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Priyanka Gandhi accuses govt of ‘pressuring’ judiciary after electoral bonds judgment

Drishti Mail, New Delhi Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Saturday accused the Centre of “pressuring” the judiciary after the Supreme Court struck down the electoral bonds scheme and wondered whether the Narendra Modi government does not approve of an independent and strong judiciary.

The Congress general secretary’s remarks come two days after Prime Minister Modi criticised the grand old party in reaction to more than 600 lawyers writing to the Chief Justice of India, alleging that a “vested interest group” is trying to put pressure on the judiciary and defame courts.

Modi on Thursday said it was a “vintage Congress culture” to browbeat and bully others.

In a post in Hindi on X, Priyanka Gandhi said, “The manner in which the judicial system is being pressured by getting letters written after seeing the layers of scams being exposed by a decision of the Supreme Court on electoral bonds (which the public is calling ‘extortion racket’), and then the prime minister himself entering the arena and making negative comments on the judiciary, shows that there is something fishy.” “And there is something about which he himself is probably nervous,” she said.

“Troubled by political interference, Supreme Court judges holding press conferences, sending a judge to Rajya Sabha, fielding a (former) judge as a candidate in elections, trying to control the appointment of judges and commenting on the judiciary when decisions are against them… Does Modiji’s government not approve of an independent and strong judiciary?” Priyanka Gandhi said.

More than 600 lawyers, including senior advocate Harish Salve and Bar Council chairperson Manan Kumar Mishra, have written to Chief Justice of India D Y Chandrachud, alleging that a “vested interest group” was trying to put pressure on the judiciary and defame courts, especially in cases of corruption involving politicians.

“These tactics are damaging to our courts and threaten our democratic fabric,” the lawyers, drawn from across the country, said in the letter dated March 26.

CJI Chandrachud’s leadership is crucial in these “tough times” and the apex court should stand strong, they said, adding it is not the time to maintain a dignified silence.

The letter, shared by official sources, targeted a section of lawyers without naming them and alleged that they defend politicians by day and then try to influence judges through the media at night.

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