In a recent disclosure to the Lok Sabha, Law Minister Arjun Ram Meghwal revealed a staggering backlog of over 5 crore pending cases in various courts throughout the country, with 80,000 of them in the Supreme Court as of December 1.
Breaking down the figures, the minister highlighted that among the total pending cases, more than 61 lakh were at the level of the 25 high courts, underscoring the extensive burden on the higher judiciary. The district and subordinate courts, on the other hand, accounted for over 4.46 crore pending cases, reflecting the overwhelming caseload at the grassroots level.
To address these challenges, the minister provided insights into the current sanctioned strength of the Indian judiciary, which stands at 26,568 judges overall. The Supreme Court, having a sanctioned strength of 34 judges, is grappling with a substantial load of 80,000 pending cases. The high courts, with a sanctioned strength of 1,114 judges, face the task of resolving over 61 lakh cases. The district and subordinate courts, with a sanctioned strength of 25,420 judges, bear the brunt of over 4.46 crore pending cases.
This revelation emphasizes the urgent need for judicial reforms and increased infrastructure to expedite the resolution of pending cases. The backlog not only impedes the timely delivery of justice but also adds strain to an already overburdened legal system. The minister’s disclosure sheds light on the challenges faced by the judiciary at various levels and underscores the importance of addressing these issues to ensure the effective functioning of the legal system.
As the nation grapples with the enormity of the pending cases, there is a growing call for systemic reforms, including the appointment of more judges, improvements in court infrastructure, and the utilization of technology to streamline court proceedings. The alarming statistics serve as a reminder of the pressing need for concerted efforts to enhance the efficiency and accessibility of the Indian judiciary, ultimately serving the interests of justice and the citizens awaiting resolution.