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“High Court spends just over four minutes on each case”

Staff Reporter

The expenditure comes to Rs.6,327 per minute, says annual report


‘Does not include the time spent by the Judges dictating reserved judgments’

‘Arrears of main cases reduced from 79,818 in April 2007 to 74,599 by March 2008’


NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court on an average spends just 4.05 minutes on each case while its expenditure comes to Rs.6,327 per minute. Each Judge of the Court has to deal with 64 cases per day, yet it is able to dispose of more cases than are filed.

The expenditure analysis excluded the time spent by the Judges dictating reserved judgments in their chambers and preparing cases for the next day as well as time spent for correcting and signing orders in cases listed for hearing each day before a Court.

In its first ever cost-analysis of the judicial time, the Delhi High Court in its second annual report for 2007-2008 has made these revealing facts public, claiming that it has acquitted well despite the crushing workload and less than required and sanctioned strength of the Judges.

Chief Justice A.P. Shah, released the annual report at a function held on the Court campus. The Court began releasing an annual report on its functioning, achievements, problems and prospects in 2007.

However, for the first time it organised a function and invited the press to release the report in an attempt to enable people to know more about it.

The report claims that the Court has been able to reduce the arrears of main cases from 79,818 in April 2007 to 74,599 by the end of March 2008.

The reduction in arrears include 13.46 per cent of civil cases which were older than 10 years and 57.30 per cent criminal cases that were also more than 10 years old, the report says. The Court disposed of 56,612 cases in 2007-2008 while it received 47,017 cases. The Court achieved these feats despite the fact that it did not function at its full sanctioned strength of 48, average number of Judges in 2007-2008 were only 32, two-thirds of the sanctioned strength, the report states.

The report spotlights the workload which it and other courts have to bear, saying that “these figures only highlight the crushing load which courts, the Delhi High Court being an exception, have to shoulder”.

The High Court Registry received 3,32,141 cases for consideration and they were allotted for hearing to 24 Benches, each of which had to deal with 13,839 listed matters in 2007-2008. Referring to a comparative study on courts in India and in England, the report says that on an average each superior court in that country has to decide only 150 cases every year.

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