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Justice RS Chauhan writes: Who will call the bluff on the executive-collegium standoff

The former Chief Justice of two high courts says both sides aren’t being honest; Proposes an Appointments Commission with veto power for judges

January 26, 2023 / 10:09 AM IST
A tug of war ensued  between the Executive and the Judiciary, over the procedure for appointing judges to the constitutional courts. 
(Representational image)

A tug of war ensued between the Executive and the Judiciary, over the procedure for appointing judges to the constitutional courts. (Representational image)

The recent tug of war, between the Executive and the Judiciary, over the procedure for appointing judges to the constitutional courts has reignited old issues: Who should appoint the judges to the constitutional courts? What is the role of the Executive in such appointment? Is such appointment to be controlled by the Judiciary? Should we have a National Judicial Appointment Commission (NJAC), or should we continue with the Collegium system, where Judges recommend the appointment of judges to the Constitutional Courts?

While arguing these issues, both the Executive and the Judiciary are presenting half baked dishes. The Executive claims that it has no role in such appointment, a claim far from the truth. The Judiciary claims that any interference by the Executive in the appointment process would undermine the independence of the judiciary: a misplaced claim.

It is time the bluff from both the branches is called off. The issues are too serious to be left to political shadow boxing. These issues require deep introspection and concrete solutions. For, the answers would shape the future for our nation.

Judicial appointments: Executive’s hefty role