The Supreme Court has drawn up a plan to enlist services of officers of the CBI and Delhi Police to ensure that only clean recruits enter its service.
These officers, who will be on deputation, will be designated as Additional Registrars, Branch Officers etc in the Registry and will “coordinate between the court and the enforcement authorities”, a senior official associated with the development said.
“Before a new recruit joins, these officers will ensure that they have no criminal or corrupt antecedents,” the official said adding it was not meant to be a surveillance cell to monitor existing employees.
The decision has been approved by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, acting in his capacity as the administrative head.
“The modalities for implementing it will be worked out in a couple of days,” the official said. On the number of such officers that would be recruited, the official said “it will depend on the requirement and that will be known in a few days”.
The need for such a mechanism was felt after two of its officials were dismissed for allegedly tampering with a summoning order of the court in a case concerning a leading business house.
A lawyer had also come up with allegations that some terminated officials of the court played a part in trying to frame the CJI using sexual harassment charges.
The lawyer, Utsav Bains, claimed that he had been “informed by reliable sources that certain ‘fixers’, who claim to be engaged in illegally managing judgments in exchange for cash, are behind this plot as the Hon’ble CJI has taken decisive action to crack down on such fixers”.
Following this, the Supreme Court on April 25 asked retired judge Justice A K Patnaik to conduct an enquiry into the allegations. The court also asked the CBI Director, Intelligence Bureau Director and Delhi Police Commissioner to cooperate with the inquiry.
Besides the move to strengthen the court’s vigilance, the CJI has also approved plans to constitute a Human Resource Management Cell, Recruitment Cell and Training Cell in the court.
“Initially all matters related to employees HR were looked after by the administrative branch. Now the Registry has grown and has almost 2,200 employees. So the need for a specialised cell was felt. The new cell will look after all matters of service and all cadre-related issues. For instance, their evaluating performance, purging-non performing staff, cadre review at the age of 55 etc”, the source said.
Recruitment to the various posts in the administrative wing was handled by the Registry till now. Henceforth, the Recruitment Cell will take care of this.
The proposed Training Cell, officials believe, will also go a long way in imparting skill training to the court staff. “They will be trained in time management, on how to use information technology, etc,” the official said, adding “there will also be specialised training for court masters and others”.