More consideration is required before final consent is given to new procedures to appoint Supreme Court and High Court judges by setting up a National Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC).
A final nod from the Union Cabinet, which is seized of the issue, may still be needed, a government source said. The government, however, is said to be keen that a Bill to constitute the NJAC be passed in the current session of Parliament itself.
Given the problems the government is having in getting the Insurance Bill passed in the Rajya Sabha, the setting up of an NJAC, as contemplated by the Modi government, could require some major consensus-building with the Opposition.
An NJAC will require constitutional amendments to existing provisions for the appointment of judges to the Supreme Court and High Courts.
CJI to head Commission
According to the new proposals, the NJAC will be headed by the Chief Justice of India and will comprise two judges of the Supreme Court, the Law Minister and two eminent persons.
These new amendments, the source added, would also help in the withdrawal of the Judicial Appointments Commission Bill, 2013, currently pending in the Rajya Sabha.