Hyderabad: In a significant development with regard to the constitution of the separate High Court for Andhra Pradesh, the Supreme Court has permitted the AP government to set up the High Court in temporary accommodation till the permanent structure is ready.
A two-member bench of Justice A.K. Sikri and Justice Ashok Bhushan, while disposing of an appeal by the Union of India challenging the order of the High Court with regard to a separate High Court for Andhra Pradesh, said, “We expect a notification to be issued by January 1, 2019 so that the two High Courts start functioning separately and the High Court of Andhra Pradesh also starts functioning in the new building at the earliest.”
Referring to the affidavit filed by the Andhra Pradesh government, the bench noted that the CRDA came up with a proposal to build an interim judicial complex on about 2 lakh sq. feet, with 18 court halls and a Chief Justice’s court hall and the CRDA adopted the same technique it had adopted for the construction of the Secretariat and the Assembly buildings, the judicial complex could be completed by December 15, 2018.
The bench observed, The High Court has done whatever is required of them to do and the impression created as though the Judges are hesitant to shift, is factually incorrect. The moment the infrastructure is made ready and a notification is issued, the High Court is prepared to shift. In fact some of the Judges, who expressed willingness to shift, have also retired in the past two years and more.”
Citing the chronology of the developments to set up the High Court of Andhra Pradesh, the bench said, “It can be discerned that the building where the High Court of AP would be temporarily shifted would be ready by December 15, 2018. It is also clear that the Judges of the High Court, who would become Judges of the High Court of Andhra Pradesh, are satisfied with the facilities in the said building inasmuch as Full Court of the High Court has approved the proposal after Inspection Committee of Judges submitted a report in this behalf. Mr Nariman senior counsel also made a statement at the Bar that the Government would be hiring villas to take care of the residential needs of the Judges at Amaravati.”
The bench said, We may place on record that in Amaravati a very big complex known as ‘Justice City’ is under construction where the High Court and subordinate courts and even some tribunals would be accommodated and there is a provision for construction of residential complex for the Judges of the High Court and judicial officers of the subordinate courts.”
The bench held that since all the requirements stand fulfilled, there was no embargo for the Competent Authority to issue a Notification bifurcating the courts into the High Court of Telangana state and the High Court of Andhra Pradesh respectively....