Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, following the tradition of appointment system of his immediate successor, on Friday wrote to the government recommending the seniormost judge of the Supreme Court as the next CJI.
KC Kaushik, former Additional Solicitor General (ASG) and senior Supreme Court lawyer, said that it was a general practice for the CJIs to write a letter to the Central government and recommend the second senior-most judge as their immediate successor.
"As per the tradition, the sitting CJI has to write and recommend to the Central government, stating about his immediate successor. It is normal practice," Kaushik told ANI.
Sworn in as the 46th Chief Justice of India on October 3, 2018, Justice Gogoi retires on November 17. If the recommendation of the CJI is accepted by the Centre then Justice Sharad Arvind Bobde would be the 47th CJI. After the recommendation, Justice Bobde will be the next CJI and have a tenure of one year and five months till April 2021.
Noted legal expert and senior Supreme Court lawyer, Geeta Luthra, said that the writing of letter by the sitting CJI Gogoi to the Central government and recommending the second senior-most judge to be his successor is a healthy convention and a good procedure.
"It is a healthy convention. The convention, it has been seen, most of the time is being followed. The Central government most of the time-honoured the recommendation of the CJI," Luthra said.
Another legal expert, senior Supreme Court lawyer and former Solicitor General (SG) Mohan Parasaran, said that it is a tradition being followed by each CJI and in this case, the present CJI has written the letter well in advance.
"It is a tradition. All the CJIs followed this by writing a letter and recommending the central government, the second senior-most judge for their successor. The present CJI has written the letter well in advance to the Union of India, which will make a decision and it is normal that the government accepts the CJI's recommendation," Parasaran said.