CJI competent to receive complaints against the conduct of the Judges of SCI & Chief Justices of the High Courts: ‘In-House Mechanism’ of the higher judiciary

Press Release of Ministry of Law & Justice dated 24.5.2012

Disclosure of Complaints Against Judges

 Recently, while deciding an RTI Appeal by the Information Commissioner, Department of Justice was directed to provide the applicant copies of forwarding letters by which complaints received by it (Department) were sent to the Supreme Court and High Courts. Giving this information in written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha recently, Shri Salman Khurshid, Minister of Law & Justice, said that accordingly, copies of forwarding letters of the last one year were provided to the RTI applicant in compliance. They have 98 representations/ complaints cases. The Minister said that as per the ‘in-house mechanism’ of the higher judiciary, the Chief Justice of India (CJI) is competent to receive complaints against the conduct of the Judges of the Supreme Court and the Chief Justices of the High Courts. Similarly, the Chief Justices of the High Courts (CJHs) are competent to receive complaints against the conduct of the Judges of their courts. But, the Government also does receive a variety of complaints against serving judges of the Supreme Court and High Courts from various quarters. These complaints which are often addressed to the CJI/ CJHs, are forwarded as such to the Supreme Court or the concerned High Court for appropriate action, Shri Khurshid informed the House.

Press Release of Ministry of Law & Justice dated 24.5.2012

Complaints Against Judges

 As per the ‘in-house mechanism’ of the higher judiciary, the Chief Justice of India (CJI) is competent to receive complaints against the conduct of the Judges of the Supreme Court and the Chief Justices of the High Courts. Similarly, the Chief Justices of the High Courts (CJHs) are competent to receive complaints against the conduct of the Judges of their courts. Giving this information in written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha recently, Minister of Law & Justice, Shri Salman Khurshid, said that the Government does receive a variety of complaints against serving judges of the Supreme Court and High Courts from various quarters. These complaints which are often addressed to the CJI/ CJHs, are forwarded as such to the Supreme Court or the concerned High Court for appropriate action. The Central Government does not maintain records of such complaints nor does it monitor the action taken on them, Shri Khurshid informed the House.

Press Release of Ministry of Law & Justice dated 23.5.2012

Vacancies of Judges in Courts

Against the sanctioned strength of 31 Judges of the Supreme Court, including the Chief Justice of India, 26 Judges have been in position as on 15.5.2012. There are 5 vacancies to the filled. In the High Courts, against the sanctioned strength of 895 Judges, 632 were in position, leaving 263 vacancies to be filled. Giving this information in written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha recently, Minister of Law & Justice, Shri Salman Khurshid, said that as per the Supreme Court’s Court News Report, against 18,008 sanctioned strength of the District & Subordinate Courts of the State Government/ Union Territory, 14,374 wre in position as on 30.6.2011, leaving 3,634 vacancies to be filled.

The Minister said that pursuant to the Supreme Court Judgment of October 6, 1993 read with their Advisory Opinion of October 28, 1998, the process of initiation of proposal for appointment of a Judge of a High Court rests with the Chief Justice of the concerned High Court and for appointment of a Judge in the Supreme Court rests with the Chief Justice of India. In this arrangement, posts have remained vacant for want of adequate proposals to fill them. The Government has been periodically reminding the Chief Justices of the High Courts to initiate proposals in time for filling the existing vacancies as well as the vacancies anticipated in next six months in the High Courts.

Shri Khurshid informed the House that the administrative control over the members of the district/ subordinate judiciary in the States vests with the concerned High Court and State Government under Article 235 of the Constitution of India.

Regarding quicker disposal of corruption cases, the Minister of Law & Justice said that 56 courts are already functioning in the country for disposal of corruption cases. The Central Government has further decided to set up 71 additional special CBI courts. Of these, 62 CBI courts have started functioning already.

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