The four senior-most judges of the Supreme Court, who had virtually revolted against the Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, have been allotted important cases in the new roster made public on Thursday by the apex court.
The notification, which was issued under the order of CJI and made public on the official website of the apex court, gave the description of matters that would be dealt by justices Chelameswar, Ranjan Gogoi, M B Lokur and Kurian Joseph.
At a press conference held at Justice Chelameswar’s residence on January 12, the four seniormost judges had raised a litany of problems, including assigning of cases in the apex court, and said there were certain issues afflicting the country’s highest court.
Chief Justice Misra has kept to himself the public interest litigation (PIL) cases under the roster system that will come into effect from February 5.
Previously, the cases in the apex court were assigned by the CJI in his capacity as master of the roster.
The CJI also allocated to the bench headed by him the petitions based on letters, election cases and matters pertaining to contempt of court and constitutional functionaries.
He will also deal with cases related to commissions of enquiry, statutory appointments and appointment of other law officers, habeas corpus (a writ requiring a person under arrest to be brought before a judge or into court) matters and social justices cases.
The new roster of Supreme Court, assigns the bench headed by Justice J Chelameswar, the senior most judge after CJI Misra, matters related to judicial officers, employees of Supreme Court, high courts, district courts and tribunals for hearings.
Besides these, according to the new roster, the bench headed by Justice Chelameswar would deal with matters like labour, indirect tax, land acquisition and requisition, compensation, criminal matters and cases related to consumer protection.
Justice Gogoi, who during the presser, had answered in affirmative the concern on the allocation of PILs relating special CBI judge B H Loya to a bench headed by a particular judge, has been allocated matters relating to labour, indirect tax, company law, MRTP, TRAI, SEBI, RBI, criminal matters, contempt of court, personal law, religious and charitable endowments, mercantile laws, commercial transactions including banking etc.
He will also hear matters related to judicial officers, state excise-trading in liquor-privileges, licences and distilleries and breweries.
Similarly, a bench headed by Justice Lokur has been allocated matters including service, social justice, personal laws, land acquisition, mines and minerals and consumer protection.
He will also hear matters related to ecological imbalance: protection and conservation of forests throughout the country, protection of wild life, ban on felling trees and falling of underground water level.
Justice Joseph’s bench has been assigned to deal with matters including labour, rent Act, family law, contempt of court, personal law etc.
He will also hear matters related to religious and charitable endowments and all land laws and agriculture tenancies.