FAQs on Judiciary in India

By | January 14, 2017
(Last Updated On: January 14, 2017)

What is the duration of vacations/holidays in the Supreme Court?

Ans: Working days/hours in the Supreme Court are regulated by Rules framed by the Supreme Court. These rules provide that the period of summer vacation shall not exceed seven weeks. The Rules further provide that the length of the summer vacation and the number of holidays for the court and the offices of the court shall be such as may be fixed by the Chief Justice and notified in the official gazette so as not to exceed 103 days excluding Sundays not falling in the vacation and during Court holidays. The Supreme Court has been working on 222 days in a year.

What is the number of holidays in the High Courts?

Ans: The duration of vacations in the High Court is regulated by the Rules/Procedures framed by the concerned High Court. High Courts generally enjoy 20 holidays in a year beside Christmas and winter holidays and summer vacations and the number of working days of High Courts generally do not fall below 222 days in a year.

What is the language used in Supreme Court and High Courts in their proceedings?

Ans: Article 348(1) of the Constitution of India provides that all proceedings in the Supreme Court and in every High Court shall be in English language until Parliament by law provides otherwise. No law has since been made in this regard by the Parliament.

Article 348(2) of the Constitution provides that the Governor of the State may, with the previous consent of the President, authorize the use of Hindi language or any other language used for nay official purpose of the State, in proceedings of the High Court having its principal seat in that state, provided that decrees, judgments or orders passed by such High Courts shall be in English.

 Whether Hindi is being used in some of the High Courts in their proceedings?

So far the Governors of four States namely; Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan have authorized the use of Hindi in addition to English language in the proceedings of the High Courts in their States.

Is there any provision for reservation in Higher Judiciary?

Ans: Appointment of Judges of the Supreme Court and High Courts is made under Articles 124 and 217 of the Constitution of India respectively. These Articles do not provide for reservation for any caste or class of persons.

The Government has, however, requested the Chief Justices of High Courts that while sending proposals for appointment of Judges, due consideration be given to suitable candidates belonging to OBC, SC, ST and Minorities.

Whether reservation is applicable in recruitment and promotion of Judicial Officers in the District and Subordinate courts?

Ans: Under the Constitution of India, recruitment and promotion of Judicial Officers in the District and Subordinate Courts in the country fall within the purview of the State Governments. Most of the States have provisions for reservation of posts in State Judicial Services for eligible candidates belonging to SC/ST/OBC category.

Is there any proposal for creating parity in pension of High Court Judges from the BAR?

Ans: The Hon‟ble Supreme Court had, inter-alia, allowed the prayer in a Writ Petition titled as „P. Ramakrishnam Raju Vs Union of India & Others vide judgment dated 31.3.2014 directing that “for pensionary benefits, ten years practice as an advocate be added as qualifying service for Judges elevated from the Bar with effect from the 1st April, 2004, the date on which Section 13A was inserted by the High Court and Supreme Court Judges (Salaries and Conditions of Service) Amendment Act, 2005 (46 of 2005). In view of the above order, Government has approved appropriate amendment to the High Court Judges (Salaries and Conditions of Service) Amendment Act, 1954. Accordingly, “The High Court and the Supreme Court Judges (Salaries and Conditions of Service) Amendment Bill, 2015” has been introduced in the Lok Sabha on 13.08.2015.

What action is taken by Department of justice on the grievances sent by the general public against the Judiciary?

Ans: The Applications are forwarded to the Registrar General of concerned High Courts for further action, as appropriate, with a copy to the applicant.

What action is taken on the grievances against Judges of the High Courts and Supreme Court?

Ans: The Complaints are forwarded to the Secretary General of the Supreme Court of India for further action, as appropriate, with a copy to the Applicant.

What action is taken on complaints received against Officials of State Governments?

Ans: The complaints are sent to the Chief Secretary of the State concerned for taking appropriate action with copy endorsed to the applicant.

What action needs to be taken by the applicant after the application has been forwarded to concerned High Court or Supreme Court?

.Ans: The applicant has to take-up the issue further with the authorities in the High Courts and Supreme Court to whom the letter has been sent by Department of Justice. The Judiciary is independent in India and, hence, Department of justice does not ask for Action Taken Report from the Courts or send reminders. However, all High Courts and the Supreme Court have an in-house mechanism to deal with grievances.

 What action is taken on the grievance against Registrar Generals of High Courts and the Secretary General of the Supreme Court?

Ans: The complaints are sent to the PPS of Hon’ble Chief Justice and Hon’ble Chief Justice of India respectively.

 (a) whether the court proceedings/ judgments are available on the website of respective courts.

(b) whether suggestions have been received from various quarters to introduce audio-video recordings of courts’ proceedings,

Answer: Status of cases and copies of judgments are available on the websites of the respective District and Subordinate Court Complexes in respect of all courts which have been computerised. This information has also been linked to the national e-Courts portal (http://www.ecourts.gov.in). Currently, litigants can access case status information in respect of over 5.49 crore pending and decided cases and approximately 1.75 crore orders/ judgments in more than 13,000 district and subordinate courts in the country.

The Government has been receiving suggestions for the implementation of audio-video recording of court proceedings. The issue has also been discussed in the meetings of Advisory Council of National Mission for Justice Delivery and Legal Reforms. In the meeting of eCommittee of the Supreme Court of India held on 8th January, 2014, Hon’ble the Chief Justice of India advised deferment of audio-video recording of court proceedings as this would require consultations with Hon’ble Judges of Supreme Court and High Courts.

whether Government proposes to constitute more Fast Track Courts (FTCs) for speedy disposal of cases

Answer:- Setting up of subordinate courts including Fast Track Courts (FTCs) is the responsibility of the State Governments. In the Conference of Chief Ministers and Chief Justices held in New Delhi on 7th April, 2013, it was resolved that the State Governments shall, in consultation with the Chief Justices of the respective High Courts, take necessary steps to establish suitable number of FTCs

 whether the Government iproposes to set up Family Courts in districts with a population of one million or more.

Answer: As per the Family Courts Act, 1984, Family Courts are established by the State Governments in consultation with the respective High Court as per their need. Section 3(1) of the Act is reproduced below:

3) Establishment of Family Courts:- (1) For the purpose of exercising the jurisdiction and powers conferred on a Family Court by this Act, the State Government, after consultation with the High Court, and by notification:-

a. shall, as soon as may be after commencement of this Act, establish for every area in the State comprising a city or town whose population exceeds one million; a Family Court;

b. may establish Family Courts for such other areas in the State as it may deem necessary

As on 30.9.2015, 432 Family Courts have been established in the country

Government sent a proposal to the 14th Finance Commission for funding setting up of Family Courts so as to provide for at least one Family Court in each district in the country. The number of Family Courts required to be established in a State was arrived at so as to provide for, on an average, at least one Family Court in each district in that State or the number of districts without Family Courts reported by the respective High Court, whichever was higher. The Finance Commission endorsed the proposal to strengthen the judicial system in States which includes, interalia, establishing Family Courts The State Governments are urged to use the additional fiscal space provide by the Commission in the tax devolution to meet such requirement

 Whether Department of Justice has framed Citizens’/Clients’ Charter

Answer: Yes. This has been uploaded on the Website of Department of Justice.


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