NEW DELHI : Chief Justice of India (CJI) N.V. Ramana on Saturday said the three organs of the state should be mindful of the ‘Lakshman Rekha’ between them, adding that the constitution provides for the separation of powers.
Ramana said that the Constitution provides separation of power among the three organs of the state, and one should be mindful of the ‘Lakshman Rekha’ while discharging their duty.”Constitution provides separation of power among three organs and the harmonious function between three organs strengthens democracy. While discharging our duty, we should be mindful of Lakshman Rekha,” said the Chief Justice.
The Chief Justice said that deliberate inaction by governments despite judicial pronouncements is not good for the health of democracy. The CJI also made it clear that his remarks about legislative scrutiny during the last Independence Day were misconstrued, and he did not want to interfere in the legislative sphere. But using Lok sabha Speaker’s remark reiterated the need for proper legislative scrutiny before passing laws.
Justice Ramana He was speaking at the Joint Conference of Chief Ministers and Chief Justices of High Courts, which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi this morning. Mr Ramana also voiced his concern over the misuse of Public Interest Litigations (PIL).
PILs have now turned into “Personal Interest Litigation” and are used to settle personal scores, he said, adding that courts are now highly cautious in entertaining the same. Speaking at the Joint Conference of Chief Ministers and Chief Justices of High Courts, Ramana said deliberate inaction by governments despite judicial pronouncements is not good for the health of democracy.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the joint conference. He said local languages should be encouraged in courts. Expanding on the delineating of powers, the CJI said, “It is the harmonious and coordinated functioning among the three organs of the state that has preserved and strengthened the democratic foundation of this great nation over the last seven decades.”
He said the judiciary will never come in the way of governance – if it is in accordance with the law. The key to good governance is the constitution, he said, lamenting that the opinions of law departments are often not sought in the rush to implement executive decisions.
He criticised ‘ambiguities’ in legislation, saying they add to legal issues. “If the legislature passes a law with clarity of thought, foresight and people’s welfare in mind, the scope of litigation is minimized,” he said.
Ramana also said a large number of cases that are pending before courts deal with inter and intra department disputes and disputes between public sector undertakings and the government. “It is beyond my understanding… why these issues end up in court,” he said.
CJI Ramana then expressed concern over frivolous litigations in courts and said the concept of public interest litigation (PIL) has now turned into “personal interest litigation: and is at times being misused to stall projects or put pressure on public authorities.
“These days, PIL has become a tool for those who want to settle political scores or corporate rivalry. Realising the potential for misuse, courts are now highly cautious in entertaining the same,” Ramana said.
According to the Indian Express, Modi said encouraging local languages in courts “will not only increase the confidence of common citizens in the justice system, but they will feel more connected to it”. He said as the country completes 75 years of Independence, the focus should be on creating a judicial system “where justice is easily available, is quick and for everyone”.
Modi also appealed to the chief ministers to repeal “outdated laws” to make the delivery of justice easier. “In 2015, we identified about 1,800 laws which had become irrelevant. Out of these, 1,450 such laws of the Centre were abolished. But, only 75 such laws have been abolished by the states,” he said, according to the Indian Express.
Ads by eaking at the event, Prime Minister Narendra Modi also underlied the need to introce local languages in the courts.
“We need to encourage local languages in courts. This will not only increase the confidence of common citizens in the justice system but they will feel more connected to it,” PM Modi said. The Prime Minister urged the Chief Ministers to repeal outdated laws to make the delivery of justice easier.
“In 2015, we identified about 1,800 laws which had become irrelevant. Out of these, 1,450 such laws of the Centre were abolished. But, only 75 such laws have been abolished by the states,” he said.
PM Modi also stressed the need for a digital judicial system that can empower citizens.I believe that this confluence and balance of these two branches of the Constitution will prepare the roadmap for an effective and time bound judicial system in the country.” He said that 75 years of independence have continuously clarified the roles and responsibilities of both the judiciary and the executive. Wherever it is necessary, this relation has evolved continuously to give direction to the country, he said. Calling the Conference a vibrant manifestation of the beauty of the Constitution, the Prime Minister said that he has been coming to the conference for a very long time, first as Chief Minister and now as Prime Minister.
Setting the tone for the conference, the Prime Minister said “In 2047, when the country will complete 100 years of its independence, then what kind of judicial system would we like to see in the country? How do we make our judicial system so capable that it can fulfill the aspirations of India of 2047, these questions should be our priority today”. “Our vision in Amrit Kaal should be of such a judicial system in which there is easy justice, speedy justice, and justice for all”, he added.
The Prime Minister emphasized that government is working hard to reduce delay in justice delivery and efforts are on for increasing judicial strength and improving judicial infrastructure. He said ICT has been deployed for case management and efforts to fill the vacancies at various levels of judiciary are underway. The Prime Minister reiterated his vision of use of technology in governance in the context of judicial work. He said that the Government of India considers the possibilities of technology in the judicial system as an essential part of the Digital India mission.