SC shocked over HC failure to fill judge posts

SC shocked over HC failure to fill judge posts

Karnataka High Court couldn't fill 101 posts of civil judges out of 4,700 candidates

The Supreme Court on Wednesday expressed its shock and disbelief after finding that the Karnataka High Court could not find 101 suitable candidates for the post of civil judge (junior division) out of over 4700 law graduates.

"This is unbelievable. Something must be wrong. You must be adopting very high standards. Out of 4700 candidates, you could not find 101 people to become 'Munsif' and you are filling up just 33 posts," a bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi said.

"This must end. This is becoming a vicious circle. Who is conducting interviews for these posts? Your (HC) judges. Out of 885 candidates interviewed, you found only 33 suitable candidates," the bench, also comprising Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and K M Joseph, asked the Karnataka HC's official, present before the court.

The court termed the picture as "disappointing" as senior advocate K V Vishwanathan, appearing as amicus curiae, submitted the details of vacancy positions and recruitment process underway for filling up posts of judges in district courts in Karnataka.

The court was examining state-wise vacancy positions of judges in district courts.

Vishwanathan said for the posts of civil judge (junior division), 4700 candidates applied in Karnataka, after preliminary and main examinations, 885 candidates were interviewed and finally 33 candidates were found suitable against the vacancy of 101 posts advertised.

For the post of district judges, out of 30 posts advertised, only four candidates were found suitable, he informed the court.

The court, after going through the state of affairs, sought to know the names of the five high court judges, who conducted an interview of the candidates.

As the official said he was not aware and he has joined just one month ago, the bench said, "if five high court judges would conduct interview of 23-year-old candidates, they would certainly fail."

The court finally directed that all those vacant posts must be readvertised forth with and filled up.

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