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Best are not becoming judges: Arun Jaitley

Constitutional interpretation that judges appoint judges is not an ideal system,says Jaitley.

Pressing for the setting up of a National Judicial Commission for appointments in higher judiciary,BJP leader Arun Jaitley said the quality of judges has to be improved as “the best are not becoming judges”.

The Leader of the Opposition in Rajya Sabha also alleged CBI was functioning in a “terrible manner” and said there was merit in demands for a strong Lokpal even as there were fears over sharing of powers with an extra-constitutional authority.

“India needs more judges. We have to increase our investment in that… Quality of people we induct in judicial system has to be improved. The best are not becoming judges. Appointment of judges,particularly to higher judiciary and their accountability is an extremely slow mechanism,” he said.

On appointment of judges,he said it is done through a “Constitutional interpretation that judges appoint judges”,which though is better but “not an ideal system”.

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“You need a National Judicial Commission which may have a primacy of judges and participation of the executive,which needs through a collegium,at least one or two eminent citizens,who not only appoint but also keep a vigil on them,” Jaitley said.

On bringing judicial reforms,he said “A greater vigil on those who judge others will also have to be brought in as part of the judicial reform itself.”

The BJP leader also stressed on cutting short the procedures to reduce burdens on the courts.

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Appreciating the functioning of constitutional bodies like CAG and PAC,he attacked CBI for its functioning.

“CAG and PAC have conventionally functioned well. CBI is functioning in a terrible manner. I have no faith left in that institution. It has become an organ of the ruling party and we have to re-establish its credential as a premier investigative agency,” he said.

On Lokpal,Jaitley said the body has to be independent and strong and should act as a deterrent for the tainted persons.

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“There is a huge substance in this demand for a Lokpal at the Centre and Lokayukta in states. But there are fears how can you share powers with an extra-constitutional authority?” he said.

On steps to remove these fears,he said “We will make it an authority under the law. The Lokpal has to be a strong and independent institution. The appointment and removal of the Lokpal has to be done through an independent mechanism.”

Jaitley said the investigating agency under Lokpal must be fair and independent and there should be a mechanism of investigation with which it can act as a deterrent against any form of corruption.

First published on: 13-10-2012 at 12:00:14 pm
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