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Report No. 125

The First Decade (1951-60)

2.7. The sanctioned strength up to the year 1956 was Chief Justice and seven other Judges. In 1956, the Judge strength was raised from 7 to 10. An attempt to tackle the problem of arrears was made by raising the Judge strength. It hardly made any significant impact on the ever-rising graph of mounting arrears (See Graphs I and II in Appendix II). The available information is tabulated. (See Table I in Appendix I). Gleaning through the Table, it transpires that there was perceptible reduction in pending matters for final hearing during the years 1952 and 1953 but thereafter every year the arrears piled up higher.

In fact, during this decade, the arrears quadrupled. During this very decade, the first after the advent of the Constitution, the filing of petitions under Article 32 complaining of violation of fundamental rights gradually decreased. The tabulated information in this behalf is revealing. (See Table II in Appendix I). This has been graphically demonstrated in Graph III. (See Graph III in Appendix II).

2.8. Turning to the institution of petitions for special leave under Article 136, it transpires that the institution markedly increased from year to year which would be revealed by the tabulated information. (See Table III in Appendix I). The graphic description would be revealing. (See Graph IV in Appendix II).

2.9. During this period, the miscellaneous matters increased from 512 in 1955 to 3,194 in 1960. It thus appears that in the first decade, the Court could hardly manage the inflow of work with the result that the arrears started mounting up.

The Supreme Court - A Fresh Look Back

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