‘Young lawyers should accept judgeship, sacrifice practice for benefit of litigants’: Justice S S Shinde

Justice S S Shinde of the Bombay High Court, who is set to become Chief Justice of the Rajasthan High Court, urged young lawyers to accept judgeship when offered and sacrifice their practice for the benefit of litigants and the judiciary.

Justice Shinde, who served his last day as a judge of the Bombay HC on Monday, was sitting with Chief Justice Dipankar Datta on a special bench hearing public interest litigations.

“The Bar has bright upcoming juniors, but there is one thing. As and when an occasion comes, please do accept judgeship. Because at the age of 38-40, they are saying no to judgeship. They need to make some sacrifice for the litigants and judiciary,” he said.

Justice Shinde was responding to the appreciation showered upon him by state Advocate General (AG) Ashutosh Kumbhakoni and Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Anil Singh.

While Kumbhakoni expressed gratitude on behalf of the advocates appearing for the state government, ASG Singh said that in last 14 years as judge of Bombay HC, Justice Shinde had heard matters till late several times, burning the midnight oil, and efficiently made the orders available. He said lawyers and junior lawyers were equally at ease when appearing before the HC judge.

Justice Shinde said that he would give credit to members of Bar (lawyers) for the same, adding that young lawyers should take up judgeship.

With the elevation of Justice Shinde as the Chief Justice of Rajasthan High Court and that of Justice A A Sayed as Chief Justice of Himachal Pradesh High Court, the Bombay High Court, which has a principal seat in Mumbai and benches in Aurangabad, Nagpur and Goa, will function with 55 judges, which includes 46 permanent judges and nine additional judges. However, the sanctioned strength of the court is 94 and it is the second largest in the country after Allahabad HC.

While the Supreme Court Collegium in February had recommended the names of 10 lawyers as judges of Bombay High Court, the central government has not cleared them yet, keeping the number of judges less than 60, with over 40 per cent vacant posts.

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