Need to revamp the judicial system

You have made some very good comments in your editorial “Justice on sale” regarding the scandalous conduct of a Metropolitan Magistrate in issuing arrest warrants against the President and the Chief Justice of India. The number of such back sheep, as you have described them, is, however, not so small in the lower judiciary as you seem to believe and it is increasing everyday, thereby eroding the confidence of the people in the administration of justice in the country.

The fact that it takes at least one or two decades in this country for the law courts to pass a final judicial order in any important civil or criminal case is well known. The media has often reported delays in dispensing justice and convicting the accused persons or giving relief to citizens harassed by arbitrary abuse of discretionary powers by the police, the politician or the bureaucrat. However, neither the Union Government nor the apex court has ever given adequate importance to this important fundamental right of a citizen to seek timely justice through law courts.



The reasons for this increasing malaise in the lower judiciary are also well known to the district-level judicial and executive officers and also to the advocates and the public at large, but the men who matter in the government are in the judiciary seem to be unaware of the ground realities.

The remedy lies in revamping the entire judicial system so as to make the judicial officers more accountable for their increasing acts of omission and commission for personal gratification.

R.S. Malik, Panchkula

Law of contempt

In your editorial “Justice on sale” you have rightly observed that it is not fair to tar the entire lower judiciary with the same brush in light of the conduct of the magistrate in Ahmedabad. In a society where a man is judged by his material possessions and not by the ethical standards he maintains, the judicial system cannot remain untouched by the virus of corruption.

Due to the existence of the contempt of court law, it is difficult to vent your feelings. The need of the hour is to evolve a policy wherein the citizens should be encouraged to bring lapses on the part of lower judicial officers to the notice of the competent authority for administrative action.

S.C. Chabba, Ropar

Insensitive to criminality

Apropos your editorial “Killers on the train” (Jan 28), tolerance and indifference have brought us humans to a stage where we are insensitive to injustice, corruption and criminality. Most of us are timid, selfish and coward. In spite of the fact that the brave heroes like Manish Mishra, Satyander Dubey and many others appear in the news column, a majority of us prefer not to protest against evil and turn a blind eye to wrongdoings as long as it does not affect us personally.

Most of us follow the principle: If ignorance is a bliss, it is folly to be wise. If corruption is a bliss, it is folly to be honest.

Travel by a train or a bus or passing through some other crowded areas has always been risky for girls and families because you invariably come across drunken goons and cops, who try to hassle you. Only a few dare to challenge criminals and have to face the consequences of being ridiculed, isolated or killed, even eyewitnesses are eliminated, for the evil ones to live after them. Mishra (21) was killed in a brutal manner by 12 drunk men and that too in the presence of 60 mute spectators. More stunning was that his body kept lying untouched for about 20 hours and action came only at the behest of the PMO.

A severe punishment to the culprits, protection to the witnesses, high rewards for persons who dare to fight evils and the government’s commitment to provide safe travel are required to prevent such incidents.

S.K. Aggarwal, Abohar

Helping senior citizens

The drastic cut in the rate of interest on deposits with banks and post offices during the previous year has affected senior citizens. The Varishtha Pension Bima Yojana (VPBY) suffers from many handicaps and hence is no consolation for their sufferings.

First, Rs 2,66,665 will have to remain fixed during one’s life-time to earn Rs 2,000 every month. This deprives the depositor of utilising his own money in emergency. Secondly, the rate of return is low and does not match with the constant rising cost of daily needs such as medical, food, house maintenance, petrol, phone and electricity bills. This has eroded the real value of money. And thirdly, restricting the scheme to only one eligible person in a family is against the spirit of the scheme of giving relief to senior citizens.

If the government is interested to help them, the rate of interest in the scheme should be raised to 11 per cent a year. They should be allowed to invest individually. Withdrawal from the scheme should be made optional on lesser rate of interest for various bands of periods after the two-and-a-half-years of lock-in-period as in the case of Kisan Vikas Patras.

S.L. ARORA, Jalandhar City

Shame on doctors

The news-item “Dead man disappears from the hospital” (Jan 19) looked more like a film script. It is very astonishing that the man was sent to the mortuary after being declared dead which, in fact, was not by the doctors. Doesn’t it represent the pity state of government hospitals?

The other day, I was reading an article by a senior doctor which inter alia said that in spite of strenuous efforts done by a doctor in case of an emergency, the inwards of a deceased person dragged him in unnecessary litigation for being negligent. However, the Hisar incident has brought ignominy to this noble profession and has vindicated the stand which most of the people hold. Efforts should be made to improve the quality of services with a sense of urgency to restore people’s faith and confidence on the doctors.


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