Obsolete Judicial System in India Must Change: Pranab Mukherjee

Pranab Mukherjee received the first copy of a book ‘Judicial Reforms – Recent Global Trends’ on February 22, 2017 at Rashtrapati Bhavan.
Pranab Mukherjee received the first copy of a book ‘Judicial Reforms – Recent Global Trends’ on February 22, 2017 at Rashtrapati Bhavan.

The President of India, Pranab Mukherjee received the first copy of a book ‘Judicial Reforms – Recent Global Trends’ on Wednesday at Rashtrapati Bhavan from the Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi who formally released it.

The book brought out by the India International Law Foundation is the outcome of a Seminar on ‘Recent Trends in Judicial Reforms: A Global Perspective’ held in January 2013 in New Delhi.

Speaking on the occasion, the President said our judicial system established decades ago require major changes. Reform is a continuous process. It cannot be stop and go. Every system develops clogs, he said.

Prime Minister Modi recalled that he had promised to repeal one law a day, and till date, the Union Government has repealed about 1200 laws. He said efficient governance can lessen the burden of the judiciary.

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Mukherjee also suggested that there is need for constant change. Justice Dalbir Bhandari has done useful work to ignite the thinking process of the nation on the subject of judicial reforms. It is high time for everyone to not just think but also act on judicial reforms, he said.

The President pointed out that no reform is possible without adequate infrastructure. In his entire period as President, the Allahabad High Court which is the largest in the country had less than 50% of its sanctioned posts of 180 judges filled.

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If this situation of the higher judiciary is so bad, one can imagine the conditions of the lower judiciary. State and Union Governments should work hand in hand to address the shortage of basic infrastructure such as courtrooms and essential facilities for judges, the President said.

There is no dearth of talent in the country but there must be a system in place to address such issues, he said.

Others present on the occasion included Chief Justice of India, Justice JS Khehar; Arun Jaitley, Union Minister of Finance; Ravi Shankar Prasad, Union Minister of Law and Justice; Justice Dalveer Bhandari, President, India International Law Foundation and Justice Vikramajit Sen, Vice President, India International Law Foundation.

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Rakesh Raman