Chennai: Sounding a note of caution on judicial activism, President Pranab Mukherjee on Saturday said judicial pronouncements must respect the boundaries that separate the legislature, executive and judiciary.
Making his first visit outside the national capital after assuming the office of President on July 25, Mukherjee also said that everything must be done to protect the independence of judiciary from any form of encroachment.
Addressing the valedictory function of the 150th anniversary celebrations of the Madras High Court, he urged judiciary to keep reinventing itself through a process of introspection and self-correction at the same time.
In his address, Mukherjee touched upon various issues that dominate legal discourse including judicial accountability and the appointment of judges.
The President referred to judicial activism and said the judges through innovation and activism have contributed enormously to expanding the frontiers of justice and providing access to the poorest of the poor.
“However, a note of caution needs to be sounded. Judicial activism should not lead to the Constitutional principles of separation of power getting eroded. Judicial pronouncements must respect the boundaries that separate the Legislature, Executive and Judiciary,” he said.
Referring to backlog of cases, the President said the courts must be strengthened with additional resources to provide speedy justice and that government was fully engaged in this task.
The filling of vacancies in courts across the country is a matter that must be taken up as a priority by all concerned.
“We must make haste in this regard but without compromising on quality,” he said.
Judges of the Supreme Court, Chief Justice M Y Eqbal and other judges of the Madras High Court, Governor K Rosaiah, Chief Minister J Jayalaithaa and lawyers were among others present on the occasion.
Madras High Court was one of the three Courts established in India by Letters Patent issued by Queen Victoria after the Calcutta and Bombay High Courts in 1862.