We are not toeing govt line: CJI

We are not toeing govt line: CJI

In times of crisis, all the organs of the state should act in harmony for getting over the crisis, he said

Chief Justice of India S A Bobde (PTI Photo)

Chief Justice of India S A Bobde on Monday rubbished the allegation that the Supreme Court was toeing the government's line and was not hauling it up on inadequacy of measures during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In times of crisis, all the organs of the state should act in harmony for getting over the crisis, he said.

"How men, money and material should be deployed, and prioritised, it is for the executive to decide. We are doing whatever we can during this crisis," he said.

Responding to criticism by the activist lawyers, Justice Bobde said epidemic or any disaster can be best handled by the executive.

"Undoubtedly, executive can’t allow the lives of citizens be endangered. and when that happens surely the court jurisdiction will arise. In all cases relating to COVID-19, we asked executive what steps are being taken," he said.

"All these matters are sub judice. But we have done whatever we can. We are not on the field. We have given directions to the government to provide shelter, food and psychological counselling to migrant workers," the CJI added.

He also said the pressure of litigation on courts have reduced considerably. In January 2020, there was 205 cases filed daily in the Supreme Court. But in April only 305 cases have been filed through e-filing.

He also said that video conferencing proceedings are here to stay now but it will not entirely replace the courts.

"During this time, we are not taking rest and we are working and disposing of the cases. We work 210 days in a year as per our calendar," he said.