Collegium System Has Defeated Its Purpose: Ex-SC Judge

Former Supreme Court judge Ashok Kumar Ganguly today said that the Collegium system for appointment of judges has "defeated its purpose" and that an alternative system must be found out.

"In my opinion, the Collegium system is not working well, an alternative system should be found out," Ganguly told PTI here.

"Both the previous and present governments have been trying to introduce a new system of appointment of judges in view of the present controversy arising out of the appointment made through the collegium system," Ganguly said.

"In fact the collegium system effectively ousts the Executive (of) any decisive say in the appointment of judges," the retired Apex Court judge, who had resigned as the West Bengal Human Rights Commission chairman following a controversy, said.

"This is not the scheme of the Constitution. Collegium system has been evolved by virtue of judicial interpretation, but ultimately it has defeated its purpose," he asserted.

"In the new system, the Judicial Appointment Committee (JAC) must be a body which should inspire confidence in the impartiality of judicial process," Ganguly said.

"The JAC must be constituted not by a Parliamentary legislation, but by Constitutional provision," he opined.

"In the JAC introduced by the previous government, this was not followed. That cannot be accepted.

"JAC must be structured by the Constitution and the two eminent persons or citizens (to be in it) must be such persons who are of unquestionable integrity and impeccable honesty," Ganguly said.

"The Opposition must have a substantial voice and if two out of the six members do not accept a nomination, such appointment should not be accepted," he said.

"The Constitutional vision of the Executive participating in the process must be restored," the retired judge said.

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