Law Minister Rijiju Suggests Inclusion of Govt Representatives in Collegium

Law minister Kiren Rijiju has written to the Chief Justice of India (CJI) DY Chandrachud suggesting the inclusion of government representatives in the Supreme Court’s collegium to infuse transparency into the process of appointing judges.

According to the report, Rijiju has suggested the inclusion of the Centre’s representatives in the SC collegium and of the state government in the HC collegiums.

In December, Rijiju submitted a written reply to the Rajya Sabha stating that the Centre had been receiving representations from “diverse sources” on the lack of transparency, objectivity and social diversity in the collegium system on the appointment of judges.

He added that the government has sent suggestions for supplementing the Memorandum of Procedure for the appointment of judges to the high courts and Supreme Court, as reported by news agency PTI. Rijiju had expressed similar views in November too.

The apex court and the Centre have also been in conflict over the delay by the latter in clearing names for the judges recommended by the SC collegium.

On November 28, SC expressed their concern for the delay in appointments and said that it “frustrates the whole system”.

On January 6, attorney general R Venkataramani told the Supreme Court that the Centre would adhere to the timeline and assured the bench at least 44 names shall be cleared soon.

Amid a standoff between the government and the Supreme Court Collegium over the appointment of judges, a parliamentary panel had recently asked the Executive and the Judiciary to come up with “out of box thinking” to deal with the “perennial problem” of vacancies in high courts.

The committee also said that it is ‘surprised” to note that the Supreme Court and the government have failed to reach a consensus on the revision of the Memorandum of Procedure for the appointment of judges to the Supreme Court and the high courts, though the same is under consideration of both for “about seven years now”.


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