The Supreme Court collegium headed by Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud has recommended the names of six additional judges of the Punjab and Haryana High Court for appointment as permanent judges.
The additional judges are Justices Vikas Bahl, Vikas Suri, Sandeep Moudgil, Vinod Sharma (Bhardwaj), Pankaj Jain and Jasjit Singh Bedi.
The collegium, which also includes Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and K M Joseph, said that since the current two-year term of one of the additional judges is due to expire on May 24, the recommendation may be processed expeditiously by the Centre.
The collegium took the decisions in its meeting on April 17.
On December 19 last year, the collegium of the High Court of Punjab and Haryana unanimously recommended that the additional judges be appointed as permanent judges of that high court.
The collegium said that the recommendation, which has the concurrence of the chief ministers and the governors of the states of Punjab and Haryana, has been received from the Department of Justice on April 13, 2023.
“In terms of the Memorandum of Procedure, Judges of the Supreme Court who are conversant with the functioning of the High Court of Punjab and Haryana were consulted with a view to ascertain the suitability of the above judges for being appointed as permanent judges.
“The committee constituted in terms of the resolution dated October 26, 2017 of the Supreme Court collegium to evaluate the judgments of the above-named additional judges, has submitted its report. The Judgment Evaluation Committee consisting of two judges of the Supreme Court has noted the judgments of the candidates as ‘very good’ (serial nos. i, v and vi), ‘good’ (serial nos. ii & iii) and ‘outstanding’ (serial no. iv),” it said.
With a view to assess the merit and suitability of the above additional judges for appointment as permanent judges, the collegium scrutinised the material placed on record including the observations made by the Department of Justice and the complaints placed before it.
“On an overall consideration of the above proposal, the collegium is of the view that Shri Justices (i) Vikas Bahl, (ii) Vikas Suri, (iii) Sandeep Moudgil, (iv) Vinod Sharma (Bhardwaj), (v) Pankaj Jain, and (vi) Jasjit Singh Bedi, Additional Judges, are fit and suitable for being appointed as Permanent Judges,” it said.