NEW DELHI: In an apparent endorsement of views expressed by ministers in his Cabinet against judicial activism encroaching on the executive domain, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday sought unity of purpose among all three wings of legislature, executive and judiciary, to ensure the dawn of a new India. Speaking on the occasion of the Constitution Day at the Vigyan Bhavan here, Modi said: “It’s time to introspect if the judiciary and government is working as a unit.”
Of late, central ministers have been raising concerns over the judiciary, in the garb of activism, encroaching on the domains of legislature and executive. Incidentally, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had earlier underlined the dangers of the judiciary encroaching on the functions of the legislature and executive. Speaking on the occasion, President Ram Nath Kovind said it was critical not to disturb the fraternity of separation of powers and maintain a “delicate balance” while exploring the relationship between the judiciary, the executive and the legislature as they are all equal. Modi stressed that the separation of power (among the three wings) is at the core of the Constitution. He further said that the legislature should be free to legislate, while the executive should freely take action and the judiciary interpret the laws.
However, Modi also sought to strike a cordial note with the judiciary by noting that all the three wings should function as units of a family, while stating that the Constitution has ensured that India remained firm on the path of democracy and never lost sight of the objectives enshrined in the document, which was adopted on November 26, 1950. The PM also referred to President Ram Nath Kovind asking if the poor in the country is still hesitant on knocking the doors of the judiciary. He said our efforts should help in the poor not being hesitant about approaching the judiciary, besides accessing justice at a low cost. Modi also touched upon the issue of holding simultaneous elections in the country for the Lok Sabha and state assemblies.
He underlined that governance is affected on account of the Model Code of Conduct, which take effect upon announcement of schedules for polling. “On Constitution Day, I wish to remind that the code of conduct has not been framed under any law, but agreed upon by all political parties. But works stop because of the Model Code of Conduct. Many countries have common elections. Even we can think of a similar practice,” Modi said.