In comments having the potential to make people lose faith in the higher judiciary, former Supreme Court judge Markandeya Katju, of late more known for his controversial posts on social media has made his sharpest yet remark alleging that majority of the judges of the apex court are of a very low intellectual level. Katju has been off and on attacking the judiciary slamming the collegium system of appointment of judges, accusing the system of promoting corrupt and incompetent judges and even sought a probe against ex-CJI H L Dattu levelling corruption charges against him. But this is by far his strongest attack on the apex court judges.
"I think the time has come to tell Indians about the intellectual level and background of most Indian Supreme Court judges. While some of them have high intellectual level and character, like Justice Chalameshwar and Justice Nariman, the vast majority of the present SC Judges are people of very low intellectual level", Katju said in his latest controversial facebook blog in which he has named few of them including Chief Justice T S Thakur.
Queried by a FB follower if he did not fear being sued for contempt for such dangerous remarks, Katju responded "truth is a defence in contempt proceedings".
Under Contempt of Courts Act, publication of any matter or the doing of any act whatsoever which scandalises or tends to scandalise or lowers or tends to lower the authority of, any court" amounts to contempt.
When another follower said "Now I think many citizens will genuinely think low of SC judges, will it not result in people losing faith in judiciary?", Katju responded "they have already lost faith".
The hard-hitting blog comes a month after Katju, as a legal advisor of the BCCI which has been directed by a bench headed by chief justice T S Thakur to implement reforms in the structure, functioning and membership to the cricketing body in another blog questioned the order and accused the CJI of showing utter lack of judicial discipline and the self restraint expected of a judge of a superior court," Katju went on to write "…evidently Justice Thakur believes that since he is the CJI he is above the law, and need not follow it, being the monarch of all he surveys. He forgets the saying 'Be you howsoever high, the law is above you'…Does Justice Thakur imagine that being the CJI he need not follow the Constitution of India and the law?"
Katju's blog says: "I can say this (that vast majority of the present SC judges are people of very low intellectual level)"because I myself was a Supreme Court Judge for about five and a half years, and I was constantly interacting with my colleagues (the present Supreme Court judges were only High Court judges when I was a Supreme Court judge). The level of their conversation was usually about cricket or the weather, never on any intellectual subject" When another of his facebook follower asked Katju if he thought "we should have a Katju system of appointing judges instead of the present collegium system, he replied: "No system will work. Our judiciary is beyond redemption".