Hearing in SC on improving collegium system underway
The Centre on Tuesday gave suggestions on improving the collegium system of appointing higher judges to SC.
New Delhi: Several suggestions to bring about greater transparency in the collegium system of appointing judges for the higher judiciary, including establishment of a complaint redressal mechanism, were placed before the Supreme Court Tuesday.
The issues of eligibility criteria, establishment of a secretariat for the collegium and evolving a mechanism of complaint redressal were put forward as suggestions to improve the collegium system of appointment.
After hearing the matter for two hours, a five-judge Constitution bench, headed by Justice J S Khehar, asked the parties to file written submissions by compiling the suggestions on transparency, eligibility, establishment of secretariat and evolving a mechanism for complaints redressal by the collegium.
The bench, also comprising justices J Chelameswar, M B Lokur, Kurian Joseph and A K Goel, posted the matter for further hearing on Thursday.
The court heard suggestions put forth by Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi, Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar and senior advocates including K K Venugopal, who had argued against the collegium system during the hearing of the matter relating to National Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC) Act which was held unconstitutional by the apex court on October 16.
Senior advocates Fali S Nariman, Anil Divan, Rajeev Dhavan and Arvind Datar among others, who had successfully argued against the NJAC Act, also gave their suggestions, saying there was a need for greater transparency in the appointment for judges for the higher judiciary through the collegium system.
While striking down the 99th Constitutional Amendment Act and then NJAC Act, which was aimed at replacing the two-decade old collegium system of appointment of judges by the judges, the apex court had accepted that there was a need to bring more transparency and improvement in it.