Seven opposition parties, led by Congress Party on April 20 have met M Venkaiah Naidu, vice president and Rajya Sabha chairman, to submit the notice seeking the impeachment of Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra. The congress is supported by other major opposition parties, including the Samajwadi Party, the Bahujan Samaj Party, the Rashtriya Janta Dal, the Communist Party of India, and the Nationalist Congress Party.
Reportedly TMC and DMK were initially in favour of an impeachment motion against the CJI, but are no longer supporting the impeachment motion.
Among those who attended the meeting in the Parliament were Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad, accompanied by Kapil Sibal and Randeep Surjewala, besides CPI’s D Raja and NCP’s Vandana Chavan have attended the meeting.
During the press conference, Congress leaders said that the parties had to move the notice with a “very heavy heart” since CJI Misra had not “asserted the independence of judiciary in the face of interference by the executive”.
The notice comes a day after the apex court rejected a bunch of petitions seeking an independent investigation into the death of Judge BH Loya, who was hearing the Sohrabuddin Sheikh encounter case. The apex court judgment was delivered by a bench headed by CJI Misra.
Congress leaders said they have the support of more than 60 Rajya Sabha members. Such notices require the signatures of at least 50 members of a House.
“You require 50 signatures of the Rajya Sabha and 100 signatures in the Lok Sabha. That is all you require. The law does not say that every Opposition party must be represented,” said Congress leader Sibal.
Congress leaders added the people of India must protect this institution from the kind of gross interferences by the government and be protected also from within.
Talks regarding the impeachment motion against CJI initiated in January after Justices J Chelameswar, Ranjan Gogoi, M B Lokur, and Kurian Joseph held a press conference and issued a statement to say that the situation in the Supreme Court was “not in order” and that many “less than desirable” things had taken place.