New Delhi, July 28: Senior Supreme Court judge Kurian Joseph asked the central government to not delay appointments of judges and clear the names in a time-bound manner after getting the recommendations from the collegium. Speaking at a conference on ‘National Initiative to Reduce Pendency and Delay in Judicial System’, Joseph said,”Just making a passing observation — as far as appointment to high courts are concerned, once the high court has sent some request, or the high court collegium creates an appointment of a judge, to high court, there should not be a delay of three months.” Also Read - 'Why Can't Private Hospitals Built on Free Land Give Free Treatment to COVID-19 Patients', SC Asks Centre
Furthermore, he stated,“As far as the Supreme Court is concerned, since it is an appointment from among the judges serving in the country for quite a long time, there must not be a delay of more than two weeks.” Talking about increasing the age of superannuation of judges of the apex court and the high courts, Justice Joseph suggested that the age of retirement be raised to 70 years. Notably, at present, apex court and high court judges demit office at the age of 65 and 62 years respectively. Also Read - 'Effective Steps Needed to Redeem Situation': SC Takes Suo Moto Cognisance of Migrants' Plight
Joseph, in his address, also said, “My suggestion to government is to increase the retirement age of high court and Supreme Court judges should be made the same and should be 70. It’s the more productive years as far as the experience of a judge is concerned, we can well utilise them up to the age of 70.” Also Read - SC Allows Air India to Resume Non-Scheduled International Flights With Middle-seat Bookings For Next 10 Days
Meanwhile, Chief Justice of India (CJI) Dipak Misra, who made the inaugural address, said shortage of judges was a factor responsible for pendency but at the same time some courts are functioning and performing better in same conditions.
He further asked the high courts and districts across the country to share ideas and suggestions to perform better.
“Shortage of judges is a factor responsible for pendency but at the same time some courts are functioning and performing better in same conditions. Take such courts as models. This conference is for learning and sharing. Take suggestions and ideas. Conditions may be different but ideas may work over there,” he said.
While discussing over the various factors of pendency, the CJI said he is of the view that adjournment is a disorder. He suggested that since the legal aid advocates are paid by the courts, they should take up matters to argue in the summer vacation to reduce the pendency.
“High courts may form think tanks with judges, lawyers, academicians etc., so that they can discuss innovative modes and initiatives to reduce delays,” Justice Misra said.
(With inputs from agencies)