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Report No. 14

28. Transfer of work to District Courts.-

Though there was a substantial increase in the number of district and sessions judges in the Andhra region in 1956, yet surprisingly enough no appreciable increase in disposals barring that in criminal appeals is discernible.

29. In view of the heavy arrears in the High Court we consider it necessary that the appellate jurisdiction of the District Judges shall be raised to Rs. 10,000 and that, all first appeals valued below Rs. 10,000 now pending in the High Court should be transferred to the district courts for disposal. Temporary district judges will have to be appointed to dispose of the appeals that are so transferred. A certain number may have to be posted at the seat of the High Court to dispose of such transferred appeals as are ready for hearing and in which counsel have been briefed.

The burden that will fall on the district judges by reason of this change can be reduced by their being asked to restrict themselves to the trial of sessions cases and disposal of civil and criminal appeals and criminal revisions. All original suits excepting those that are exclusively triable by them should be transferred to the subordinate judges and the latter should send all the appeals pending before them to the district courts. Though the subordinate judges may continue to exercise the powers of assistant sessions judges they should not be called upon to do so much of sessions work as they are doing at present.

30. The following Table shows the annual average institution of each category of proceedings in the district and sessions courts and courts of Assistant Sessions Judges during the three years preceding 1957.

Table No. 11

Category of proceeding

Average number instituted

1

2

Session Cases

904

Criminal Appeals

3494

Civil Appeals

3434

Civil Miscellaneous Appeal

1136

Criminla Revisions

146

1. The average of criminal revisions is of two years-1954 and 1955.

31. During the years 1954 and 1955 the number of district and sessions judges remained constant in the Andhra region; this will enable us to calculate the annual average institution and disposal per judge.

Table No. 12

Category of Proceeding

Average institution per Judge

Average disposal per Judge

1

1954

1955

1954

1955

Civil Suits

25.5

25

28.2

23.4

Civil Appeals

227

200

253

209

Civil Miscellaneous Appeals

36.1

37

46.2

38

Session Cases

44

40.4

44

40.6

Criminal Appeals

106

112.7

99.2

118

Criminal Revisions

21.7

18.4

19

18.2

32. We shall now examine how much extra work will devolve on District Judges as a result of their appellate powers being raised and the subordinate judges relieved of this class of work. The annual average institution of first appeals valued between Rs. 5000 and Rs. 10,000 in the High Court during the triennium 1954-56 was 268 while that of appeals valued upto Rs. 5000 filed in the subordinate judges courts was 2007. Including the present annual average of 3444 instituted in the District Courts, there will be on an average about 5719 appeals instituted in a year.

On the basis of the average disposals per district judge during the years 1954 and 1955 (vide Table No. 12) there would appear to be adequate work for about twenty-five judges. We should not however be understood as suggesting that the cadre strength of District and Sessions Judges should be fixed at this figure. The approximate number of officers that would be required to keep pace with the institutions has been worked out only in a broad manner.

The following Table (Table No. 13) shows the pendency of the different categories of proceedings triable by District and Sessions Judges as on.-1-1957.

Table No. 13

Category of proceeding

Pending on.-5-1957

Civil Appeals

4515

Civil Miscellaneous Appeals

709

Session Cases

152

Criminal Appeals

377

Criminal Revisions

99

33. Though the number of first appeals valued upto Rs. 10,000 pending in the High Court is not available, assuming that all first appeals of this value instituted between 1952 and 1956 are pending, approximately 1350 appeals may have to be transferred to the District Courts. Thus the District Judges will have a total of about 5865 appeals to clear off apart from other categories of proceedings. Temporary district judges will have to be appointed and entrusted with the task of disposing of these pending proceedings so as to complete their work within two years. Thereafter, the number of officers that will be required to keep pace with the institutions will have to be finally determined.

34. Concentration of Courts.-

Unlike in some other States, too many courts are not concentrated in a number of stations in this State. In 1953, the distribution of courts in the Andhra region was as shown below:

Table No. 14

Strength of Judicial officers in each station

Number of stations

One Munsif only

27

Two Munsifs only

4

One Munsif and one Subordinate Judge

10

One Munsif and two Subordinate Judges

4

Two Munsifs and one Subordinate Judge

2

Two Munsifs and two Subordinate Judges

2

Two Munsifs and three Subordinate Judges

1

Three Munsifs and three Subordinate Judges

1

35. However, there is some scope for further decentralisation. In the Telangana region, almost all the taluqs have got a Munsif cum Sub-Divisional Magistrate.



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