Modi govt turns down SC request to formulate draft MoP for appointments of judges

New Delhi: The Modi government on Thursday refused to formulate a draft memorandum of procedure (MoP) to be followed by the Supreme Court collegium for appointments of judges to the higher judiciary, according to Zee News and PTI.

The Supreme Court on Wednesday had asked the Centre to frame the draft MoP for future appointments in higher judiciary after considering all suggestions on the issue.

Attorney General Mukul Rohtagi, representing the Modi government, told the Supreme Court on Thursday that it is not possible to give draft MoP for vetting by by judiciary. Rohtagi, instead, asked the court itself to pass directions on the issue.

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After receiving diverse suggestions from various quarters on the improvement of the collegium system, the Supreme Court on November 3 had said that “there can’t be wholesale change” in the system for the appointment of judges for high courts and supreme court.

It had asked parties involved to respond on four points – transparency, minimum eligibility criteria, need for secretariat (office) and how to deal with complaints that come against prospective appointments.

A constitution bench headed by Justice JS Khehar had said that the response the court had received was “tremendous” and “diverse in nature” after its October 16 verdict, which quashed the National Judicial Appointment Commission Act.

In a 4-1 majority judgment on October 16, the Supreme Court had held the 99th Constitutional Amendment Act 2014 and the National Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC) Act 2014, to be “unconstitutional and void”.