This refers to the article “Expanding access to justice” (editorial page, Nov. 28). The government is not the only largest litigant that goes on appeal against almost every court judgment. Banks too are not above arm-twisting especially when it comes to settling borrowings by the poor. There are also an alarming number of litigants who mislead courts and waste precious time. In the process, genuine litigants are deprived of their accessibility to timely justice. As justice delayed is justice denied, it is time that at least two High Court benches were constituted in each State, saving time and money. The Lok Adalats should also be invigorated further.
One is in total agreement with the writer on the need to reduce the cost of litigation so that everyone can have access to justice. Apart from additional permanent benches of the High Courts across all the States, there must be at least four regional benches of the Supreme Court.
The delays that have overwhelmed our judiciary can be read along with the dropping of cases decided by the Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court because of a backlog.
The lack of infrastructure and logistics for courts as well as inadequate human resource leave nearly a two-thirds of India’s prisoners as undertrials. This underscores the necessity to have judicial reforms and the establishment of permanent High Courts benches.
The writer seems to be advocating that more High Court benches will be a panacea for all the ills affecting the judicial system. It is important to address the grim condition of lower trial courts. There are judicial vacancies and a lack of adequate infrastructure. The need to go in for an appeal must be reduced by ensuring the quality of hearings.