Senior District Judge (Judicial Service officer) just before he becomes.eligible to be elevated as a HC JUDGE, are often posted as Joint Secretaries in the State Law Dept
I don't have empirical data but I suppose a High Court judge in Tripura would be more powerful in Tripura than a High Court judge in Delhi would be in Delhi.
In the end, power depends on how you use the power. As a judge, you can be a Bhagwati or a Krishna Iyer whose judgements impacted millions. Or you can be an unknown judge from a high court whose greatest work was a judgement interpreting rule x (iv) under section a (b) of Irrelevant Act, 1986.
Similarly, as an IAS officer, you could be Ajit Doval, Jaishankar or Amitabh Kant. Or you could be the Director of Random Corporation of India.
If you really willing to taste that experience, then make a time machine and go back in the era of 1975,,, you will got to know how much PARLIAMENT can be a bad**ss!!!
To sum up what I said there also: it depends on your clout/network.
1) It's unfortunate that commenters are making the same old "Order Of Precedence" arguments again. It's been iterated multiple times by governments that this list is inapplicable for the daily functioning of the state.
By this precedence logic, a former vice-president is more powerful than the current CJI? Does that make any sense?
This is a purely ceremonial ranking that tries to satiate the ego of all the three wings of the Indian state - it still does not change the fact that India is not a country with perfect separation of powers - it's a state where the Legislature enjoys slight superiority over the Judiciary and Executive due to the former's ability to impeach and suspend persons serving in the latter two wings. This stuff is taught in basic civics classes now.
It's also strange that some "litigator" in this thread has claimed he's seen IAS officers tremble before HC judges - that sort of stuff sounds like good inspiration for a Jolly LLB franchise movie but doesn't reflect reality.
By this same strain of logic, SC judges tremble in front of Ajit Doval? He has the Prime Minister's ear and access to methods of investigation and related technology that's military-grade.
2) What is this drama about how a judge can summon IAS officers and even ministers but that the same ministers/officers can't "summon" a judge? The power to summon is something that's exclusively reserved for courts of law to carry out judicial proceedings, it doesn't prove the superiority of judges. It's frankly quite immature to think so.
Again, by the same logic only an SP can authorise PAC personnel to go and carry out an encounter of dacoits. Judges can't order encounters. Does this mean judges are suddenly not powerful?
Army officers, starting from the post of Brigadier, are allowed to take unilateral action to a large degree at the border - this can quite literally make the Republic enter a state of war - judges can't initiate war so I'd assume they're not powerful either?
See how absurd this logic of "summons" is?
3) Now, coming to the actual comparison. A HC Judge vs an IAS officer.
High Court judges enjoy extra-ordinary privileges against arrests (well, so did IAS officers above the joint secretary level until a certain judgement. You'd still never see the police arrest a Jt. Sec., however).
HC judges are eligible for red-light beacons, one of the few functionaries who still are. They get excellent bungalows and adequate support staff.
However, it's very difficult to make this comparison without really knowing the grade at which said IAS officer is.
Is an HC judge more powerful than an SDM? Most definitely. While an HC judge mostly cannot interfere directly in an SDM's work as they belong to different wings of the state - they are still extremely senior and enjoy the benefit of connections made over many decades. A freshly-minted SDM or DM simply cannot compare.
However, compare a HC judge with a Chief Secretary or the state's Home Secretary and things change extremely rapidly.
(The HC judge only has a ceremonial order of precedence rank going for them here.)
Chief Secretaries and Home Secretaries work side-by-side with the Chief Minister of the state. The Chief Secretary is the principal advisor to the CM on all state matters. They are provided palatial housing right next to the CM and his/her cabinet and freely use helicopters and such vehicles for their work (Even DMs have former mansions and palaces reserved as their official residence in most cities.)
They are the administrative lynchpin that connects the CM and the ruling legislative party with any state's executive branch.
A High Court judge simply does not compare with the kind of functions that a CS carries out. The CS broadly oversees every single department that the state runs and specifically hold charge of multiple departments such as personnel, administrative reforms, planing and so on.
They are also the highest nodal point that can be contacted for law and order issues - the CS outranks the state's Director General of Police (DGP).
Compared to ALL of this, a HC judge's domain is indeed restricted. They're powerful functionaries too with political contacts, but an IAS officer works far more closely with public representatives than any judge does. They tend to accumulate considerable political heft after years of manoeuvring through the demands and challenges posed by MPs and MLAs.
A High Court judge has considerable power - they can order arrests for contempt. But that's really it? Unless your case is in the docket and is eventually heard by some HC judge who despises you, they can't really do shit to you.
On the other hand: Chief Secretaries, Home Secretaries' involvement in a citizen's life is huge. Revenue, law and order, health, schooling and whatnot. I'm not going to elaborate much on this but most people here are most likely aware of the kind of power someone who can order around the DGP and controls land-revenue records holds...
Is this topic usually put up by judicial exam aspirants?
Same happened in the other thread also. A guy became super defensive at when the people here actually attempted to disillusion him - the thread was about lower judicial services versus UPSC. The logic ends at "oh judge can summon you so you are inferior hurr durr"
Quote: There are no joint secretaries who serve at a state level. Jt. Secretaries only serve at the central level - they are EXTREMELY high ranking officers.
Lots of people in the last thread gave us the example of how some serving district judge was appointed as Law Secretary - and that it took IAS officers years to attain Secretary level posts therefore "judge more powerful".
Well, not quite.
A judge was appointed as Law Sec. for the first time, ever. Asinine to use an exception as a rule and claim a district judge is at par with a Secretary to the GOI in terms of power.
Moreover, the government maintains an in-house cadre called the Indian Legal Service to fill positions in the Central Law Ministry. Most appointees there always ARE judges and advocates. They don't get those positions by virtue of possessing greater power/influence than an IAS officer.
To reiterate, very odd to assume that the Union Home Secretary is less powerful than a district judge because of appointments in a specific ministry which only appoints advocates/judges to their executive posts.
Even jmfc is much more higher than any govt. Puppies!!
High Court judge >>>>>>>>>Ias officer (j. S level)
If you must, the power and authority must be decided based on what confers those powers to each office holder. The Constitution. And as such you got to follow the Order of Precedence.
If your question is influenced by dilemma over career choice, pick either of these and you will be fine. :)
My father is a HIGH COURT Judge,,,,
And all I can say that,,, there is no need to compare honable Judiciary with executive puppies!!
High Court judge is much more powerful!!
HC judge is boss and Ias (executive puppy) is servant!
That line - While an "IAS has same amount of power" when he's less than 30" (Joke of the year).
Ever heard the name of Chief Judicial Magistrate?? No?, Might you, anyways I don't care!
Lemme tell you,even the powers of Honourable CJM is much more than that of DM!! And has much more fame too!!
Power & fame of HC judge is, literally, much much much more than that of shitty executive(s), Shocked?!, this is the truth!
If u don't know, keep shut ur mouth, but pls don't mislead!
We get it, buddy, you're prepping for judiciary real hard and really want it to be the best career path in the world. But that does not change the reality of things. It's not as black and white as you are making it out to be. It's much more complicated than that - the person, the post, the clout. And let's also stop pretending that judges don't have to work within the limits of the law. "oh CJM has more fAmE than Dm" (lolwut) - no.
Look , I'll not elaborate frthr cuz truth is always bitter!! But what I've said is absolutely accurate! "CJM HAS MUCH MORE FAME THAN DM"! I can understand u r jealous, but that's the truth, right?,,, Right!!
Judiciary is extremely powerful on pen and paper,! Even Jmfc is much more powerful than any executive puppies!. Just because they got selected through Upsc doesn't mean they have upper hand!
Last but not the least, Those who write and apprehend that DM is powerful, haven't has much experienced in real life! They are just fascinated by social media reels - "ENTRY OF AN IAS/IPS OFFICER"!
Did u expect the same from judicial officer(s)??
(click on the abovementioned link and then tell me, Do you still want to stand firmly on what you've said above)
I belonged to family of judges and I myself experienced what's the name and fame is!! Don't mislead, if u don't know!!