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How Upendra Baxi's 'proposal' for collegium reform ended up in the Datar-Anand report

Professor Upendra Baxi, in a comment to Legally India, had expressed his surprise how his name appears in the list of those who made proposals for reforming the collegium, compiled by the Supreme Court appointed committee comprising senior advocate, Arvind Datar, and ASG, Pinky Anand, as he had not submitted any such proposal.

Baxi had said he was also surprised that his so-called proposal was shown as not contributing to any of the five categories identified by the court and the committee, namely, collegium secretariat, eligibility criteria, transparency, mechanism to deal with complaints and miscellaneous.

Legally India has learnt that the Supreme Court Registry sent the Datar-Anand committee a file of all mails / letters that had been received by the Supreme Court or by individual judges giving suggestions for improving the collegium.

One letter included was by Prof Baxi. The committee did not have the discretion to delete any particular document and, therefore this letter was also included in the annexures. As it did not contain any suggestion under the five categories, the committee had left all the columns against his name blank.

Prof Baxi’s name thus appears in the chart annexed to the Datar-Anand report in the peculiar circumstances leading to the formation of the committee, and the records forwarded to it.

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