Various chief ministers opposed the idea of the judiciary to have a national body to create court infrastructure in states and wanted such a panel to be set up at the state level with representation of the political executive, sources said on Sunday. On Friday, the conference of chief justices of the high courts had passed a resolution to create a national judicial infrastructure development authority of India.
But on Saturday, at the joint conference of chief ministers and chief justices, several chief ministers did not agree with the proposed set up. They said the panels should be set up at the state level and not at the national level because the implementation of the projects would happen in states.
Sources aware of the deliberations at the conference said there was intense discussion on creating the body at the national level. During the course of discussion there were arguments on the issue between Law Minister Kiren Rijiju, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and some other chief ministers, the sources said.
The Union Law Minister and some other chief ministers later ensured near anonymity to have a body at state level to ensure speedier execution of judicial infrastructure. The proposed body could be in the form of a special purpose vehicle.
Chief Justice of India NV Ramana had mooted judicial infrastructure authorities both at the state and the national levels. “After discussion, there was near unanimity among the chief ministers… state-level infrastructure body to be established and not a national-level one.
“However, there was a suggestion to include the chief minister or his nominee in the body at the state level. Most of the states have agreed to adopt this model,” he said at a press conference on Saturday.