Calcutta HC

Kolkata: Acting Chief Justice Jyotirmoy Bhattacharya, who took oath as the Chief Justice of the Calcutta High Court today, said the judiciary was passing through a difficult phase owing to a dearth of judges.

“At present, we are functioning with less-than-half of the sanctioned strength of judges,” he said, after being administered the oath by West Bengal Governor KN Tripathi.

The Chief Justice of Calcutta HC requested the authorities concerned to increase the judges’ strength with fresh appointments to ensure a speedy disposal of the pending cases.

The sanctioned strength of judges for the Calcutta High Court is 72. Currently, the court has only 33 judges. With the appointment of four additional judges, who are scheduled to take oath tomorrow, the number will be just over the half-way mark.

“I will try my best to provide justice to the deprived and arrange for speedy disposal of cases,” the Chief Justice of Calcutta HC said.

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was present at the oath-taking ceremony, along with some of the members of her Cabinet, including Law Minister Moloy Ghatak.

Justice Bhattacharya was appointed a Judge of the high court on 3 December 2003 and the acting Chief Justice on 25 October 2017.

The lawyers’ associations at the court had resorted to a cease work from 19 February, demanding the appointment of judges and a chief justice.

The cease work was lifted on Saturday, following the appointment of Justice Bhattacharya as the Chief Justice and four advocates as additional judges of the high court. The lawyers resumed work at the high court yesterday, after a gap of 70 days.