New Delhi: Attorney General KK Venugopal on Thursday said that the Supreme Court of India is perhaps the most powerful court in the world because the Government has always honoured its mandate.
Arguing before a Constitution Bench led by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, the AG referred to a statement made by former Chief Justice of India PN Bhagwati in his interview to the Time magazine in 1996.
"Justice Bhagwati had described the Supreme Court of India as the most powerful court in the world… and perhaps rightly so. And that's because the Government of the day has always shown respect to this institution," said Venugopal.
The AG added that the apex court has very often issued directions to the Government in its PIL jurisdiction and the latter honoured the mandates.
“Irrespective of which party is in power, the government of the day has respected the Supreme Court. They don't want confrontation," maintained the law officer.
The AG was arguing for the Centre in a matter on the legal validity of parliamentary panel reports. The Court is examining as to whether and to what extent findings of a parliamentary panel report can be relied upon the courts in deciding an issue before it.
According to Venugopal, since the reports are meant for the Parliament and also because such reports are not final, parliamentary panel reports cannot form the basis of a finding by the courts.
The Bench, during the day-long hearing, clarified that it was deliberating upon the matter to avoid any kind of "discomfort between the Parliament and the judiciary" and settle the issue for all times to come.
At one point, it even questioned the AG if it would be appropriate to shut its eyes from valuable information available in the public domain in the form of these reports only because either it is pending consideration of the Parliament or that the new House has been prorogued.
Venugopal, on his part, highlighted the principle of separation of powers between the Parliament and the judiciary while reiterating: "Every Government has always shown highest respect to this Court."