Out of the total 56.38 lakh cases across 25 high courts in India, nearly 55 per cent are pending for three years or longer, government data shows.
Among the 30.61 lakh cases that are pending for over three years now, nearly 40 per cent are civil cases, according to the National Judicial Data Grid (NJDG), a government platform monitoring judicial data.
Out of the total 56.38 lakh cases, nearly 77 per cent – 43.40 lakh cases – are pending for more than one year while more than 20 per cent were pending for 10 years or more.
The data analysed by CNN-News18 shows that among the HCs, the Allahabad High Court has the highest pendency of more than eight lakh cases, followed by Madras High Court having 5.78 lakh cases pending. The High Court of Rajasthan has 5.74 lakh pending cases while at least 5.63 lakh cases are pending at the Bombay High Court.
Further, the Allahabad High Court is functioning with over 40 per cent vacant posts against the total sanctioned strength of 160, data from the Ministry of Law and Justice shows.
Across India, nearly 37 per cent post of judges are vacant, it says. Against the sanctioned strength of 1,098 judges in high courts, 694 judges are working leaving 404 vacancies.
“Filling up of vacancies in the high courts is a continuous, integrated and collaborative process between the executive and the judiciary. It requires consultation and approval from various constitutional authorities both at the State and central levels. While every effort is made to fill up the existing vacancies expeditiously, vacancies of judges in high courts do keep on arising on account of retirement, resignation or elevation of judges and also due to increase in the strength of judges,” the Ministry informed the Lok Sabha last week.
In the Supreme Court, at least 69,855 cases are pending, the apex court data up to December 6 shows. When it comes to district and subordinate courts, 4.06 crore cases are pending, the Ministry data shows.