Unlocking the Potential: Exploring All India Judicial Service
All India Judicial Service

Unlocking the Potential: Exploring All India Judicial Service

Relevance: GS- ll Judiciary / Indian Constitution.

Context: The President of India supports the establishment of an All-India Judicial Service, aiming to recruit skilled individuals from across the nation. This initiative aims to nurture talent at various levels, providing opportunities for underrepresented social groups and ultimately striving for a more inclusive and proficient judiciary.

Introduction to All-India Judicial Services (AIJS)

Concept and Purpose:

  • AIJS is a reform initiative to centralize the appointment of judges, particularly at the additional district and district judges' levels across all Indian states.

  • It draws parallels to the UPSC's central recruitment of bureaucrats, with AIJS managing the centralized recruitment of judges to various state cadres.

Constitutional Provisions for AIJS

Enabling Legislation:

  • Article 312 of the Indian Constitution, amended by the 42nd Amendment in 1976, paves the way for AIJS's establishment.

  • A resolution must be passed in the Rajya Sabha with a two-thirds majority to declare the need for AIJS in the national interest.

  • Following this, Parliament can enact a law to formally establish AIJS.

  • Article 312 (3) dictates that AIJS will not cover positions lower than that of a district judge.

Current Judicial Recruitment System

Process and Governance:

  • Under Article 233, district judges are selected by State Governors, advised by relevant High Courts.

  • Per Article 234, other judicial appointments are made by State Governors following established rules and after consultations with the State Public Service Commission and High Court.

The Need for AIJS

Challenges and Objectives:

  • Vacancy Challenges and Recruitment Delays: Significant vacancies in lower judiciary posts contribute to a backlog of cases.

  • Quality Deficiency in Judicial Officers: Declining quality in the current recruitment system affects justice delivery and judgement quality.

  • Financial Constraints: State judicial services face challenges in attracting top talent due to inadequate compensation.

  • Lack of Specialized Training: There is a need for specialized adjudication training, which current state institutions are not fully equipped to provide.

  • Subjectivity in Recruitment: Current processes are marred by subjectivity, corruption, and nepotism.

Arguments For and Against AIJS

Supporting Points:

  • AIJS can strengthen the federal structure and autonomy of states, enhance judiciary diversity, and create uniformity among lower judiciary judges.

  • It aims to address vacancies and case backlogs by attracting talented candidates.

Opposing Views:

  • Critics argue it might encroach upon Judicial autonomy, impact diversity negatively, create disparities among judges, and might not effectively address vacancy and case issues.

Challenges and Non-Implementation Reasons

Key Obstacles:

  • Constitutional Framework: State's authority over the appointment of district judges presents a constitutional challenge.

  • Lack of Consensus: Differing opinions among state governments, High Courts, and other stakeholders.

  • Resistance to Change: Established systems have deep-rooted support, and changing them requires significant shifts.

  • Regulatory Complexities: Difficulty in aligning diverse states and stakeholders on various regulatory aspects.

Way Forward

Strategic Recommendations:

  • Building consensus among stakeholders is crucial before enacting AIJS.

  • NITI Aayog recommends ensuring the independence of the AIJS cadre, regular examinations, and the use of technology to expedite justice.


The establishment of AIJS is a vital step in enhancing the competence and quality of India's lower judiciary, crucial for revitalizing the entire judicial framework of the country.

Advait IAS