Appointment of Judges



Appointment of Judges

A statement showing the approved strength, working strength and vacancies of Judges in the Supreme Court and High Courts as on 29.02.2016 is given at Annexure-I. The number of Judges of Supreme Court and High courts appointed from 1st January, 2015 till 13th April 2015 i.e. the date on which the Constitution(Ninety Ninth Amendment) Act, 2014 and the National Judicial Appointments Commission Act, 2014 were brought into force is given at Annexure-II. With the coming into force of these Acts, all appointments of Judges of Supreme Court and High Courts through the Collegium process as laid down in the Memorandum of Procedure were stopped. However, with the revival of the Collegium system, the process of appointment of Judges has resumed. A Statement showing the sanctioned strength, working strength and vacancies of Judicial Officers in District and Subordinate Courts in the country as on 30.06.2015 is given at Annexure-III.


In All India Judges’ Association Case, the Hon’ble Supreme Court in its Judgement dated 21st March, 2002, on  a comparative assessment of the position in other countries directed that there should be 50 judges for a million population in the country. Based on the population, as per census 2011 and sanctioned strength of judges in the Supreme Court and High courts as on 29.02.2016, and the sanctioned strength of Judges/Judicial Officers of District and Subordinate Courts as on 31.12.2015, the Judge population ratio in the country works out to be 17.72 Judges/Judicial Officers per million population.

 The  Supreme Court vide its order dated 16.10.2015 declared that the system of appointment of Judges to Supreme Court, and Chief Justices and Judges of High Court from one High Court to another as existing prior to Constitution (Ninety-Nineth Amendment ) Act, 2014 called the “Collegium System” to be operative. The Supreme Court simultaneously decided to consider introduction of appropriate measures, if any, for an improved working of the “Collegium System”. The Government of India submitted its suggestions subject to its reservation about the correctness of the Judgment. The Government has taken the stand that it reserves its liberty to take such action as it may decide fit. Further, the Parliament has the power within the parameters of the Constitution to govern the criteria and process for appointment of Judges to the Supreme Court and High Courts.

     The Supreme Court pronounced its Order on improvement in the “Collegium System” on 16.12.2015. Vide this order they have decided that the Government of India may finalize the existing Memorandum of Procedure (MoP) by supplementing it in consultation with the Chief Justice of India, and  based on the unanimous view of the Collegium comprising the four senior-most puisne Judges of the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court has indicated broad categories under which existing MoP can be supplemented such as eligibility criteria, transparency in the appointment process, Secretariat and complaints etc. The Department of Justice is in the process of preparing a revised draft Memorandum of Procedure in consultation with the State Governments.



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Grant of Bail

Review of criminal justice system is a continuous process to make the laws in sync with the social changes. The amendments in the Indian Penal Code and the Code of Criminal Procedure are carried out from time to time based on the recommendations of the Law Commission of India, various Court judgements and reports of any other Committees specially constituted for the purpose. The Law Commission of India has been requested to undertake a comprehensive review of the criminal justice system and give a comprehensive report covering all the aspects of criminal law, including desirability of having separate Bail Act, so that comprehensive amendments can be made in the various laws viz. Indian Penal Code, Code of Criminal Procedure and the Indian Evidence Act etc.

This information was given by Union Minister of Law & Justice Shri D.V.Sadananda Gowda in reply to a written question in the Lok Sabha today.

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Facilities for Differently-Abled Persons

The development of infrastructure facilities for judiciary in the States including facilities essential for the differently-abled persons and crèche etc. is the responsibility of the State Governments. The Central Government augments the resources of the State Governments by releasing financial assistance under a Centrally Sponsored Scheme (CSS) for the development of judicial infrastructure. In the conference of Chief Justices held on 05th and 06thApril, 2013, it was, inter-alia, resolved that the High Courts shall prepare Vision Statements for High Court and District Courts and Five-year and Annual Plans which inter-alia will include special care for differently-abled persons while preparing the construction plan for Court complexes and facilities be provided for them.

The Government has ratified the UN Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) on 01/10/2007. As a part of implementation of the convention, the Government has already introduced Rights of Persons with Disabilities Bill, 2014 in Rajya Sabha on 7/2/2014 to replace the existing Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995 to make the law in-line with UNCRPD. The Government has also submitted 1st country report before the concerned UN Committee in November, 2015.

This information was given by Union Minister of Law & Justice Shri D.V.Sadananda Gowda in reply to a written question in the Lok Sabha today.

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Pending Court Cases
Data on pendency of cases is maintained by the Supreme Court and High Courts.  As per the information made available by the Supreme Court of India, details of civil and criminal cases pending in the Supreme Court of India; and civil and criminal cases pending for more than 10 years in the Supreme Court of India; and number of cases disposed of by the Supreme Court of India during the last three years and the current year are as under:-

Number of Pending Cases as on 19.02.2016
Number of Cases pending for more than 10 years up to 19.02.2016.
Number of Cases disposed during last three years and current year upto 19.02.2016
Civil
Criminal
Civil
Criminal
2013
2014
2015
2016
48,418
11,050
1,132
84
40,189
45,042
47,424
6,054

As per information made available by High Courts, details of pending cases in High Courts and District and Subordinate Courts are as under:-

Number of Pending Cases in High Courts as on 31.12.2014
Number of Cases pending for more than 10 years in High Courts as on 31.12.2014
Number of Pending Cases in District and Subordinate Courts as on 31.12.2014
Number of Cases pending for more than 10 years in District and Subordinate Courts as on 31.12.2014
Civil
Criminal
Civil
Criminal
Civil
Criminal
Civil
Criminal
3116492
1037465
589631
187999
8234281
18254124
611658
1432079

The details of cases disposed of during 2012, 2013 and 2014 by the High Courts and District / Subordinate Courts are given in the Statements at Annexure – I and Annexure – II respectively.

Some of the main factors responsible for pendency of cases in courts are increasing number of state and central legislations, accumulation of first appeals, continuation of ordinary civil jurisdiction in some of the High Courts, vacancies of Judges, appeals against orders of quasi-judicial forums going to High Courts, number of revisions / appeals, frequent adjournments, indiscriminate use of writ jurisdiction, lack of adequate arrangement to monitor, track and bunch cases for hearing.

The Chief Justices’ Conference held on 03rd and 04th April 2015 has resolved that each High Court shall establish an Arrears Committee to clear the backlog of cases pending for more than five years.  As per information available, Arrears Committees have been set up in the High Courts of (i) Allahabad, (ii) Bombay, (iii) Calcutta, (iv) Chhattisgarh, (v) Delhi, (vi) Himachal Pradesh, (vii) Jammu & Kashmir, (viii) Jharkhand, (ix) Kerala, (x) Madhya Pradesh, (xi) Madras, (xii) Manipur, (xiii) Meghalaya, (xiv) Orissa, (xv) Patna (xvi) Punjab & Haryana, (xvii) Sikkim, (xviii) Tripura, and (xix) Uttrakhand.
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ST/rs



Annexure-I
Pending Court Cases.
Cases disposed of in High Courts during last three years
Sl. No
High Court
2012
2013
2014
Disposal of cases
Disposal of cases
Disposal of cases
1
Allahabad
2,47,539
2,36,821
3,10,294
2
Andhra Pradesh
66,130
58,278
66,239
3
Bombay
1,74,020
1,40,761
1,30,580
4
Calcutta
78,428
1,34,938
95,656
5
Delhi
35,656
35,371
40,154
6
Gujarat
63,778
64,450
74,444
7
Gauhati
35,713
30,308
27,467
8
Himachal Pradesh
37,772
36,455
62,270
9
Jammu &Kashmir
16,380
24,916
23,151
10
Karnataka
1,21,624
1,28,134
1,19,824
11
Kerala
78,801
68,871
72,173
12
Madras
2,46,200
2,31,817
1,29,954
13
Madhya Pradesh
1,00,281
1,11,348
1,29,373
14
Orissa
81,388
70,262
76,523
15
Patna
91,328
82,343
1,04,955
16
Punjab & Haryana
1,08,266
1,11,465
1,14,801
17
Rajasthan
1,31,277
1,27,928
83,792
18
Sikkim
126
140
230
19
Uttarakhand
13,616
15,661
13,386
20
Chhattisgarh
27,817
28,206
28,155
21
Jharkhand
30,030
25,970
22,327
22
Tripura*
0
4,379
5,144
23
Manipur*
0
2,677
1,926
24
Meghalaya*
0
1,418
1,724
Total
17,86,170
17,72,917
17,34,542
*Operationalisation of High Court was notified on 23rd March, 2013.
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Annexure-II
Pending Court Cases.
Cases disposed of in District and Subordinate Courts during last three years
Sl. No
States
2012
2013
2014
Disposal of cases
Disposal of cases
Disposal of cases
1
Andhra Pradesh and Telangana
6,06,447
5,14,867
6,47,130
2
Arunachal Pradesh
7,355
7,444
7,615
3
Assam
2,39,706
3,14,672
2,76,138
4
Bihar
3,04,786
3,15,586
3,05,583
5
Chhattisgarh
1,62,104
1,79,065
1,76,144
6
Goa
33,886
30,717
30,625
7
Gujarat
10,72,123
11,37,159
11,32,433
8
Haryana
7,33,591
6,08,315
5,87,385
9
Himachal Pradesh
2,46,052
2,93,575
4,09,732
10
Jammu & Kashmir
2,91,100
3,07,192
2,97,507
11
Jharkhand
1,23,777
1,18,076
1,10,068
12
Karnataka
10,35,706
10,17,437
13,67,041
13
Kerala
11,12,342
11,71,821
13,55,926
14
Madhya Pradesh
12,17,733
12,73,437
11,13,382
15
Maharashtra
20,48,255
17,10,180
15,36,322
16
Manipur
14,572
16,189
14,257
17
Meghalaya
2,982
3,284
11,691
18
Mizoram
11,747
10,270
10,747
19
Nagaland
3,179
3,062
3,047
20
Orissa
3,00,337
4,14,772
4,70,085
21
Punjab
7,58,927
6,11,671
5,49,300
22
Rajasthan
11,50,808
11,99,745
11,32,028
23
Sikkim
1,913
2,146
2,008
24
Tamil Nadu
14,99,884
18,44,056
16,45,329
25
Tripura
1,48,688
1,58,838
1,93,003
26
Uttar Pradesh
27,98,690
29,66,521
31,82,318
27
Uttarakhand
1,78,409
2,22,318
2,20,660
28
West Bengal  and A & N Island
9,92,367
11,84,289
10,89,309
29
Chandigarh
1,38,558
1,53,772
1,80,616
30
D & N Haveli and Daman & Diu
8,451
3,344
2,771
31
Delhi
9,18,683
9,57,154
9,30,732
32
Lakshadweep
96
93
95
33
Pondicherry
33,899
32,479
28,631
Total
1,81,97,153
1,87,83,546
1,90,19,658
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