Bharatiya Janata Party MP Kiren Rijiju was on Thursday removed as the Union Minister of Law and Justice, a statement by the Rashtrapati Bhavan said.
Arjun Ram Meghwal has been assigned independent charge as the minister of state for law and justice in addition to his existing portfolios. Rijiju will take charge of the ministry of earth sciences.
It is not clear why Rijiju has been removed from the law ministry. However, the move comes days after his prolonged tussle with the judiciary.
Over the last few months, Rijiju and Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar have repeatedly criticised the collegium system of appointing judges, contending that it is opaque. In the collegium system, the senior judges of the Supreme Court recommend names for the Supreme Court and High Courts and the government is expected to follow them.
Rijiju also said in December that the Centre had introduced the National Judicial Appointments Commission Act in 2014 with an objective to make appointments to the Supreme Court and High Courts “more broad-based, transparent, accountable and bringing objectivity in the system”.
The National Judicial Appointments Commission Act had proposed to make judicial appointments through a body comprising of the chief justice, two senior Supreme Court judges, the law minister and two other eminent persons nominated by the chief justice, the prime…