Chennai, Feb 07, 2023: The Supreme Court on Tuesday dismissed the petitions challenging lawyer Lakshmana Chandra Victoria Gowri’s appointment as Madras High Court judge. The top court’s decision after Gowri was sworn in as a judge of the Madras HC.
The case was heard by a bench headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) DY Chandrachud. Earlier, a bench of justices Sanjeev Khanna and MM Sundresh was to hear the matter.
The hearing came on the day Gowri was scheduled to take oath as an additional judge. She was appointed along with four others on Tuesday.
On Monday, the Union government notified her appointment following a recommendation from the top court collegium.
Gowri’s elevation as a judge was opposed by a group of 21 lawyers from the Madras High Court, who wrote to President Droupadi Murmu urging her to return the file submitted by the Supreme Court Collegium recommending the appointment of Victoria Gowri, a BJP functionary, as a judge of the high court.
The lawyers cited instances where Victoria Gowri was seen making hateful remarks against minority communities. The lawyers alleged that it reflected her “regressive views” and “deep-rooted religious bigotry”, thus making her “unfit to be appointed as judge of the High Court”. They referred to one of Victoria Gowri’s interviews, hosted by the RSS in 2018, wherein she termed Christianity as "white terror” and had made a similar “distasteful diatribe” against Christians.
“The Collegium’s recommendation to appoint a person who makes no bones about her hatred towards the minority communities will definitely dent the public perception of the impartiality of the judiciary. In the context of Ms Gowri’s utterances, can any litigant belonging to the Muslim or Christian community ever hope to get justice in her court, if she becomes a Judge?” asked the lawyers.
Gowri has been cleared as an additional judge of the high court and she will be up for confirmation as a permanent judge after two years when the Supreme Court collegium will assess her overall competence and suitability.
Courtesy: India Today