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No courtrooms so no judges: Delhi high court

india Updated: Jan 30, 2014 18:02 IST

The Delhi high court today rejected the pleas of six persons seeking appointment as lower court judges by raising number of vacancies, saying lack of sufficient infrastructure and courtrooms was a valid ground for not filling up all vacant seats.

"It would be appropriate to note that till date additional infrastructure in the form of building and courtrooms have not been made available.

"It is unfortunate but true that the infrastructure is normally made available after the posts have been sanctioned and not before," a bench of justices Sanjiv Khanna and G P Mittal said while dismissing the pleas of six persons aspiring to become lower court judges.

Citing a full court judgement in another similar case, the bench said lack of infrastructure and sufficient courtrooms was good enough a ground for not filling up all the sanctioned posts.

The job seekers, most of them are lawyers, had filed the plea for appointment in Delhi Judicial Services by increasing the seats or posts advertised for which selections were made in 2011.

They had said an advertisement was published on November 19, 2011 2009 for recruitment of 50 judges in the judicial service, whereas 100 posts were vacant that time.

Out of 50 seats, 23 were open for general category students and rest were reserved, the pleas said adding the petitioners, who ranked below 100, should be considered for appointment by increasing seats to 1000, which is the real vacancy.

"The contention of the petitioners on the aspect of courtroom etc are mere surmises and conjectures based upon their own calculations and cannot form the basis of a judicial decision to accept the writ petitions," the bench said.

Earlier, the court was told by its registry that the shortage of courtrooms and lack of infrastructure in district courts was leading to many positions of judicial officers lying vacant. Earlier, the court had reserved the judgement on the pleas of job seekers after its registry said the vacant posts of judges could not be filled due to lack of infrastructure.

A large number of vacancies are existing in the lower judiciary and in view of the law laid down by the Supreme Court and in view of constitutional provisions, the qualified candidates are entitled to be considered for appointments against vacancies existing in the lower judiciary, the petitions had said.