Special Correspondent

It will be submitted to government within next two months

CHENNAI: The Mediation and Conciliation Project Committee of the Supreme Court will prepare a national mediation plan, which will be submitted to the government, said Justice S.B. Sinha, Judge Supreme Court and Chairperson of the Committee, here on Friday.

Training programme

Inaugurating a three-day mediation training programme for advocates from Erode, Justice Mr. Sinha said the plan would include providing honorarium for trained mediators. The committee was also planning to create a corpus. The plan would be prepared and submitted to the government within two months.

The number of pending cases had increased twelve fold since 1978, which at present stood at 3 crore cases in the country.

It would be 24 crore cases by 2030, for which a total of 82,000 Judges were required. Similarly, the infrastructure for judiciary needed to be improved at least by 10 per cent, he said.

Talking about registering of cases in the courts, Justice Mr. Sinha said nearly 24 cases per 1,000 persons were registered in Tamil Nadu annually, where the literacy rate is 76 per cent.

In Kerala it was 27 cases per 1,000 persons annually (literacy rate 96 per cent). In the United States, 333 cases per 1,000 persons were registered in a year.

Mediators tried to probe the source of the dispute. They (mediators) were aware of generating options and considering the causes of a dispute. In the next five years 20,000 trained mediators would be engaged by the judiciary in the country, he said.

Mediation had made great strides all over the country, said Justice H.L. Gokhale, Chief Justice, Madras High Court and Patron-in-Chief of the Tamil Nadu Mediation and Conciliation Centre.

Praising the State for leading the mediation and conciliation process, he said some of the States were lagging behind.

Mediation was a way of bringing in an amicable settlement among different parties. One should have the right kind of mindset to undergo mediation training, said Justice F.M. Ibrahim Kalifulla, Judge Madras High Court and Chairman, Tamil Nadu Mediation and Conciliation Centre. In future trained lawyers could only be working as mediators, he added.

Justice K. Raviraja Pandian, Judge, Madras High Court and Member, Committee of Judges for Tamil Nadu mediation and Conciliation Centre, also spoke.