Centre to SC: Will decide on Justice Kureshi within a week

New Delhi, Aug 16 (IANS) The Centre on Friday informed the Supreme Court it will take a call within a week on the court's Collegium recommendation of May 10 elevating the Justice Akil Kureshi as Chief Justice of the Madhya Pradesh High Court.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta contended before a bench comprising Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, Justices S.A. Bobde and S. Abdul Nazeer that he has instruction that within a week some decisions would be taken on the matter.

Mehta urged the court to consider the matter after a week, as the government is processing the documents shared by the Collegium on the judge concerned.

Earlier, the government had told the apex court it would decide on Kureshi's elevation latest by August 14. The bench adjourned the hearing on the matter and informed the parties that the administrative side will fix the date of the next hearing.

On the last date of hearing, appearing for the Centre, Mehta had requested a bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi to give 10 days more for taking the decision as Parliament was still in session. At this, the bench had said whatever decision the government wanted to take, it should be placed before the court.

The court was hearing Gujarat High Court Advocates Association's petition challenging the delay in the elevation of Justice Kureshi as Chief Justice of the Madhya Pradesh High Court. It said that the government had not cleared the file.

Senior Advocate F.S. Nariman, appearing for the association, had said the Union government should act as "distinguished communicator" on the recommendation made by the Collegium.

On May 10, the Supreme Court Collegium headed by Chief Justice Gogoi had recommended Justice Kureshi, currently the senior most judge in the Gujarat High Court, as the most suitable candidate to be appointed as the Chief Justice of the Madhya Pradesh High Court.

Disregarding the recommendation, the Centre notified the appointment of Ravi Shanker Jha as the acting Chief Justice of the Madhya Pradesh High Court last month after Justice Sanjay Kumar Seth retired on June 9.

The association has requested the court to direct the Centre to implement the Collegium's resolution of May 10.

--IANS

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