Law ministry reviews justice delivery with states

Written by fe Bureau | Kolkata | Updated: Jun 28 2010, 06:11am hrs
The Union law ministry has started consulting state governments and high courts for implementing the 13 th finance commission programmes with a grant of Rs 5,000 crore, which aims at improving the country's justice delivery system.

Law minister Veerappa Moily, after eastern region's review meeting in Kolkata on Sunday, said the law ministry has started consulting with all state law departments and high courts regarding the steps to be taken for implementing the e-court project. It is also working on drawing up infrastructure development plans for district and subordinate courts, creating an all-India judicial service, reviewing vacancies of judges in high courts and subordinate courts and following the recommendations of the task force on judicial impact assessment.

The law ministry, he said, was also reviewing implementation of gram nyayalaya scheme, progress of fast track courts and progress made in setting up evening and morning courts, family courts and more CBI courts with the state law departments and high courts.

The 13 th finance commission's total grant of Rs 5000 crore for improving the justice delivery system, includes schemes of operation of morning, evening and shift courts, for which Rs 2,500 core has been granted. The commission has granted Rs 600 crore for setting up alternate dispute resolution centres, Rs 150 crore for training mediators and conciliators, Rs 100 crore for setting up more lok adalats, Rs 200 crore for legal aid, Rs 250 crore for training judicial officers, Rs 300 crore for creating state judicial academies, Rs 150 crore for training public prosecutors, Rs 450 crore for maintaining heritage court buildings and Rs 300 crore for creating a new position of court managers and appointing them.

Moily said that the first review meeting with the state law departments and high courts of north eastern states have already been done in Guwahati early this month and the second meeting for the eastern states was in Kolkata on Sunday. The third meeting for the southern states would be held in Chennai in the first week of July and the fourth meeting for western states would be in Goa in the third week of July followed by a national review meeting in Delhi.

According to Moily, while a national litigation policy was already in place for reducing pendency and delays in resolving litigation, all the states would have to come up with state litigation policy by March 2011 for ensuring speedy trial.

Justice delivery system should not suffer from shortage of manpower and manpower in judiciary should not suffer for lack of funds, Moily said.

He said at present there were 14,000 district and subordinate courts in the country dealing with litigation but the number of courts was required to be increased since the number of litigation was also increasing.