The Supreme Court on Thursday suggested appointing an ad-hoc judge in a high court to overcome the vacancy crisis in the judiciary and to reduce the number of cases.
The bench comprising of Chief justice of India S.A. Bobde, Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul, and Surya Kant clarified that there will not be stall regular judicial appointments in the high courts.
The Supreme Court also laid down guidelines for the appointment of an ad-hoc judge in the High Court under Article 224A of The Constitution of India. The main Intention of appointment ad-hoc Judge is to hear old pending cases and such an appointment cannot be a substitute for a regular appointment.
In a related direction, it was also asked by the Central Government to inform of the names of 55 members that were clarified by the S.C. collegiums for appointment in the various high courts but the government has been not notified yet.
The Apex Court also observed that the law Ministry Should respond to the appointment of ad hoc judges in a reasonable time frame.
Appointment of Ad-Hoc Judges:
S.C has asked all the 25 high Courts to respond to a PIL filed by Lucknow-based N.G.O., asking for the appointment of retired judges as ad-hoc judges under Article 128 of The Constitution of India. Article 128 Confers “The attendance of retired Judge” as the Judge of the Supreme Court.
It states that the Chief Justice of India on the consent of the president may request the retired judge who was previously judged in the Supreme Court or High Court to sit in the Supreme Court and act as a judge.
Similarly, Article 224A, confers that even a retired judge of the High court can be appointed as ad-hoc judges to H.C.
The bench was fixed on the 8th of April to hear the matter again and said that it will not allow any adjournment.