It's not every day that lawyers of the Supreme Court are pulled up like errant children by none other than the Chief Justice of India himself. But CJI JS Khehar was probably at the end of his patience when he scolded lawyers for repeatedly seeking adjournments.
When a junior lawyer who appeared on behalf of an NGO that had filed a PIL in 2013 regarding mid-day meals across schools in India, and said that one of the arguing counsel in the case was out of Delhi to attend a family event, Khehar was livid, according to the Telegraph.
"Is this a joke court or Supreme Court? What kind of court is this? You start joking with us. You bring the Centre and states here and then say you have to go for a family function?" he told the lawyer representing the Antarrashtriya Manav Adhikaar Nigraani.
It was generally a bad day to tick Khehar off.
Earlier in the day, lawyers who were asked to file replies on a 2012 PIL seeking ways to curb river pollution were told off for seeking adjournments.
"Is it some joke or something else going on here? If you don't want to file your replies, tell us, we will record it," the paper quoted the judge as saying.
A report this year said 2.8 crore cases are pending in district courts across the country which are short of nearly 5,000 judicial officers. Khehar's annoyance is understandable. As many as 64,919 cases are pending in the apex court, as on December 1, 2014.