The Supreme Court on Monday questioned the Central government over the non-appointment of two Sikh lawyers as the judges of a High Court. [The Advocates Association Bengaluru vs Barun Mitra & anr]. .A Bench of Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Sudhanshu Dhulia, while apparently referring to the Centre's failure to clear the names of advocates Harmeet Singh Grewal and Deepinder Singh Nalwa for appointment as judges of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, said,"Two of the candidates not cleared are both Sikhs. Why should this arise? Don't let past issues link up with present pending ones."Grewal and Nalwa were recommended for appointment by the Supreme Court Collegium on October 17 along with three other lawyers. However, the Centre on November 2 notified the appointment of only three lawyers out of the list of five..Today, the top court once again questioned the Central government for its "pick and choose" approach in the transfers of judges."Attorney, it does not create a good impression. You cannot pick and choose transfers like this. What is the signal you send? One pending from Allahabad, another from Delhi, four from Gujarat not transferred at all," the Court told the Attorney General (AG) R Venkataramani.The AG in response said there was some delay due to elections and progress has been made in respect of the reiterated names. The Court, however, remarked that not even 50 per cent of the names have been cleared. "We had considered the inputs. You, by detaining, have affected the seniority," it added..The Court in its order noted that out of the remaining eleven names recommended for transfer, five have been transferred and six transfers are pending.It also said that eight candidates have not been appointed from recently reiterated names and for five names, the government has not replied with its comments. "Some of these are senior to others appointed. This is something on which we have spoken of earlier, that it becomes difficult to then to persuade candidates to join the bench," the Court observed.After the AG assured the Court that it will not be disappointed, the matter was listed for hearing on December 5..The Court was hearing a plea filed by the Advocates Association Bengaluru over delays in appointing judges.The Association has contended that the Central government's failure to process the names recommended by the Collegium for appointment was in direct contravention of the top court's judgment in the Second Judges case.The Supreme Court had earlier in November observed that the Central government cannot block the appointment of judges just because names cleared by it were not approved by the Collegium.The Bench had made it clear that when the Collegium does not accept a name for judgeship, that should be the end of it.The Court had also slammed the Central government for a "pick and choose" approach in the appointment of judges, observing that it was disturbing the seniority among those recommended for the judgeship..In November last year, the apex court had sought a response from the Union Law Secretary in the matter.Meritorious lawyers recommended by the Collegium for High Court judgeship often back out because the Central government processes names selectively, thereby affecting potential seniority of the candidates, the Supreme Court had lamented during an earlier hearing.