Some judicial observations gave impression of overreach: VP Naidu

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November 25, 2020 4:14 PM

The higher judiciary deciding on Diwali fireworks, denying the executive any role in the appointment of judges through collegiums, invalidating the National Judicial Appointments Commission Act seeking to enforce accountability and transparency were some of the instances of judicial overreach cited by the vice president.

Naidu said that "elimination" of the threat of terrorism will help the region realise its true potential.

Citing court verdicts on firecrackers and denying the executive a role in the appointment of judges, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu on Wednesday said some judgments gave a distinct impression of the judiciary’s overreach. He stressed that the legislature, the executive and the judiciary are bound to work within their respective domains as defined in the Constitution.

Addressing the 80th All India Presiding Officers’ Conference on “Harmonious Coordination between Legislature, Executive and Judiciary – Key to Vibrant Democracy”, Naidu said harmony lies in each organ doing its job, without interfering with that of the others. This warrants a spirit of mutual respect, responsibility and restraint. Unfortunately, there have been several instances of crossing the boundaries, he said.

Naidu said there have been quite a few judicial pronouncements that gave a distinct impression of an overreach. “Since independence, the Supreme Court and the high courts have delivered several far-reaching verdicts in furtherance of socio-economic objectives, besides making correctional interventions. But occasionally, concerns have been raised as to whether they were entering the domains of the legislative and executive wings. “There have been debates as to whether some issues should have been more legitimately left to the other organs of the government,” he said.

The higher judiciary deciding on Diwali fireworks, denying the executive any role in the appointment of judges through collegiums, invalidating the National Judicial Appointments Commission Act seeking to enforce accountability and transparency were some of the instances of judicial overreach cited by the vice president.

“There have been quite a few judicial pronouncements that gave a distinct impression of an overreach. These actions have resulted in an avoidable blurring of the contours demarcated by the Constitution,” Naidu said. “At times, the legislature too has tended to cross the line. The 39th Constitution amendment placing the election of president, vice president and prime minister beyond the scope of judicial scrutiny in the circumstances in 1975 is one such instance,” he said.

Talking about the executive, the vice president said there have been cases when rules framed under the delegated “subordinate legislation” violated the provisions of the original legislation passed by Parliament. “Violations of the rights and liberties of citizens by the executive at times are too visible for comfort,” he said.

Expressing concern over the frequent disruptions in the legislatures, Naidu said the “decency, dignity and decorum” of the temples of democracy will be upheld only through adherence to three “Ds” — debate, discus and decide.

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