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Congress mulls scrapping collegium system

Monday, 11 August 2014 - 6:58am IST | Place: New Delhi | Agency: dna

 After scuttling prime minister Narendra Modi government's plans on economic reforms package that included increasing foreign direct investment in the insurance sector, the Congress is now eying to rock the passage of the National Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC) Bill which proposes to scrap the collegium system and make drastic changes in the way judges are appointed to the higher courts.

Realizing that the government was in a tearing hurry, Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Friday asked her party's top legal brains Kapil Sibal, Salman Khurshid, Ashwani Kumar and Veerappa Moily, all former law ministers to meet and finalise party's stand on the issue.

But insiders said the party believes that the Bill related to higher judiciary needs wider consultations not only amongst political parties but with the judiciary as well.

A senior Congress leader and former law minister while admitting that though like insurance, the judicial bill was also the UPA baby, said against the backdrop of the controversy surrounding former solicitor general Gopal Subramanium, circumstances have now changed.

"Even the Chief Justice of India had expressed his annoyance at segregation of the name of the Gopal Subramanium from the panel," he told dna. In such circumstances, Congress would tread cautiously to give more hand to executive, he added.

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