Chandigarh based Think Tank- SUVICHAR- and Army Institute of Law (AIL), Mohali, organised a Seminar on the need for Legal Reforms with special emphasis on the Recruitment of Judges.
Legal luminaries and professionals debated on the issues so that the huge backlog of cases can be cleared, and suggested immediate action to balance out the ratio of judges vis-à-vis the population.
Mr M L Sarin, Senior Advocate and a founder member of SUVICHAR was the key speaker on the occasion. Mr Vivek Atray, Convenor, SUVICHAR, and three students of AIL also presented their point of view in the debate.
Mr Sarin said that various studies have been carried out by the Law Commission and others to go into the question of clearing the huge backlog of pending cases and Supreme Court has given direction to the Government to provide better infrastructure and more manpower to the judiciary in each State so as to to increase the ratio of the number of judges to population and bring it as close as possible to the developed countries.
Mr Sarin said that a criminal case takes 20 years or even more leading to uncertainity with wide spread speculations and holds true the common maxim ‘justice delayed is justice denied’.
Mr Vivek Atray said that SUVICHAR is a forum of thought Leaders who have experience of and insight into various key sectors that are an integral part of our society’s functioning. SUVICHAR seeks to give back to society and the nation inputs and guideposts that can enhance the ability of people to deal with a plethora of issues and also to provide thought leadership in certain macro-level aspects of nation building.
Suvichar participants agreed that the procedure to be adopted in clearing names of the High Court and Supreme Court judges as laid down in ‘Supreme Court Advocates on Record Association case’ should be finalized at the earliest and delay of over two years in finalizing the procedure is already leading to backlog of pending cases.
The participants also agreed to establish an appropriate procedure to keep a tab on the judicial system on disposal and pendency of cases in courts.
Student of AIL Madhavi Sandhu participating in the debate suggested participation of all three wings, legislasture, executive, and the judiciary to infuse important
safeguards into the appointment process.
Ayushi Vashisht suggested scrapping the 20-years old system plaguing the Indian judiciary and restoring NJAC which ensured appropriate checks and balances which institutionalized the system of appointment of judges in a transparent way without favouritism or nepotism.
Kudrat Dutta Chaudhary opined that constitution of an Indian Judicial Service could be another workable option to create robust judicial system to identify meritorious students through competitive examination and ensure quality standards through uniform training procedure.