On Monday, President Ramnath Kovind nominated former Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi to Rajya Sabha. Former CJI Ranjan Gogoi, the 46th Chief Justice of India, who was credited for many landmark verdicts on diverse topics like the decades-old politically and religiously sensitive Ayodhya land dispute, had retired as the chief justice of India last year on November 17. President of India nominates twelve members to the Upper House of the Parliament for a period of six years for their contribution in art, literature, science, law and social service.
His nomination to the Rajya Sabha led to a prolonged meltdown of the ‘liberals’ on social media. Aspersions were cast on the independence of judiciary.
What a fucking shame!! Can you trust Supreme Court after this. https://t.co/HHP3SW319d— Nakul (@_Northernerd) March 16, 2020
Congress leaders also implied that the judgements were passed ‘in favour’ of the government as quid pro quo.
◆1st NRC Judgment in favour— अभिमन्यु राव (@abhimanyuraohry) March 17, 2020
◆Then Rafale judgement in favour
◆Then Ayodhya Judgment in favour
◆Petition for Loya probe rejected
Then Mr. Gogoi gets Rajya Sabha seat. https://t.co/gYHFm9NnzZ
Gogoi’s father, Kesab Chandra Gogoi was a Congress leader and served as Chief Minister of Assam for two months in 1982.
‘Journalists’ also alleged that the nomination to Rajya Sabha is as a ‘bribe’ to Gogoi.
खुल्लम-खुल्ला रिश्वत दी जा रही है। https://t.co/8UYCF9udjj— Prashant Kanojia (@PJkanojia) March 16, 2020
Congress workers were also quite ‘liberal’ fictionalising facts to sensationalise the news.
JUDGEMENTS OF GOGOI— Srivatsa (@srivatsayb) March 16, 2020
🔸Demolition was criminal. But land is yours
🔸Human Rights matter. But no time to hear petitions
🔸Horse trading bad. But MLAs can contest election
🔸No investigation. Clean Chit to Modiji
Quid Pro Quo = Rajyasabha
The Ayodhya verdict was delivered by a Supreme Court bench which also had justice Bobde (current CJI), justice Chandrachud (next in line to be CJI), justice Ashok Bhushan and justice S. Abdul Nazeer. The verdict was unanimous. Similarly, Rafale, too, was a three-judge bench verdict. But why let facts get in the way of a viral tweet?
We are now reaching a point in India where being shameless is a badge of honour. #RanjanGogoi— Rohini Singh (@rohini_sgh) March 16, 2020
Irony blatantly fawned over a politician on social media ahead of state assembly elections and got fired.
Shameless is the new normal in India https://t.co/ojf0mGuFSy— Swati Chaturvedi (@bainjal) March 17, 2020
And here, irony really needs to stalk talking to the voices in her head.
In his last week of tenure as the CJI, Gogoi passed a slew of key landmark judgments pertaining to government matters, religion, politics, and the applicability of the law to his own office. He etched his name in the annals history when a five-judge bench headed by him on November 9, 2019, brought an end to the Ayodhya land dispute, which dates back to even before the Supreme Court came into existence in 1950.
The CJI also headed a bench which, by a majority 3-2 verdict, referred to a larger seven-judge bench the pleas seeking review of the apex court’s historic 2018 judgement allowing women and girls of all ages to enter Kerala’s Sabarimala temple.
Justice Gogoi’s name will also be remembered for heading a bench which gave a clean chit to the Modi government twice — first on the writ petition and then on the pleas seeking review of the December 14, 2018 verdict, in the Rafale fighter jet deal with French firm Dassault Aviation. It also censured Congress leader Rahul Gandhi for wrongfully attributing the “Chowkidar chor hai” remark against Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the top court.
The Supreme Court Bench of CJI Gogoi has also reserved its judgement on pleas challenging the constitutional validity of the Finance Act, 2017 on the ground that it was passed by Parliament as a Money Bill.
On November 13, a five-judge constitution bench, headed by Gogoi, wherein a 3:2 majority verdict, the apex court referred the broader question of whether all provisions of the Finance Act 2017 could be construed as being part of Money Bill and hence didn’t need Rajya Sabha’s approval. The Supreme Court held that a larger bench should look into the correctness of the Aadhaar judgment since the Aadhaar Act was also passed as a Money Bill.
Justice Gogoi, who was sworn on October 3, 2018, as the 46th CJI, had the tenure of a little over 13 months. On his last date at office, Gogoi circulated a parting note to journalists covering the Supreme Court, refusing one-on-one interviews. He said, “bitter truth must remain in memory.”