NEW DELHI, July 14 (IANS): The Delhi High Court Thursday refused to grant an urgent hearing on the plea of former Central Vigilance Commissioner (CVC) P.J. Thomas against the swearing-in of Pradeep Kumar as his successor.
A division bench of Justice Vikramajit Sen and Justice Siddharth Mridul, referring to the scheduled oath ceremony of the new CVC, said it was difficult to hear the petition at the eleventh hour.
The court said Thomas' plea could be listed for hearing Friday.
Thomas' counsel Wills Mathews mentioned the matter at 10.30 a.m. Thursday and requested for urgent hearing of the plea.
In his writ petition filed on Wednesday, Thomas sought the court's direction on the appeal filed by him March 16 and urged President Pratibha Patil to wait for a decision on this before appointing the new CVC.
"The main ground is that the decision was delivered by a three-judge bench. We are supporting the mandate of the constitution that it should have been by a five-judge bench," said Mathews.
The Supreme Court had March 3 quashed Thomas' appointment as the CVC as a chargesheet was pending against him in a corruption case. Thomas was appointed the CVC in September 2010.
"The warrant of appointment of Thomas was cancelled only on the basis of the said judgement. When the legality and the validity of the judgement in itself is disputed, it is our humble view that only after reaching a conclusion on the legality and validity of the judgement, the respondent should go ahead with the appointment of new CVC," Mathews said.