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New Delhi: A petition in the Supreme Court has challenged former chief justice of India Ranjan Gogoi’s appointment to the Rajya Sabha. Gogoi was nominated to the Rajya Sabha by the Narendra Modi government in March 2020, four months after he retired from the Supreme Court.
At the time of the nomination, several constitutional experts, rights activists and others had criticised the decision, saying the constitutional separation of powers between the executive and the judiciary was being blurred.
The recent plea, filed by lawyer and social worker Satish S. Kambiye, asks by what authority, qualification and title Gogoi has been nominated to the Upper House, LiveLaw reported. After an inquiry, the plea says, Gogoi should be removed from parliament with or without retrospective effect.
As per the biodata provided on the Rajya Sabha website, the petitioner has noted, Gogoi does not have any books or publications to his credit, and has not been involved in any social, scientific, literary or or cultural activities either. “At least, no information of the respondent has been given about his special knowledge or practical experience towards the literature, science, art and social service on the website,” he continues.
Given these facts, the petition says, the government notification nominating Gogoi – under Article 80 (1) (a) read with (3) of the Constitution – does not stand as the requirements for these clauses are not fulfilled.
Soon after the appointment, academic and activist Madhu Kishwar had filed a PIL again the move. In her petition, she alleged that Gogoi’s appointment casts a shadow in the independence of the judiciary.