Can’t fix cooling off period for judges to take govt jobs: SC
New Delhi: The Supreme Court today refused to fix any cooling off period for judges to take up government assignments after retirement, an issue which has been widely debated after former CJI P Sathasivam took governorship soon after his tenure ended.
A bench headed Chief Justice H L Dattu dismissed a PIL seeking its direction for stipulating cooling off period for retired judges and restraining governments from appointing retired judges of the Supreme Court and high courts to any post without the consultation and concurrence of the Chief Justice of India or the Chief Justices of the high courts.
Interestingly, Justice Dattu’s predecessor, Justice R M Lodha, on his last day in office, had opined that there should be a cooling off period of two years for judges and said that he won’t take any government assignment during the period.
The court was hearing a PIL filed by one Mohammed Ali who pleaded that it is necessary to pass order regarding this to protect the integrity of judiciary.
He submitted that there is no provision as such in the Constitution as constitution maker had not expected that retired Chief Justice of India would accept any post offered by the government.