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CJI disfavours SC disintegration
Published on 31 Jan. 2010 12:10 AM IST
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Chief Justice of India K.G. Balakrishnan Saturday said he was not in favour of “disintegration” of the Supreme Court by setting up four regional benches of the apex court as advised by the Law Commission. “I am not in favour of the disintegration of the Supreme Court. Personally, I feel the Supreme Court cannot be in any other part of India. This is the highest court of the land and it is in the capital city of the land,” the chief justice said during the R.K. Jain Memorial Lecture here. “It is a final court and we should maintain the integrity of the Supreme Court. There is nothing wrong in restructuring of the Supreme Court, but it cannot be disintegrated,” he emphasised. The Chief Justice said filing of cases in the Supreme Court was increasing at a phenomenal rate. Over 50,000 cases are pending before the various benches. The central government is closely examining the recommendation of the Law Commission to set up four ‘cessation benches’ in Delhi, Chennai, Kolkata and Mumbai and a federal court in the national capital exclusively devoted to examining constitutional issues - as a possible way to reduce the huge backlog of pending cases. The ‘cessation benches’, according to the Law Commission recommendation, will have the power to deal with matters falling under the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court. However, the full court of the Supreme Court has till date rejected all proposals for setting up benches in the south or any other region of the country. At present there are 26 judges in the Supreme Court against the sanctioned strength of 31. The Law Ministry had sought opinion of Attorney General G E Vahanvati who also was not in favor of regional benches of the apex court.

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