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‘Ji Nahin’: Rijiju contradicts self on ‘anti-India’ ex-judges remark

New Delhi: The law ministry receives complaints regarding serving and retired judges from time to time but it is concerned only with appointment and service conditions of serving members of the higher judiciary, Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju informed Rajya Sabha on Thursday.

He was responding to the question “whether as per the Union minister for Law and Justice, a few former judges of the Supreme Court are part of an anti-India gang”.

The minister was also asked to reveal the source of the information and whether in view of national security, the government has informed the chief justice of India and the Union home ministry.

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While in the English version of the written reply, Rijiju has not given a direct response to the four sub-questions, in the Hindi version, he replied in the negative.

He responded with “ji nahin” to sub-questions A to D.

“From time to time, complaints are received in the Department of Justice (in the law ministry) against sitting as well as retired judges of Supreme Court and high courts. Department of Justice is concerned only with the appointment and service conditions of the sitting judges of the Supreme Court and high courts,” he said.

He also said complaints related to the retired judges of the Supreme Court and the high courts are not handled by the Department of Justice.

Accountability in higher judiciary is maintained through an “in-house mechanism”, he said, recalling that the Supreme Court in its full court meeting on May 7, 1997 had adopted two resolutions — one dealing with restatement of values of judicial life and the other with in-house procedure for taking suitable remedial action against judges who do not follow universally accepted values of judicial life.

As per the established “in-house mechanism” for the higher judiciary, the chief justice of India is competent to receive complaints against the conduct of judges of the Supreme Court and the chief justices of the high courts.

Similarly, the chief justices of the high courts are competent to receive complaints against the conduct of high court judges.

“The complaints/representations received by Department of Justice are forwarded to the Chief Justice of India or to the chief justice of the concerned high courts, as the case may be, for appropriate action,” he said.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by Siasat staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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