Justice Sikri Withdraws Himself From Hearing A Petition On CBI Interim Chief

Justice Sikri Withdraws Himself From Hearing A Petition On CBI Interim Chief

Justice Sikri Withdraws Himself From Hearing A Petition On CBI Interim Chief 

New Delhi: The Top Court Justice AK Sikri has withdrawn himself from hearing a petition against the appointment of M Nageswara Rao as interim chief of the CBI. CJI Ranjan Gogoi had withdrawn from the case because he was a member of the high-powered selection committee that will pick a name to head the Central Bureau of Investigation. However,  after the CJI withdrew from the of the high-powered selection panel, Justice Sikri was added to the panel.

Alok Verma, the former chief of CBI was removed months after he was sent on leave and replaced by Nageswara Rao. After PM Modi-led selection committee decided to  remove Alok Verma and transfer him to the fire services, Mr Rao took over from him a second time.

A non-profit group called Common Cause, who was the petitoner said that Justice Sikri withdrawing from the case sent a "wrong message". "If we had known yesterday itself, we would have asked the CJI to list it today," the petitioner's lawyer, Dushant Dave, told the court. 

Justice Sikri replied, "You know me well and my position. Since I am recusing I can't say anything... I agree the PIL raises some important issues. We can have it tomorrow and let me not be part of this hearing. If it is an administrative order I would have known, and since it is a judicial order I have to recuse now only."

After the Chief Justice Gogoi recused himself from hearing the petition earlier this week, the case came to Justice Sikri.