For the first time ever, four senior Supreme Court judges addressed the media on Friday, January 12. The press conference was held at Justice Jasti Chelameshwar's residence and also saw Justices Ranjan Gogoi, Madan Lokur and Kurian Joseph addressing the media.
Speaking to the media, Justice Chelameswar called this "an extraordinary event in Indian history," and said that there are times when the Supreme Court's administration is "not in order" and there have been many incidents in the last few months that have compelled them to put the facts before the nation."
"All our efforts have failed and we are all convinced that unless this institution is not preserved, democracy can't be protected in the country," he added.
He also said that there have been times when things are done in a certain way that raises questions about the integrity of the Supreme Court.
"About a couple of months ago, four of us gave a signed letter to CJI. We wanted a particular thing to be done in a particular manner. It was done, but in such a way that it raised further questions on integrity of institution. The same thing happened this morning. We are discharging our duty to the nation by telling you what's what."
The press conference and these details come just a few weeks after Chelameswar had a tiff with Chief Justice of India, Dipak Misra over a case hearing. After the tiff, Misra had re-alloted the case, which raised quite a few eyebrows. The particular case was reportedly on the alleged corruption in the judiciary and involved the bribes paid by a medical college in Uttar Pradesh that wanted a government order, which blacklisted the institution, revoked.
The CJI is yet to comment on the matter.
We are not mentioning details only to avoid embarrassing the institution but note that such departures have already damaged the image of this intuition to some extent: Supreme Court Judges in letter to CJI— ANI (@ANI) January 12, 2018
Issues don't matter. It is their complaint on administrative matter. They are only 4, there are 23 others. 4 get together and show the Chief Justice in a poor light. It is immature & childish behaviour: Justice R S Sodhi (retd) on press conference pic.twitter.com/jGFOtMCp4d— ANI (@ANI) January 12, 2018
With no pleasure we are compelled take the decision to call a press conference. The administration of the SC is not in order & many things which are less than desirable have happened in last few months :Justice J.Chelameswar
In a first, Justice J. Chelameswar & 3 other judges of the Supreme Court to hold a press conference at 12.15 pm.— ANI (@ANI) January 12, 2018
This is a developing story