New Delhi: The UPA government is closely examining the recommendation of the Law Commission to set up four Supreme Courts in metros and a Federal Court in the Capital exclusively devoted to examine constitutional issues, as one of the possible ways of reducing the huge backlog of pending cases.
The recommendation of the Law Commission, made in its 229th report, to set up Supreme Courts in the original four metros as well as a Federal Court tasked with disposing of constitutional issues, was recently endorsed by Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan.
Sources said that the CJI`s advocacy for four Supreme Courts has been the goad for the closer look at the nearly-forgotten recommendation of the Law Commission.
The idea to set up four Supreme Courts, or more appellate courts, in Delhi is seen as in harmony with the Constitution, for Article 130 provides that "The Supreme Court shall sit in Delhi or in such other place or places, as the Chief Justice of India may, with the approval of the President from time to time, appoint."
However, creation of a Constitutional or Federal Court in Delhi to hear only matters of grave constitutional importance would require an amendment to the Constitution, the sources said, adding the law ministry wanted to examine the Law Commission`s recommendation and the suggestion made by the CJI.
In its report submitted to law minister Veerappa Moily, the Commission had said: "Whether the Supreme Court should be split into Constitutional Division and Legal Division for appeals, the latter with Benches in four regions - North, South, East and West - is a subject of fundamental importance for the judicial system of the country."
It recommended that "a Constitution Bench be set up at Delhi to deal with constitutional and other allied issues and four Cassation (final appeal court) Benches be set up in the Northern region at Delhi, the Southern region at Chennai/Hyderabad, the Eastern region at Kolkata and Western region at Mumbai to deal with all appellate work arising out of orders/judgments of the High Courts of the particular region."
However, the Full Court of the Supreme Court had till date rejected all proposals for setting up Benches of the Supreme Court in the South or any other region of the country.