Kumar said he hoped the SC response on the presidential reference would reinforce the constitution’s clear demarcation of boundaries of functions and powers assigned to the executive, legislature and judiciary. With reference to a controversial clause in the Judicial Standards and Accountability Bill, which has already been passed by Lok Sabha, he said there was no potential for confrontation between the government and the judiciary. “The government believes that judicial independence is a constitutional imperative and will always respect it,” he said.
The minister said that the “proposed provision”, which seeks to debar judges from making oral comments in courts, merely seeks to reiterate what has been stressed in several Supreme Court judgments on the subject. “We are still in the process of giving a final shape to the bill. My predecessor (Salman Khurshid) held extensive consultations with all stakeholders, including the judiciary. I have myself applied my mind on the issue,” Kumar added.
The minister is hopeful of getting the bill passed in the Rajya Sabha during the ongoing winter session itself.
Kumar also promised to cut down on red-tapism and other delays in decision making.