SC Likely to Challenge Delhi HC’s Ruling on CJI Office

The Supreme Court is likely to challenge a ruling delivered by the Delhi High Court on Wednesday that even the Chief Justice of India’s (CJI’s) office is a public authority and falls under the purview of the Right to Information Act (RTI), said top Supreme Court officials.

“We have just received the copy of the High Court judgment. We are examining it at present. It will take a few days before we can say what to do with it,” Supreme Court Secretary General MP Bhadran was quoted as saying by IANS.

While Bhagran declined to categorically state how the Apex Court would act on the issue, other senior court officials said that the Supreme Court “may have to sit in judgement over the high court ruling”.

According to the court officials, the issue that has to be resolved is if the office of CJI falls under the purview of the RTI. Chief Justice KG Balakrishnan is opposed to the view.

“In the name of transparency, the office of the Chief Justice could not be stripped naked,” an official said.

It may be mentioned that on Wednesday a Delhi High Court bench had ruled: “The CJI is a public authority under the RTI Act. The CJI holds the information pertaining to asset declarations in his capacity as (the) Chief Justice.”

Ruling came on an appeal by the Apex Court’s registry action the Central Information Commission’s order the CJI was a public authority.

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