Day 13 Arguments

Judicial Vacancies in the Lower Courts

Day 13 Arguments: 9 July 2019

The Supreme Court has taken suo moto cognisance of a disproportionate number of vacant judicial posts in the District and Subordinate courts. A three judge bench of the court is monitoring the steps taken by State Governments and High Courts to fill these vacancies. The court is being assisted by Amici Curiae Shyam Divan, K.V. Vishwanathan, Vijay Hansaria and Gaurav Agrawal.

In today’s hearing, Amicus Curiae Vijay Hansaria submitted that the Union government and state governments have substantially complied with the court’s directions issued on 28 February and 23 April. These directions implement the short-term suggestions listed in Vijay Hansaria’s report dealing with the Union government’s funding of infrastructure for the subordinate judiciary.

The court then directed state governments to submit the following information as on June 30th, 2019 :

  • strength of each cadre
  • number of filled up posts in each cadre
  • number of vacant posts in each cadre
  • number of posts for which selection is underway
  • stage of each selection process
  • number of posts for which selection process has not been initiated

This information must be submitted by concerned state government authorities and the Registrar Generals of the High Courts to both the Supreme Court and the four Amici Curiae by 30 July. The Amici Curiae have been directed to peruse through these submissions and offer their views on 30 July.

The next hearing is on 31 July. The court will hear the views of concerned Union government officials on Amicus Curiae Vijay Hansaria’s suggestions on central funding for the infrastructure of subordinate judiciary.