The CPI (M) on Tuesday stepped up its criticism of the judiciary, saying that the High Courts and the Supreme Court have been passing judgments that favour the private sector and employers. It demanded that a national judicial commission be constituted to ensure accountability and transparency in appointments in the higher courts.
"There have been a number of judgments by the Supreme Court in the recent period, which overturned verdicts favouring the worker. At the same time, the trend of curtailing democratic rights and collective action by the higher judiciary continues. The Kerala High Court order banning student organisations and political activities from campuses is one such instance,’’ Party general secretary, Prakash Karat, said.
Karat was addressing the media at the end of the three-day meeting of the central committee (CC), one of the two decision-making bodies of the Party.
Karat’s also made the comments in the context of the contempt proceedings initiated against a CPI (M) minister by the Kerala High Court for his "anti-judiciary remark" and sentencing of another minister by a court for obstructing train services during a party agitation.
In recent weeks, the CPI (M) has also expressed displeasure against the SC stay on providing 27 per cent reservation for OBCs in higher educational institutions and the suo motu decision taken by the Calcutta High Court to order a CBI enquiry into the Nandigram incident when the Left Front Government would have preferred a judicial probe.
"We do not accept judgments which say bandhs, general strikes and hartals are illegal. It amounts to curbing democratic rights," he said, adding that the right to criticise is a fundamental right.
On the issue of Nandigram, Karat said that the CC discussed the matter in detail and was "deeply unhappy" with the deaths of 14 villagers. At the same time, he rejected the ``scurrilous propaganda’’ carried out by right wing parties, naxalites and certain NGOs against the Party.
"Allegations and charges are being fabricated and purveyed about large number of deaths and sexual assaults on women in Nandigram. These are the heinous methods adopted by the anti-communist forces in Bengal time and again,’’ Karat said.