SC wonders how its two-judge bench usurped powers of CJI

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Bhushan said the court has ordered for a hearing by a Constitution Bench, so "what else can be asked for".

Jaiswal's petition was filed even as a plea by the NGO Campaign for Judicial Accountability and Reforms seeking a similar probe in the case was already listed before the bench headed by Justice AK Sikri.

In its order, the bench reiterated the sole authority of the Chief Justice as the master of the judges roster, which means he alone had the right to decide on the forum of a bench.

Making it clear that they were not underestimating the seriousness of the matter, the court in its order said let the appropriate order be passed to tag the petition with the one by Jaiswal, which was referred to a five-judges constitution bench on Thursday by the bench of Justice Chelameswar and Justice S. Abdul Nazeer.

Earlier in the day, the bench of Justice Sikri and Justice Ashok Bhushan took exception to the manner in which the second petition by Jaiswal was filed, and was heard by the bench headed by Justice Chelameswar, asking Bhushan as to what was the urgency. The note by the registrar on the directions of the CJI, says that on 6 November, the CJI had directed that matters brought up by oral mentioning either be presented to the CJI at 3 pm or any such time as is indicated by him or to a bench directed by him.

The Supreme Court on Friday termed the allegations of bribes taken in the name of judges as "very serious" and asserted that no one would be allowed to "impure the stream of justice". The CBI had conducted searches at eight locations, including the residence of the Justice (retired) Quddusi before filing a case against him. This petition was first posted before a bench headed by Justice Chalameswar on November 10.

Renowned Supreme Court lawyer Prashant Bhushan on Friday stormed out of a hearing in the apex court while yelling at the Chief Justice of India Justice Deepak Misra. However, he remarked that "the court can't function like this".

The happenings in the court on Thursday, too, were intriguing. The two were accused of assuring the college representative of getting favourable orders from the top court.

What happened in the Supreme Court on Friday morning?

It may be recalled that on October 12, a Division Bench of Supreme Court, headed by Justice Ranjan Gogoi and comprising Navin Sinha, had rejected an intervention petition filed by the Assam Pradesh Congress party challenging the Gauhati High Court order rejecting the validity of the Panchayat certificate issued as proof of citizenship for the goal of the updating of NRC.

The court also issued notice to Centre and the CBI on the plea seeking setting up of SIT headed by ex-SC judge under its monitoring.

Perturbed by yesterday's order, the CJI, without taking names of the concerned judges, said there were hundreds of matters listed in the court daily and if the orders were passed like this, then the court can not function.

Both the petitioners also doubt the intentions of the CBI. "There can not be a command or order directing Chief Justice of India to constitute a particular kind of a bench".

Disposing the petition by lawyer R.P. Luthra, a bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, Justice A.K. Sikri and Justice Amitava Roy recalled the October 27 order by a two-Judge bench relating to delay in the finalisation of the memorandum of procedure.

The names of the college's trustees B P Yadav and Palash Yadav is also there in the FIR lodged by the CBI.

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