NEW DELHI: Supreme Court Bar Association President Adish C Aggarwala on Thursday expressed "utter shock" over an open letter written by senior advocate Dushyant Dave to Chief Justice of India D Y Chandrachud over shifting of sensitive cases from one bench to another, alleging such letters are written at the behest of some influential litigants.
"Of late, there has been a growing tendency of writing such letters to sitting Chief Justices of India to exert undue pressure on the administration of justice," he said.
Maintaining that the entire Bar, except a few individuals, are fully satisfied with leadership of the CJI, both on the judicial side as well as on the administrative side, Aggarwala the CJI to ignore "such malicious, motivated and dubious attempts".
"If the Chief Justice of India succumbs to such pressure tactics, it would sound a death knell to the independence of this great institution at the hands of certain vested interests," he said.
Requesting the CJI and other Supreme Court judges to ignore it, Aggarwala said these attempts which are nothing but self-serving attacks on the independence of the judiciary.
"Owing to this misbehaviour by some senior counsel, the Bar suffers disgrace and the harmony between the Bar and the Bench gets disturbed. The ill behaving lawyers still stand to benefit because they attract clients who want to put pressure on the courts to decide cases in a certain manner," he said.
Aggarwala referred to similar attempts made in the past in year 2019, 2020 and again in 2020.
"The Administration cannot waste its precious time entertaining every letter making wild and imaginary accusations. The assignment of cases is not open to question on the judicial or the administrative side," he said.
Terming the writing of such letters as "malicious, and calculated to embarrass the administration", he said the time has come where one should put an end to the practice.
"This will subserve the interest of the Bar and will strengthen the administration of justice. It is essential to curb every attempt to scandalise the court mechanisms with insinuations and falsehood, aimed at mischievously shaking the confidence of the public in our courts," he said.
On December 6, Dave, former SCBA president expressed anguish over shifting of some sensitive matters involving human rights, freedom of speech, democracy, and functioning of statutory and constitutional institutions, from one bench to another bench of the Supreme Court.
He claimed shifting out of such cases was in clear "disregard of the Rules, the Handbook on Practice and Office Procedure referred above and established Practice and Convention".