Indian Judicial system, can the poor expect fair Judgement?
Indian Judiciary, one of the most powerful and significant organ of the government, the interpreter and protector of our constitution where citizens expect a fair justice. Judiciary safeguard of our property, our liberty and our freedoms and rights. But the reality says, the poorer you are, the more likely you are to end up in jail. This is not because the poor committed the more crimes, though they do commit but the rich has got its own means to escape law because of availability of efficient lawyers on their sides-a true story of Salman khan to be inspired by. The more the money you can spend, the more easily a person gets bailed out. And according to a statistics, about 75% of the prisoners of Indian jails are under trials and they have already spent so many years in jail even more than the tenure of the actual punishment of their offences.
First of all, logjam in about lakhs of cases in our Indian courts shows the inadequacy and inefficiency on the part of the powerful organ. Definitely, the large population is a gigantic problem but that is where more economic differences exist, and that is where more offences are made and that is where actual justice is needed. And hence, we need more faster and accurate judgements. But most of the times, the poor seeking justice turns out to be disappointed with the charges imposed by the lawyers on accounts fighting the case for them.
'When the rich wages the war, it is the poor who dies', rightly said by Jean Paul Sartre, in the same connotation when a poor approaches a lawyer, the cases are either adjourned for end number of times or they are just losing their cases because of more efficient lawyers fighting for the riches and hence ultimately no justice is given to the poor. More the justice is delayed by these adjournments more is the cost that the poor has to spend.
But one may not blindly ignore the reforms in judicial system of the country like the introduction of Lok adalat in 1990s and which has started achieving the goals set by it in the recent few years, as it assures to provide justice to economically backward sections of the society at almost no cost and faster disposal of the cases, hence reducing delay and reducing cost. Recently, in Bengaluru about 5,705 motor vehicles accident claims and insurance matters across the state were settled and a total compensation of Rs.86, 03, 58, 11 was awarded as a part of national Lok adalat, is amongst the success stories which cannot be neglected.
The second most important progress by our Indian Judiciary is the success of Public Interest Litigation (PIL).It has drawn the attention of our courts towards the deprived sections of the society. Most of the times it has shown up with success with one of the progressive social legislation whether it be related to bonded labour, minimum wages etc.
There are great success stories of judicial activism. solving out the great coal gate scam, bringing 2G scam to light, all under the interests of public litigation, Ensuring safe working conditions and also safer environment to live in (the works of national green tribunals), all these have indirectly benefitted the backward sections but to a minimal amount. But these are definitely fair and justified initiatives by judiciary for people who at least have middle class backgrounds.
Filling up the vacancies of judges at subordinate courts, the capable and the honest minds into the board of lawyers to be attracted to judicial posts. Computerisations of the cases in order of fast disposal of the cases and also fix the number of adjournments in solving a particular case. Judiciary being independent, due to concentration of power results in greater corruption also and hence, a constant check of powers by the government is mandatory. Because it is rightly said, "if the laws could speak for themselves, they would complain of lawyers at first place". Establishment of fast track courts will save a lot of time. A serious and a strategic approach can fill the loopholes of Indian Judiciary in failing and incapacity to punish the riches and providing appropriate justice to the poor's. In the end, it makes every citizen feel that judiciary becomes the puppet of the riches and poor becomes the puppet of judiciary.
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