SC order pending, LC Victoria Gowri to be sworn-in as Madras HC judge tomorrow

The Supreme Court is scheduled to hear the plea challenging LC Victoria Gowri’s elevation as Madras High Court judge on Tuesday.

Chennai ,UPDATED: Feb 6, 2023 23:03 IST

A plea challenging lawyer L Victoria Gowri’s appointment as a judge of Madras HC will be heard on Tuesday.

By Aneesha Mathur: Despite lawyers’ opposition to her appointment, lawyer Lakshmana Chandra Victoria Gowri is scheduled to be sworn in as Madras High Court judge on February 6. The ceremony will be conducted even as a Supreme Court bench of Justices Sanjiv Khanna and MM Sundresh is set to hear a petition challenging her elevation as a judge. Notably, the petition challenging her appointment has been listed for a hearing on Tuesday itself.

Gowri’s elevation as a judge was opposed by a group of 21 lawyers from the Madras High Court, who wrote to President Droupadi Murmu urging her to return the file submitted by the Supreme Court Collegium recommending the appointment of Victoria Gowri, a BJP functionary, as a judge of the high court.

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The lawyers cited instances where Victoria Gowri was seen making hateful remarks against minority communities. The lawyers alleged that it reflected her “regressive views” and “deep-rooted religious bigotry”, thus making her “unfit to be appointed as judge of the High Court”. They referred to one of Victoria Gowri’s interviews, hosted by the RSS in 2018, wherein she termed Christianity as “white terror” and had made a similar “distasteful diatribe” against Christians.

“The Collegium’s recommendation to appoint a person who makes no bones about her hatred towards the minority communities will definitely dent the public perception of the impartiality of the judiciary. In the context of Ms Gowri’s utterances, can any litigant belonging to the Muslim or Christian community ever hope to get justice in her court, if she becomes a Judge?” asked the lawyers.

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A similar representation was also submitted to the Supreme Court Collegium in which the lawyers also pointed out that Victoria Gowri was an active member of the BJP.

Several opposition leaders also condemned the recommendation and questioned the Collegium’s decision.

Taking to Twitter, Congress MP Manickam Tagore said: “Another Sanghi on her way into the judicial system”.

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