The central Law minister, Mr. Ravi Shankar Prasad has gone on record by criticising the judiciary for reviving the collegium system for appointment of judges. He brought the matter to the fore by citing it as a lack of “trust in the Prime Minister” in a valedictory function of the Law day celebrations in New Delhi.
The Chief Justice, Dipak Mishra refuted his statement with a Cordelia-like answer that the judiciary reposes as much trust in the PM as the public does. “Many things we have accepted with mutual respect. We are absolutely conscious where we can intervene and where we cannot. One institution should not claim supremacy over the other.” were his closing remarks.
NJAC vs Collegium
The Prime Minister was a mute spectator to the exchange when his Law Minister went all the way in criticising the judiciary for insisting on the collegium and independent appointment of judges.
Mr. Prasad said in his address at the valedictory function, “The people of India trust the Prime Minister with the obligation to secure the unity and integrity of India. As I once said in the Parliament, the Prime Minister possesses the nuclear button… that’s how much the people trust him. The Prime Minister through his Ministers can do so much work, yet the Prime Minister through the Law Minister cannot be trusted to have a fair judge appointed is a question … Some day we trust the judiciary and the polity of the country will look into this.”
Ex-High court judge,Karnan’s example (now in Jail for contempt of court) was cited by the Law Minister as a failure of the collegium.