Bharatiya Kisan Mahapanchayat requested the reconstitution of the Supreme Court-appointed Farm Laws Committee because members expressed views in support of the farm laws.
The Chief Justice of India SA Bobde responded to the public criticism against the Supreme Court-appointed committee to negotiate a solution to the farmers protest. The CJI said that “aspersions” were cast on the committee members.
The CJI said: “Aspersions are cast unnecessarily. Expressing opinions in a different context doesn’t mean disqualification. BS Mann asked for modifications of laws. Branding people like this, we don’t appreciate. Even judges express views during hearing. That doesn’t mean they can’t decide.”
CJI made these remarks while considering an application filed by Bharatiya Kisan Mahapanchayat requesting the reconstitution of the SC appointed Committee because the members expressed views in support of the farm laws.
CJI said: “How can you play with people’s reputation like this? We have serious objections in they [Committee members] being called biased and in saying court was having an interest. You malign people according to majority opinion?”
Bobde added that “men of integrity” can change their opinions after hearing an opposite view.
“The basis of your application is that all four people are disqualified. How do you come to that conclusion? They are brilliant minds in the field of agriculture. They are experts. How do you malign them because they have expressed some views in the past?”
The CJI clarified that the Committee is appointed only to assist the Court and isn’t provided with powers to adjudicate.
However, the bench proceeded to issue notice on the application of Bharatiya Kisan Mahapanchayat as there was a vacancy due to the resignation of BS Mann. BS Mann opted out of the Committee stating he didn’t wish to compromise farmers’ interests.