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Collegium reforms must aim at greater transparency, while eliminating the scope for arbitrariness in judicial appointment process and this must be done without compromising the judicial independence. Elaborate. (250 words)

Topic: Separation of powers between various organs dispute redressal mechanisms and institutions.

2. Collegium reforms must aim at greater transparency, while eliminating the scope for arbitrariness in judicial appointment process and this must be done without compromising the judicial independence. Elaborate. (250 words)

Difficulty level: Moderate

Reference: the Print

 

Why the question: A plea has been filed in the Delhi High Court challenging the Central Information Commission’s order dismissing an RTI appeal seeking the agenda of the Supreme Court collegium meeting on December 12, 2018, when certain decisions were purportedly taken on elevation of judges to the apex court.

Key Demand of the question: To write about nature of reforms in the Collegium system of judicial appointments.

Directive word: 

Elaborate – Give a detailed account as to how and why it occurred, or what is the particular context. You must be defining key terms wherever appropriate and substantiate with relevant associated facts.

Structure of the answer:

Begin the answer by describing the collegium system of appointments to higher judiciary.

Introduction: 

Begin the answer by tracing the journey of the process of appointments of the judges to the apex court since independence.

Body:

Mention in brief the three judges’ case and NJAC act, 2014.

Next, write about the reasons which calls for reforms to the existing collegium system. Opaqueness, lack of accountability, lack of representation from weaker sections, slow pace of appointments and lack of public faith etc.

Suggest reforms to overcome the above issues that are affecting the collegium system without compromising the judicial independence.

Conclusion:

Mention the importance of efficient, independent and vigilant judiciary for our democracy.