Inappropriate & Irresponsible: Why VP Rejected Impeachment Motion
Naidu based his decision on the opinion of top legal and constitutional experts, after an extensive discussion.
Rajya Sabha Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu on Monday, 23 April, rejected the unprecedented notice to begin impeachment proceedings against CJI Dipak Misra, saying it lacked substantial merit and that the allegations were neither "tenable nor admissible".
The vice president in his order held that that the allegations leveled by the Congress-led opposition in the notice have a serious tendency of "undermining" the independence of the judiciary.
Naidu based his decision on the opinion of top legal and constitutional experts, including former secretary generals of Lok Sabha and other legal luminaries with whom he held extensive consultations.
He also took into account the views of top legal and constitutional experts, including former chief justices and judges, before taking the decision, sources said.
Seven opposition parties led by the Congress had last week moved a notice before him for impeachment of the Chief Justice of India (CJI) on five grounds of "misbehaviour".
Leaders of the opposition parties had on Friday, 20 April, met Naidu and handed over the notice of impeachment against the CJI bearing signatures of 64 MPs and seven former members, who recently retired.
“I have considered the material contained in the Notice of Motion and reflected upon the inputs received in my interaction with legal luminaries and constitutional experts, I am of the firm opinion that the Notice of Motion does not deserve to be admitted,” Naidu said in the order rejecting the plea.
"I refuse to admit the Notice of Motion," he said.
Naidu said he had detailed personal conversations on all aspects arising from the notice and had considered each of the allegations made in it individually as well as collectively.
"Clearly this is an internal matter to be resolved by the Supreme Court itself. Going through the five allegations mentioned in the notice, I am of the view that they are neither tenable nor admissible," he said in his order.
"Based on all this, I have come to the conclusion that this motion does not deserve to be admitted... On careful analysis and reflection, I find there is virtually no concrete verifiable imputation," he said.
Naidu also held that "we cannot allow any of our pillars of governance to be weakened by any thought, word or action."
The vice president said the MPs, who have presented the petition, are themselves "unsure" of their own case as the phrases used by them indicate "a mere suspicion, a conjecture or are assumptions."
“The same does not constitute proof ‘beyond reasonable doubt’, which is required to make out a case of ‘proved misbehaviour’ under Article 124 (4),” the order said.
"In passing, I am constrained to observe that in this matter, the well established parliamentary customs and conventions as have been delineated in para 2.2 of the Handbook for Members of Rajya Sabha have been disregarded," the chairman said while making a reference to the press conference held by opposition parties.
The rejection of the notice comes a day after he held the consultations to determine the maintainability of the motion.
Read the full order here:
(With Inputs from PTI)
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