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Justice is a birthright given at death
Many people die before their cases come to a logical and fair end...
In our great country, justice usually is delayed to an extent where the seeker might not live that long to see the end. This is also the root of our corruption, where the rich and powerful can always find their way out of trouble, moving insidiously without any dread and inhibition. Ironically, 80% of prisoners in Indian jails are undertrials, who do not have enough money for a bail. Sometimes they languish in jail for a period of time that is more than their entire punishment! There are 10 times the number of judges in US than in India per million. The figure is 7 times for Canada. The Indian lower courts have a huge backlog of 250 lakh cases, while for the High Courts it is 38 lakhs; and the Supreme Court has crossed 48,000 logjam cases.
Towards the fag end of the UPA government’s 5-year term at the seat of power, they are ready to shell out Rs.600 crore to create 3,000 village courts within a month of endeavour. Rs.20 crore will be provided per court, to bring justice within the reach of common man in rural India. It must be noted here that a novel idea has been adopted by the Gujarat Government by introducing evening courts. This has enabled the daily wage earners to attend the courts after a full day of work. Quite credibly, a figure of 45 lakh pending cases in 2003, with 65 lakhs new cases, have been reduced to only 20 lakhs of backlog cases as on date.
The Central Government, on the other hand, wants these new courts to follow the Singapore model, where the civil or commercial disputes will be resolved using mediation and conciliation mechanism. The ‘Singapore Mediation Centre’ follows a method where the arbitrator has to repay the entire fees in failing to resolve the case in 40 days. Even this kind of efficiency could make our judiciary more accountable to the poor people who have almost but lost their faith in our judicial system. The fact remains that the faster a case is resolved – even if wrongly – improves the chances of the future of our judiciary. We’re all praying...
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