Four minutes and 55 seconds. That is all that the Delhi High Court manages to spare on an average for a matter's hearing in a day due to the burden on its judges, raising concerns among litigants that their cases may not be decided during their lifetime.
There are over 1.06 lakh pending cases in the High Court and with 39 judges to dispose of pending and fresh cases, it is no surprise that one case's hearing in a day gets less than five minutes from courts reeling under the "crushing load," a fact reflected in the High Court's annual report.
The report was based on the analysis of the working of the court in the financial year 2007-08 in which during five hours 15 minutes the average number of cases listed per day before its 24 benches was 1,536.
Expressing concern over the growing burden on Judges of the court, Chief Justice A P Shah said that each bench on an average has to deal with 13,839 cases in a year.
"These figures only highlight the crushing load which the courts, the Delhi High Court being no exception, have to shoulder," Justice Shah said while releasing the report.
He compared the working of Indian courts with that in England where on an average each Superior Court Judge had to decide about 150 cases every year.