Judicial Reforms

SC paves way for appointment of ad-hoc judges in HCs


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Article 224A

Mains level: Paper 2- Appointment of retired judges in the High Court under Article 224A

Appointment of retired judges under Article 224A

  • The Supreme Court cleared the way for appointment of retired judges as ad-hoc judges in High Courts under Article 224A of the Constitution.
  • The court ruled that the Chief Justice of a High Court may initiate the process of recommending a name if the number of judges’ vacancies is more than 20 per cent of the sanctioned strength.
  • The court said the appointments can follow the procedure laid down in the Memorandum of Procedure for appointment of judges.
  • The move will help to deal with mounting backlog of cases.
  • Since the nominees have been judges before, the need to refer the matter to the IB or other agencies would not arise, shortening the time period.

Back2Basics: About Article 224A

  • It allows the Chief Justice of a High Court to allow a retired judge of any High Court to sit and act as the judge of the High Court for that State.
  • Previous consent of the President is necessary.
  • The acting retired judge would be entitled to such allowances as the President may by order determine and have all the jurisdiction, powers and privileges of, but shall not otherwise be deemed to be, a Judge of that High Court.
  • This Article was not part of the Constitution of India, 1950. It was inserted by the Constitution (Fifteenth Amendment) Act, 1963.

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