A retired Judge of the Andhra Pradesh High Court has written a letter to the CJI, urging him not to consider the Andhra CM's letter, imputing various allegations on the second-senior most Judge at the Supreme Court, Justice NV Ramana, as the same is motivated by a personal agenda.
"The letter Is liable to be treated as scandalizing the Court, attracting appropriate action"
Justice (Retd.) Noushad Ali, has emphasized that the CM's letter is a comeback to Justice Ramana's recent order dated September 16, 2020, whereby the Judge passed orders for expediting trial of cases concerning politicians.
Justice Ali has pointed out that YS Jagan Reddy is an accused person in as many as 31 cases, out of which 11 are being investigated by the CBI and 7 by the Enforcement Directorate.
"The timing of the letter is worthy to be noted. Hon'ble Supreme Court through the Bench headed by Justice Ramana passed Orders on 16.9.2020 to expedite trial of cases, concerning politicians. On 6th October the Bench asked for some information to enable passing substantive Orders to fast track long Pending trials. The Chief Minister letter is also dated 6.10.2020," the letter states.
It is alleged that the "orchestrated allegations" against Justice Ramana are designed to deny him the right to succeed to the office of Chief Justice of India.
Referring to the issues raised by Reddy in his letter, Justice Ali pointed out that those matters are already pending consideration on the Judicial side of the Court and thus, it is improper to insist that they be examined at the administrative side.
"The propriety and nature of the letter seeking administrative intervention of the Hon'ble Chief Justice has to be examined in the light of the challenge of the Same allegations on the Judicial side of the court. In my humble Opinion, petitioning for the administrative interference of the Hon'ble Chief Justice, when the court is seized of the matter on its Judicial Jurisdiction amounts to direct interference with the Administration of Justice."
"By seeking such intervention, the Chief Minister is obviously putting pressure on the court to Pass orders as desired by him. His letter double edged, that if orders are passed as desired in his favour he would stand vindicated or else he can go the public that Supreme court is also against him."
Justice Ali is further displeased by the CM's suggestion that the Executive has to check the functioning of the Judiciary.
In his letter, Reddy had, inter alia, written, "each one of the three branches of Governance are designed to act as checks against the other for balancing the great powers endowed by the constitution."
Taking exception to this proposition, Justice Ali wrote,
"In my humble opinion it suggests that a Chief Minister or a Government can put the judiciary or parliament in check. I am afraid whether such is the position in the constitution. In my opinion the Chief Minister is clearly under an illusion."
Lastly, he claimed that Reddy had "orchestrated attacks" on the Judiciary through all the Assembly Speaker, Ministers and legislators in his Government, so as to lower public confidence in the judicial institution.
On October 11, Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy, the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, wrote a complaint to the Chief Justice of India, S A Bobde, alleging that some High Court judges are attempting to protect the interests of the major opposition party, Telugu Desom Party, in politically sensitive matters.
A striking feature of the complaint - details of which were revealed to the media in a presser by Ajaya Kellam, the advisor of the CM, on Saturday evening - was that it had accused senior Supreme Court judge, Justice N V Ramana, who is next in line to be the Chief Justice of India, of influencing the administration of justice in the High Court.
A plea has also been moved before the Supreme Court stating that the contents of Reddy's letter have put the confidence of people in Judiciary at stake.
Another PIL seeks Reddy's removal from the of the Chief Minister for "misusing his position and power as a Chief Minister by making a false, vague, political and scandalized remarks and allegations openly in the public and media against the senior most sitting judge of this Hon'ble Court and render Justice."