Govt fine tunes shape of proposed body to replace collegium

Last Updated: Sunday, August 3, 2014 - 12:44

New Delhi: Keen to bring a bill to scrap the present system of appointment of judges, government is weighing its options on the shape of the proposed body to replace the collegium system.

While some legal luminaries are of the view that the proposed Judicial Appointments Commission should be a `permanent` body with its chairperson and members having a fixed tenure, others feel that an `ex officio` body, as proposed by the previous UPA government in its bill, was sufficient.

Working to bring the bill in the ongoing session of Parliament, government is learnt to be looking into both the options.

While a permanent body would mean that the chairperson and other members would have a fixed tenure, in an ex officio commission, members would become part of it by virtue of holding a certain post.

The UPA bill had proposed that the JAC would be headed by the Chief Justice of India and would have two senior judges of the Supreme Court, two eminent persons and the Law Minister as its members.

In the ex officio set up, a person would continue to be a part of the Commission as long as he holds a certain post.

Sources said the NDA government is not averse to the previous UPA government`s plan to put the composition and functions of the proposed Judicial Appointments Commission Bill in Constitution.

By giving the composition and functions of the proposed commission Constitutional status, UPA had sought to ally fears of the judiciary that the composition and functions can be tweaked by any future government.

BJP, then in Opposition, had also raised the issue of constitutional status for the proposed body.

While a constitutional amendment bill requires two-third majority for passage in a House, a normal legislation needs just a simple majority.

PTI

First Published: Sunday, August 3, 2014 - 12:44

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