The Law Department is in a fix as it has received more than 3,200 applications from ruling party MPs,MLAs and ministers,making recommendations for the appointment of law officers in districts and the high court.
We have received 1,700 recommendation letters from MLAs and MLCs and about 1,050 from ministers. Besides,there are about 270 recommendations from MPs, a source in the department said. The letters were written to the Chief Ministers office which,in turn,passed these on to the Law Department.
The government appoints law officers such as district government counsels (DGC) for civil,criminal and revenue courts at the district level according to the Legal Remembrancer Manual (LRM). Recently,the cabinet cleared a proposal to amend the LRM making it mandatory to involve district judges in the appointments of DGCs and ADGCs in the light of a high court order. The previous Mayawati government had stopped the practice of getting recommendations from the district judges.
Asked about the value of recommendations in the light of the LR Manual,Principal Secretary (LR) Zaki Ullah Khan said such recommendation letters will not affect the process of appointment. The department examines all applications properly before making appointments and we will strictly follow the LR Manual,he said.
Most DGCs usually earn Rs 30,000 to Rs 35,000 per month. They get around Rs 1,100 per working day,besides about Rs 3,000 as non-practising allowance, said a former DGC. He said it is the post of DGC (Criminal) which is considered most important in a district.
Every district court has three posts,namely DGC (Criminal),DGC (Revenue) and DGC (Civil). UP currently has 75 districts. Under the Mayawati regime,several DGCs were removed. But some of them have been reinstated now in view of a high court order. But it is not clear how many vacancies exist. However,the Akhilesh Yadav government has not made new appointments.
Apart from DGCs,the government also appoints ADGCs. The number of ADGCs in a district depends upon the number of courts and cases there.
The state governments decision to make it mandatory to get recommendations from district judges in the appointment of DGCs will prevent political intervention in appointments. First,the vacancy for a DGC,if any in the district,is notified by the DM. Then,recommendations made by the district judge and the DM are sent to the Law Department, a source in the Law Department said.