Though the country follows a democratic set-up where the citizens have all freedom, the rule of law is never compromised. The public need not worry as the rule of law is in safe hands, Supreme Court Justice Jasti Chelameswar has said.
He was speaking at the valedictory function of the National Judicial Academy (NJA) South Zone Judicial Conference on the ‘Role of Courts in Upholding the Rule of Law’ on Sunday. Kerala High Court Chief Justice Manjula Chellur presided over the function.
“The government comes to power through the votes of the majority. Despite boasting of a democratic set-up and one of the largest armed forces in the world, the governance in the country is based on well laid-out laws and regulations,” Chelamsewar said.
Supreme Court Justice Kurian Joseph spoke about the need for judges to respect the rights of the public. “The courts play an important role in strengthening the trust of the public in a country where the constitution is the backbone of governance,” he said.
“If the trust of the public is to be strengthened, the judges need to remember to respect the rights of the people. When the courts ensure that the rights of the citizens are upheld, the trust of the people will automatically increase,” Justice Joseph said.
He added that the judges should deliver judgements based on the merits of the judicial system. Also, they must remember that they are not exempt from the rulings of the court. “The courts also play an important role in upholding the principle of democracy in the land. The verdicts should be a pointer to the appropriate conduct of the citizens and prove useful for the betterment of the society,” Justice Joseph said.
Chief Justice of the Kerala High Court Justice Manjulla Chellur, Justice K T Sankaran, Justice P R Ramachandra Menon and Dr Balram Gupta, Director, National Judicial Academy, were also present at the function.
Former Supreme Court Justice K T Thomas, Justice S B Sinha, Justice P K Balasubramanian, Chief Justice of Andhra Pradesh High Court Kalyan Jyothi Sengupta and other members of the judiciary from Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Kerala were present on the occasion.
The regional conference was organised by the National Judicial Academy, in association with the High Courts of various states and the respective State Judicial Academies, with the objective of creating a mechanism to help develop a system of uniformity in understanding the legal principles and judicial structure throughout the country, with a view to promote best practices in a uniform manner.
The proposed theme on the role of courts in the rule of law was conceived for the seminar with an objective to inculcate an understanding of the Constitutional underpinnings of the rule of law in the district judiciary, and promote its application for fair administration of justice.