New Delhi, March 26: The government had accepted the proposal given by the Supreme Court (SC) regards in raising the payments given to the judges of both Supreme Court and High Court (HC) in adequate with the recent hike in pay for central government staff. The highest paid official in the judiciary is the Chief Justice of India (CJI) whose current monthly payment is Rs 1 lakh, excluding other allowances is expected to rise by Rs 2.8 lakh per month with additional benefits like official residence, cars, staff and allowances as applicable.The salaries of the Chief Justices of HCs and SC judges has fixed by government at Rs 2.5 lakh per month in addition to allowances at the level of the cabinet secretary, the service chiefs and some constitutional functionaries such as the Comptroller and auditor general of India (CAG) and the Central Empowered Committee (CEC). The salary of Rs. 2.5 lakh per month is fixed for the judges of HC which is same as the salary given to the secretary-level officers in the central government.
The proposal given to government by Supreme Court committee is not fully accepted. ‘A salary of Rs 3 lakh per month should be given to CJI excluding other benefits’ suggested the three-judge panel. They even suggested that retiring judges should be benefited by higher pension. This again has been brought to the Seventh Pay Commission level in an equivalent grade.
The three-judge committee had already suggested government a few months ago about raising the salaries of judges. The suggestion was immediately send to government after the implementation of the Seventh Pay Commission recommendations for central employees last year. A Cabinet note has been prepared and may be approved by the Union Cabinet soon. The law minister will bring a related judges salary amendment bill before Parliament once the Cabinet clears the proposal.
Parliament still has to pass any change in judges' salary and service condition. The salaries of judges of the high courts and the Supreme Court are revised every 10 years, almost on the lines of the hikes given to senior government functionaries.