Backlog of 1.9m cases can be cleared if more judges are appointed: CJP

March 08, 2019

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"There are only 3,000 judges to cater to a population of 221 to 222 million people," says Justice Khosa. — Twitter/File
"There are only 3,000 judges to cater to a population of 221 to 222 million people," says Justice Khosa. — Twitter/File

Chief Justice of Pakistan Asif Saeed Khosa said on Friday that if judges are appointed to 25 per cent of the vacant positions in the system, the backlog of pending cases in court could be wrapped up within a year or two.

"There are only 3,000 judges to cater to a population of 221 to 222 million people," Justice Khosa said while adding that last year, the justice system wrapped up 3.1 million cases.

"The Supreme Court wrapped up a total of 26,000 cases last year, while the US Supreme Court managed to only wrap up 80 to 90 cases," the chief justice said while making a comparison.

The chief justice said that 1.9 million cases are still pending with the justice system and that even with a shortage of judges, people in the system are trying to wrap up as many cases as they can.

The chief justice had also raised the same issue previously when he had pointed out that only one judge was available for a population of 62,000 in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Similarly in the Lahore High Court, only one judge is available for 2.2 million people.

Also in Punjab, a single judge has a case load of more than 660 cases which shows that the judiciary is doing its best for dispensation of justice despite heavy case load and it is endeavouring to resolve the issues of delays within its existing limited resources.

“And when we ask the government to increase the number of judges so that justice can be delivered promptly, they reply to us they are short of funds,” Justice Khosa had said at the time.