Chief Justice of India RM Lodha on Friday said there should be mutual respect among judiciary, Parliament and executive, each of which should be unhindered by “extraneous influence”, in comments that came a day after Parliament scrapped the collegium system of appointments.
“I am sure that people in judiciary, people in executive and people in Parliament are mature enough to have mutual respect for each other and ensure that each of them is permitted to work in their sphere unhindered by any extraneous influence,” Justice Lodha said after unfurling the tricolour in the Supreme Court premises on the occasion of independence day.
He said Constitution makers made it sure that all organs of the state operate in their respective field without encroaching upon each other's domain.
Notwithstanding reservations of judiciary, Parliament had on Friday cleared two bills providing for a new mechanism for appointment of judges to higher judiciary by scrapping over two-decades old collegium system.
In his speech, he referred to appointment of less than 1000 judges to higher judiciary by the present system of judiciary appointing judges but did not elaborate or refer to the proposed judicial appointments commission being put in place by the government.
Apparently responding to criticism over inordinate delay in the justice delivery system, Justice Lodha noted that while judiciary is responsible for appointing less then 1,000 judges (of SC and HCs), the state governments appoint 19,000 judges in lower courts.
Giving a break up, the CJI said the present collegium system appoints 906 judges of the High Court and 31 to the Supreme Court.
“As head of judiciary, my heart feels pain when I find criminal justice system has given tremendous suffering, pain, exploitation of human rights and deprivation of human liberty,” he said.