Chief Justice DY Chandrachud on Saturday said that judges at the grassroots level are reluctant in granting bail due to the fear of being targeted, India Today reported.

“High courts and the Supreme Court are flooded with bail applications due to reluctance at grassroots to grant bail,” Justice Chandrachud said. “Judges at the grassroots are reluctant to grant bail not because they do not understand crime, but there is a sense of fear of being targeted for granting bail in heinous cases.”

Justice Chandrachud made the remarks during his felicitation ceremony organised by the Bar Council of India.

In his address, he also said that the legal profession in India is patriarchal and sometimes caste-based, reported Bar and Bench.

“This has to change so that we as lawyers discharge our duties to our society to make the legal profession open up to people from different communities and marginalised groups in our society,” he said.

The chief justice also urged senior lawyers at the bar to pay their juniors well and spoke about their working conditions.

“For too long we regard young members of our profession as slave workers. Why? Because that is how we grew up,” Justice Chandrachud said. “Seniors today cannot say that is how I learnt law a hard way and therefore I will not pay my juniors.”

He added: “Those times were very different, families were smaller…And so many young lawyers who could have made it to the top never made it for the simple reason that they had no resources.”