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The Problem Of Court Congestion: Evidence From Indian Lower Courts

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  • Micevska, Maja B.
  • Hazra, Arnab K.

Abstract

This paper explores the problem of court congestion in Indian lower courts. We use several measures to capture court congestion. These include: caseloads per capita and per judge, the number of cases older than a year per capita and per judge, and congestion rates calculated as the ratio of cases older than a year to cases disposed. We conclude that the Indian state judiciaries differ with respect to the nature and the level of congestion. We can also identify the reasons why some judiciaries are more congested than others. The results show that the large number of judges per capita is negatively related to congestion rates, while judgeship vacancies have a positive effect on caseloads per judge. Court productivity captured by the clearance rates has a significant and negative effect on both caseloads and congestion rates and seems to be crucial for the effectiveness of congestion-reduction programs. Finally, judiciaries with lower litigation rates display a relatively better performance with respect to current caseloads, but are not efficient in addressing the �real� backlogs of cases pending for more than a year.

Suggested Citation

  • Micevska, Maja B. & Hazra, Arnab K., 2004. "The Problem Of Court Congestion: Evidence From Indian Lower Courts," Discussion Papers 18750, University of Bonn, Center for Development Research (ZEF).
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:ubzefd:18750
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    Cited by:

    1. Dimitrova-Grajzl, Valentina & Grajzl, Peter & Slavov, Atanas & Zajc, Katarina, 2016. "Courts in a transition economy: Case disposition and the quantity–quality tradeoff in Bulgaria," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 18-38.
    2. Srivastava, Vatsalya, 2016. "The Sorry Clause," Discussion Paper 2016-008, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
    3. Stefan Voigt, 2016. "Determinants of judicial efficiency: a survey," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 42(2), pages 183-208, October.
    4. Stefan Voigt & Nora El-Bialy, 2016. "Identifying the determinants of aggregate judicial performance: taxpayers’ money well spent?," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 41(2), pages 283-319, April.
    5. Datta, Pratik & Surya Prakash B.S. & Sane, Renuka, 2017. "Understanding Judicial Delay at the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal in India," Working Papers 17/208, National Institute of Public Finance and Policy.
    6. Srivastava, Vatsalya, 2016. "The Sorry Clause," Discussion Paper 2016-004, Tilburg University, Tilburg Law and Economic Center.
    7. Höffken, Johanna I., 2014. "A closer look at small hydropower projects in India: Social acceptability of two storage-based projects in Karnataka," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 34(C), pages 155-166.
    8. Srivastava, Vatsalya, 2017. "The Sorry Clause (revision of CentER DP 2016-008)," Discussion Paper 2017-002, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
    9. Dimitrova-Grajzl, Valentina & Grajzl, Peter & Sustersic, Janez & Zajc, Katarina, 2012. "Court output, judicial staffing, and the demand for court services: Evidence from Slovenian courts of first instance," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(1), pages 19-29.
    10. Srivastava, Vatsalya, 2017. "The Sorry Clause (Revision of TILEC DP 2016-004)," Discussion Paper 2017-002, Tilburg University, Tilburg Law and Economic Center.

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    Keywords

    Political Economy;

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