Plan for All-India Judicial Service Faces Roadblocks
The Centre's plan to create a national level judicial service, on the pattern of the All India Civil Services, is facing roadblocks due to lack of unanimity among states.

The plan is based on the recommendation of the department-related Parliamentary Standing Committee on Personnel, Public Grievances, Law and Justice.

Sources in the Law Ministry said at least 13 of the 21 high courts have expressed reservation about having an all-India judicial service.

Language barrier and differences in syllabi of various universities which could put students of some states at disadvantage over others have been cited as reasons behind having an all-India service.

"The issue of an all-India judicial service came up for discussions. But there was no unanimity as the various states and their high courts have their own views...The debate will continue. We do not wish to impose ourselves," Law Minister M Veerappa Moily had said after a regional meeting of six states and High Courts here recently.

In at least two judgements delivered in the early 1990s, the Supreme Court had recommended setting up of an all-India judicial service.

The Department of Justice in the Law Ministry has now prepared a consultation paper on the issue and is likely to circulate it among the stakeholders in coming days.

In its 15th report, tabled in May 2006, the committee had asked the Law Ministry to expedite steps to set up all-India judicial services to appoint district-level judges.

As of now, while most government departments have all-India service recruits, selected after the all-India competitive examination conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) every year, judiciary is the only set-up that doesn't have such a selection process.

Almost all states have their own state-level judicial services, with successful candidates constituting the bulk of the subordinate judiciary.
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