At a virtual meet for the virtual release of a book by Hon’ble former CJI RV Raveendran i.e., “Anomalies in Law and Justice: Writings Related to Law and Justice” former CJIs incumbent Hon’ble CJI NV Ramana and Hon’ble Supreme Court Judges were in attendance.
In this virtual meet, Hon’ble former CJIs and experts in the field discussed various issues regarding the judiciary among which more emphasis is laid on the issue of “increasing the retirement age of Hon’ble Judges of Hon’ble Supreme Court and Hon’ble High Courts”
The present age of retirement for Hon’ble Supreme court judge is 65 and for Hon’ble High court judge is 62.
Senior advocate Arvind Datar, who was moderating the panel expressed that there is more than 50 lakh pending cases in the Indian courts, to which Hon’ble former CJI Lohati opined that “retirement age of Hon’ble judges of both Hon’ble Supreme Court and Hon’ble High Court must be increased and only if the age of retirement is the same will the rat race will stop.”
Hon’ble Justice bn Shri Krishna concurring with the opinion of Hon’ble former CJI Lohati expressed that “most Hon’ble High Court Chief Justices are always turned to the north towards the Hon’ble Supreme Court. Further, they [Hon’ble Chief Justices of Hon’ble High Courts] hope to give judgments according to what they think the Hon’ble Supreme Court would say which is totally against the judiciary .further, your judgment should be your judgment which will only make judiciary independent”
Hon’ble Former CJI MN Venkatachaliah reiterated what is suggested in the first CJIs meet in 1993 that “retirement age must be increased to 68 years. Further, The Hon’ble Chief justices of the Hon’ble High courts should be treated as an extension of the Hon’ble Supreme Court and The Hon’ble CJI should be able to ask Hon’ble Supreme Court judges to act as Hon’ble High Court Chief Justices and vice versa
Hon’ble Justice Lohati further expressed that “with the increase in age the country would be more benefitted from the experience. Moreover, this would encourage Hon’ble Judges of Hon’ble High Courts to prefer to stay at Hon’ble High Courts rather than aiming for a position in the Hon’ble Apex Bench.”
Lastly, the Hon’ble CJI NV Ramana expressed that he would keep in mind all these suggestions in his mind in a way forward.