Judges & journos: CJI is partly right on the media mixing news and views. But judges should be less prickly too

News: Chief Justice of India NV Ramana, in a recent event, expressed worry about how news and views are being mixed together in today’s time. He also talked about the “recent trend to sermonise about judgments, and villainise judges”

The article urges the judiciary to be less prickly (irritable) about criticism, including when not just judgments but judges too are criticised.

Why the judiciary should take constructive criticism sportingly?

Separation of news and views is very essential for effective functioning of a democracy, but constructive criticism is also equally important. 

Part of the media’s job is to report on and analyse and, in its opinion columns, criticise not just political leaders but all powerful players in the system – from the police to armed forces and judges to corporates. 

As these institutes take decisions of great public significance, they should be encouraging of these criticisms which also reflect the plurality of voices in a democracy. 

In the same spirit, the Supreme court can also give a thought to decriminalise what is termed as ‘scandalising the court’. This provision doesn’t sit well in a democracy. 

Source: This post is based on the article “Judges & journos: CJI is partly right on the media mixing news and views. But judges should be less prickly too” published Times of India on 31st Dec 2021. 

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