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Comments against the judges a disturbing new trend: Ravi Shankar Prasad | India News

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PATNA: Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Saturday voiced strong disapproval of legal activists making objectionable comments about judges failing to pass favorable orders in their petitions, calling it a “disturbing new trend.”
Prasad was addressing a function organized here to mark the inauguration of a new Patna High Court building by Chief Justice of India SA Bobde, in the presence of Bihar’s Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, among others.
“Surely we can criticize the reasoning of a sentence. But, I foresee a new trend that I need to mark today,” Prasad said referring to the “grossly unfair” comments on social media against judges by those who file PIL and feel aggrieved when the judgment is not favorable.
To assert that the judges of India, whether they are Supreme Court, High Courts or District Courts should be free to decide a case according to their knowledge of the law and that although people are free to make their own analysis criticizing a verdict, “trolling” and “agenda setting” were not acceptable.
“I had been thinking about making my concerns public. I chose to do it here,” said Prasad, who also mentioned having served as a lawyer in the Patna High Court and his current term as a local deputy.
The Union minister, who also holds the Electronics and Telecommunications portfolios, also referred to the recently issued guidelines for the use of social networks that were “long overdue.”
“We support freedom. We support criticism. We also support dissent. But the problem is misuse and abuse of social media. There should be a grievance redress mechanism for people who are abused on social media.”, added.
The Union Law Minister also referred to the proposed establishment of All India Judicial Services, “a work in progress”, as part of which “the best minds” would be appointed judges after passing competitive examinations conducted by the UPSC “under the direction The Supreme Court.
He also said that the government “wanted to give adequate reservations to the SC, ST and OBC”, which would make the judiciary more “inclusive”.
Prasad also expressed satisfaction that the judiciary faced the challenge posed by the Covid-19 pandemic last year.
The total number of cases heard digitally across the country, as of January 31, was 76.38 lakh. Of these 24.55 lakhs were heard in the various High Courts, another 51.83 lakhs in the district courts and 22,353 in the Apex Court.
“It is a question of certain security and appreciation,” he said.

Times of India

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