The Supreme Court on Tuesday declined to entertain a public interest litigation seeking directions to double the number of judges in High Courts and district courts, Bar and Bench reported.
The petition was filed by lawyer and Bharatiya Janata Party leader Ashwini Upadhyay.
A bench comprising Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud and Justice PS Narasimha remarked that such petitions were turning the system dysfunctional.
“Every evil you see does not merit a PIL,” Chief Justice Chandrachud said. “Your panacea does not warrant a remedy. Try getting judges to fill up the existing vacancies and then you will realise how difficult it is.”
The court said that “populist measures” and “simplistic solutions” were not likely to solve such problems, according to Live Law.
“Getting more judges is not the panacea of all evils,” the bench said. “We cannot entertain petitions which are general like this.”
Upadhyay said that he had filed the petition in public interest, and that the litigation was not meant to be an adversarial one. However, the court refused to accept the contention.
“This is like Parliament saying in an Act that all matters will be disposed of within six months,” Chief Justice Chandrachud said. “It does not happen like this.”
Upadhyay subsequently agreed to withdraw the petition. “Liberty granted to file a fresh plea if any with research on statistics on recruitment, vacancies etc,” the court said in its order.
The Supreme Court is currently hearing a contempt petition by the Advocates Association Bengaluru against the Union law ministry for not approving 11 names given by the Supreme Court collegium. On Monday, a bench comprising Justices SK Kaul and AS Oka objected to remarks by Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju about the collegium system of appointing judges to the higher judiciary.
The court had asked why the government was not clearing names recommended by the collegium for judicial appointments.
The law minister had said that the collegium system is not in consonance with the Constitution. “You tell me under which provision the collegium system has been prescribed,” he had said while speaking to news channel Times Now on November 26. Rijiju added that the collegium cannot expect the government to simply accept all the recommendations it makes.