New Delhi [India], December 9 (ANI): The Supreme Court on Thursday observed that the appointment of ad-hoc judges in the High Courts needs to be simplified and asked Attorney General R Venkataramani and Senior Advocate Arvind P Datar to brainstorm and explore a less cumbersome process relating to the appointment of ad-hoc judges in the high courts.
A bench led by Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul observed that senior advocates are mostly not eager to take up permanent positions at the bench but as a part of social commitments they may take up ad-hoc positions for two years and then choose not to practice in that high courts.
The court also observed that the appointment of ad-hoc judges seems to be very cumbersome. Therefore, it asked the counsel to explore the idea and recommended suggestions in this aspect.
The counsel assured the court to relook into the issue of the Memorandum of Procedure so that the purpose of quick disposal of cases is met by appointing ad hoc judges.
The court was hearing a petition preferred by Lok Prahari which relates to the appointment of ad hoc judges to deal with the unprecedented situation arising from the backlog of cases pending in the high courts.
The top court on April 20, 2021, had issued various guidelines for the appointment of ad hoc judges including if the vacancies are more than 20 per cent of the sanctioned strength, the cases in a particular category are pending for over five years, more than 10 per cent of the backlog of pending cases are over five years old.
The percentage of the rate of disposal is lower than the institution of the cases either in a particular subject matter or generally in the Court were among the key points of the guidelines issued by the court.
"While emphasising that recourse to Article 224A is the necessity of the day, and without inhibiting the expanse of the powers conferred on the Chief Justice of the High Court as per the Constitution, it would be in the fitness of things to lay down some guidelines for the assistance of the Chief Justices of the High Courts and to make the provision a 'live letter'," the top court said in its April 2020's order. (ANI)