Bottlenecks or inefficiencies: A Critical Analysis of Judicial Efficiency and Court Productivity in the Lower Judiciary System of Punjab

Theme/Relevant Ministry:

Civil Courts; High Court; Supreme Court; Bars; Supreme Judicial Commission of Pakistan; M/o Human Rights

Project Brief:

The importance of sound judicial system cannot be denied as one of the important pillars for economic development. Transparent judiciary builds the confidence and trust of investors as well as promotes efficiency of the social, economic and political system. However, in case of developing economies, the judicial system is facing major constraints such as poor infrastructure, poor incentive systems, malpractices, lack of accountability, delays and backlogs, high costs of litigation, complex procedures, lack of judges and supporting staff vis-a-vis lack of transparency in appointments. Pakistan is also facing the same issue and its impact is visible both in domestic and international statistics that due to the fear of insecurities and delay in justice, citizens are losing faith on the integrity of the public and private policies. Congestion in courts, cost of litigation, and delay in the disposition of cases are the major characteristics of our judiciary system. Inefficient Justice System actually provokes rent-seeking activities, social and political unrest and lawlessness among certain segments of the society due to which sometimes violent acts have become normal routines in lower income countries for pressing and challenging the writ of the State. This study aims to highlight these kind of anomalies in our Justice system not only using objective data from published sources but also through  the survey for exploring that whether the system is facing bottlenecks or it’s the governance issue in the inefficient use of law. This will be examined both at the supply side (Number of Disposed Cases) and demand side (Number of new cases or new litigants) of the justice in district courts of mainly three cities of Punjab i.e. Lahore, Multan and Rawalpindi. Moreover the researchers also aim to conduct another very important survey related to ‘customer service quality survey’ for highlighting the factors affecting the supply-side of quality justice to speed-up the court processes.

Public Policy Relevance:

This study aims to estimate the efficiency of our judicial system both at higher and lower courts. Moreover, this analysis also targets to explore the determinants which are causing a high rate of pendency of cases and congestion on the other side. This study will help highlight the factors which are causing the inefficiency of our judicial system. This will help to find out the loopholes in the case management system and to know how to make it improved at international standards.


Saima Sarwar
Associate Professor, GC University Lahore (PI)
06 months
Rs. 3,600,000/-