Implications of Delhi HC’s Ruling to Be Considered by SC Full Court: CJI

A day after Delhi High Court’s landmark ruling, Chief Justice of India KG Balakrishnan has said that the full court of the Supreme Court will take up for consideration the implication of high court’s verdict holding that the office of the CJI comes within the ambit of the Right to Information Act, said reports.

Declining any further comment on the matter, Balakrishnan said that he was yet to go through the judgement and that he had only read reports which appeared in the newspapers.

“I have not seen the judgement so far. Let me see it. So far, I have only seen your valuable report,” he was quoted as saying by ‘Indian Express’.

He made the statement on the sidelines of the farewell function organised at the apex court for Justice Tarun Chatterjee, who retires today.

Yesterday, a three-judge bench of the Delhi High Court headedy Chief Justice AP Shah had ruled that the office of the CJI comes under the ambit of the RTI Act.

The apex court has decided to appeal against the judgement.

The ruling was seen as jolt to Justice Balakrishnan, who has so far maintained that the CJI cannot be brought under the ambit of the transparent law.

The larger Bench upheld the decision of the single Bench which had also held the apex court registry and CJI office cannot be said to be separate organs.

The High Court had rejected the contention of the apex court that bringing the CJI’s office within the RTI Act would ‘hamper’ judicial independence and said that higher judiciary should not shy away from the transparency law.

“Judicial independence is not a privilege to a judge but a responsibility,” the High Court said, adding that the CJI cannot be said to have fiduciary relation with his fellow judges.

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