Supreme Court Collegium System
The collegium system for the appointment of the Judges adopted by the supreme court of India was established in 1993 to ensure Democracy in the Judicial System. Present collegium system is led by Chief Justice of India N.V. Ramana.
The Collegium consists Chief Justice of India and 4 Senior most Judges of the Supreme court. After discussing with the collegium members, they will send the list of recommended judges to the parliament and parliament then fallows the procedure of verifying the candidate and taking president assent approve the judges. But if The Collegium send the recommended list twice it is mandatory for the parliament to approve and appoint the recommended judges.
The collegium met on Monday and continued the process of recommendations and reiterations to fill up vacancies in high courts across the country. The Collegium finalised the names of lawyers and judicial officers for appointment of judges to seven different High courts For the year 2022 on Monday.
Government Published list of vacancies in the High Courts on February 1st and according to the list the sanctioned Judicial strength in the court is 1098 but at present there are 687 Judges so totally there is 411 vacancies for the post of Judges in High Court. During the Collegium meeting Chief Justice of India N.V. Ramana said that the appointment of judges is an “Ongoing Process”.
Biju Janata Dal’s Prasanna Acharya questioned the law minister Kiren Rijiju about the pending approval of names that have been recommended by the collegium as a response to his question law minister stated that there is no deliberate delay in judicial appointment. Law minister Kiren Rijiju answering his subsequent question answered that “we have been stressing time and again, and personally, I have also been asking the Collegium that while recommending names for appointment as judges, preference may be given to women and persons from backward classes, SC’s and ST’s”
Law minister in his official twitter account shared a video of the above statement which he gave in Rajya Sabha and stated that “There is no reservation in Judiciary but efforts are being made to create better representation”. He also stated that there is delay in appointment of judges or it is called ongoing process because while approving the names recommended by the Collegium and the government has to take due diligence and ensure that he is fit to be a Judge.
Supreme Court has stated different stages and timelines in the appointment process, saying the “Exercise is collaborative in nature and we would except promptness in this process to facilitate the larger cause of dispensation of timely Justice. To approve judges by fallowing these stage and procedure automatically causes delay in the appointment of Judges. To conclude the parliament has to give the assent and appoint the judges if The Collegium send the list of recommendations twice and as there is no time limit, more procedures involved there will be delay in approving and appointment of judges and as there are very less woman judges if Collegium gives preference to women advocates there will be huge development in the Judiciary.