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Law Minister bats for national-level test to recruit judges for lower courts

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

today pitched for a national-level entrance test for "talent infusion" into the subordinate judiciary.

But at the same time, he made it clear that he was not rooting for a national-level judicial service on the lines of the all-services such as the and for appointing judicial officers.

He said the all-examination would allow the pool of talented young lawyers who graduate every year from national to be part of the subordinate judiciary.

He said serving judicial officers can also appear in the entrance exam which could be conducted by the UPSC.

He was speaking at the launch of a website and a mobile app of the to monitor the progress in development of in using

Appointments to the lower judiciary in the states are made by the respective high courts either directly or through public service commissions through state-level examinations.

The government has in the past proposed an all-judicial service to be conducted the

But nine high courts have opposed the proposal to have an all-India service for lower judiciary. Eight others have sought changes in the proposed framework and only two have supported the idea.

The has given a fresh push to the long-pending proposal to set up the new service to have a separate cadre for lower judiciary in the country. The idea was first mooted in the 1960s.

The high courts of Andhra Pradesh, Bombay, Delhi, Gujarat, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, and, and have not favoured the idea of (AIJS).

Only the high courts of and have concurred with the proposal approved by the committee of secretaries for formation of an all-India service for lower judiciary.

Allahabad, Chhattisgarh, Himachal Pradesh, Kerala, Manipur, Meghalaya, and Uttarakhand high courts have suggested changes in age at induction level, qualifications, training and quota of vacancies to filled through the proposed service.

The high courts of and have indicated that the matter regarding creation of the AIJS is pending consideration, while no response has been received from the high courts of Calcutta, and Gauhati, a recent document showed.

Seeking to overcome the divergence of views, the government had recently suggested to the various options, including NEET-like examination to recruit judges to the lower judiciary.

National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) is conducted for admission to medical degrees.

There were vacancies of 4,452 judges in subordinate courts in the country as per the figures released on December 31, 2015. While the sanctioned strength is 20,502, the actual number of judges and judicial officers in subordinate courts is 16,050.

At present, various high courts and state service commissions hold exams to recruit judicial officers.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, June 11 2018. 20:25 IST