Don’t threaten, leave my court: CJI DY Chandrachud amid heated argument with lawyer
Chief Justice DY Chandrachud on Thursday ordered Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) president Vikas Singh to leave the courtroom following a heated exchange between the two during the hearing of a land allotment case. The CJI also directed the lawyer to keep his voice down, while the lawyer told the CJI and a bench of Justices PS Narasimha and JB Pardiwala that he had been struggling for the last six months to get the matter listed.
“On a petition by the SCBA, the land of Appu Ghar came to the Supreme Court and the Bar was reluctantly given only one block. The construction on the land was to begin during the tenure of former CJI NV Ramana. For the past six months, we have been waiting for the matter to be listed. are fighting for. Treat me like a common litigant,” Singh said. The CJI remarked, “You cannot demand land like this. You tell us that we are sitting idle all day.”
To this, Singh replied, “I am not saying that you are sitting idle all day. I am only trying to list the matter. If that is not done, I will go ahead and send it to your residence.” But have to take it.” I do not want the Bar to be taken up like this.” Chandrachud then became agitated and said, “Don’t threaten the Chief Justice. Is this a way to behave? Please sit down. It will not be listed as such. Please leave my court. I will not give such a list. I won’t be scared of you.”
“Mr Vikas Singh, please do not raise your voice. As a Chairman, you should be the mentor and leader of the bar. I am sorry, you are lowering the level of communication. You have filed an Article 32 petition, in which It has been claimed that the land allotted to the Supreme Court should be handed over to the Bar for construction of chambers. We will deal with it when the matter comes. Please feel free to twist our arm to give us the relief you want. Don’t try,” said the CJI.
He said, “You are demanding the Supreme Court to give the allotted land to the Bar. I have announced my decision. It will be taken up on the 17th and it will not be on the first board.” The SCBA president said, “If my lord wants to dismiss it, please do it. But don’t do it because it is not listed.” The CJI replied, “I have pronounced my judgement. It is on 17th March and it will not be listed at serial number 1, Mr. Singh.” The senior counsel refused to go down and said that the Bar has always supported the court.
He said, “I never want to be disrespectful but I am forced to do so in this case.” Chandrachud then told Singh, “I am the Chief Justice. I am here since March 29, 2000. I have been in this profession for 22 years. I have never allowed myself to be intimidated by any member of the bar, litigant or anyone ” Otherwise, I will not do this in the last two years of my career.” Refusing to remain silent, Singh said, “This is not the attitude. If the Bar is cooperating with the court, it does not mean that it should be taken for a ride. This is something I feel very strongly about. I want to make it that much clearer.”
The CJI then said, “Please settle your agenda outside the courtroom,” and called for the next matter. As the mention of the matters ended, senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing in the court for the Shiv Sena case, apologized to the bench on behalf of the Bar and said, “I am sorry for what happened this morning. I apologise.” There is a Lakshman Rekha which none of us should cross. I do not think that the bar should exceed the limit of propriety,” the CJI said, adding, “There is no reason to behave like this. Above 70-80 cases a day. For all these cases I sit with my staff in the evening and give them dates. Senior advocate Niraj Kishan Kaul also apologized and said, “We all join in and feel equally pained by what happened.”
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