HYDERABAD: TRS senior leader and former MP B Vinod Kumar on Thursday wrote to Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, seeking the establishment of a bench of the Supreme Court in south India. Kumar said the matter was pertinent in ensuring access to justice for all citizens. The senior TRS leader told Prasad there was pendency of 58,669 cases in the apex court and the number was rising. He said the strength of judges needs to be increased.
“I welcome yesterday’s (Wednesday) Union Cabinet decision to increase the number of Supreme Court judges from 31 to 34. But, when the Supreme Court judges were increased from 26 in 1988 to 31 in 2009, the rate of increase in cases was much lower compared to the rate of increase between 2009 and 2019. In this 5G world, information is everywhere and it has made people aware of their rights. On the other side, crime is reaching new heights. I suggest the Central government increase the number of Apex court judges to 42,” Vinod Kumar said.
The TRS leader also said that the highest number of appeals from outside the north zone were filed from South India. The highest number of appeals to the Supreme Court were from regions close to Delhi. Very few cases were appealed in the SC from the South due to the distance factor, which is a clear contradiction to the right of access to justice, Kumar said.
“The Delhi HC, in 2006, 2007 and 2011, had an average appeal rate of 9.3 per cent. The Uttarakhand, Punjab and Haryana High Courts, all located close to Delhi, too had appeal rates of over 4. Madras had an appealing rate of just 1.1 per cent, Orissa less than 1 per cent,” he said.