The Chief Justice of India (CJI) DY Chandrachud on Thursday stated in court that the Supreme Court will have three ceremonial benches tomorrow on the occasion of three Supreme Court judges who are retiring during the summer vacations.
The CJI made the statement in response to counsels seeking dates for their cases for tomorrow (May 19). CJI DY Chandrachud stated that the Supreme Court will be very busy tomorrow.
He added, “We can’t take matters up tomorrow. If it’s urgent, bring it up before the vacation bench. Tomorrow, we have three ceremonial benches, as three judges are retiring.”
The Chief Justice referred to three judges: Justice KM Joseph, Justice Ajay Rastogi, and Justice V Ramasubramanian. While all three judges are scheduled to retire in June, their ceremonial benches will be conducted tomorrow because it is the Supreme Court’s final working day before the summer vacation.
The retiring judge will sit in a “ceremonial bench” with the Chief Justice of India on the last working day, as per the tradition. The bench is named “ceremonial” since it will not hear any court cases and is held to honour the retiring judge. The CJI and bar members will bid farewell to the retiring judge, who will respond with a speech.
The three judges are retiring following the recent retirements of Justice S Abdul Nazeer in January 2023, as well as Justice Dinesh Maheshwari and Justice MR Shah just a few days ago. In 2023, a total of nine Supreme Court judges will retire.
Here is more information about the retiring judges:
- Justice KM Joseph: 16 June, 2023
Justice KM Joseph, who was appointed to the Supreme Court on August 7, 2018, will retire on June 16, 2023. Justice Joseph presided over the Constitution Bench hearing the slew of petitions seeking an independent system for appointing Election Commissioners. He was also a member of the constitutional bench that upheld the constitutional validity of state amendments to the central law Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act made by the states of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, and Maharashtra to allow the conduct of animal sports such as Jalikattu, Kambala, and bull-cart racing in their respective states.
- Justice Ajay Rastogi: 17 June, 2023
Justice Ajay Rastogi is scheduled to retire the day following Justice Joseph, on June 17, 2023. On November 2, 2018, Justice Rastogi was appointed to the Supreme Court. Prior to this, he served as Chief Justice of the Tripura High Court and later as the Acting Chief Justice of the Rajasthan High Court from April 14th to May 13th, 2016. Justice Rastogi was on the bench that dismissed Bilkis Bano’s review petition, which sought review of the May 2022 judgement, which held that the Gujarat Government had jurisdiction to decide the remission applications of 11 convicts sentenced to life in prison for gangrape and murder during the 2002 Gujarat riots.
- Justice V Ramasubramanian: 29 June, 2023
Justice V Ramasubramanian will retire on June 29, 2023. On September 23, 2019, Justice Ramasubramanian was appointed to the Supreme Court of India. Prior to this, on June 22, 2019, he was sworn in as Chief Justice of the Himachal Pradesh High Court. Justice Ramasubramanian was a member of the Constitution Bench that affirmed the validity of demonetisation, observing that the term “recommendation” in Section 26(2) of the RBI Act would imply a consultative process between the Reserve Bank of India’s Central Board and the Central Government.