The central government on Thursday decided to set up village courts all over the country to bring justice to the doorstep of villagers in a less expensive and speedier manner.
A cabinet meeting, chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, decided to bring in the budget session of parliament the Gram Nyayalayas Bill, 2007, to establish village level courts, Information and Broadcasting Minister PR Dasmunsi told reporters.
The proposed gram nyayalaya or village courts will be presided over by a nyayadhikari who shall be qualified to be eligible to be a first class judicial magistrate and shall be appointed by the state government in consultation with the concerned high court.
The village court will follow the summary procedure in criminal cases and a simple procedure of natural justice in civil cases, said Dasmunsi.
Explaining the objective of the bill, he recalled how India's first prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru had visualised bringing justice to the doorstep of the poorest man in the village.
The bill is based on the proposals of the 114th report of the Law Commission of India and seeks to establish a village court for every panchayat at intermediate level or a group of contiguous panchayats throughout the country except Jammu and Kashmir.
It is meant to provide a system of justice which is less expensive, free from protracted procedural wrangles, quick and available at the grass-roots level to the common man to render justice to him as enshrined in Article 39A of the constitution, said the minister.
After the bill is introduced, it will be sent to the Standing Committee for further consideration, he added.