August 31, 2006
Law Minister Acknowledges Need To Make System Credible*
By Mukesh Jhangiani
United News of India
New Delhi (UNI) – Recalling days not too long ago when judgements were pronounced after quick trials within three days, India‘s Law and Justice Minister Hansraj Bhardwaj today stressed making the judgement delivery system credible.
A Ministry statement said Bhardwaj’s remarks came while accepting four Reports from the Law Commission Chairman on Witness Identity Protection, Unfair Terms in Contract, Trial By Media and Medical Treatment After Accidents.
Bhardwaj emphasised the need to tighten the loose ends in the procedural law, the Ministry statement said.
It said the reports on witness protection, unfair terms in contracts, trial by media and medical treatment after accidents will be presented to Parliament in the next session.
There was a time not too long ago when judgements were pronounced after quick trials within three days, the Minister said.
Now, the Minister went on, the institution of public prosecutors has almost collapsed, adjournments in courts cases were commonplace and motivated investigations led to acquittals even in the most serious criminal cases.
The law officers must take their job seriously and the trials at the sessions court should be quick enough to restore people’s faith in the judicial system, Bhardwaj observed.
The Reports presented by retired Supreme Court Judge M J Rao, now the chairman of the Law Commission, are:
–198th Report on Witness Identity Protection and Witness Protection Programmes;
–199th Report on Unfair (Procedural and Substantive) Terms in Contracts;
–200th Report on Trial by Media: Free Speech Vs Fair trial Under Criminal Procedure Amendments to the Contempt of Court Act 1971; and
–201st Report on Medical Treatment after Accidents and during Emergency Medical Condition and Women in Labour.
UNI MJ RP VV2007