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Grindingly slow judicial systemand the plight of litigants

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I decided to write on this subject since, in my opinion, all other legal matters can be handled effectively only if we have a solid, prompt, reliable, and genuinely independent core “judiciary” in place. A well functioning judiciary is essential to a nation’s progress on all fronts. Alas! The Indian judicial system has failed to provide the people with prompt justice. Delayed justice is not just the postponement of judicial action for some time,but it is such a process which has irreversible negative consequences on the prosperity of state as well as on the minds of the citizens. In this matter litigants receive disillusionment rather than speedy justice.

The Indian judiciary system has failed to deliver expeditiously the justice to people, not quick justice but the disillusionment is what is granted to litigants. On a court visit while I was examining the court proceedings, I found out that judges give adjournments for no genuine reasons, though the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 suggests not more than three adjournments should be given in each case, I witnessed more number than that. On one instance, the judge had to hear the arguments but he set that for yet another hearing date giving the reason “not feeling likes taking arguments”. Such conducts are so disturbing and convey disrespect to whole justice system.

Slow judicial system can traumatize minds of the citizens, which I very closely have felt- one of my close relatives had some service matter case initiated right 19 years back and still the case is pending before the court. With the result, not only the person but his whole family is left with no hopes in judiciary.

The slow judiciary becomes even more traumatising in cases wherein heinous crimes have been committed.This can make the earlier victims the future criminals. The system wherein citizens are left with less or no faith in judiciary because of the delayed justice cannot be considered a functioning judiciary. Also, we can’t close our eyes to the reality that in certain cases the judgements are delayed because of the political winds which blow in the cabins, homes and courts of the judges. Then as such the independent status given to judiciary seems to be mere a bubble.

Efficacy of the judicial system is connected so vitally with the development of the country andspeedy Justice would foster and bolster the economic development of the country by improving the enforceability of commercial contracts. Efficiency of judiciaries are associated with economic growth and we can say that Justice delayed is growth denied as well! Sound judiciary is the key to proper enforcement of substantive laws and here by sound I am focusing on “the speedy remedy giving” aspect mostly.

As a student of Law, I feel there is a lack of such a subject in the syllabus which will appeal to the conscience of today’s learners,the future judicial minds. Such a subject is imperative to be there in addition to other law subjects so that the law students right from the law school will be made aware of the lacunae’s of the slow process of judiciary as contrary to the professional conducts and against their voices within. “Justice delayed is justice denied” this conviction should be a major aim of every law student and of every adjudicating authority.

People should be made aware of the Alternative Dispute Resolution systems like arbitration, mediation, conciliation, etc. which ensure speedy justice to trivial cases and screening of matters that require court assistance which intern will save much of courts’ time. Law students study ADR as a subject in law schools, hence it becomes their social responsibility to enlighten people about such system through legal awareness programs. Hence, collective efforts need to be put forth by the people associated with legal background, right from students to authorities,to turn the wheels of justice at fast pace.

The writer is a law student at University of Kashmir.

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