NEW DELHI:To ease pendency in courts, Chief Justice of India T S Thakur has cleared the names of 170 judges to be appointed in 24 High Courts across the country. In the past three months, 145 appointments have been made. With this, 442 vacancies in High Courts will reduced to 127, which will ease the burden on courts. “The process to fill over 170 vacancies of High Court judges is on. The law minister is ensuring that things move fast at a fast pace,” Justice Thakur said.
The names of these judges have been sent to the ministry for approval. If they are not cleared, vacancies of judges will hit 500 by the year end. The delay in filling up vacancies was due to a controversy surrounding the National Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC), which was struck down by the Supreme Court. Names recommended by High Courts got stuck during the intervening period between the NJAC’s constitution and its decimati on. One year was lost, and the vacancies rose to 450.
The 24 High Courts in the country were functioning with 611 judges as against the approved strength of 1,017, as on January 1, 2016, which is less than 65 per cent of its approved strength. In the lower courts, more than 3,300 posts are vacant against a sanctioned strength of 17,715 judges.