March 11: A Bill seeking to remove anomalies in the pensionary benefits of High Court judges, elevated from the bar, today received the formal nod of Parliament.
The High Court and the Supreme Court Judges (Salaries and Conditions of Service) Amendment Bill, 2015 was passed in the Lok Sabha during the Winter Session in December 2015 and by the Rajya Sabha on March 3.
It was brought to the Lower House again today with the amendments approved by the Rajya Sabha, including the change of title from 2015 to 2016.
The amendments were passed without discussion by a voice vote. With this, the measure received the nod of Parliament being sent to the President for his assent.
The bill will also simplify some of the provisions relating to determination of leave allowances of judges of High Courts and the apex court.
The bill says the practice of 10 years as advocate will be added as qualifying service for High Court judges elevated from the bar, as ordered by the Supreme Court in a judgment in March 2014. The measure seeks to give effect to this judgment.
In the judgement, the apex court had said in order to remove arbitrariness in the matter of pension of High Court judges elevated from the bar, the relief should be reckoned from April one, 2004. It sought to amend the High Court Judges (Salaries and Conditions of Service) Act, 1954 and the Supreme Court Judges (Salaries and Conditions of Service) Act, 1958.
“With the passage of time, certain provisions in the aforesaid acts have become spent and outdated. A review has been undertaken and it has been decided to remove the same for clarity and provide for the added years of service in view of the judgment given by the Supreme Court,” the Bill said.