Although the apex court has a sanctioned strength of 31, the Court has never functioned to full capacity.
The Supreme Court Collegium has recommended the name of two judges for elevation to the apex court which currently has a working strength of 26 judges.
The Collegium comprising of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, Justices AK Sikri, SA Bobde, NV Ramana, and Arun Mishra had met on Thursday and decided to elevate Justice Dinesh Maheshwari, presently Chief Justice of Karnataka High Court and Justice Sanjiv Khanna, judge of the Delhi High Court.
The decision was placed in public domain by displaying on the Supreme Court website late Friday evening.
The decision of the Collegium will be examined by the Government which has the option to either forward it to President for issuing warrant of appointment or it can return the names citing objection.
As per the Memorandum of Procedure for appointment of judges, if the Collegium reiterates the name, the Centre is bound to accept it.
According to the information disclosing the Collegium’s decision, extensive deliberations were held by Collegium members on January 5 and 6 based on the material made available to them.
Ultimately, the five judges concluded, “While recommending the names of justices Dinesh Maheshwari and Sanjiv Khanna the Collegium has taken into consideration combined seniority on all-India basis of Chief Justices and senior puisne judges of high courts, apart from their merit and integrity.” It even kept in mind the desirability of giving due representation to high courts on the Supreme Court bench.