The news of the Supreme Court collegium recommending Madras High Court Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee’s transfer to Meghalaya High Court has met with controversy. Multiple lawyers and lawyers’ associations have written to the collegium asking it to reconsider its decision and to also provide reasons for this transfer.

This is not the first time a transfer has turned contentious. Multiple transfers in the past year have raised concerns on how opaque the entire process of appointment and transfer of judges is.

What happened?

On November 9, the collegium published its recommendation from a meeting held on September 16, recommending the transfer of Justice Sanjib Banerjee from the Madras High Court to the Meghalaya High Court. The collegium is the body comprising the chief justice of India and other senior judges of the Supreme Court who decide on the appointments and transfers of judges to the Supreme Court and various High Courts.

The Centre approved the transfer on Monday.

Banerjee has had a 10-month tenure at the Madras High Court which started on January 4. Before that, he was a judge at the Calcutta High Court. Banerjee is due to retire in November 2023, which means that, were he not transferred out, he would have been the chief justice at the…

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