The Price of Justice :-
- In democracies, elected governments often view a strong and independent judiciary with suspicion. Politicians, regardless of ideology, desire a weak and submissive judiciary which will not come in the way of fulfilling the promises made before elections.
- The Executive, at all times, tries to keep the judiciary in check. One such way is to keep the judiciary’s budgetary allocation to a bare minimum.
For example :- For 2017-18, the Union budget allocated a meagre Rs 1,744 crore to the judiciary — about 0.4 per cent of the total budget according to which 12 companies with the highest non-performing assets (NPA) have debts at least eight to 10 times more than the judiciary’s budget.
Why our judiciary underperform ?
There are three things which made judiciary underperform :-
- Poor manpower
- Crumbling infrastructure
- Boom in PIL’s
- Enactment of New Laws by Executive
- Not increasing judicial officers or courts.
- Judicial decision-making is a complex, time-consuming process. It directly affects the rights and livelihoods of persons,
Perfect example of for Judiciary under-performance :- New law were enacted by parliament in 1988 as, dishonour of cheques was made a criminal offence. There are an estimated 38 lakh such cases pending before magistrates across India. This took away manpower from other cases, with a cascading effect on pendency. There are reportedly about 3.4 crore cases pending across all courts.
Let’s just look at Statistics :-
- As of April 2017, there were 430 posts of judges and additional judges lying vacant in high courts
- 5,000 posts vacant at the district level and lower.
- In the Supreme Court (SC), each judge is tasked with reading more than 60 cases on a Monday and Friday, that is, at least 120 on two days.
- For 1.7 billion people in India, there are 31 judges in the SC and 1,079 in high courts.
If Govt really wants to improve the efficiency of Judiciary then Govt need to take care of certain things like :-
- Budgetary allocation for judiciary must be high which will ultimately improve the poor infrastructure of courts.
- Need to improve the salary of judges
- Needs to fill up the vacancies and should allocate funds to setup new courts & Govt must keep aside their issues with SC because judiciary must be free from executive power if govt really want to improve the efficiency.