Polity

Judicial Transparency

13th March – Judicial Transparency

Ruling against judicial transparency In its recent decision, in the Chief Information Commissioner v. High Court of Gujarat case, the Supreme Court, regrettably, barred citizens from securing access to court records under the Right to Information (RTI) Act. Instead, the court held that such records can be accessed only through the rules laid down by …

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Independence of tribunals

3rd March – Independence of Tribunals

Independence of Tribunals In November 2019, a Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court, in Rojer Mathew, declared the Tribunal, Appellate Tribunal and other Authorities (Qualification, Experience and other Conditions of Service of Members) Rules, 2017 as unconstitutional for being violative of principles of independency of the judiciary. The insertion of non-judicial members in such tribunals …

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13th February – Six years on, Lokpal is a non-starter

More than six years after the Lokpal law received the President’s assent, the institution of the Lokpal is yet to play any significant role in tackling corruption in the country. Role of Lokpal – The preambular statement of The Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013 notes that the law has been enacted to ensure prompt and …

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12th February – Liberty at the government’s whim

Fundamental rights, we have been repeatedly been told, do not exist in silos. The values inherent in the rights to equality, freedom of expression and association, and to life and personal liberty are deeply intertwined, with each right deriving meaning from the other. In this respect, it is important to discuss a recent judgment of …

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11th February – Victim justice is two steps forward, one step back

The recent judgment in Rekha Murarka vs The State Of West Bengal (November 2019) has held that the victims’ private counsel cannot orally examine or cross-examine the witnesses. What is the issue? Under our criminal justice system, victims find themselves removed from the proceedings. Their identities are reduced to being mere witnesses. Presently, the victims’ …

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10th February – Upholding the fairness of the sentencing process

The subject of rape has since become a matter of national importance; often there are protests with demands for the perpetrators to be hanged. While public sentiment remains unchanged, it is important to realise that judicial processes demand dispassionate fairness that gives due regard to substantive requirements of sentencing. Failure to meet these demands raises …

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7th February – Office of the Speaker

Recently, the Supreme Court of India while adjudicating upon the matter relating to the disqualification of MLAs in the Manipur Legislative Assembly under the Tenth Schedule in Keisham Meghachandra Singh vs. the Hon’ble Speaker Manipur Legislative Assembly & Ors. made a significant suggestion. It recommended that Parliament should rethink as to whether disqualification petitions ought …

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5th February – Towards a Cooperative Federalism

As of January 28, the Chief Ministers of at least 11 States have expressed their unwillingness to implement the National Register of Citizens (NRC). Two of these States, West Bengal and Kerala, have stayed all work on the National Population Register (NPR), which is the foundational register from which the NRC will be built. Furthermore, …

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1st February – Civil Society

Civil Society – The concept of civil society is normative as it specifies that associational life in a metaphorical space between the market based on profit, and the state that embodies power. Associational life neutralises the individualism, the atomism, and the anomie of modern life. Social associations enable the pursuit of multiple projects and engender …

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25th January – The origin of the Constitution

The world marvels at how well the Indian Constitution has kept a diverse country together for more than 70 years. It’s robustness and durability rest on its many built-in safeguards securing citizens’ rights to freedom and justice and fair play which no government, however powerful, can hope to effectively recast within the space of a …

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