The five-judge Constitution bench of the Supreme Court concluded its hearing in Delhi v Center and reserved its judgement on December 6. The conclusion of the hearing a little after 4 pm was marred by heated exchanges between the Chief Justice of India, Dipak Mishra and the senior counsel for the Delhi Government, Rajeev Dhawan.
As Rajeev Dhawan wanted to make oral submissions, in response to the respondents’ contentions, the Chief Justice who was initially reluctant to hear him, permitted him to do so when he insisted, on the condition that he would avoid the points already canvassed by the lead counsel, Gopal Subramaniam.
Dhawan then submitted that Article 239 has to be read as a whole and not in isolation. The Chief Justice objected to asking why he was making it an issue when nobody suggested it. This is an uncalled for and unwanted argument, the CJI described Dhawan’s submission.
Unhappy with Dhawan’s continued submissions on the same point, CJI said: “You go on shouting. You are always like that. We will give our judgement”. This choice of words by the Chief Justice embarrassed Dhawan, who regretted that the Constitution bench was not permitting him to articulate his propositions.
In a letter addressed to Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, Senior Advocate Rajeev Dhavan has withdrawn his decision to quit Court practice, stating that he has not repaid his debt to the Supreme Court and the judicial system.
As per the letter, Mr Dhawan took the decision after several former and sitting Judges of the Court, as well as several Advocates, requested him to withdraw his statement. Besides, he has also highlighted the fact that he is engaged in several matters such as the Babri Masjid case and that he intends to fulfil his obligations in the pending cases.