Judges fear their phones tapped, claims Arvind Kejriwal; Centre calls it baseless charge

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said on Monday that there is a “widespread fear” that the phones of judges are being tapped.

Written by Anand Mishra | New Delhi | Updated: November 1, 2016 7:52 am
kejriwal, arvind kejriwal, judges phone tapped, kejriwal phone tapped, phone tapped, delhi high court, delhi hc, delhi news New Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal. (PTI photo)

DELHI CHIEF Minister Arvind Kejriwal said on Monday that there is a “widespread fear” that the phones of judges are being tapped. He was speaking at the golden jubilee celebrations of the Delhi High Court, where he shared the stage with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and Chief Justice of India T S Thakur.

 

While Prasad quickly denied the allegation, Modi, in his speech, chose not to comment on the issue. Hours later, the home ministry issued a statement stating that such charges were “baseless and unfounded”.

Addressing the function, Kejriwal said: “I have heard judges talking among themselves. Two judges telling each other let us not talk on our phones as phones are being tapped. I told them this cannot happen, phones of judges cannot be tapped. They, however, said that they are being tapped. Everyone’s phone is being tapped.”

Kejriwal said he did not know if this was true but “there is a widespread fear”, adding that even if there is a “wrongdoing” by a judge, phone tapping should not be allowed. “There are many other ways to gather evidence for wrongdoing… otherwise it (tapping) will be the biggest assault on the independence of the judiciary,” he said.

Prasad, who spoke after Kejriwal, said: “I wish to deny with all the authority at my command that the phones of judges have been tapped… I want to make it very clear and categorical.”

He said the Prime Minister as well as other ministers in his government had fought for the independence of judiciary and freedom of media during Emergency. “Therefore, the commitment of the government led by Narendra Modi to the independence of the judiciary is completely irrefutable, fundamental, and we have suffered for that,” he said.

The home ministry, in its statement, said: “MHA strongly denies media reports alleging tapping of telephones of some judges. There is no truth in these reports. These reports are baseless and unfounded.”

Kejriwal also referred to the ongoing tussle between the Centre and the Supreme Court over the appointment of judges. “I feel that the Executive should not have even 0.001 per cent interference in the appointment of judges. If there is any interference, it is not good for the independence of the judiciary… The judiciary has to be completely independent of the Executive. The Executive already has so much power that the judiciary is required to keep a check and balance on them, he said.

Flagging vacancies in the higher judiciary, Kejriwal blamed the Centre, suggesting “interference” by it and referring to “rumours” that appointments are being stalled. “One is concerned because this gives rise to various kinds of rumours. Public opinion is most important in a democracy. Such kinds of rumours within public opinion is not a good thing. People discuss that a minister made recommendations for three judges… They are not being appointed, and hence the vacancies are not being filled. There is talk that the government does not want to appoint a particular judge, and hence the files are stuck,” he said.

He advocated a rule whereby the collegium’s recommendations are implemented within 48 hours.

Speaking on the issue, Prasad said the Supreme Court and the government were working together to make the collegium system more transparent. “We are working together to find an amicable solution,” he said, in an apparent reference to the Memorandum of Procedure — a document to guide the appointment of the higher judiciary.

Kejriwal also spoke briefly on the actions of the judiciary as well as the Executive. “If any action of the Executive snatches the power of the people, if any judicial interpretation of the Constitution takes away power of the people then it is not good for democracy,” he said.

 

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  1. K
    Karma
    Nov 1, 2016 at 5:04 am
    The rogue is BJP starting from Modi ji.. how much more do we have to see this 56 inch chest man in power!.. he is creating a lot of intollerance again and now phone tapping. wow
    Reply
    1. D
      David
      Oct 31, 2016 at 5:33 pm
      What AK says is true. The brahmin scoundrels in National TOILET Research Organization(NTRO) is notorious for snooping the TOILETS of their own WOMEN EMPLOYEES and enjoying their PERVERSION in their computer screen. Brahmin scoundrels are know PERVERTS.
      Reply
      1. M
        MyTake
        Oct 31, 2016 at 6:30 pm
        AK and Mamata's consciousness level almost same! They work with hidden agenda which also could be same!
        Reply
        1. M
          MyTake
          Oct 31, 2016 at 6:27 pm
          AK is a white collar Maoist.
          Reply
          1. R
            Ravi
            Nov 1, 2016 at 12:18 am
            O Kejriwal, teri maa ko e Cho@en
            Reply
            1. R
              Ravi
              Nov 1, 2016 at 12:15 am
              O Mather Cho@ Kejriwal chup kat
              Reply
              1. A
                Archpagan
                Nov 1, 2016 at 3:50 am
                Since when Kejriwalji has become spokesperson of judges? Does he hold any power of attorney?
                Reply
                1. A
                  Arvind
                  Oct 31, 2016 at 4:20 pm
                  Whenever and wherever Arvind Kejriwal gets chance to attack Modi Govt he will not leave any opportunity to do so.However of late the people of India does take him so seriously.Everyone knows he is frustrated CM as such he tries to bring rift between Govt and Judiciary.
                  Reply
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