Today's Paper

Judge recuses himself from Jagan case

Justice U.U. Lalit  

Justice U.U. Lalit of the Supreme Court on Monday recused himself from hearing separate writ petitions that sought action against the Andhra Pradesh government and Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy for levelling “false, vague and political allegations” against Supreme Court judge N.V. Ramana and other High Court judges.

The judge, who leads a three-member Bench, withdrew from hearing the case, explaining that he had, as a lawyer, represented some of the parties involved in the case. Justice Lalit, one of the few senior advocates directly elevated as Supreme Court judge in the history of the court, said, “I have difficulty in hearing this... I cannot take up this matter. I have as a lawyer represented some of these parties.”

The Bench then recorded a short order, requesting Chief Justice of India (CJI) S.A. Bobde to list the case before an appropriate Bench.

Letter by CM

The petitions relate to a letter by Mr. Reddy addressed to the CJI against the judges and the subsequent revelation of its contents at a press conference.

Recently, Attorney-General K.K. Venugopal refrained from giving his statutory consent to pleas seeking contempt of court action against Mr. Reddy and his Principal Adviser Ajeya Kallam.

Mr. Venugopal said it was up to the CJI, who is “seized of the letter”, to take an appropriate decision.