Cabinet nod for judicial accountability bill
The Union Cabinet today approved ‘The Judicial Standards and Accountability Bill, 2010” and its introduction in the Parliament.
The Bill provides a mechanism for enquiring into complaints against the Judges of the Supreme Court and the High Courts, lays down judicial standards and requires the Judges of the Supreme Court and the High Courts to declare their assets and liabilities. The Bill seeks to replace the Judges (Inquiry) Act, 1968 while retaining its basic features. The enactment of the Bill will address the growing concerns regarding the need to ensure greater accountability of the higher judiciary by bringing in more transparency and would further strengthen the credibility and independence of the judiciary.
At present there is no legal provision for dealing with complaints filed by the public against the Judges of the Supreme Court and the High Courts. Also, the judiciary has adopted resolutions for declaration of assets by Judges and “Restatement of values of Judicial Life’. However, there is no law that requires the Judges of the Supreme Court and the High Courts to declare their assets and liabilities and also there is no statutory sanction for judicial standards.
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