KOLKATA: The nearly four-week-long ceasework by lawyers' associations demanding appointment of judges continued to cripple judicial work at the Calcutta High Court today.
High Court Bar Association president Uttam Majumdar said that representatives of the associations are scheduled to meet the Chief Justice of India tomorrow and the Union Law Minister on Saturday to discuss the issue of early appointment of judges to vacant posts.
At present 39 posts of judges are vacant at the Calcutta High Court, the oldest and one of the three chartered high courts in the country, which has a sanctioned strength of 72 judges, Majumdar said.
Three new judges have taken oath on March 12, which has taken the strength of sitting judges to 33.
Out of the 33 sitting judges, two preside over the Andaman and Nicobar Circuit Bench on rotation.
"We have been invited to a meeting with the Chief Justice of India tomorrow at New Delhi.
We will place before the CJI the problems arising out of the acute shortage in the number of judges at the high court," Majumdar said.
He said that the meeting with the Union Law Minister, Ravi Shankar Prasad which was earlier scheduled for today, would be held on Saturday at the national capital.
Apart from the Bar Association, which commands the largest share of members, the Bar Library Club and the Incorporated Law Society are also participating in the ceasework which commenced on February 19.
Majumdar said that the lawyers' fora will also take up the issue of appointment of a chief justice at the high court, which has had acting chief justices at the helm for the last three years with the exception of just three months.
The agitation is scheduled till tomorrow and the lawyers' bodies will hold meetings with their respective members on March 19 to place before them details of their discussions with the CJI and the union law minister.
A decision on whether the ceasework would continue or not will be taken at the meetings, Majumdar said.