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Wednesday, 11 September 2019

Why has Justice Tahilramani's resignation become the cause of controversy and connection with Gujarat?

Madras High Court Chief Justice Vijaya or Tahilramani has resigned after being transferred to the Meghalaya High Court. The incident has raised questions about the functioning of the Supreme Court's college.
Top lawmakers have called the Supreme Court's collegium-replacement decision a "wrong", "unreasonable step" and "harmful", raising questions about the college's working system.
Well-known lawmaker Prashant Bhushan said that the Supreme Court's collegium made the wrong decision.
"In my opinion, the decision taken by the collegium of the Supreme Court is wrong. It should be reviewed. It seems that the government wanted to teach him (Tahir Ramani) a lesson, as he made a judgment in the Bilkis Bano case," 
Dushyant Dave, another senior law aide to the Supreme Court, said that it appears that the college could not save its own 'good' judges.
"The tragic aspect of the collegium's performance has been reflected in this. It seems that the college cannot save our good judges."
"There seems to be a lot of bias in the workings of the college. Appointments have been made or promoted to those who are college favorites," 
"Judges who are slightly against the government or who feel against the government are being targeted. It is a pity that the college is becoming a hindrance to playing in the hands of the executive wing." He added.
He said that "nobody knows how things are going in college, because they never reveal the true reasons for their decisions."
Questioning the method of working of the collegium, Dave said that when the Supreme Court thought about the construction of the college in 1992, it was expected to act independently of the appointment, recommendation and transfer of judges, but I do not see it happening.
"I think the college has become a loser, it has failed, it has failed in the last decade," Dave said.
Former Additional Solicitor General and Supreme Court Senior Lawyer Vikas Singh said the collegium has insulted Tahilramani by deciding the transfer.
"The change is very humiliating for him. I am happy to say that he resigned against the college's decision. This step is unreasonable. People in the judiciary suffer and do not protest, but here they protested and eventually resigned. "
"It's not fair to treat anyone this way in the higher judiciary. It seems to have been done intentionally,"
The Supreme Court's college has four of the most senior judges.
At present, the then Chief Justice of India, Ranjan Gogoi, will be the next Chief Justice Sharad Arvind Bobde, Judge N. V. Ramna, Arun Mishra and Rohinton Fali are the best.
Judges are appointed in the Supreme Court and the High Courts as recommended by the Collegium.
After the collegium ordered the transfer on August 28, Tahilramani officially requested a change in the decision.
However, his reconsideration application was not accepted and the transfer order was upheld. After that, Justice Tahilramani resigned on September 7.
This is not the first case that a High Court judge has resigned due to a college decision.
Two years ago, in 2017, Judge Jayant Patel also resigned from the Karnataka High Court after being transferred to the Allahabad High Court.
He was to be appointed Chief Justice of the Karnataka High Court. He has ordered a CBI inquiry into the Ishrat Jahan encounter case.
Judge Tahilramani was appointed as a judge in the Bombay High Court on June 26, 2001. He became the Chief Judge of the Madras High Court on August 9 last year. He was due to retire on October 2nd next year.
While he was acting chief justice of the Bombay High Court, on May 2017, he upheld the verdict of life imprisonment convicted of 11 accused in the Bilkis Bano gang rap case. The Supreme Court has directed the court to turn the case from Gujarat to Maharashtra court.
Talking about the issue, lawyer Shobha Gupta, who fought the Bilkis Bano case, said, "In my view, he was an excellent judge. It would have been better if he had worked till retirement," However, he declined to comment further on the issue.
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