- Justice Gogoi became the 46th Chief Justice of India today
- Will work out parameters for urgent mentioning of cases, he said
- Issue of rostering of the Supreme Court judges made headlines in January
Justice Ranjan Gogoi, who became the 46th Chief Justice of India today, issued a new roster hours after taking oath, in which he kept most of the Public Interest Litigations with himself. Some of the cases will be heard by Justice Madan B Lokur.
"No urgent mentioning of cases will be allowed" till certain "parameters" are fixed for it, the new Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi said. "We will work out the parameters then we will see as to how mentioning will be done... If somebody is going to be hanged tomorrow, then we can understand (urgency)", Chief Justice Gogoi said.
President Ram Nath Kovind administered the oath to the 63-year-old Justice Gogoi at a brief ceremony in Rashtrapati Bhavan's Darbar Hall this morning. Justice Ranjan Gogoi, who succeeds Justice Dipak Misra, will have a tenure of a little over 13 months and would retire on November 17, 2019.
The issue of rostering of the Supreme Court judges had made headlines in January after four of the court's most senior judges held an unprecedented press conference to flag their concerns on the issue. Cases of national importance, they said, were being assigned to judges who are lower in the top court's hierarchy.
After a petition was also filed on the issue, a two-judge bench of the top court upheld the verdict of two earlier benches, declaring that the Chief Justice of India was the "master of the roster".
"The Chief Justice has the role of first among equals and is empowered to exercise leadership in administration of the court which includes assignment of cases," said Justices AK Sikri and Ashok Bhushan. Chief Justice Dipak Misra, who was the object of criticism, thereafter put up the roster in the website of the top court.
In his last weeks, Chief Justice Misra, at the head of a five-judge constitution bench, had taken calls on a record number of cases that had a huge impact on the country's social fabric. From gay rights to adultery and entrance for woman in Kerala's famous Sabarimala temple, the bench had delivered a series of landmark verdicts.