No one can meddle in judges' appointment: Prez

No one can meddle in judges' appointment: Prez

No one can meddle in judges' appointment: Prez

Against the backdrop of the collegium issue, President Pranab Mukherjee said no one can meddle in the appointment process of judges which must conform to the highest standards of probity and operate on transparent principles to select the best.

At the same time, Mukherjee also said that judicial activism should not lead to dilution of separation of powers.

“In the exercise of powers by the judiciary, the only check possible is self-imposed discipline and self-restraint by the judiciary. The balance of power between the three organs of the state is enshrined in our Constitution. The Constitution is supreme. The equilibrium in the exercise of authority must be maintained at all times,” he said.

The Supreme Court has, on October 16, invalidated NJAC Act and revived the collegium system for appointment of judges in higher judiciary wherein the judges select themselves.

Inaugurating the Golden Jubilee Celebrations of the Delhi High Court at Vigyan Bhawan here, Mukherjee asked the judiciary to reinvent itself through introspection and self-correction as autonomous judiciary is a vital feature of democracy.

Quick justice

Mukherjee also said there was a need for quick justice delivery system which should be “accessible” and “affordable” to all.  He said delay in administering justice was as good as its denial.

There are over 60,000 cases pending in the apex court and more than 40 lakh pending in the high courts, and over 2.6 crore in the district and subordinate courts. The phenomenon of high pendency must change through multi-dimensional effort, he suggested.

“Courts must have enough resources to boost their infrastructure. Vacancies in judicial positions must be filled up on priority. Having said that, expeditious selection must be no ground for sacrifice (of) quality,” he said.

Chief Justice of India Justice H L Dattu, Delhi High Court Chief Justice G Rohini, Delhi Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung and Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal were present.