'Final say always vests with selection panel'

Interviews

Retired Chief Justice of India Justice V N Khare spoke to Ashish Tripathi of Deccan Herald. Excerpts:

How do you view the recent controversy surrounding the setting up of Lokpal?
What controversy? I don’t think there is any.

Do you think the process for appointment of such an august body has been vitiated with recent resignations of noted jurist F S Nariman and former SC judge Justice K T Thomas?

See, when they were given the assignment, they must have seen the rules.

According to Rule 10 (1) under Lokpal Rules 2014, the search panel can only consider names from the list provided by the government. Do you think this would again compromise with integrity of the persons to be considered?

The search committee merely recommends the names.

Ultimately, it is the selection panel which would undertake the appointments. The final authority vests with the selection panel. I have been on the selection panel for various posts where search committee records the aspirants’ names according to a particular order and make recommendation but the final decision is taken by the selection panel.

As far as non-judicial members are concerned, the rules mandated that only those who held the secretary-level posts at the Centre and state could be considered. What is your view about it? Will this not allow the government to put in place its own individual in the Lokpal panel?

This is again a matter of debate. One has to trust the government at one level. Those who are not in agreement should have protested at the time of framing of rules.

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