NEW DELHI: To put an end to the increasing burden on judiciary, which is reeling under the pendency of over three crore cases due to mounting vacancies in the lower judiciary, the apex court on Tuesday sought views from state governments on having a centralized selection mechanism for judicial officers.
A Bench headed by Chief Justice J S Khehar took suo moto cognizance of the letter sent by secretary (Justice) Snehlata Shrivastava to the registrar of the top court putting the proposals of its committee on judicial reforms before it and convert it into a PIL.
In the majority of cases pending in various courts, over 2.30 crore cases are pending in district courts which have a sanctioned strength of over 21,000 judges. But there are only around 17,000 judges working in subordinate courts across India and having vacancy of nearly 4000 judges.
“The Union government is on board and it has made us conscious to fill up the vacancies in subordinate judiciary. We have held detailed consultation and deliberation and decided that through a judicial order, we should crystalise it,” a bench headed by Chief Justice JS Khehar said.
The court asked various state government to file their replies or suggestions on the proposals and clarified: “Our endeavour is not to touch the federal structure, but we want to explore whether a singular agency can hold the examination for filling up the vacancies.” It said the Centre has suggested various options to fill up the vacancies and one such suggestion is a Central Selection Mechanism.