Govt working to decongest courts: Khursid

Govt grapples with 3.2 crore cases

He also said fresh steps will be taken to deal with corruption in judiciary and appointment of judges.

According to an official release,  3.2 crore cases are pending in subordinate courts and high courts as on December 2010.

The total institution of cases had gone up to 66 per cent and the overall disposal by 71 per cent in high courts in the period between 1999 and 2010.

The total institution and pendency remained at 33 and 35 per cent respectively in subordinate courts in the same period.

Addressing a press conference, Khurshid said efforts like establishing “gram nayalaya” and “lok adalats” are being taken to address the pendency problem.

The government is also working on schemes for computerisation, infrastructure augmentation and promotion of alternate dispute redressal mechanism, among others.
Khurshid said a commercial division of high courts bill will be introduced in the Rajya Sabha to ensure that higher value commercial litigation goes directly to the high courts instead of remaining in district courts.

In order to deal with the ills plaguing the judiciary, he said considerable work has been done in the Judicial Commission.

He said the government wants to take up the appointment of senior judges and the National Judicial Service after the present round of laws on laying down judicial standards and increasing retirement age of high court judges (from 62 to 65) are passed by Parliament.

2011 figures

On vacancies in higher judiciary, the minister quoted the November 2011 figures of the Supreme Court facing a shortfall of four judges against a sanctioned strength of 31.
The 21 high courts have 281 vacant positions with 614 judges working against an approved strength of 895.

He also said under the National Litigation Policy 2010 all wasteful litigations will be avoided. The objective of the policy, he said, is to ensure that each state will have “fair, objective and transparent” policy to put “scrutiny” of cases.

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