High courts of India

Law of India

This article is part of the series:
Judiciary of India

India's unitary judicial system is made up of the Supreme Court of India at the national level, for the entire country and the 24 High Courts at the State & Union territory level. These courts have jurisdiction over a state, a union territory or a group of states and union territories. Below the High Courts are a hierarchy of subordinate courts such as the civil courts, family courts, criminal courts and various other district courts. High Courts are instituted as constitutional courts under Part VI, Chapter V, Article 214 of the Indian Constitution.[1]

The High Courts are the principal civil courts of original jurisdiction in the state along with District Courts which are subordinate to the High courts. However, High courts exercise their original civil and criminal jurisdiction only if the courts subordinate to the High court in the state are not competent (not authorized by law) to try such matters for lack of pecuniary, territorial jurisdiction. High courts may also enjoy original jurisdiction in certain matters if so designated specifically in a state or Federal law. e.g.: Company law cases are instituted only in a High court.

However, primarily the work of most High Courts consists of Appeals from lower courts and writ petitions in terms of Article 226 of the Constitution of India. Writ Jurisdiction is also original jurisdiction of High Court. The precise territorial jurisdiction of each High Court varies. The appeal order is the following: tehsil-kotwali-criminal/civil courts - district - high court - supreme court.

Each state is divided into judicial districts presided over by a 'District and Sessions Judge'. He is known as a District Judge when he presides over a civil case, and a Sessions Judge when he presides over a criminal case. He is the highest judicial authority below a High Court judge. Below him, there are courts of civil jurisdiction, known by different names in different states.

Under Article 141 of the Constitution of India, all courts in India (which includes High courts) are bound by the judgments and orders of the Supreme Court of India by precedence.

Judges in a High Court are appointed by the President of India in consultation with the Chief Justice of India and the governor of the state. High Courts are headed by a Chief Justice. The Chief Justices are ranked #14 (in their state) and #17 (outside their state) in the Indian order of precedence. The number of judges in a court is decided by dividing the average institution of main cases during the last five years by the national average, or the average rate of disposal of main cases per judge per year in that High Court, whichever is higher.

The Calcutta High Court is the oldest High Court in the country, established on 2 July 1862. High courts which handle a large number of cases of a particular region, have permanent benches (or a branch of the court) established there. Benches are also present in states which come under the jurisdiction of a court outside its territorial limits. Smaller states with few cases may have circuit benches established. Circuit benches (known as circuit courts in some parts of the world) are temporary courts which hold proceedings for a few selected months in a year. Thus cases built up during this interim period are judged when the circuit court is in session.

High Courts

The Madras High Court in Chennai, Bombay High Court in Mumbai, Calcutta High Court in Kolkatta and Allahabad High Court in Allahabad are the first four High Courts in India.

The following are the 24 High Courts of India sorted by name, year established, Act by which it was established, jurisdiction, headquarters, benches, and the maximum number of judges sanctioned.

Court name Established Act established Jurisdiction Seat Benches Jud. Chief Justice
Allahabad High Court[2] 1866-06-11 High Courts Act, 1861 Uttar Pradesh Allahabad Lucknow 95 Hon'ble Shri Shiv Kriti Singh
Andhra Pradesh High Court 1954-07-05 Andhra State Act, 1953 Andhra Pradesh Hyderabad   39 Hon'ble The Chief Justice P.C. Ghose
Bombay High Court 1862-08-14 High Courts Act, 1861 Maharashtra, Goa, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Daman and Diu Mumbai Nagpur, Panaji, Aurangabad 60 Hon'ble Shri Justice Mohit Shah
Calcutta High Court 14 August 1862 High Courts Act, 1861 West Bengal, Andaman and Nicobar Islands Kolkata Port Blair (circuit bench) 63 Hon'ble Shri Justice Arun Mishra
Chhattisgarh High Court 2000-01-11 Madhya Pradesh Re-organisation Act, 2000 Chhattisgarh Bilaspur   12 Hon'ble Shri Justice Yatindra Singh
Delhi High Court[3] 1966-10-31 Delhi High Court Act, 1966 National Capital Territory of Delhi New Delhi   43 Hon'ble Shri Justice D. Murugesan
Gauhati High Court[4] 1948-03-01 Government of India Act, 1935 Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Nagaland, Mizoram Guwahati Kohima, Aizwal, Itanagar 27 Hon'ble Shri Justice A K Goel
Gujarat High Court 1960-05-01 Bombay Reorgansisation Act, 1960 Gujarat Ahmedabad   42 Hon'ble Shri Chief Justice Bhaskar Bhattacharya
Himachal Pradesh High Court 1971 State of Himachal Pradesh Act, 1970 Himachal Pradesh Shimla   09 Hon'ble Mr. Justice Ajay Manikrao Khanwilkar
Jammu and Kashmir High Court 1943-08-28 Letters Patent issued by the Maharaja of Kashmir Jammu & Kashmir Srinagar & Jammu[5]   14 Hon'ble Shri Justice Mahesh Mittal Kumar
Jharkhand High Court 2000-11-15 Bihar Reorganisation Act, 2000 Jharkhand Ranchi   12 Hon'ble Shri Justice Prakash Tatia
Karnataka High Court[6] 1884 Mysore High Court Act, 1884 Karnataka Bengaluru Circuit Benches at Hubli-Dharwad & Gulbarga   40 Hon'ble Shri Chief Justice D.H.Waghela
Kerala High Court[7] 1956 States Reorganisation Act, 1956 Kerala, Lakshadweep Kochi   40 Hon'ble Smt Justice Manjula Chellur
Madhya Pradesh High Court[8] 1936-01-02 Government of India Act, 1935 Madhya Pradesh Jabalpur Gwalior, Indore 42 Hon'ble Shri Justice Sharad Arvind Bobade
Madras High Court 1862-08-15 High Courts Act, 1861 Tamil Nadu, Puducherry Chennai Madurai 47
Manipur High Court 2013-03-25 North-Eastern Areas (Reorganisation) and Other Related Laws (Amendment) Act, 2012 Manipur, Imphal 3 Hon'ble Shri Justice Laxmi Kanta Mohapatra
Meghalaya High Court 2013-03-25 North-Eastern Areas (Reorganisation) and Other Related Laws (Amendment) Act, 2012 Meghalaya, Shillong 3 Hon'ble Shri Justice T. Meena Kumari
Orissa High Court 1948-04-03 Orissa High Court Order, 1948 Odisha Cuttack   27 Hon'ble Shri Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel
Patna High Court 1916-09-02 Government of India Act, 1915 Bihar Patna   43 Hon'ble Ms Justice Rekha Doshit
Punjab and Haryana High Court[9] 1947-11-08 High Court (Punjab) Order, 1947 Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh Chandigarh   53 Hon'ble Shri Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul
Rajasthan High Court 1949-06-21 Rajasthan High Court Ordinance, 1949 Rajasthan Jodhpur Jaipur 40 Hon'ble Shri Justice Amitava Roy
Sikkim High Court 1975 The 38th amendment to the Constitution of India Sikkim Gangtok   03 Hon'ble Shri Acting Chief Justice Sonam Phintso Wangdi
Tripura High Court 2013-03-26 North-Eastern Areas (Reorganisation) and Other Related Laws (Amendment) Act, 2012 Tripura Agartala   04 Hon'ble Chief Justice Laxmi Kanta Mohapatra
Uttarakhand High Court 2000-11-09 Uttar Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2000 Uttarakhand Nainital   09 Hon'ble Shri Justice Barin Ghosh

High Courts by state/ union territory

State or UT Court Principal Seat/(Bench having jurisdiction of the State)
Andaman and Nicobar Islands Calcutta High Court Kolkata (Circuit Bench at Port Blair)
Arunachal Pradesh Gauhati High Court Guwahati (Bench at Itanagar)
Andhra Pradesh Andhra Pradesh High Court Hyderabad
Assam Gauhati High Court Guwahati
Bihar Patna High Court Patna
Chhattisgarh Chhattisgarh High Court Bilaspur
Chandigarh Punjab and Haryana High Court Chandigarh
Dadra and Nagar Haveli Bombay High Court Mumbai
Daman and Diu Bombay High Court Mumbai
National Capital Territory of Delhi Delhi High Court New Delhi
Goa Bombay High Court Mumbai (Bench at Panaji)
Gujarat Gujarat High Court Ahmedabad
Haryana Punjab and Haryana High Court Chandigarh
Himachal Pradesh Himachal Pradesh High Court Shimla
Jammu and Kashmir Jammu and Kashmir High Court Srinagar/Jammu
Jharkhand Jharkhand High Court Ranchi
Karnataka Karnataka High Court Bengaluru (Bench at Dharwad and Gulbarga)
Kerala Kerala High Court Kochi
Lakshadweep Kerala High Court Kochi
Madhya Pradesh Madhya Pradesh High Court Jabalpur (Bench at Gwalior and Indore)
Maharashtra Bombay High Court Mumbai (Bench at Aurangabad and Nagpur)
Manipur Manipur High Court Imphal
Meghalaya Meghalaya High Court Shillong
Mizoram Gauhati High Court Guwahati (Bench at Aizawl)
Nagaland Gauhati High Court Guwahati (Bench at Kohima)
Odisha Orissa High Court Cuttack
Puducherry Madras High Court Chennai
Punjab Punjab and Haryana High Court Chandigarh
Rajasthan Rajasthan High Court Jodhpur (Bench at Jaipur)
Sikkim Sikkim High Court Gangtok
Tamil Nadu Madras High Court Chennai (Bench at Madurai)
Tripura Tripura High Court Agartala
Uttarakhand Uttarakhand High Court Nainital
Uttar Pradesh Allahabad High Court Allahabad (Bench at Lucknow)
West Bengal Calcutta High Court Kolkata

Courts under High Court

Notes and Citations


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