A five judge bench of the Supreme Court of India on October 16 struck down the National Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC) while upholding the collegium system to appoint judges to the higher judiciary.
A batch of petitions had been filed challenging the constitutional validity of the NJAC. After hearing the matter at length the Supreme Court had reserved orders on the matter on July 15.
There have been mixed reactions to the verdict of the Supreme Court which struck down the NJAC. While many in the judiciary have hailed the decision stating that the independence of the judiciary has been upheld others have termed it sad.
Here are some facts you need to know about the Collegium System
- The collegium system has been in place since 1993, it left the legal fraternity somewhat divided.
- It was created by two judgements of the Supreme Court.
- It comprises the Chief Justice of India, four senior most judges of the Supreme Court and the chief justice of a particular high court and its two senior most judges.
- The Collegium system recommend appointments and transfers of judges. It is popularly referred as judges-selecting-judges.
- The Collegium system has no place in the Indian Constitution.
- The Central government has criticised Collegium System saying it has created an imperium in imperio (empire within an empire) within the Supreme Court.