The Supreme Court collegium has rejected the plea of Justice V.M. Velumani, a Madras High Court judge, to cancel her transfer to Calcutta High Court and instead shift her to the high court in either Manipur or Tripura.
Justice Velumani was transferred to Calcutta High Court by the collegium on September 29, 2022, “for the better administration of justice”. The judge had initially urged the collegium to reconsider the transfer, but her plea was rejected by the collegium, which reiterated the decision on November 24.
The judge then requested through another communication dated March 17 this year that she be transferred to a high court in the Northeast, preferably Manipur or Tripura. This request, too, has been turned down by the five-judge collegium of Chief Justice D.Y. Chandrachud and Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul, K.M. Joseph, M.R. Shah and Ajay Rastogi through a resolution adopted on March 28.
The following is the resolution released by the collegium: “Ms Justice V.M. Velumani was appointed as a Judge of the Madras High Court on 20 December 2013. The Collegium by its resolution dated 29 September 2022, proposed to transfer Justice V.M. Velumani to the Calcutta High Court for the better administration of justice. Justice Velumani sought reconsideration of the recommendation by her letter dated 14 October 2022. Her request was not acceded to by the Collegium.
“The Collegium by a resolution dated 24 November 2022, reiterated the recommendation for her transfer. Justice V.M. Velumani has by a communication dated 17 March 2023 sought a transfer to a High Court of the Northeastern States, preferably Manipur or Tripura, on the ground that she would then be able to retain her official accommodation at Chennai.
“The request made by Ms Justice V.M. Velumani to retain her at the Madras High Court has been rejected by the Collegium on an earlier occasion. There is no valid reason to reconsider the earlier decision of the Collegium by which her transfer has been recommended to the Calcutta High Court or to accede to her fresh request. Her request for transfer to either Manipur or Tripura or any High Court in the Northeastern States is rejected.”
In another resolution, the collegium conceded the request of Justice Atul Sreedharan, a judge of Madhya Pradesh High Court, for transfer out of the state as his daughter will begin legal practice in the district court and the Indore Bench of the high court. Justice Sreedharan had wanted to avoid any conflict of interest.
The collegium has transferred him to the High Court of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh. “in the interest of better administration of justice”.