Row between Supreme Court chief justice and the Union government over filling up of vacancies in courts snowballed further today with CJI lambasting the Centre saying that justice is delayed due to dearth of staff in courts.
“There are around 500 vacancies in High Courts today. 500 High Court judges should be working today, they are not working,” Chief Justice Thakur said in New Delhi.
Justice Thakur also said there was a lack of infrastructure being provided to tribunals, due to which several of them are empty.
“Government is not ready to give proper facilities. Vacancy apart from infrastructure is a major concern for tribunals. Tribunals are not equipped and are lying empty. Today a situation has come that when no retired Supreme Court judge wants to head a tribunal… Posts are falling vacant and I am at pains in persuading my colleagues who are demitting office to accept these appointments,” he said.
Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, however, disagreed and said the government has made 120 appointments this year.
“We respectfully disagree with him (Chief Justice). We have made 120 appointments this year. Since 1990 there have only been 80 appointments. 5,000 vacancies are there in lower judiciaries in which the government of India has no role to play. That is something for only to judiciary to take. As far as infrastructure is concerned, that is a continuous process,” Mr Prasad said.