Report No. 32
Extracts from the Himachal Pradesh Courts Order, 1948 (10th August, 1948) (Preamble, and Paragraphs 3, 4, 8, 10, 16, 17 and 18)
No. 270-I.B., dated the 10th August, 1948.-
whereas the Central Government has full and exclusive authority, jurisdiction and powers for and in relation to the governance of Himachal Pradesh; and whereas it is expedient to consolidate and amend the law relating to Courts in Himachal Pradesh;
Now, therefore, in exercise of the powers conferred by sections 3 and 4 of the Extra-Provincial Jurisdiction Act, 1947 (47 of 1947), and of all other powers enabling it in this behalf, the Central Government is pleased to make the following Orders:-
3. Establishment of the Court of the Judicial Commissioner.-On and from the commencement of this Order, there shall be established for Himachal Pradesh a Court to be known as the Court of the Judicial Commissioner for Himachal Pradesh which shall consist of the Judicial Commissioner and the Additional Judicial Commissioner, if any1.
1. Under sections 17-19 and Schedule to the Delhi High Court Act (6 of 1966) from the prescribed date by the Court of Judicial Commissioner is to be abolished.
4. Appointment of Judicial Commissioner and Additional Judicial Commissioner.-(1) The Judicial Commissioner and the Additional Judicial Commissioner, if any shall be appointed by the Central Government and shall hold office at the pleasure of the Central Government.
(2) No person shall be appointed as the Judicial Commissioner or the Additional Judicial Commissioner who is not qualified to be appointed as a Judge of a High Court under sub-section (3) of section 220 of the Government of India Act, 1935, or who is not, immediately before the commencement of this Order, the Chief Judge of a State comprising Himachal Pradesh.
8. Save as otherwise provided by this Order or any other law for the time being in force, the Court of the Judicial Commissioner shall be the highest civil and criminal court of appeal and revision for Himachal Pradesh.
10. (1) The general superintendence and control over all Courts in Himachal Pradesh shall vest in, and all such Courts shall be subordinate to, the Court of the Judicial Commissioner1.
(2) In exercise of the power of superintendence and control vested in it, but without prejudice to the generality of such power, the Court of the Judicial Commissioner may do any of the following things, that is to say,-
(a) call for returns;
(b) direct the transfer of any suit or appeal from any Subordinate Court to any other Court of equal or superior jurisdiction;
(c) make rules and issue general directions and prescribe forms for regulating the practice and procedure of Subordinate Courts;
(d) b prescribe forms in which books, entries and accounts shall be kept by the officers of any such Court.
1. Under sections 17-19 and Schedule of the Delhi High Court Act, 1966 (26 of 1966) references to Judicial Commissioner are from the prescribed date to be considered as references to the High Court and reference to Chief Commissioner as reference to Commissioner.
16. Civil districts and District Judges.-(1) For the purposes of this Chapter, the Chief Commissioner may, by notification in the Official Gazette, divide Himachal Pradesh into civil districts and may alter the limits or the number of these districts and may determine the headquarters of each such district.
(2) The Chief Commissioner shall, after consultation with the Judicial Commissioner, appoint as many persons as he thinks necessary to be District Judges and shall post one such person to each district as District Judge of that district:
Provided that the same person may, if the Chief Commissioner thinks fit, be appointed to be the District Judge of two or more districts.
17. Additional District Judges.-(1) When the business pending before the Court of a District Judge requires the aid of an Additional Judge or Judges for its speedy disposal, the Chief Commissioner may, after consultation with the Judicial Commissioner, appoint such Additional District Judges as may be necessary.
(2) An Additional District Judge so appointed shall discharge any of the functions of a District Judge which the District Judge may assign to him, and in the discharge of his functions he shall exercise the same powers as the District Judge.
18. Subordinate Judges.-(1) The Chief Commissioner may, after consultation with the Judicial Commissioner, fix the number of Subordinate Judges to be appointed and if there is a vacancy in that number, may subject to the rules, if any, made under subparagraph (2), appoint such person as is nominated by the Judicial Commissioner to the vacancy.
(2) The Chief Commissioner may, after consultation with the Judicial Commissioner, make rules as to the qualifications of persons to be appointed Subordinate Judges.
(3) A Subordinate Judge may be suspended from office by the Judicial Commissioner subject to the confirmation of the Chief Commissioner and may be removed from office by the Chief Commissioner on the report of the Judicial Commissioner.