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Reducing delay in justice

THE DISTRICT Consumer Forum is gradually attaining the reputation of a relief provider to the citizens, who had been in the queue since long and waiting for the decision. The long list of a large number of cases are being disposed of quickly by the chairman and the member judge.
By Padmini Singh | None, Allahabad
PUBLISHED ON APR 18, 2006 12:43 AM IST

THE DISTRICT Consumer Forum is gradually attaining the reputation of a relief provider to the citizens, who had been in the queue since long and waiting for the decision. The long list of a large number of cases are being disposed of quickly by the chairman and the member judge.

"The court is being run regularly now and the number of pending cases has been brought down from 6000 (about 10 months ago) to 4000 now," said Chhaya Chakravarty, Member Judge.

"Most of the cases in which the final decision has been given, belong to the year 1998-99 and thus although after a long gap, the citizens have been relieved," she added.

At present the forum consists of one member judge and Chairman Janardan Pandey, who is a retired additional district judge (ADJ). "The regular functioning in the court has helped us perform better and within three four days another member judge will join us and then the proceedings will be quicker as the condition of incomplete quorum will arise rarely," she added.

According to the rules, the quorum is complete with two people, either the two member judges or the chairman and a member judge.

According to Chakravarty, a minimum of 100 to 150 cases are filed each day and sometimes the number exceeds the limit.

However, a case still takes almost five months to get decided. "This duration is significant and it is not possible to reduce it as there are certain processes which need to be handled. One month is given for the opposition to submit the written statement and it takes almost 40 days for the final decision," she added.

The member judge was, however, dissatisfied with the attitude of the private banks and insurance companies whose cases are registered in large numbers.

"Their tactics result in delay as they keep changing their advocates very often and the new lawyer takes time to understand the entire case," said Chakravarty.

"The harassment at the hands of the private banks and insurance companies often forces the citizens to seek our help. There are also cases registered against ADA," she said.

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