Supreme Court agrees to list petition challenging collegium system of judicial appointments

The Supreme Court on Thursday agreed to list a petition challenging the collegium system of judicial appointments, reported Live Law.

The collegium system comprises five senior-most judges of the Supreme Court, including the chief justice who decides on the appointments and transfers of judges to the Supreme Court and the High Courts.

The matter was mentioned before a bench of Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud, Justices Hima Kohli and JB Pardiwala.

Advocate Matthews J Nedumpara appearing for the petitioner asked the court to declare that the collegium system of appointment of judges has become synonymous with nepotism and favouritism, as it has resulted in the denial of fair opportunity in the selection and appointment of judges, reported the Deccan herald

The development comes days after former Chief Justice UU Lalit said that the collegium system of judicial appointments was necessary for the independence of the judiciary and the rule of law.

Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju has described the collegium system of appointing judges as “very opaque”.

On October 18, Rijiju had said that the government was unhappy with the Supreme Court’s 2015 decision to strike down the National Judicial Appointments Commission Act passed by Parliament months after Narendra Modi took over as the prime minister in 2014.

Under the National Judicial Appointments Commission, judicial appointments were to be made through a body comprising of the chief justice, two senior Supreme Court judges, the law minister and two other eminent persons nominated by the chief justice, the prime minister and the leader of the Opposition.

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