What is a vacation bench?
- A Vacation Bench of the Supreme Court is a special bench constituted by the Chief Justice of India. The court takes two long vacations each year, the summer and winter breaks, but is technically not fully closed during these periods. Litigants can still approach the Supreme Court and, if the court decides that the plea is an “urgent matter”, the vacation bench hears the case on its merits.
- The Chief Justice may appoint one or more Judges to hear during summer vacation or winter holidays all matters of an urgent nature which under these rules may be heard by a Judge sitting singly, and, whenever necessary, he may likewise appoint a Division Court for the hearing of urgent cases during the vacation which require to be heard by a Bench of Judges.
- The High Courts and trial courts too have Vacation Benches to hear urgent matters under their jurisdiction.