PM not for use of judicial review to erode role of govt wings

Hyderabad: In the wake of carping comments from the Supreme Court vis-a-vis the government in various cases, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today said the power of judicial review should never be used to erode the legitimate role assigned to other branches of the government.

"While the power of judicial review must be used to enforce accountability, it must never be used to erode the legitimate growth assigned to other branches of the government," he said inaugurating the 17th Commonwealth Law Conference at the Hyderabad International Convention Centre here.

This is "vitally necessary to preserve the integrity and sanctity of the constitutional scheme premised on the diffusion of sovereign power," the Prime Minister said.

His remarks come in the wake of the Supreme Court`s proactive role in the 2G spectrum allocation, CVC appointment and other cases.

The Prime Minister said developing countries needed a legal system that was conducive to rapid economic development and one that has a built-in mechanism to promote equitable distribution of gains from development.

"A sound legal system based on the rule of law and effective and speedy contract enforcement are a major determinant of a favourable macro economic development.

"It is my firm belief that meaningful solutions to the problem of mass poverty that prevails in developing countries can be found only in the framework of a rapidly expanding economy," he said.

Singh said the legal order must constantly adapt itself to change in a fast-changing world.

"That is the only way it (legal system) can retain its relevance. The role courts and judges play in making law an instrument of social stability and progressive change cannot be over-emphasised," he said.

Singh said it was necessary to address common challenges facing the humanity as a whole.

"These include international terrorism, poverty, malnutrition, protection of human rights, climate change and energy security. Indeed, the rule of law can no longer be divorced from global policy languages," he said.

The Prime Minister urged the jurists and thinkers to reflect on ways and means that would ensure the continuing strength and resilience of liberal institutions of democracy and the rule of law in the framework of a rapidly expanding economy.

Chief Justice of India S H Kapadia, who also addressed the conference, virtually slammed the government on the food security issue and the lack of financial inclusive growth.