How to remove a High Court Judge?

Q.  Which of the following is/are true regarding tenure and removal of judges of High Court?

1) High Court Judge holds office until he attains the age of 62 years.
2) The process of removal of Judge of high Court is same as that of Supreme Court Judges.

- Published on 09 Mar 17

a. Only 1
b. Only 2
c. Both 1 and 2
d. Neither 1 nor 2

ANSWER: Both 1 and 2
    Tenure of Judges of High Court -

  • The tenure of High Court judges is not fixed by the Constitution.

  • But it has following provisions -

    (a) He shall hold office until he attains the age of 62 years.

    (b) Any question regarding the age of the judge will be determined by President on consulting the Chief Justice of India. President’s decision is final.

    (c) He can resign his office by writing to the President.

    (d) He can be removed from his office by the President on the recommendation of the Parliament on grounds of proved misbehavior or incapacity.

    (e) He also vacates his office, if he is appointed as a judge of Supreme Court.

    (f) He also vacates his office when he is transferred to another High Court.

    Removing a Judge of High Court -

  • A Judge of the High Court shall not be removed from his office except by an order of the President.

  • The President can issue the order only after an address by the Parliament has been presented to him in the same session.

  • The address must be supported by a special majority of each House of Parliament.

  • Special majority is a majority of the total membership of that House and a majority of not less than 2/3rd of the members of that House present and voting.

  • There are 2 grounds of removal - proved misbehavior or incapacity.

  • This is similar to removal of a Supreme Court Judge.

  • The procedure relating to the removal of a judge of the High Court by the process of impeachment is regulated by The Judges Enquiry Act (1968) -

    1. Removal motion is signed by 100 members (for Lok Sabha) or 50 members (for Rajya Sabha). This is given to the Speaker/Chairman.

    2. The Speaker/Chairman may admit or refuse the motion.

    3. If admitted, a 3-member committee is formed by the Speaker/Chairman to investigate into the charges.

    4. The committee should consist of -

    (a) the Chief Justice or a judge of the Supreme Court;

    (b) a Chief Justice of a High Court; and

    (c) a distinguished jurist.

    5. The House can take up the consideration of the motion, if the committee finds the judge to be guilty of misbehavior or suffering from incapacity.

    6. On passing the motion by each House of Parliament by special majority, an address is presented to the president for removal of the judge.

    7. Lastly, the president passes an order removing the judge.

  • No judge of the High Court has been impeached up to now.

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