New Delhi, November 30, 2019 (PPI-OT): The elevation of a lawyer of occupied Kashmir’s High Court as judge has been stalled for more than two years now by the Narendra Modi government. Wasim Sadiq Nargal’s appointment as a judge in the High Court of occupied Kashmir was first recommended by the court’s collegium in 2017. It was also cleared by the Indian Supreme Court collegium, but the Modi government sent it back. Ten months after the apex court collegium asked the government to furnish a reason for rejecting the recommendation it is yet to receive a reply.
Nargal was one of five names recommended for elevation by the Kashmir High Court collegium on August 24, 2017. Four of these were lawyers and one a district and sessions judge. On April 6, 2018, the Supreme Court collegiums considered the recommendations and decided to clear the names of three of the lawyers – Nargal, Nazir Ahmed Beig and Sindhu Sharma. District and sessions judge Rashid Ali Dar’s name was cleared as well.
In keeping with the procedure for judicial appointments, the names were then sent to New Delhi but, on 3 August last year, the Narendra Modi government only issued warrants of appointment for Sindhu Sharma and Rashid Ali Dar, leaving out Wasim Sadiq Nargal and Nazir Ahmed Beig. After sitting on Nargal and Beig’s files for a few months, the Indian government finally returned the names to the Supreme Court collegium for “reconsideration”.
As for Nargal, the collegium asked the government to furnish specific information in detail on the basis of which the proposal for elevation has been referred back for reconsideration.
Over 10 months later, the collegium is yet to receive any information from the Modi government as to why it wanted Nargal’s elevation reconsidered. “We have made some inquiries with the Ministry of Law and Justice but haven’t received any response so far,” a senior Supreme Court functionary aware of the developments told media.
On the other hand, the High Court of occupied Kashmir continues to function at just over 50 per cent of its sanctioned strength. As of 1st November 2019, the High Court had just nine judges against a sanctioned strength of 17.
For more information, contact:
Kashmir Media Service
Phone: +92-51-4435548, +92-51-4435549