Infrastructure

JUDICIAL INFRASTRUCTURE MANAGEMENT AGENCY (JIMA)

Adequate and quality infrastructure has a direct impact on the administration of justice. The physical infrastructure such as the buildings of the court complexes and residential quarters of Judges and staff form an important component of the judicial infrastructure. A dedicated technical agency viz., Judicial Infrastructure Management Agency (JIMA), the first of its kind in the country, was established by the Government of Odisha in consultation with the High Court of Orissa for effective management of judicial infrastructure. It was inaugurated on 12th October, 2022 in the premises of the office of Chief Construction Engineer, Cuttack R & B Circle at Cantonment Road, Cuttack.

The idea of a separate entity to deal with judicial infrastructure was mooted in the conference of Chief Justices held in April, 2022 in New Delhi. JIMA could be seen as a response by the Government of Odisha at the state level to this need. The function of JIMA is to exclusively manage the construction and maintenance of all the judicial infrastructure of the State. JIMA, comprising Engineers and Architects, acts as the Nodal Agency in the matter of monitoring physical and financial status of the infrastructure projects of the State Judiciary. It looks after the project preparation, drawing and design, architecture, procurement, award of contracts, engineering supervision for new projects and also takes care of maintenance and renovation of the existing projects and the annual maintenance contracts.

Office of the Judicial Infrastructure Management Agency

CONSTRUCTION OF 550 STAFF QUARTERS

Employees of the High Court have been facing difficulty due to inadequate staff quarters as compared to staff strength. On the request of High Court, the State Government has made available 10 acres land in Sector-13, CDA, Cuttack for construction of staff quarters. The High Court Building Committee approved the plan and estimate of Rs.284,29,02,000/- prepared by the Works Department for the construction of 550 flats (200 D-type flats and 350 E-type flats) in 12 towers. The project is expected to be completed in 18 months’ time.

CONSTRUCTION OF NEW RESIDENTIAL BUILDINGS FOR JUDGES

The number of residential buildings available at the disposal of the High Court is not commensurate with its working strength. Further, the sanctioned strength of the Judges has been increased from 27 to 33. Accordingly, the High Court Building Committee has approved the plan for construction of 7 new residential buildings at the sites available. The total cost of the projects is Rs.27,39,98,000/-. The State Government is expected to make provision of funds in the Supplementary budget 2022-23 for the commencement of the work.

MODERNIZATION OF THE OFFICES OF THE HIGH COURT

With a view to ensuring a congenial working atmosphere, modernization of the various branches of the High Court had been taken up in 2021. While some of them were refurbished in 2021, almost all the remaining administrative and judicial sections of the Court were refurbished in 2022. The employees have been provided with work stations, comfortable chairs along with cupboards and storage cabinets. To ensure timely attendance, biometric devices were installed at 14 different locations of the office.

RENOVATED APPOINTMENT SECTION

CONFERENCE HALL IN THE RRDC

A room in the first floor of the RRDC has been converted into a conference room for holding of periodic meetings of the Committee.

Conference Room at the RRDC

RESEARCH STATIONS IN THE RRDC

In order to facilitate research, separate stations have been set up in the ground floor of the RRDC as depicted in the photograph below.

Research Station at the RRDC

CONSERVATION LABORATORY IN RRDC

For conservation of the old fragile records a laboratory has been set up in the ground floor of the RRDC with all the necessary infrastructure required for a conservation laboratory.

Conservation Laboratory in the RRDC

CONSTRUCTION OF COVERED PARKING IN FRONT OF THE NEW BUILDING

In order to obviate the problem of parking of vehicles, decision was taken to make better use of the existing parking area in front of the Court’s new building by way of construction of covered parking place so that the basement could be used as parking and the roof top could be used for holding official meetings and functions. The High Court Building Committee approved the plan and estimate of Rs. 3,25,07,400/-. Provision of funds has been made in the supplementary budget 2022-23 for commencement of work.

CONSTRUCTION OF A NEW ANNEXE BUILDING FOR THE HIGH COURT BAR

In 2019, the State Government had accorded administrative approval to the construction of a new annexe building (B+G+6) for the Bar as well as for the records in the High Court premises at an estimated cost of Rs.82,82,57,552/-. However, the execution of the work could not be taken up due to delay in finalization of the tender, followed by the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic. With the disposed of records of the High Court being kept in a separate Record Room Digitization Centre, it was felt that the entire Annexe Building could now be used exclusively for the Bar. Accordingly, the plan was revised for the construction of an annexe building of reduced size (B+G+4) at an estimated cost of Rs. 33,94,96,000/-. Though provision of funds for commencement of the new Annexe building (B+G+4) has been made in the financial year 2022-23, the project is awaiting administrative approval of the State Government.

CONSTRUCTION OF FOOT OVER BRIDGE WITH FACILITY OF LIFTS

Most of the vehicles come to the High Court and adjacent Government offices from the ring road along the Kathajodi river. During court hours, the ring road and the approach road to the High Court remain overcrowded. In order to facilitate safe access of advocates and litigants to the High Court premises from the Ring Road along the Kathajodi river, a decision was taken to construct a foot over bridge with facility of lifts. The plan and estimate amounting to Rs.5,57,65,119/- for the project has been approved by the High Court Building Committee. The State Government has provided funds for the commencement of the work during the current financial year.

RESTORATION AND DEVELOPMENT OF THE HIGH COURT MUSEUM

In 2017, a museum had been set up in the previous residence of the Chief Justice within the Barabati Fort Complex. In order to make the museum more educative and reflective of the judicial system in Odisha, a decision was taken to revamp it. The restoration work has been entrusted to INTACH, an organization having expertise in the field of conservation. The estimated cost of the restoration project is Rs.3,18,95,394/-. Apart from artifacts and documents of historical importance related to the judiciary, a virtual walk through of the High Court will be displayed in the museum. Besides, a mini architectural model of the High Court will be exhibited and the century old records will be digitally displayed. Beautification of the existing pond and improvement of the peripheral area around the premises has also been planned.

RENOVATION OF THE COMPOUND WALL OF HIGH COURT

The compound wall of the High Court was due for renovation. With the rise in the height of the adjoining roads, it was necessary to raise the height of the Court’s compound wall.

Record Room Digitization Centre

Video Conference Hall in the new building of the High Court