SC imposes Rs. 50,000 fine on the litigant who requested for “special neutral bench”

On Monday, the Supreme Court imposed a cost of Rs. 50,000 on a litigant who requested the formation of a “special neutral bench” consisting of judges who do not fall under the OBC or unreserved categories to hear a case involving the enhancement of reservation in public service that was brought by candidates from both the OBC and unreserved categories.

The plea was filed before the Apex Court challenging the Madhya Pradesh High Court order that had refused to allow the application filed for the constitution of a special bench.

One petition pertained to enhancement in the reservation to OBC category from 14 to 27% in public service and the other pertained to persons from the unreserved category.

The Madhya Pradesh High Court rejected the request for recusal made by a litigant or lawyer. The court emphasized that judges should not step down from a case simply upon request, as their duty is to decide the matter impartially according to their oath.

The court found no valid reason for recusal and stated that doing so would contradict their commitment to deliver justice without any bias or influence.

The court observed, “recusal by any one of us in the given facts and circumstances would defy the oath taken for rendering justice without fear or favour, affection or ill will.”

Source: Live Law

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