Swearing-in of Justice K M Joseph comes amid a row with the Centre over his seniority being lowered on his elevation.
New Delhi: Justices Indira Banerjee, Vineet Saran and K M Joseph have been sworn in as judges of the Supreme Court in order of seniority on Tuesday.
The order of seniority was notified by the Centre.
Chief Justice of India (CJI) Dipak Misra administered the oath to the three judges in a simple ceremony in his courtroom.
The oath-taking of Justice K M Joseph comes amid a row with the Centre over his seniority being lowered on his elevation.
Earlier, the Centre on its part said it went purely by the "time tested" principle of high court seniority list. It came out with a notification last Friday on the appointment of three judges to the apex court by putting at third position the seniority of Justice K M Joseph.
Judges including members of the collegium comprising Justices M B Lokur, Kurian Joseph and A K Sikri met Chief Justice Dipak Misra on Monday and raised concerns on the seniority issue on Justice Joseph.
However, it was decided that the oath-taking ceremony should take place.
"Let the oath-taking take place. There is no time. The oath-taking can't be deferred. It has to be seen what can be done later," the court sources said.
They said that the CJI, who heads the collegium, assured the judges that he would consult Justice Gogoi who is the senior-most after him and take up the issue with the Centre.
In the notification, the names of Justice Indira Banerjee, Chief Justice of the Madras High Court, was at number one, followed by that of Justice Vineet Saran, Chief Justice of the Orissa High Court.
It is the convention that seniority of the judges is determined in accordance with the order of names notified by the government.
The warrants of appointment of the three judges were signed by the President on August 3.
Justice Joseph's elevation to the apex court put an end to a protracted stand-off between the government and the judiciary.