CJI Thakur lashes out at Centre over delay in judges' appointment, asserts 'can't stall process'

| Updated: Aug 12, 2016 19:51 IST

New Delhi, Aug 12 (ANI): After pulling up the Narendra Modi-led government for not filing its response in a matter pertaining to road accidents, the Chief Justice of India T.S. Thakur on Friday took on the Centre over the delay in the appointment of judges. Thakur told Attorney General Mukul Rohtagi to reply in four weeks over why the appointment of judges have been delayed and by with which authority. Slamming the government over the delay he said, 'don't force us to pass orders to remove logjam'. The Supreme Court also asked the Attorney General to give details of compliance of decisions of Collegiums with respect to appointment or transfer of high court judges. The top court asserted that the time has come to take judicial note of appointments and transfers which have not been made despite Collegium clearance eight months ago. Regarding the Collegium, the apex court stated that 75 names of HC judges have been cleared but have not been approved. "The vacancies in high courts have increased to 43 per cent when the pendency in high court's have reached to four million cases. If the government has any objection on the names, it should be sent back to the collegiums with relevant matter, but the process can't be stalled," the apex court observed. Earlier today, the Supreme Court pulled up the Centre for not filing its response in a matter pertaining to road accidents and imposed a fine of Rs 25, 000 on the Ministry of Road and Transport. Speaking for the government, the Attorney General assured that the response will be filed within three weeks. The top court rebuked the Centre saying, "thousands dying because of your indifferent attitude." During the hearing, Justice Thakur slammed the Centre saying that the government was the biggest litigant but always blamed the court for not performing well. "You have not filed counter affidavit for more than a year. Is this a Panchayat going on here?," Thakur observed in the apex court. Thakur's strong words come after he made a poignant appeal in April to increase the number of judges in order to handle the "avalanche" of litigations, to which Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who was present at the event, assured him of the government's intervention. "It is not enough to criticise, you cannot shift the entire burden to the judiciary. If you compare performances of our judges to the other countries, we are head and shoulder above them. Speeches have been made in past, people have spoken in conference, there's been debate in Parliament. But I think nothing really appears to be moving," Thakur addressed the Joint Conference of Chief Ministers and Chief Justices. In response, Prime Minister Modi said that he understood the Chief Justice's concern and added that that going forward, he hoped that the Government and the Judiciary could work together to find solutions to these issues. (ANI)