Political patronage and judicial appointments in India

Gautam, Khagesh (2017) Political patronage and judicial appointments in India. The Indonesian Journal of International & Comparative Law, 4 (4). pp. 653-724. ISSN 23387602

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The issue of judicial appointments in the higher judiciary (i.e. the Supreme Court of India and the State High Courts) has been in the news recently. The new government, carrying forward the efforts of previous governments, intro duced the 99th Constitutional Amendment amending the Judges Appointment Clause (article 124) of the Indian Constitution and introduced three new arti cles in the Indian Constitution providing for a National Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC) for appointing judges to the higher judiciary. Along with this amendment, the National Judicial Appointments Commission Act, 2014 was enacted. Thus the previous system, also known as the Collegium System of appointments, whereby the Indian President had to give primacy to the opinion of the Chief Justice of India in matters of judicial appointments in higher judi ciary was replaced with the new NJAC system of appointments. This new consti tutional amendment and the NJAC Act were immediately challenged before the Supreme Court of India as unconstitutional and void as violating the principle of independence ofjudiciary, which is a part of the basic structure of the Indian Constitution. In the Fourth Judges Appointment Case, decided on October 16, 2015, the Supreme Court of India by a majority of4 judges to 1, declared the 99th Amendment as violative of the basic structure. The majority of4 judges also held that in the absence of the 99th Amendment, the NJAC Act automatically became unconstitutional and void. The lone dissenting judge did not express any opinion on the constitutionality of the NJAC Act since the majority had already found it

Item Type: Article
Keywords: National Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC) | Supreme Court of India | Judges | High Court
Subjects: Social Sciences and humanities > Social Sciences > Law and Legal Studies
JGU School/Centre: Jindal Global Law School
Depositing User: Amees Mohammad
Date Deposited: 09 May 2022 04:01
Last Modified: 09 May 2022 04:01
URI: https://pure.jgu.edu.in/id/eprint/2919


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