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EXCLUSIVE | No Other Justice or CJI Knew About the Explosive Dissent of Four Supreme Court Judges

It was unanimously decided that the four judges would meet the media on Friday itself, without delaying it any further. However, there was no time left to inform the other judges about their decision.

Utkarsh Anand | CNN-News18

Updated:January 13, 2018, 5:09 PM IST
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EXCLUSIVE | No Other Justice or CJI Knew About the Explosive Dissent of Four Supreme Court Judges
Supreme Court Justice Jasti Chelameswar along with other judges addresses a press conference in New Delhi on Friday. (PTI photo)
New Delhi: When the four senior-most Supreme Court judges decided to "address the nation" and "discharge their debt", no other judge in the apex court or even the Chief Justice of India (CJI), Dipak Misra had any inkling of what was about to happen.

It was a particular moment when the four judges, including Justice Ranjan Gogoi, who is next in the line to become the CJI, decided to do something that has never happened before.

Justices J Chelameswar, Madan B Lokur and Kurian Joseph held a meeting with Justice Gogoi, who took a call to shed his reluctance and come out in the open against the "unfortunate events" that impacted the "independence of the judiciary" -- as Justice Chelameswar communicated at the press briefing.

Since Justice Gogoi happens to be the next CJI, whose name shall have to be recommended by the incumbent CJI Misra to the President for appointment, it was perhaps the most difficult decision for him. But the fact that all four were in unison that the overall functioning of the CJI's office seemed to have been affected by the manner of the present administration, Justice Gogoi also agreed to come along.

It was then unanimously decided that they shall meet the media on Friday itself, without delaying it any further.

However, there was no time left to inform the other judges about their decision.

Sources tell News18 that the four dissenting judges wanted to consult a few other judges too, who, according to their opinion also shared the same grievances. But since the court had to start functioning at 10.30 am and all the other judges had to go to their respective courtrooms, it was not possible to apprise them of the move. Besides, these four judges also had to go to their courts and conclude hearing of the cases listed before them.

According to the sources, it was Justice Chelameswar who got the draft of the seven-page letter prepared in his office. This was later approved by the other three judges.

Thus, the upheaval on Friday did not only leave the country in a tizzy but also the brethren in the Supreme Court. They were equally surprised by the unprecedented act of the four judges.

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| Edited by: Sanchari Chatterjee
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