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Saturday, February 19, 2011

Judicial Accountability - strides in the right direction

It is good to see that the current bench in the SC has taken this bold step to acknowledge that the complaint on the ex-CJI as well as to ask the Govt to file a status report. The ex-CJI has been under the shadow of suspicion on several grounds at the same time, whether he helped to hush-up the call to a sitting judge in the Chennai High Court (the one that had dubious Raja in the other end) by a Central Minister, whether his children acquired property not in line with their known sources of income (Kerala government has an investigation on this I think) and whether he did enough for Judicial Accountability.

It is important that he clear himself from such shadows, particularly as he has immediately assumed the office as the Human Rights Commission head. He has had earlier problems too (I have blogged earlier on an RTI by a popular channel here). In fact, during his tenure, he maintained that he would keep the asset details of the Judges in a 'sealed envelop' as the only incentive he granted for Judicial Accountability. This was not agreed upon by many even then (note on Judge disagreeing with him on Accountability here) and some Judges have declared their assets online. It is amazing that we have such straight forward judges.

It is not enough if the former CJI clears his name and comes out clean. It is important that others don't have to go through such suspicion. We still have the pending suspicion of who was the judge that was neutralized as per the Radia tapes (there is a reference in one of her conversations about a judge being taken care of for a certain amount).

Tell us status of complaint about ex-CJI assets: SC

In a rare step towards judicial transparency, a three-judge Bench led by Chief Justice of India (CJI) S H Kapadia revealed in full public glare today that the Union Home Ministry had, in 2010, received a complaint seeking an investigation into the assets of former Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan.

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