‘Media, judiciary should maintain accountability’

K V Thomas exhorted the citizens to speak out against corrupt practices in the judiciary

Published: 13th January 2013 12:06 PM  |   Last Updated: 13th January 2013 12:06 PM   |  A+A-

Union Minister of State for Food and Consumer Affairs K V Thomas has said that majority of people are afraid to criticise the wrongdoings of corrupt elements in the judiciary.

“People are aware of the unethical trends in the judicial system. But due to issues like contempt of court, they prefer to keep quiet,” Thomas said.

He was inaugurating the legal enrichment camp titled ‘Sameeksha’, organised by the Indian Lawyers Congress (ILC) here on Saturday. The Minister opined that important political personalities in India, including the prime minister, ministers of the Central Cabinet  and chief ministers are open to criticism and accountable to the public.

“The public can scrutinise the functioning of politicians at least during elections and show red card to political figures who are not up to the mark,” he said.

He added that the media and judiciary are important institutions and should maintain their accountability. “The media is powerful to even decide the political agenda. But it is high time they develop the outlines of being accountable.”

Benny Behanan MLA came down heavily on the unethical trends in judiciary. He admitted that the UDF government has appointed many public prosecutors based on caste and community recommendations than merit.

ILC president M V S Nampoothiry presided over the function. KPCC vice-president Lali Vincent, ILC office-bearers Raju Joseph, Joy George Adukkam and Tomy Kallani spoke on the occasion. The three-day camp will have many presentations related to Indian judiciary.

Legal luminary N R Madhava Menon has also highlighted the importance of judicial accountability.

Delivering a talk on the theme ‘Judicial Accountability Bill’ organised by the Indian Lawyers Congress here on Saturday, he said that judicial accountability is vital for timely justice.

“The difference between the colonial and the post-independence judiciary is that the latter is grounded in constitutional philosophy and its promises. The judicial officers need to respect that,” he pointed out.  Apart from constitutional accountability, judicial officers also need to have personal, decisional and institutional accountabilities. Menon however warned to not use the ruse of accountability to intrude into the independence of the judiciary. “If that be the case, then the medicine would cause more harm than the disease,” he said.


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