Balakrishnan concerned over shortage of judges (Lead)

December 31st, 2009 - 12:54 am ICT by IANS  

Lucknow, Dec 30 (IANS) Concerned over the long list of pending cases before the Allahabad High Court, Chief Justice of India K.G. Balakrishnan Wednesday said vacancies of posts of judges needed to be filled to dispose of pending case.
“About half the sanctioned posts of judges are vacant in the Allahabad High Court alone. Only if these vacancies were filled up, the nine lakh-odd pending cases here could be disposed off within a reasonable time,” Balakrishnan said.

The chief justice was speaking at the foundation laying ceremony for a new state-of-art building for the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court at modern city’s posh Gomti Nagar that will replace the existing building at Qaiserbagh.

He talked about the paucity of courts but observed that “despite the shortage, judges have been able to dispose off 70 percent cases within reasonable time”.

“At least half of the remaining 30 percent cases were deliberately delayed at the behest of litigants,” he lamented.

He said, “It is not the long list of cases that we are afraid of. Our worry is about the need for a better infrastructure, which we hope to achieve here once we have the new building in place.”

Hoping that the new building will be completed well within time, Balakrishnani praised Lucknow’s rich judicial heritage.

“I feel deeply privileged to be in Lucknow whose erstwhile court of Awadh was still remembered for its landmark judgements, that were still quoted by the legal fraternity all across the country.”

Chief Justice of the Allahabad High Court Justice Chandramauli Kumar Prasad said, “A staggering 46,630 cases have been added to the pending list just in a year’s time.

“In January 2009, the number was 911,858 and now it has gone up to 958,488.”

Spread over a sprawling 40-acre plot, the new building will house 57 courts with 69 judge’s chambers. Besides, it would have 512 lawyer’s chambers, each with a capacity to accommodate six advocates.

A special wing will have chambers for advocate general and all government counsels. Separate facility would be made available to accommodate 2,240 typists and lawyers’ assistants, besides a sitting room for drivers.

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