Supreme Court Closes For 44-Day Summer Break After A Tumultuous Week; Reopens On July 2. Vacation Benches Assigned

Supreme Court Closes For 44-Day Summer Break After A Tumultuous Week; Reopens On July 2. Vacation Benches Assigned

A happening final week in the Supreme Court witnessed two rare events- a midnight to day break hearing and a sitting on a Saturday (today), both relating to urgently ordered proceedings to hear pleas related to the ongoing Karnataka government formation drama.

It also saw a rather quiet exit of Justice Chelameswar who otherwise made a lot of noise in past four months and raised a lot of hue and cry within the judiciary and legal fraternity with the unprecedented press conference against CJI followed by explosive letters raising several crucial issues effecting the higher judiciary

The Supreme Court closed  for a 44-day summer break ( May 19 to July2 ) after a tumultuous final week which witnessed two rare events- a midnight to day break hearing and a sitting on a Saturday, both relating to urgent proceedings to hear pleas related to the  ongoing Karnataka government formation drama.


The much-awaited pronouncement of the verdict in Delhi’s Kejriwal Government Vs Lt Governor (Centre) regarding who has the control over Delhi administration-LG or the elected government  did not happen though was expected.

The judgment was reserved way back on December 6, 2017.

Now with the apex court closing for summer vacations, it is unlikely to be pronounced till it reopens on July 2. By then seven months would have passed since reserving of the order.

It is to be noted that even the Constitution Bench for the matter was set-up after senior counsels representing the Delhi government, including former Solicitor General Gopal Subramanium had consistently mentioned the matter before benches headed by successive Chief Justice of India, including Justice TS Thakur, Justice JS Khehar and the current CJI, Justice Dipak Mishra, for over a year, that a Constitution Bench be set-up to resolve the dispute which has severely affected the Delhi government functioning.

It is to be noted that at a recent public function, interacting with senior journalist Karan Thapar, Justice J Chelameswar had stated that keeping judgments reserved for a long time defeats the very purpose of administration of justice.

Justice Chelameswar’s statement was in response to a question whether the Supreme Court should have kept the verdict in former Tamil Nadu chief minister late J Jayalalitha’s disproportionate assets case reserved for six months.


Honoring convention, Justice Chelameswar spent his last working day in Courtroom no. 1, alongside Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra and Justice D.Y. Chandrachud.

While the Bench assembled at 10:35 am for a fairly brief period of time with 11 matters listed before it, Advocate Prashant Bhushan, Senior Advocate Rajiv Dutta, and Advocate Gopal Sankaranarayanan approached Justice Chelameswar to give farewell speeches before the Bench could rise for the day.

Mr. Bhushan stepped forth to thank Justice Chelameswar for his contribution to the institution, saying, "On behalf of the Bar, I would like to say that it was a pleasure and honor to have appeared before you… future generations will remember your contribution to democracy and to the country."

Advocate Dutta and Advocate Sankaranarayanan similarly thanked him and reminded him that he would always be remembered and appreciated.

The farewell planned by the Supreme Court Bar Association for Justice Chelameswar yesterday, May 18 had to be cancelled as he refused to accept the invitation and said “I have always been against such functions”

At a reception hosted by Lawyers Collective Friday night, Justice Chelameswar said ever since he initiated the process to democratize the institution, younger generation stood by him while “established and acknowledged constitutional lawyers and jurists attacked him”


Meanwhile the Supreme Court has notified six Vacation Benches that would be hearing matters during the Court’s summer vacation

May 21 to May 27: Justice A.M. Khanwilkar and Justice Navin Sinha

May 28 to June 3: Justice L. Nageswara Rao and Justice Mohan M. Shantanagoudar

June 4 to June 10: Justice A.K. Goel and Justice Ashok Bhushan

June 11 to June 17: Justice U.U. Lalit and Justice Deepak Gupta

June 18 to June 24: Justice S. Abdul Nazeer and Justice Indu Malhotra

June 25 to July 1: Justice Arun Mishra and Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul.


During the vacations, the Registry will remain open from 10 am to 5 pm on all days, except Saturday, Sunday and holidays. These Benches will hear urgent miscellaneous matters on Monday and regular hearing matters from Tuesday to Friday. The Court will reopen on July 2.