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  India   Politics  04 Mar 2017  Centre can reject judge, but collegium will have final say

Centre can reject judge, but collegium will have final say

THE ASIAN AGE. | J VENKATESAN
Published : Mar 4, 2017, 3:38 am IST
Updated : Mar 4, 2017, 6:57 am IST

The collegium took 15 months to arrive at a consensus in finalising the MoP.

The collegium took 15 months to arrive at a consensus in finalising the MoP.
 The collegium took 15 months to arrive at a consensus in finalising the MoP.

New Delhi: The Supreme Court Collegium headed by the Chief Justice of India J.S. Khehar during a meeting on Friday cleared the Memorandum of Procedure (MoP) on appointment of judges.

The collegium took 15 months to arrive at a consensus in finalising the MoP. The contentious issue of “veto power” to the Centre to reject a candidate on grounds of national security has been sorted out. In the MoP cleared on Friday, the collegium gave liberty to the government to reject any name on grounds of national security after giving reasons in writing. But the final power to reject or approve the name will continue to remain with the collegium.

The collegium has, however, rejected the NDA government’s plea for an independent secretariat to screen names of judges, as it was of the view that the existing mechanism under which the personal staff of the five judges constituting the collegium was sufficient to deal with the issue.

The judiciary feels that appointing a separate secretariat and screening committee to vet the names would “not only impinge on the independence of the judiciary, but could also lead to prospective names being leaked” which can’t be accepted.

The MoP was evolved in 1998, under which the procedure for appointment/transfers of judges are done with mutually acceptable norms between the collegium comprising the five senior most Supreme Court judges led by the CJI and the government.

A five-judge Constitution Bench in October 2015 quashed the National Judicial Appointments Commission Law and restored the collegium system of appointment.

Tags: j.s. khehar, collegium, supreme court
Location: India, Delhi