Union Law Minister HR Bharadwaj on Saturday said that there was no proposal to create a separate bench of the Allahabad High Court in western Uttar Pradesh and a controversy over it was generated by "vested interests."
"No such proposal (regarding creation of a separate bench) is in place. In fact, it has not even been taken up for discussion ever since I assumed the post two-and-a-half years ago," Bharadwaj, who arrived in Allahabad on Friday, hours after violent protests by advocates over the issue rocked the city, told a press conference.
He said there were people, whom he did not want to name, who tried to spread such "rumours" as they wanted to "spoil" his reputation.
He also described as "self-created" a report in a Hindi daily regarding possibility of creation of a "circuit bench" if not a permanent one, which became the immediate provocation for the protests by lawyers.
When pointed out that lawyers from western UP are in favour of a separate bench, the Minister said, "They should approach the state Chief Minister as it is he who will have to take the necessary initiatives."
The Minister said he had decided to raise the sanctioned strength of judges in the Allahabad High Court by 40.
Bharadwaj also said his Ministry had chalked out a plan to "revolutionise" the judicial system by fully computerising the lower judiciary, for which the Centre was going to spend billions of rupees.