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Chief Justice S.A. Bobde will now constitute a new bench to hear the plea for removal of Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy as Andhra Pradesh chief minister. (Mint)
Chief Justice S.A. Bobde will now constitute a new bench to hear the plea for removal of Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy as Andhra Pradesh chief minister. (Mint)

Justice U.U. Lalit recuses himself from hearing plea for removal of Reddy as CM

  • Justice Lalit recused himself as in the past when he practised as a lawyer, he had represented Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy in one of his cases.

The Supreme Court justice Uday Umesh Lalit recused himself on Monday from hearing a batch of pleas seeking removal of Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy as Andhra Pradesh chief Minister over his remark against sitting Supreme Court justice N.V. Ramana.

Justice Lalit recused himself as in the past when he practised as a lawyer, he had represented Reddy in one of his cases. “I have difficulties. As a lawyer, I had represented one of the parties. I will pass an order for it to be listed before a bench without me," said justice Lalit.

The case was listed before the bench comprising justices Lalit, Vineet Saran, and S. Ravindra Bhat. Chief Justice S.A. Bobde will now constitute a new bench to hear the plea for removal of Reddy as CM.

In a letter dated 6 October, Reddy wrote to Chief Justice Bobde alleging that the Andhra Pradesh high court was being used to “destabilize and topple" his democratically elected government. He claimed in his letter that justice Ramana has been “influencing" the sitting HC judges. In his eight-page letter, he alleged “proximity" of justice Ramana with former chief minister N. Chandrababu Naidu.

Three separate petitions have been filed. Two by advocates and one by Anti-Corruption Council of India trust.

The plea seeks direction for a judicial inquiry against Reddy. It has sought the constitution of an internal committee headed by sitting or former judges of the apex court or any member from Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) over the allegations made by Reddy against justice Ramana.

Justice Ramana is to precede Chief Justice Bobde as the next chief justice of the country.

Attorney General K.K. Venugopal had earlier declined to give his consent to initiate contempt proceedings against Reddy. However, he had added that it is open to the Supreme Court to take up the matter of contempt suo motu as provided by the Contempt of Courts Act.

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