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IndiaCentre rejects 43 recommendations to SC Collegium

Centre rejects 43 recommendations to SC Collegium


Appointment of judges:

Centre rejects 43 recommendations to SC Collegium

New Delhi, November 11

The Centre has rejected 43 of the 77 recommendations of the Supreme Court Collegium for the appointment of high court judges and accepted the remaining 34 proposals.

“Forty-three recommendations have been returned to the Collegium” for reconsideration as the government noticed shortcomings in the proposals, Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi told a Bench headed by Chief Justice TS Thakur, which was hearing three PILs on the appointment of higher judiciary judges.

With this, not a single recommendation was pending with the government, the AG said in response to the court's query at the last hearing on October 28 as to why the Centre was sitting over the proposals for appointment of HC judges whose vacancies stood at over 40 per cent in the country.

This is perhaps the first time that the government has returned such a large number of proposals for reconsideration. Under the Collegium system of appointing judges, the Centre can seek reconsideration but is bound to accept the proposals if the Collegium rejects the government's objections.

Rohatgi also informed the Bench that the government was awaiting the response of the five-member SC Collegium headed by the CJI to the revised Memorandum of Procedure (MoP) sent to it on August 2.

CJI Thakur said the Collegium was slated to meet on November 15 to consider the MoP.

A Constitution Bench headed by Justice JS Khehar had struck down the Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC) Act, meant for replacing the Collegium with the Commission, but allowed the government to revise the MoP to infuse greater transparency and accountability in the process.

On October 28, the Bench had directed the Centre to clear its Collegium proposals without waiting for the finalisation of the new MoP.

Half of HC rooms were locked due to the delay in clearing the Collegium recommendations. The government seemed to be determined to have the entire judicial system locked, the Bench said.

It had threatened to summon the secretary responsible for processing the proposals, but changed its mind after the AG pleaded for posting the PILs for hearing after the Diwali break.

The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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