The Karnataka High Court has directed the state government to hold an examination for filling up the vacant post of Assistant Public Prosecutors in the state and declare the results thereof in six weeks.
A division bench of Chief Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi and Justice Ashok S Kinagi said,
"Considering submission of AGA, we hereby provide six weeks further time to hold examination for the post of assistant public prosecutors and declare results, failing which, the Director of Prosecution, shall appear on the next date."
The direction was given during the hearing of a suo-motu petition initiated by the High Court in the year 2019, to fill in all the vacant posts of Public Prosecutors, Senior Assistant Public Prosecutors and Assistant Public Prosecutors across the State.
During the hearing, the government advocate informed the court that 205 posts of Assistant Public Prosecutors are required to be filled up for which the examination date was notified as May 28/29. However, the draft examination paper sent by National Law School of India University (NLSIU) consisted of majority questions on Constitutional Law, which were not very relevant for the post in question. The Karnataka State Bar Council as well as Advocates Association of Bengaluru (AAB) had raised objections and therefore, the examination was postponed.
Earlier, the court had observed, "Under Article 21 of the Constitution of India, every accused has a Right to have a speedy trial. If the trials are delayed due to non-availability of the prosecutors, there will be a violation of fundamental rights of the accused under Article 21 of the Constitution of India."
It had added, "Failure of the State to appoint Prosecutors has adversely affected the administration of justice as far as criminal matters are concerned. We must note here that the total pendency of criminal cases in the trial courts in the State is 8,10,730 out of which 61,867 criminal cases are more than five years old and 10,650 criminal cases are more than10 years old."
The court has now directed the state government to file a compliance report and posted the matter after six weeks.
Case Title: High Court of Karnataka v. State of Karnataka
Case No: WP 48130/2019