The All India Seminar on Judicial Reforms (Balance Sheet of 60 years of the administration of Justice under the Indian Constitution 1950 to 2010) organised by the Confederation of Indian Bar and supported by Konrad Adenauer Foundation was held from July 31 to August 1.
The All India Seminar on Judicial Reforms (Balance Sheet of 60 years of the administration of Justice under the Indian Constitution 1950 to 2010) organised by the Confederation of Indian Bar and supported by Konrad Adenauer Foundation was held in New Delhi from July 31 to August 1.
The seminar was inaugurated by the President of India, Pratibha Patil and presided over by the Chief Justice of India, Justice S.H. Kapadia.
The opening address of the ceremony was given by Harish N. Salve, Chairman of the Reception Committee. He emphasised on our justice delivery system needing repairs. “We need to fix the justice delivery system. Certainty is the key in capital investment. We have to adapt our legal system and focus on alternative dispute resolution (ADR).”
The President spoke on the justice system being afflicted by an outburst of litigation with current figures revealing arrears in High Courts exceeding 40 lakhs and in Subordinate Courts exceeding 2.72 crore. She expressed her positive mannerism with the National Mission endeavoring to implement an action plan to reduce pendency of cases from 15 years to 3 years and the State Governments who together with the Bar and Bench must find innovative methods to liquidate backlogs in a time bound manner.
Bar & Bench had covered an exhaustive litigation report on the statistics of pending cases at various courts. A total of 3.13 crore cases are pending at various levels and nearly 3,054 judges' posts are yet to be occupied at various courts. These were the statistics released by the Supreme Court earlier last month indicating the number of cases that were pending.
However, the CJI, S.H. Kapadia speaking at the conference chose to interpret these statistics in a different manner. The Times of India reported his speech where he said, “My brother judges, who include all trial court judges, have done an excellent job in maintaining a high disposal of cases. But, instead of getting compliments, they have been at the receiving end. For years I have been listening to speaker after speaker at Vigyan Bhawan slamming the judiciary for mounting arrears. They must know filing of a case today becomes a pending case tomorrow. But, is that an arrear? Statistics reveal that 60% of the cases pending in trial courts were less than one year old. So, if we take a realistic look at the arrears and exclude those pending for just one year, then the arrears are only one crore cases."
Once the CJI had indicated that only one crore cases are pending the President said “Now as the CJI has talked about the difference between arrears and pendency in cases, I think we will have to review these figures!"
There were 14 working sessions during the course of the two day seminar. The topics included ADR, balancing the environment and development, fast track courts, human rights, Government as a model litigant, cyber crimes etc.
The eminent speakers at the seminar were Gopal Subramanium, Solicitor General of India and Chairman Bar Council of India; Pravin H. Parekh, President of the Confederation of Indian Bar; Justice D.K. Jain, Justice V.S. Sirpurkar, Justice B. Sudershan Reddy, Justice G.S. Singhvi, Dr. Justice Mukundakam Sharma, Justice Cyriac Joseph, Justice Asok Kumar Ganguly, Justice R.M. Lodha, Justice Deepak Verma, Justice A.K. Patnaik, Justice T.S. Thakur, Justice K.S. Radhakrishnan, Justice S.S. Nijjar and Justice Swatanter Kumar,Judges of the Supreme Court of India.
The valedictory session included an opening address by former Judge of the Delhi High Court, Justice K. Ramamoorthy along with Professor Dr. Ranbir Singh Vice-Chancellor of National Law University, Delhi. The closing ceremony concluded with an address by Justice Dipak Misra, Chief Justice of the Delhi High Court; Justice Altamas Kabir, Supreme Court of India; and Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar.