Union Law & Justice Minister Dr. M.Veerappa Moily has reiterated Governments resolve to operationalise reduce the number of undertrail cases soliciting the help of Chief Justices of various high Courts by 2/3rd within a set time frame ending June 30, 2010. Addressing a function to observe National Law Day organized by the Bar Council of India here today the minister said work in this connection is underway actively.
Quoting philosopher Finely Peter Dunne –“Don’t think a poor man has a chance in court? Of course he has. He has the same chance there that he ha outside. He has a splendid poor man’s chance”, Dr. Moily said access to justice as one pillar of guaranteeing equal protection of law. The Minister urged all the State Governments/UT Administrations, the Bench and the Bar to ensure the fulfillment of target. He emphasized to institute permanent measures to ensure that the miscarriage of justice that has given rise to such a large population of under trials does not occurs He said “a necessary corollary to the guarantee of the rule of law is Article 14 of the Constitution-The State Shall not deny to any person EQUALITY before the law or equal protections of the laws within the territory of India”. Unfortunately, Justice delivery system in its working in India has not been able to guarantee this protection to every citizen- man, woman and child, the minister added.
The minister termed women as soul and children as future of the nation and said there are in excess of 300,000 under trials in India- 70 per cent of the jail population, only 30 per cent are people actually convicted and imprisoned. Of the under trials, roughly about 200,000 inmates have been in jail for several years, essentially because of delays in the justice delivery system.