A PIL has been moved in the Delhi High Court challenging the criteria laid down by sessions judge of the Saket District Court for empanelment of local commissioners, saying only lawyers practising there are being considered for selection. A bench of Chief Justice Rajendra Menon and Justice A J Bhambhani, before whom the matter came up for a hearing Wednesday, told the petitioner to bring on record the statutory rules formed by the Delhi High Court and the Delhi government for appointment or empanelment of local commissioners.
With the direction, the bench listed the matter for further hearing on April 1. Petitioner Abhijit Mishra, in his plea, has contended that the circular issued by the office of the district sessions judge (DSJ) of Saket court was "biased and discriminatory in nature" as it was seeking applications only from advocates who are members of the Saket Bar Association with 3-7 years of experience.
"The criteria requirements of the circular for the empanelment of the local commissioners brings the bias and discrimination in the application and selection process. "The office of the District and Sessions Judge (South) Saket District Court is being biased and favouring only the applicants who are having registration number/membership number of the Saket Bar Association, thereby discriminating other applicants who are enrolled with another bar associations," the petition, filed through advocate Payal Bahl, claimed.
The plea also alleged that the circular discriminates against applicants "who do not have a chamber in the Saket District Court or office and or residence in an area other than south or southeast districts". "This requirement/condition for the empanelment of the local commissioner is against the fundamental rights and principles as enshrined under the Constitution of India," it added and sought that the office of the DSJ be asked to amend the circular so that lawyers of other bar associations can also apply.
(With inputs from agencies.)