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Report No. 230

Three players in Judiciary

1.56 The first player is the Government. The Government is mostly at fault by not filling up vacancies which they know well in advance. The Government fails in appointing quality judges and providing proper infrastructure, including the basic things like a good library, typists, etc.

1.57 The second player is the lawyers. We should realize that adjournments, even if they are in favour of clients, are not in favour of the system. In a number of regulatory cases, there is no real need for appeals or adjournments. Given the huge backlog of cases, practical ways and means need to be thought of, to solve such problems. Ethics of lawyers has also become questionable. There is a Bar Council that has to look after ethics of lawyers, but it has rarely taken action against tainted lawyers. Everything becomes customary and loses meaning.

1.58 The third player, of course, is the judges. Unless they display work-ethics, no recommendations can be of use to them. Fairness, speed and quality should be key values for the judiciary, as for all other sectors.

1.59 The Judiciary is under great pressure. We have about 10-11 judges per million population right now. The Supreme Court has recently directed that we should have 5 times the number of judges we currently have.1

1. All India Judges' Association v. Union of India, (2002) 4 SCC 247.

Reforms in the Judiciary - Some Suggestions Back

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