In most Indian High Courts, at least forty percent of judge’s vacancies are lying vacant. The list is topped by Patna High Court, functioning with just twenty judges out of the sanctioned strength of fifty-three.
Second comes Calcutta High Court, which has just 21 judges, while the sanctioned strength is 72. Madhya Pradesh has 24 judges and a sanctioned strength of 53, while there are just 23 judges of sanctioned 50.
In Andhra Pradesh, there are nineteen judges against a sanctioned strength of 37, while Delhi has 31 judges against a sanctioned strength of 60.
Other High Courts with more than 40 per cent vacancies are Punjab & Haryana High Court, Gujarat, Orissa and Haryana, Jharkhand and Telangana.
Overall, the sanctioned strength of 25 High Courts is 1080, out of which 430 posts are vacant.
The Supreme Court currently has seven vacancies, and Justice Rohinton Nariman is set to retire on 12th August.
Since CJI Ramana took office, only seven recommendations have been made for elevation, and all seven are serving judicial officers.
In the last month, the government made only one judicial appointment of Advocate Vikas Bahl, appointed as Additional Judge of Punjab and Harayana High Court.
A Collegium appoints High Court judges. It comprises Hon’ble Justice Rohinton Nariman and Hon’ble Justice Rohinton Nariman and Hon’ble Justice UU Lalit, Hon’ble Justice AM Khanwilkar and Justice DY Chandrachud.
During the tenure of former CJI Bobde, the Collegium faced a deadlock, and not even a single recommendation was made to the Apex Court.
Due to the ongoing pandemic, several thousand cases have piled up in Courts, and currently, there is a twenty per cent rise in pendency at the High Court level.