By Dr. Sanjay Chaturvedi, Editor
As per the information made available by the High Courts, as on 28.02.2022 there are 20,814 Court Halls and 18,319 Residential Units available for Judicial Officers/Judges in the country against the working strength of 19,350 Judges/Judicial Officers of District and Subordinate Courts and sanctioned strength of 24,520 as on 28.02.2022. There is presently a vacancy of 5,170 Judicial Officers. As the available infrastructure also includes court halls leased from Centre/ States and rented buildings, the aim is to shift all the court halls to judiciary owned buildings and to match the Judicial Infrastructure with sanctioned strength of judges.
The primary responsibility of development of infrastructure facilities for judiciary rests with the State Governments. To augment the resources of the State Governments, the Union Government has been implementing a Centrally Sponsored Scheme for Development of Infrastructure Facilities for Judiciary by providing financial assistance to State Governments / UTs in the prescribed fund sharing pattern between Centre and States. The Scheme is being implemented since 1993-94. It covers the construction of court buildings and residential accommodations for Judicial Officers of District and Subordinate Judiciary. As on date a sum of Rs. 8758.71 crore has been released under the Scheme so far since its inception, out of which Rs. 5314.40 crore (60.68 %) has been released since 2014-15. The Scheme has been extended from 2021-22 to 2025-26 with a budgetary outlay of Rs. 9000 crore including Central share of Rs. 5307.00 crore. Besides the construction of Court Halls and Residential Quarters, the Scheme now also covers the construction of Lawyers’ Halls, Digital Computer Rooms and Toilet Complexes in the District and Subordinate Courts.
The State-wise statement of the ratio of the cases currently pending in the court to the total number of judges is at Annexure-I.
The State-wise detail of total vacancies of Judges at present is at Annexure-II.
The Registry of Supreme Court of India has compiled data on the status of judicial infrastructure and court amenities. A proposal has been received from Chief Justice of India for setting up of National Judicial Infrastructure Authority of India (NJIAI) for arrangement of adequate infrastructure for courts, as per which there will be a Governing Body with Chief Justice of India as Patron-in-Chief. The other salient features of the proposal are that NJIAI will act as a Central body in laying down the road map for planning, creation, development, maintenance and management of functional infrastructure for the Indian Court System, besides identical structures under all the High Courts. The proposal has been sent to the various State Governments/UTs, as they constitute an important stakeholder, for their views on the contours of the proposal to enable taking a considered view on the matter.
ESTABLISHMENT OF NATIONAL JUDICIAL INFRASTRUCTURE (As on 09.03.2022)
|Sl. No.||States & UTs||Sanctioned Strength of Judges/Judicial Officers of District and Subordinate Courts||Working Strength of Judges/Judicial Officers of District and Subordinate Courts||Total pendency of District and Subordinate Courts||Ratio of Pending Cases to Judges /Judicial Officers of District and Subordinate Courts|
|1||Andaman and Nicobar||0||13||*||*|
|8||D & N Haveli||3||2||3706||1853.00|
|9||Daman & Diu||4||4||2902||725.50|
|15||Jammu and Kashmir||300||240||253828||1057.62|
Source: – National Judicial Data Grid (NJDG) and MIS Portal of DoJ.