SC says no information released by court on complaints against members of higher judiciary; in-house inquiries confidential

The Supreme Court, on the administrative side, Thursday asserted that it would never release information about in-house inquiries into complaints against members of the higher judiciary as they were “totally and wholly” confidential in nature.

The SC’s statement came in the backdrop of media reports quoting anonymous Supreme Court “sources” claiming that CJI SA Bobde had sought an explanation from the senior-most judge of the Supreme Court, Justice NV Ramana with regard to the allegations levelled against him by Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister, YS Jaganmohan Reddy.

“Supreme Court is being quoted as the source of the information. It is clarified once and for all that inquiries under the “In-house Procedure” being totally and wholly confidential in nature, Supreme Court never releases information in matters incidental thereto”, the statement read.

The report also said CJI Bobde asked the Andhra CM to send his complaint in the form of an affidavit (given under oath) which he did.

Andhra Pradesh CM Reddy who is facing multiple cases of corruption had written to the CJI on October 6 alleging that Justice Ramana has been influencing the Andhra Pradesh High Court against his Government. The letter also cast aspersions on the several sitting judges of the Andhra Pradesh High Court including the Chief Justice of that High Court.

Supreme Court Advocates-On-Record Association (SCAORA), the Delhi High Court Bar Association (DHCBA), Supreme Court Women Lawyers Association (SCWLA) and the Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) had slammed Chief Minister for writing a letter to the Chief Justice of India (CJI) casting aspersions on Justice N V Ramana, the seniormost judge of the Supreme Court who is in line of becoming the CJI in April 2021.