The Supreme Court on Wednesday, January 20, said it had serious objections over the portrayal of the members of the committee formed to resolve the deadlock over three farm laws just because in the past, they had favoured the laws.
The court disapproved of the criticism, saying that 'public opinion will not determine who should or shouldn't be the member and that it had 'serious objections' to people and the press tarnishing the image of the members of the panel', Hindustan Times reported.
The Bench was led by Chief Justice of India (CJI) SA Bobde and included justices AS Bopanna and V Ramasubramanian.
"If you muster a public opinion to malign people, brand people, should that be a ground of disqualification? We have severe objections to our members being called names, accused of bias etc. And then they say this court had some interest. What interest can we have? We entered into this in the interest of common people, especially farmers," the media quoted the Bench.
The court responded to a plea filed by advocate Ajay Choudhary, who appeared for a farmers' organisation from Rajasthan. Choudhary had filed a petition for the reconstitution of the committee.
The formation of the panel became controversial after all the four members had previously made statements supporting the reforms. Later, one of the members, Bhupinder Singh Mann, left the panel, expressing his solidarity with the farmers.
The other three members are Pramod Kumar Joshi, the director for South Asia, International Food Policy Research Institute, New Delhi, agricultural economist Ashok Gulati, former chairman of the Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP) and Anil Ghanwat of the Shetkari Sanghatana, a Maharashtra-based farm union.