NEW DELHI: Dubbing the Opposition move seeking impeachment of Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra as dangerous, Union Finance Minister and senior BJP leader Arun Jaitley on Friday slammed “institution disrupters” who, he alleged, pick up false causes in the garb of public interest litigations (PILs).
Jaitley accused the Opposition of using the impeachment motion as a political tool. It was essentially “a revenge petition” after the falsehood of the Congress Party has been established in the Justice Loya death case, he alleged.
“It is an attempt to intimidate a Judge and send a message to other Judges, that if you don’t agree with us, fifty MPs are enough for a revenge action,” Jaitley noted in an article he penned on Friday after the Opposition submitted the impeachment motion to Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu.
The Leader of the House in the Rajya Sabha, who is considered the top judicial mind in the Narendra Modi government, noted that the impeachment of a judge of the Supreme Court can be done only in case of either his “incapacity” or “proven misconduct”. Trivialising the use of impeachment power was a dangerous event, the minister noted.
“The power of impeachment under our Constitution is a part of an inter-institutional accountability. Both Houses of Parliament as political Houses have been conferred the judicial power of impeachment. Thus, a judicial power is exercised by a political House. Each member has to act as a judge. Decisions cannot be on party lines or dictated by whip. The power is exercised in case of proven misconduct,” Jaitley said. “To use the power as intimidatory tactics when neither you have a case of ‘proven misconduct’ or the numbers on your side, is a serious threat to judicial independence.”
The BJP’s Lok Sabha MP from New Delhi Meenakshi Lekhi, too, slammed the Congress for resorting to “demean, degrade and denigrate” the judiciary after the conspiracies in cases of Justice Loya death and Maya Kodnani had been exposed.
The BJP’s media department head and Rajya Sabha MP Anil Baluni said case after case filed against BJP leaders during UPA I and UPA II was falling apart.