Day 1 Arguments

Judicial Vacancies in the Lower Courts

Judicial Vacancies: Day 1 Arguments

On November 1 2018, a three judge Bench of the Supreme Court headed by CJI Ranjan Gogoi expressed its concern regarding the vague responses by the State Governments & High Courts with regard to filling up of vacancies in the District & Subordinate Courts.

The Court was hearing a batch of petitions in which taking suo moto cognizance of the alarming rate of vacancies in the lower judiciary, CJI Gogoi had on October 22 2018, passed an order directing all the State High Courts to supply the Supreme Court registry with among other particulars, information with regard to the number of vacancies as well as the dates on which recruitment procedure has been initiated to fill up such vacancies.

A Bench of CJI Ranjan Gogoi, Justice UU Lalit, & Justice KM Joseph today came down heavily on all the State High Courts for failing to fill up vacant posts despite there being numerous applicants for each post.

The Bench in particular reprimanded the High Courts of Delhi and Punjab & Haryana where the procedure for filling up of the vacancies has either been long drawn or entirely lacking. It was further directed that the Court would monitor the case of judicial appointments in 4 phases with the States of Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, West Bengal, & the North Eastern states being dealt with first.

The matter will be taken up for hearing next on 15.11.2018 on which date the Registrar Generals of the High Courts and the authorised representatives of the Chief Secretaries of each of these states have been directed to present before the Court.

(Court reporting by Disha Chaudhry)