Feasibility of All India Judicial Service Examination

By | February 4, 2020
Feasibility of All India Judicial Service Examination

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All India Judicial Service Examination (AIJSE) was proposed is to give a single examination to recruit the judges of high courts and the Supreme courts in India. The idea of an All India Judicial Examination was first suggested in the Chief Justices’ Conference in 1961. The Constitution was amended in 1976 to provide for an AIJS under Article 312. The proposal was again floated by the ruling UPA government in 2012 but the draft bill was shelved again after opposition from High Court Chief Justices who labelled this an infringement of their rights.

Purpose

The main objective of this examination was to curb out any judicial or executive intervention in the appointment of judges in the district courts across the country. it will also ensure that younger judges are appointed in the high courts and the supreme court.[1]

Advantages 

The advantages of forming an All India Judicial Service includes: –

  1. Creating an all India judicial service will help in making the judicial system more professional, accountable and equitable.
  2. In the absence of an all Indian judicial service it is very difficult to maintain the required strength of the judges in the district courts and the high courts. Currently, there are all the sanctioned posts are not filled up in the district courts. An all India judiciary would help fill up the vacant seats and thus help in speedy delivery of justice and hence decrease and eliminate the age-old problem of pendency of cases in the Indian courts.
  3. Recruitment through Union Public Service Commission can help make the selection process very transparent.
  4. Many talented candidates dump judiciary for pursuing civil services which are having better perks. Moreover, the low salary of the judiciary is also an issue because state governments are not having enough funds to sufficiently increase the salary of the judges of the subordinate courts and thus make the job more lucrative for competent candidates. Thus, it can be said that an all India judicial service will be very helpful with regard to appointment of high-quality judges in the subordinate courts.
  5. It will increase the standard of adjudication.

Disadvantages

However, as there are pros of having an all India judiciary so there are cons to it. some of the most important are:

  1. The main problem for an all India judiciary will be the language barrier. In the district courts the language used by the judges is regional languages. If all India judiciary is applied in India then judges from different states will be posted in different regions thus, they will face high language barrier which can affect the quality of adjudication. Even for writing orders, the local language is used in some subordinate courts.
  2. An apparent solution to the above problem is that the judges can be trained to learn the local languages. But that in itself is a separate issue because it will take up a huge amount of time and money for training of the judges.
  3. Another important issue that will arise is the independence of the judiciary, which is guaranteed by the constitution. By applying All India Judicial services, we will be giving away the power to appoint judges solely to the executive.
  4. By AIJS the avenues for promotion of the current judicial officers who acquired their positions through state judicial services will be hampered.
  5. Local laws and customs are also other issues. A person coming from a different state will not be known as many local laws or customs as a person of the same state or area. Training the judges about the local laws and customs will be a burden in itself and will add to the expenditure in training of judges.

Conclusion

The feasibility of an All India Judicial Exam remains controversial. In my opinion, I don’t think that the advantages are greater than the disadvantages. On the theoretical side, we have to see that we are not doing anything which opposes a constitutional mandate, here as already explained by making AIJS real we will be opposing from the constitutional mandate of separation of judiciary. In the practical side giving training to judges only about the local laws and accustoms and making them well versed with the language does not seem quite practical given a large number of judges the government have to train. Training such a large number of judges will cost substantial time and money.

Thus, its always better to appoint a judge who has been a local or at least from the same state. Moreover, it is the need of the hour that the vacant seats in the judicial system are fulfilled as soon as possible and since training will take a substantial amount of time it is not very practicable in the present situation.

Other problems include reservations. The SC, ST and the OBC candidates will get a hold ahead from the other candidates which do not have the issue in the present situation because of domicile. If AIJS is made applicable the domicile certificate will have no value in the matter of appointment of judges[2]. So, as far as my opinion AIJS is not the call of the hour. We have to increase the efficiency of the present judicial system and make it better. In spite, of making huge investments in the application of AIJS the government should invest in legal education.

In our country apart from a few national law universities most of the law colleges do not provide quality education to the students. So, investment in the education sector will be much more helpful and productive than investing in AIJS.


References

[1] ‘All India Judicial Service (AIJS)’ (Insights Mind maps)

[2] C D Staff, ‘[Burning Issue] All India Judicial Services’ (civilsdaily, 24 March 2019)


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