Hon'ble Mr. Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar is going to take over as the next CJI when the present CJI Hon'ble Mr. Justice T.S. Thakur retires on 4th January 2017. As is usual now-a-days, this appointment too came under controversy. Neverteless, decision taken and now Mr Khehar has lot of challenges set out before him.
The huge backlog of cases pending in various courts is a statistician’s delight and is symptomatic of deeper problems plaguing the judiciary which warrants attention. Unless these are addressed, not much improvement will come about.
Some areas are mentioned below by the author.
Eight hour workday is accepted practise in whole of India and one wonders why the officials of any court should not follow this. Every citizen has experienced the unpunctual behaviour of officials in courts. A proper system of recording attendance should be linked to the salary as is the case in industrial and commercial establishments. No work no pay is to be implemented.
Study of adjournments should be periodically made and frequent, repetitive cases on frivolous ground need to be further investigated. These are generally done to defeat the system by interested parties often accompanied by greasing of palms.
30 % of lawyers have fake degrees - this has been admitted by the Chairman of Bar Council Of India. A verification process has been initiated and is supposed to be completed in 2016 i.e. today to weed out the fake ones. CJI should also make public the names of such fake lawyers and initiate legal proceedings under Section 420.
The nation would like to have an assurance from the CJI that all practising lawyers are genuine. This is not expecting too much.
Appointment of Judges
On April 24th Chief Justice of India Mr T S Thakur broke down (crying) in public – bemoaning the state of judiciary. This happened at a conference of Chief Ministers of states and Chief Justices of High Courts, also attended by the Prime Minister.
The CJI wanted the number of judges to be increased to 40,000 from 21,000. Since not much progress has been made so it appears that the Government of India and Judiciary are not working together.
The new CJI has opportunity to improve the climate and improve the plight of the common man and ensure improvement in delivery of justice.
If persons heading pillars of democracy feel helpless and breakdown in public, then God alone can help the nation!