The government has asked the Chief Justice of India and chief justices of high courts to fill up vacancies in various courts, mostly in lower judiciary, for speedy disposal of huge backlog of cases in the country.
Law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad told Lok Sabha on Monday that around 4,000 posts are vacant in lower judiciary and 250 posts of judges in various high courts.
"I have written to the Chief Justice of India and chief justices of various high courts to ensure that vacant posts are filled up at the earliest to clear the backlog of cases," he said during Question Hour.
Prasad's comment came after RK Singh (BJP) said the "judicial system in the country has collapsed" as there is huge backlog of court cases and it was leading to law and order problems.
With this, AIMIM member Asaduddin Owaisi and BJP's Murli Manohar Joshi pointed out that Singh was himself union home secretary and asked as to how he could make such a statement.
Speaker Sumitra Mahajan advised the BJP member from Bihar to desist from making such sweeping comments to which Singh said he would follow the advice.
To a question on Gram Nyayalayas, Prasad said government had planned to set up 5,000 gram nyayalayas at panchayat level under the 12th Five Year Plan but so far only 159 of them could be set up.
He said government has allocated Rs 4,867 crore for development of judicial infrastructure under the centrally sponsored scheme for development of infrastructure facilities for judiciary during 12th Plan.
He said the issues affecting implementation of the Gram Nyayalayas scheme were discussed in the conference of chief justices of high courts and chief ministers on April 7, 2013.
Prasad said it was decided in the conference that state governments and High Courts should decide the question of establishment of gram nyayalayas wherever feasible taking into account their local problems.
"The focus is on covering those talukas under the gram nyayalayas scheme where regular courts have not been set up," he said.