Following in the footsteps of their counterparts in Gujarat and Telangana, the Madras High Court Advocates Association (MHCAA) has raised ‘strong objection’ to the Supreme Court Collegium’s decision to transfer judges from one High Court to another.
In a letter written to Chief Justice of India D.Y. Chandrachud on Friday, the organisation opposed transfer of Madras High Court Acting Chief Justice T Raja to the Rajasthan High Court, alleging that such proposals looked like the person was being disincentivised for being an efficient and decent judicial officer, holding the highest post in the state judiciary.
As per MHCAA President G. Mohana Krishnan, since September 22, 2022, when Justice Raja took over as the Acting Chief Justice of Madras High Court, he has maintained the highest decorum.
Calling him a ‘people’s judge,’ who rendered justice irrespective of the person arguing the case, the MHCAA chief said that the transfer order just about six months left before Justice Raja’s retirement, spelt ‘bad news’ for the judiciary.
It further urged the Supreme Court, the Collegium and the Government of India to drop the proposal and let Justice Raja continue in his present capacity till he attained superannuation.
The Supreme Court Collegium, headed by CJI Chandrachud, had on November 16, recommended transfer of three High Court Judges.
These included Acting Chief Justice of the Madras High Court Justice T. Raja (to the Rajasthan High Court), along with Justice A. Abhishek Reddy (Judge at the Telangana High Court) and Justice Nikhil S. Kariel (Judge at the Gujarat High Court) to the Patna High Court.
The Bar Associations of both Telangana and Gujarat High Courts have already announced strike against the decision.
A delegation from the Gujarat High Court Bar Association will meet CJI Chandrachud on Monday, so as to convince him to roll back the decision to transfer Justice Kariel.