In biggest-ever one-time rejig, SC recommends new CJs for 13 HCs | India News

NEW DELHI: The SC collegium led by Chief Justice of India N V Ramana on Friday recommended appointment of eight high court judges as chief justices of various HCs and transferred five HC chief justices as head of other HCs, thus taking steps to put in place new chief justices in 13 states.
The collegium also recommended transfer of 28 high court judges from their present HCs to other HCs, many on request and others for better administration of justice, apex court sources said. Never before had the collegium at one go ordered such a big one-time reshuffle involving 41 HC judges – 13 HC chief justices and 28 judges. All the recommendations are expected to reach the Union law ministry by Saturday for processing.
Justice Rajesh Bindal who, as acting chief justice of Calcutta HC, had stirred a few feathers in West Bengal by staying the bail granted to TMC ministers and MLAs arrested in Narada scam on a letter petition by CBI, has been recommended to be appointed as the Chief Justice of Allahabad HC, the biggest HC in the country with a sanctioned strength of 160 judges.
Chief Justice of Tripura HC Akil Kureshi has been recommended to be transferred to Rajasthan HC as CJ. The insistence on recommending justice Kureshi’s name for appointment as SC judge by a former collegium member had virtually deadlocked collegium deliberations for nearly a year. The collegium could resume HC judge and CJ selection after the retirement of that SC judge last month. Within a month, the SC collegium headed by CJI Ramana filled 9 vacant posts in SC and recommended over 110 names for appointment as HC judges.
The collegium, also comprising Justices U U Lalit, A M Khanwilkar, D Y Chandrachud and L N Rao held marathon meetings spanning days, which resulted in the CJI and four most senior SC judges sitting half an hour late in the court on two consecutive days to finalise names of HC judges suitable for heading state judiciaries as well as transfer five CJs to other HCs for better administration of justice.
Other 4 CJs who have been transferred are: Justice Arup Kumar Goswami, transferred from Andhra Pradesh HC to Chhattisgarh HC; Justice Mohd Rafiq from Madhya Pradesh to Himachal Pradesh HC; Justice Indrajit Mahanty from Rajasthan HC to Tripura HC and Justice Biswanath Somadder from Meghalaya to Sikkim HC.
Justice Prakash Srivastava, who is the senior-most judge in MP HC, has been recommended to be appointed as the chief justice of Calcutta HC. Acting chief justice of Chhattisgarh HC Prashant Kumar Mishra is recommended to be appointed as the chief justice of Andhra Pradesh HC.
Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi of Allahabad HC has been recommended for appointment as the CJ of Karnataka HC. Justice Satish Chandra Sharma, whose parent HC is Madhya Pradesh and is presently posted as judge in Karnataka HC, has been recommended for appointment as chief justice of Telangana HC. The HC chief justice post was vacant after appointment of Justice Hima Kohli as judge of the SC.
Justice Ranjit V More from Bombay HC and presently the most senior judge in Meghalaya HC, has been recommended for appointment as chief justice of Meghalaya. Karnataka HC judge Arvind Kumar has been recommended for appointment as CJ of Gujarat HC. Justice Ravi Vijaykumar Malimath, who hails from Karnataka and presently the acting chief justice of Himachal Pradesh, has been recommended for appointment as Chief Justice of Madhya Pradesh HC.

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