`Judicial accountability won’t take away freedom`

Government on Saturday said accountability would not take away judiciary`s freedom, but would only re-emphasise it.

Updated: Sep 08, 2012, 20:57 PM IST

Chennai: With the judiciary expressing concern over `tinkering` of its independence, government on Saturday said accountability would not take away its freedom, but would only re-emphasise it.

Government was considering, "accountability not that takes away independence but accountability that adds to independence and re-emphasises it," Law and Justice Minister Salman Khurshid said.

"This will come about through a fruitful wholesome dialogue between the judiciary and legislature," he said in the presence of President Pranab Mukherjee and legal luminaries at a valedictory function of the 150th year celebrations of the Madras High Court.

His observation comes in the backdrop of Chief Justice of India S H Kapadia recently cautioning the government against `tinkering` with the judiciary`s freedom in the context of the Judicial Standards and Accountability Bill, which has been passed by the Lok Sabha and is pending in the Rajya Sabha.

A controversial clause in the Bill states: "No judge shall make unwarranted comments against the conduct of any constitutional or statutory institution or officials at the time of hearing matters in open courts during the course of hearing matters."

Khurshid said the Government was looking to improve the justice delivery system, "both in terms of time and quality, of consensus and outreach."