`Pendency of cases, vacancy major challenges before judiciary`

Supreme Court judge Justice GS Singhvi said pendency of cases, lack of infrastructure, manpower, delay in judges` appointment were among major challenges judiciary has been facing for past 65 years.

Jaipur: Recently-retired Supreme Court judge Justice G S Singhvi on Thursday said huge pendency of cases, lack of infrastructure facilities and manpower, and delay in judges` appointment were among the major challenges the judiciary has been facing for the past 65 years.
"More than 3.24 crore cases have been pending before different courts in the country, of them the number of one-year old cases is 2.24 lakh and three- to five-year old cases one crore. We have to accept that justice is delayed due to a number of challenges," Justice Singhvi said speaking on "Challenges before Indian Judiciary" here today.

The criminal justice system suffered badly in the past five decades as police recruitment was not up to any standard, prosecution and investigation were defective, he said.

"...Adjournment of cases are the commonest process in judiciary. Every one (judge) wants to be popular. There is a need to improve criminal justice dispensation," Justice Singhvi, who who headed the Supreme Court bench that criminalised gay sex, said.

On CBI and CBI courts` functioning, he said fifty per cent of posts were lying vacant in special CBI courts. When the states were directed by the Prime Minister that 65 additional special courts must be set up, no state paid any heed to it, he added.

He told young lawyers to show their commitment to their duty right from the beginning. "We have not adopted a system of governance of judiciary. Judges must be educated and undergo refresher courses as there are multiple challenges of new subjects like surrogacy, inter-state adoption, cyber crime... All needs better education," he said.

There was a lack of commitment not only in judiciary, but also in bureaucracy, legislature, he said, adding that it was "our duty to protect legal rights of a litigant".

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