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The country’s biggest litigator: Some facts & figures
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The country’s biggest litigator: Some facts & figures

Bar & Bench

by Aditya AK and Anuj Agrawal

Of the 3.5 crore cases pending in courts over the country, a sizeable percentage stems from government litigation. And although government litigation has been a well-documented fact, what is lesser known are the facts and figures that keep the litigation machine well oiled.

Ever wondered how the Central Government goes about managing its legal affairs? How much of the litigation in our courts involves the government? What is the quantum of fees paid to those who appear on behalf of the government?

The Ministry of Law and Justice has answered all these questions and more in their Annual Report.

The Law Ministry itself is divided into three divisions – the Department of Legal Affairs, the Legislative Department, and the Department of Justice.

The Department of Legal Affairs provides legal advice to the Ministries.

Legal advice tendered to Govt. ministries/departments

Number of ReferencesHead
6,131References received by Advice ‘A’ Section from various Ministries and Departments of the government of India.
3,853References made to Advice ‘B’ Section from ministries/departments of the government.
19Cases referred to the Attorney General of India, the Solicitor General and the Additional Solicitor General.

This department also oversees the payment to lawyers engaged by the government. Although detailed numbers across the different courts have not been provided, the report does provide some insight into how much is spent on  litigation.

Counsel Fees for Govt. litigation

Counsel FeesHead
4.02 croreCounsel fees for government litigation in the Delhi High Court
22.4 lakhCounsel fees for government litigation in the district courts of Delhi
97.67 lakhCounsel fees for government litigation in Calcutta High Court

Another interesting statistic relates to the number of cases instituted by the government in the previous year.

Number of cases instituted by and against the Govt. in 2014

Number of CasesHead
5,166Central Agency Section (Supreme Court)
4,244Delhi
880Mumbai (includes western region)
2,275Kolkata (includes east and northeast region)
4,772Chennai (Tamil Nadu and Kerala)
3,700Bangalore (AP, Telangana and Karnataka)

Lastly, the report also provides information on the budgetary allocations made under various heads. For instance, the National Judicial Academy in Bhopal was sanctioned Rs. 10 crore, while the Central government provides Rs. 10 lac for every Family Court established.

In fact, the Thirteenth Finance Commission had recommended an investment of Rs. 5,000 crore  in the Indian judiciary over a five-year period. Some of the investments are mentioned below.

Miscellaneous figures

FigureHead
10.74 croreAnnual budget sanctioned for the National Judicial Academy
10 lakhAmount of Central aid for establishment of one Family Court
450 croreAmount allocated for maintenance of heritage court buildings
14, 309Number of laptops provided to judicial officers under the E-courts integrated mission mode project
495Number of courts/jails where video-conferencing is to be rolled out

Image taken from here.

Read the complete report below.

Final-Annual-Report-2014-15.pdf
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