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Report No. 116

Chapter V

Justification for Setting up Indian Judicial Service

5.1. The question that must now be posed is whether, having regard to the existing situation, four decades after the decision was taken to leave judicial service below the High Court to be handled by the States, a situation has arisen which calls for a radical departure from the existing pattern and provide for setting up a judicial service on an all-India basis. Commencing from the year 1958,1 and continued through,2 experts have consistently opined that in order to improve, tone up and raise the level, it is in the interest of the system that an all-India judicial service, called the Indian Judicial Service, be established. This expert opinion carries its own weight and formidable arguments and unanswerable objections will have to be advanced to negate this view.

Having regard to the present state of the judicial service below the High Court, the malaise that has set in, the inadequacy of the talent being attracted, varying conditions of service from State to State, unattractive conditions of service and ineffective voice of the High Court in the matter of recruitment, failure of Public Service Commissions on this front, utter and total antipathy of State Governments have contributed in no uncertain measure to the falling standards in the State Judicial Service. Available evidence shows that they are totally dissatisfied with the existing situation. Silent march of civil judges and metropolitan magistrates in the capital not long ago is a grim reminder of the situation. Occasionally one hears of strike by them also. How do you repair or improve the situation.

If the situation is allowed to stagnate, as the law stands today, States alone will be competent to repair or improve the rot. They are shown to be indifferent. Any expense on State Judicial Service will be classified as non-plan, non-productive expense even though millions are collected as court fees.3 Law and justice project into the lives of all segments of society from bottom to top. Therefore, a national approach and perspective is a must. Futile litigation is time consuming and an unproductive expenditure luxury. The structure of judiciary has to some extent contributed to this undesirable situation. A fresh look from broader national perspective is preeminently necessary.

If other services were organised on all-India basis for acquiring definite improvement in efficiency and productivity of service, why not judiciary by which everyone is vitally affected ? If administrative service, police service, forest service, medical service, engineering service, accounts and audit service, etc., could be more effectively organised on an all-India level, one fails to find adequate justification for not attempting to organise judicial service on all-India basis. Further, the cost benefit structure clearly tilts the balance in favour of all-India service. The objections against setting up the same which are merely repetitious in character have been effectively answered earlier and fully dealt with hereinbefore.

The benefits flowing from the constitution of judicial service on all-India basis would far outweigh some minor adjustments that may have to be made. Having, therefore, regard to all the aspects of the matter, the Commission is of the firm view that the judicial service within the parameters of Article 312(3), i.e., at the level of district judge, as the term is defined by an inclusive definition in Article 236 below the High Court in each State which is at present called State Judicial Service must be organised on an all-India basis, meaning thereby a service common to States and the Union and to be styled as Indian Judicial Service.

1. Law Commission of India, Fourteenth Report, Vol. I, Chapter IX, para. 59.

2. Law Commission of India, Seventy-seventh Report, Chapter IX, paras. 9.6 and 9.6A.

3. Material collected by the Government of India to examine the proposal for abolition of court-fees.

Formation of an All India Judicial Service Back

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