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Decide on plea on Rule of Law Index in 6 months, Supreme Court tells government

A view of the Supreme Court of India in New Delhi. File

A view of the Supreme Court of India in New Delhi. File  

Petition seeks steps to improve the ‘pathetic ranking’ of India.

The Supreme Court on Thursday asked the government to treat a writ petition filed by apex court lawyer Ashwini Upadhyay, for setting up expert panels to boost India’s prospects in the Rule of Law Index, as a “representation” and decide the issue within six months.

Mr. Upadhyay, represented by senior advocate Vikas Singh, sought a direction to the government to constitute expert committees to examine the best practices of the countries ranked among top 20 in Rule of Law Index-2020 and accordingly take steps to improve the “pathetic ranking” of India.

“This petition may be treated as representation by the respondent(s) for such appropriate actions as may be found appropriate, which may be decided within a period of six months,” a three-judge Bench led by Chief Justice of India Sharad A. Bobde ordered.

The lawyer said the cause of action for the petition accrued on March 11 when the the World Justice Project announced the Rule of Law Index and ranked India in the 69th position.

“India has never been ranked even among top 50 in the Index, but successive governments did nothing to improve international ranking of India,” the petition said.

Poor performance

The nation’s ranking in the Index “confirms poor performance in eight sectors, constraints on government powers, absence of corruption, open government, fundamental rights, public order and security, regulatory enforcement and civil and criminal justice”.

Mr. Upadhyay said “poor rule of law has a devastating effect on right to life, liberty, economic justice, fraternity, individual dignity and national integration”.

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Printable version | Aug 4, 2020 3:27:41 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/decide-on-plea-on-rule-of-law-index-in-6-months-supreme-court-tells-government/article31863917.ece

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