LAHORE - The civil judges who have passed the written test and interviews are likely to wait long for their posting as the authorities have not provided proper infrastructure and relevant staff, The Nation has learnt.

Earlier this month, a total of 8,000 candidates had submitted their documents while only 5500 were declared eligible to sit in the exams. Out of that, more than 700 passed the written exam and appeared in interview and only 378 were selected for the vacant posts of civil judges-cum judicial magistrates.

A reliable source told this scribe that the candidates who had been declared successful had yet to wait long for their postings, because the authorities had to establish courts and hire staff for them.

More than 100 civil judges are working at a building of Lahore Development Authority (LDA) adjacent to the Punjab Election Commissioner’s office.

Small-rooms made of wooden, unavailability of benches and yards for the litigants come their for their cases, suffocated and overcrowded rooms and non-availability of record rooms show the lack of interest of authorities concerned to make the functioning of courts more efficient.

The staffers working with the courts like readers, stenographers and naib courts are also forced to do double work against low packages. The poor infrastructures and low packages of the lower judiciary’s staff is another factor behind the slow working of courts. These are the factors which are creating problems for the litigants who do not get justice in time and suffer a lot.

Ashiq Hussain, a resident of Baghbanpura, said that he filed a civil suit in 2000 against the illegal occupation of his property in the area but to no avail. He said the courts always granted date after date. He said he did not find sitting place and water cooler at the LDA building whenever he came there for the hearing of his case.

Aasya, another litigant from Model Town, said that she had filed suit for the recovery of dowry articles but this matter was pending for the last three years.

She stated that being a woman she suffered a lot every time when she appeared in her case. “Overcrowded courts with no sitting place and suffocation in small cabin courts disturbs her while appearing in her case.

Surprisingly, a civil judge said on the condition of anonymity that he had not been provided proper retiring room. “Small retiring room with wooden walls besides the small courtroom where the litigants ask staffers about their cases create problems for him to write a judgment,” said the judicial officer.

He said ‘the cabin courts have damaged the decorum of a judge and court but who cars’. Sometimes people entered into this retiring room which disturbed him, said the official.

Another official stated that there were 500 more vacant posts of the civil judges which would be filled up within the period of two months. He said the authorities were planning to arrange buildings on rent for new civil judges.

However, finance department had declined to provide funds for infrastructure and staffers’ salaries which is a big problems, said the officials.

This scribe tried again and again to contact the Registrar office but he was not available for comments.