Orissa High Court records 133.60% Case Clearance Rate

A view of Orissa High Court. File

A view of Orissa High Court. File
| Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

In one of the best ever performances, the Orissa High Court recorded Case Clearance Rate (CCR) at 133.60% by disposing of 1,36,599 cases against institutions’ 1,02,247 cases. 

“The opening balance of the year, 2022 was 1,96,662 cases and at present the pendency of case is considerably reduced as it stands now at 1,62,310 cases. In the current year, 8,769 cases of more than 10 year old were disposed of,” the Orissa HC said.

The CCR in district courts is too encouraging. The district judiciary in Odisha reveals that more cases were instituted in 2022 than that of in 2021.

“While 5,00,404 cases were instituted in the district courts till November 30, 2022, the corresponding figure for the whole year of 2021 was 4,34,810. As far as the disposal figure is concerned, 4,47,733 cases were disposed of in 2022 compared to 2,38,588 cases in 2021, which is 53.28% more disposal in 2022 than 2021,” says the analysis.

Similarly, 72,806 judgments including 17,370 civil cases and 55,436 criminal cases were delivered in 2021 and the corresponding figure till November 30, 2022 is 1,41,920 including 29,209 civil cases and 1,12,711 criminal cases. The percentage of delivery of judgments in 2022 is 51% more than the delivery of judgments in 2021. 

According to Orissa HC, “better disposal can be achieved if Odisha judiciary functions with full strength. While the average working strength of judicial officers was 767 against the sanctioned strength of 962 in 2021, the corresponding figure in 2022 is 776 and 977 respectively. The per capita disposal in 2021 is 311 cases whereas it is 577 cases in 2022.”

The disposal of rape and Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO) cases was fast tracked.

“The total pendency of these heinous cases in the district judiciary was 18,882 as November 30, 2022. Total 1,042 rape cases were disposed of between January 1, 2022 and December 26, 2022, out of which 125 cases were disposed of within one year from the date of taking cognisance. Similarly, 3,309 cases were disposed of in the district judiciary for the corresponding period, out of which 660 cases were disposed of within the statutory period of one year from the date of taking cognizance of offence as delineated under Section 35 (2) of the POCSO Act,” says the HC.

As filing of various kinds of physical documents the case record in traditional court system becomes voluminous and increasingly difficult to organise the records and requires more manpower and storage space, Orissa HC has expedited e-governance initiatives by making courts paperless.

A paperless court functions without the physical records, where judges rely on digitised court records using technology.  These practices have now resulted in saving of billions of paper sheets.

In Odisha, paperless court started in 2021 with the Bench of the Chief Justice Dr. S. Muralidhar and gradually seven other Benches of the High Court became paperless. Subsequently, two paperless courts started in the district court o Cuttack on pilot basis. Thereafter, 34 paperless courts in all the 30 districts of Odisha were made functional on September 17 this year.

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