Puducherry: Union Law and Justice Minister Kiren Rijiju said on Thursday that ‘the central government respects the judiciary as independence of the judiciary is absolutely necessary’. Laying the foundation stone of a building at a Rs 13-crore integrated court complex here for lawyers in Puducherry, he said, “From the first day I took over as law and justice minister. I have been talking about justice, independence of the judiciary.” I am clear about my ideas, vision and purpose. “Our government respects the judiciary and independence of the judiciary is essential for a thriving democracy,” he said.
Rijiju said, ‘The judiciary works for the country and the legislature and the executive also work for the country. Without cooperation and coordination among them we cannot make the country a great nation. He said that judiciary, legislature and executive are not working separately. The Law Minister said, ‘We work in different areas but with the same objective and we have very clear responsibilities under the Constitution of India.’ He said that the division of powers, respect for each other and Lakshman Rekha are clearly defined and hence there is no scope for disputes. The law minister said his message to the judiciary is ‘We will always respect the dignity and independence of the judiciary’.
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However, Rijiju expressed concern that “some people are making statements and adverse comments on the matter which are only harming the institution”. He said that in the past few days he had seen “some comments from eminent persons, eminent lawyers and some retired judges of the Supreme Court, from whom we are hopeful that they will contribute positively to the development of the country”. Rijiju said, ‘I have written to the Chief Justice about a very systematic collegium system for appointment of Supreme Court and High Court judges and it is very well guided by the Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court.’
He said the bench had given very clear observations and directions to the collegium and the government in 2016 on restructuring the system of appointment of judges in the Supreme Court and High Court. But it has been delayed. Rijiju said, ‘However, it is my responsibility to carry forward the order of the Supreme Court’s constitutional bench. As long as there is a collegium system and until an alternative system comes up and until Parliament brings in a new system, we will continue with the current system. It needs some updating and restructuring as directed by the Constitution Bench of the Court.
He said Puducherry Chief Minister N Rangasamy has petitioned the full bench of the High Court for the union territory. “We will take positive steps to provide this facility so that applicants from Puducherry do not have to go to Chennai for appeals or other judicial decisions,” he said. Rangasamy spoke on the occasion. He also emphasized on the need to grant statehood to Puducherry.
Tags: Judiciary, Kiren Rijiju, Supreme Court of India
First Published: January 19, 2023, 23:03 IST