Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has cleared the elevation of the Chief Justices of four High Courts for appointment as judges of the Supreme Court.

They are Justices Ananga Kumar Patnaik (Madhya Pradesh), Tirath Singh Thakur (Punjab and Haryana), Surinder Singh Nijjar (Calcutta) and K.S. Radhakrishnan (Gujarat).

Law Ministry sources told The Hindu that the file had been sent to President Pratibha Patil for her approval and the appointment notification is expected next week.

The clearance came after the Supreme Court collegium, headed by Chief Justice of India K.G. Balakrishnan, de-linked the name of Karnataka High Court Chief Justice P.D. Dinakaran from among the five names originally proposed.

In other postings, Justice S.J. Mukhopadhaya of the Madras High Court, belonging to Bihar, is being elevated as Chief Justice of the Gujarat High Court. The earlier recommendation that he be appointed Chief Justice of the Rajasthan High Court did not materialise. Subsequently, he was recommended for appointment as Chief Justice of the Himachal Pradesh High Court. Now he is being sent to Gujarat.

The recommendation to elevate Justice Ibrahim Kalifulla, the seniormost judge of the Madras High Court, as Chief Justice of the Himachal Pradesh High Court has been cancelled. Instead, Justice Kurian Joseph, the seniormost judge of the Kerala High Court, is being appointed to that post.

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