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Report No. 14

11. Jurisdiction of civil courts.-

The following Table shows at a glance the pecuniary jurisdiction of different classes of civil judicial officers in the Andhra and Telangana regions.-

Table No. 1

Region of the State

Class of officers

Civil

Small Cause

Appellate

Ordinary

Special

1

2

3

4

5

6

Andhra

District and Additional District Judge.

Unlimited

Guardians and Wards Act, Indian Succession Act, Land Acquisition Act, Payment of Wages Act, etc.

--

Rs. 7,500

Subordinate Judge*

Do.

Indian Succession Act, Land Acquisition Act, etc.

Rs. 2,000

Rs. 5,000

Munsif

Rs. 5,000

Indian Succession Act.

Rs. 500

Nil.

Telangana

District Judge.

Unlimited

Land Acquisition Act, Indian Succession Act, Guardian and Wards Act, Payment of Wages Act, etc.

Rs. 300

Rs. 5,000

Subordinate Judge**

Up to Rs. 20,000

Nil.

Rs. 200

Nil.

Munsif***

Upto Rs. 2,000

Nil.

Rs. 50

Nil.

*.Subordinate Judge in the Andhra region are also Assistant Sessions Judges.

** Subordinate Judge are also District Magistrates.

***Munsifs are also Sub-Division Magistrates.

12. Volume of litigation.-

During the triednium 1954-56 on an average about 71,500 suits-regular and small cause-were instituted in civil courts (excluding village and panchayat courts) or one suit per 437.2 persons. The average institution in this period in the Andhra region was 65,304 suits or one suit per 316.1 persons whereas it was about 6,000 suits or one suit per 1,769 persons in the Telangana region.

13. The number and value of suits in different classes of civil courts, according to the statistics furnished by the High Court* are set out below:

*. All the statistics given in this chapter have been taken from data furnished by the High Court (The figures shown in the reports on the administration of civil and criminal justice do not always tally with those furnished to us by the High Court).

Table No. 2

Suits of the value

Andhra District

Telangana Region

Number filed in

Average

Number filed in

Average

1954

1955

1956

1954

1955

1956

Not exceeding Rs. 1000

57561

49764

54076

53800

4957

4102

4504

4521

Exceeding Rs. 1000 but not exceeding Rs. 2000

6256

5730

4893

5626

655

814

920

796

Exceeding Rs. 2000 but not exceeding Rs. 5000

7830

2524

2680

4345

439

517

553

503

Exceeding Rs. 5000 but not exceeding Rs. 10,000

1129

978

784

964

184

191

233

203

Exceeding Rs. 10000 but not exceeding Rs. 20000

327

285

237

283

NA

NA

NA

NA

Exceeding Rs. 20000 but not exceeding Rs. 50000

208

203

185

199

NA

NA

NA

NA

Exceeding Rs. 50000

101

78

81

87

NA

NA

NA

NA

Note.- Suits which are not capable of valuation are note Shown.

14. It appears from these figures that in Andhra districts about 95 per cent. of the suits are brought to trial before the courts of munsifs.

15. State of work in munsifs' courts.-

The following table shows the average number of proceedings instituted, disposed of and pending in the courts of Munsifs in the Andhra region during the three years preceding 1957.

Table No. 3

Nature of proceeding

Instituted

Disposed of

Pending

Original Suits

324

319.73

257.6

Small Cause Suits

614.9

615.5

126.7

Civil Misc. Petns.

2578.03

2558.03

322.5

16. The average duration of original suits disposed of after contest in the year 1955 was 391 days-not very much above the standard time prescribed by us for the disposal of suits in the subordinate courts.

17. On 1st January 1956, 16257 original suits were pending in the courts of Munsifs in the Andhra region out of which 5,400 were a year old-the oldest suit remaining pending having been instituted in 1934 as will be seen from the table given below:

Table No. 4

Year

1934

1941

1943

1944

1945

1946

1947

1948

1

1

4

3

9

31

23

43

Year

1949

1950

1951

1952

1953

1954

1955

66

115

194

319

1002

3576

10876

18. Though, as is evident from the figures given in Table No. 3, the Munsifs in the Andhra region are able to keep pace with institutions, the heavy pendency is due to the fact that there is an accumulation of old suits. Appointment of temporary Munsifs to wipe out the arrears seems to be essential to bring the file under control. Raising the cadre strength of Munsifs does not appear to be necessary.

19. There would not appear to be any reason for keeping the pecuniary jurisdiction of Munsifs in the Telangana region as low as Rs. 2,000 in original suits and Rs. 50 in small cause suits, especially as even village courts in the Andhra region have jurisdiction to try suits valued at Rs. 50. We recommend that the Munsifs in the Telangana region should have the same original and small cause jurisdiction as is conferred on their counterparts in the Andhra region. A single civil courts Act for the entire State is also very necessary.



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