Plea seeking appointment of chairperson, others in law panel
SC says will hear case on Oct 31
New Delhi: The Supreme Court is scheduled to hear on October 31 a PIL seeking a direction to the Centre to declare the Law Commission as a “statutory body” and appoint the chairperson and members to the panel.
According to the cause list of October 31 uploaded on the apex court website, the petition is slated to come up for hearing before a bench comprising Chief Justice U U Lalit and Justices S R Bhat and Bela M Trivedi.
In a reply to the PIL, filed by the Ministry of Law and Justice in December 2021, it was said that there was no proposal under consideration to make the Law Commission a statutory body.
“It is submitted that the 22nd Law Commission was constituted on February 21, 2020, and the appointment of chairperson and members is under consideration with concerned authorities. However, no proposal is under consideration to make the Law Commission a statutory body,” the ministry had said in its affidavit.
The Ministry had submitted that the petition filed by advocate Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay is frivolous and not maintainable as being devoid of merits.
The PIL, which made the ministries of Home Affairs and Law and Justice as well as the Law Commission of India as parties, said the cause of action arose on August 31, 2018 and is still continuing when the tenure of the 21st Law Commission ended but the Centre has neither extended the tenure of its chairperson and members nor notified the 22nd Law Commission.
“Although on February 19, 2020, the Centre approved the constitution of Twenty-second Law Commission but it has not appointed the chairperson and members till date,” Upadhyay said in the petition filed through advocate Ashwani Kumar Dubey.
The plea, which sought a direction to the Centre to appoint the chairperson and members to the 22nd law panel, has also urged the top court to do the needful itself.
“Alternatively, being custodian of the Constitution and protector of fundamental rights, the Court may be pleased to use its plenary constitutional power to appoint the chairperson and members of the Twenty Second Law Commission of India and declare that the Law Commission of India is a statutory body,” it said.
Upadhyay has sought direction to the law panel, to be set up, to also consider his submission seeking action on the Vohra commission report on alleged nexus between politicians and criminals.
The PIL also sought action from the law panel on the plea “seeking 100 per cent confiscation of black money, benami property and disproportionate assets and life imprisonment to looters as a Representation and preparing two separate reports within three months”.