The government has proposed to increase the retirement age of high court judges from 62 to 65 years, and is likely to move a bill in parliament during the ongoing monsoon session.
The union cabinet will take up the law ministry proposal for consideration, a top ministry official said on Monday.
Law Minister M. Veerappa Moily informed the high court judges of the western region about the proposal, addressing a zonal conference on Sunday.
“We have sent the proposal to the cabinet for its approval, and in case we get on time, the bill has already been listed for introduction in parliament,” the official said.
Presently, the retirement age for Supreme Court judges is 65 years, and a number of recommendations, including the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Law and Justice, have asked the government to raise the age for high court judges also to bring parity.
The ministry does not expect any opposition on the proposed bill, which would have to be passed by a two-thirds majority in both Houses of parliament, for it to become a law.
“It will need an amendment to article 217 of the constitution, and the bill will have to be approved by atleast half of the state assemblies,” the official said.
Once it becomes a reality, the proposed new law will benefit around 700 high court judges in the country.
The Ministry has confined its fresh proposal only to raise the retirement age of high court judges, and has decided against touching the age for Supreme Court judges.
The UPA government, in its first tenure, had attempted to raise the retirement age of Supreme Court judges to 68 along with increasing the retirement age for high court judges, but the move for the top court judges did not find favour with the opposition parties. Moily has been tightlipped on the issue of raising the retirement age for the judges of the apex court, and ministry officials have ruled out the possibility of this move in the near future.