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Vice President Naidu seeks splitting of Supreme Court, setting up regional benches


ANI General News
Suggesting major reforms to ensure timely and cost-effective justice delivery, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu on Friday called for setting up of four regional benches of the Supreme Court in the country.
Speaking at a book launch here, Naidu spoke at length on the present state of judicial system in the country and the pressing need for reforms in the presence of Supreme Court's Justice Rohinton F Nariman, Attorney General KK Venugopal and several former judges including Justice AR Dave.
Expressing serious concern over inordinate delay in justice delivery in the country, Naidu suggested several reforms including bifurcation of the Supreme Court and setting up of four regional benches of the apex court besides evolving Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) that limit the number of adjournments and the timeframe for disposal of cases by the courts.
Endorsing the recommendation of the Law Commission towards splitting the top court into Constitutional Division and Courts of Appeal for steady disposal of cases, Naidu also underlined the need to set up four Regional Benches of the apex court and went on to the extent of saying that this arrangement does not require any amendment to the Constitution.
"The Supreme Court shall sit in Delhi or at such other place or places, as the Chief Justice of India may, with the approval of the President, from time to time," he said.
To cut the present delays in delivering justice, Naidu urged that SOPs may be evolved by the judiciary by which the number of permissible adjournments can be specified and a time limit can be set for the disposal of cases based on the nature of issues involved.
He urged the government to be much more proactive in addressing a large number of pending vacancies in the judicial system so that delays are avoided.
"The judiciary and the government should act in tandem in this regard," he said.
Naidu said the speed and quality of justice delivery in the country has a huge bearing on economic development as it impacts the flow of investment.
"It would be better if judges at various levels are exposed to special orientation programmes organised by the judiciary itself on various technical and specialised branches of emerging laws and the attendant issues and processes," he said.
He also called for the induction of capable judges and quality lawyers besides improving the quality of legal education to enable the delivery of justice in time.
The Vice President also underscored the need for election cases and cases of criminal proceedings against politicians to be decided by special benches of higher courts for their disposal within six months.

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First Published: Sep 27 2019 | 8:54 PM IST

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