“Justice is the constant and perpetual will to allot to every man his due.” – Ulpian.
If you want to be fair, you should demand the right to justice. Over time, justice has come to the rescue of those who have been rejected for basic human rights. Protests for the necessity of justice are common, and people actively participate in these grave but necessary peaceful protests. Justice had also inspired children who seek refuge in superheroes who fight for justice and mercy. If there is no justice, life is unjust.
WHAT IS JUSTICE DELAYED IS JUSTICE DENIED?
Justice delayed is almost always justice denied, whether in criminal or civil cases. With the passage of time, the stakes in the outcome of a case become diluted, if not non-existent with the lengthy trial process that plagues our courts. As it was discussed by Martin Luther King in Birmingham jail that delayed justice is equal to injustice this saying is apt for the Indian legal system where time is ignored by the whole system. Often people get justice after a long period of time when it is redundant or useless for them. It is the right of people to get timely justice. There are many loopholes and complexity in our judicial system of which people find it difficult to fight against injustice.
There are many cases in India like Harshad Mehta, Ram Mandir Babri masjid, Soren Son, Mumbai bomb blast 1993 and lakhs of other cases in which decades have been passed. The case of scientist Nambi Narayan required instant decision but due to the somehow reason, it took the productive life span of the great scientist and his team.
There are major reasons like due to inability of sufficient judges from district magistrate to supreme court judges, another one is political interference in the judicial system hinder the system, absence of infrastructure and staff. Political and government unwillingness to improve the judicial system leads to delayed justice. According to the report, it is needed to extend the number of judges by 5 times and if government increase the staff and judges that by only two times it will improve the situation.
Vishnu Tiwari v. State of UP
Vishnu Tiwari, a man from Lalitpur, Uttar Pradesh, who was wrongly convicted in a sexual assault case, was released by the Allahabad High Court after serving 20 years in prison. During this time, his parents and two brothers died, but he was not even allowed to attend their funerals. The Division Bench of the High Court finally announced his release on Wednesday. In 2005, Vishnu appealed against the judgment of the Sessions Court in the High Court, but the case remained pending for 16 years. The case was registered three days after the alleged crime. No injuries were reported to the victim’s private parts. Essentially the case was not registered by the woman but by her husband and father-in-law. Considering the facts and evidence in the record, we believe that the accused was wrongly convicted. Even if he is released can nobody compensate for his loss?
- Most of the evidence in criminal cases are diluted by the time
- People lose trust in the judiciary system and are not able to enjoy early justice due to delayed decisions
WHAT IS JUSTICE HURRIED IS JUSTICE BURIED?
We need laws and justice to be able to work together peacefully. There is a reason why judicial proceedings must be conducted in a certain way. There is a good chance that justice will not be served. I feel it’s better to wait for enough proof than to hurriedly convict a person. If the judgement is delayed due to lack of proof, then it shouldn’t be deemed injustice. But in case the judgement is delayed due to corruption then sure that is injustice.
Nowadays there are instances of speedy trials and cases being heard on a day-to-day basis. India has a population of 1 billion but the workforce in the judiciary is struggling to be at par with a number of cases being filed every day. The govt needs to make proper recruitment so that the seats don’t lie vacant and should also make provisions to increase the number of positions. Until these things are done, justice will obviously be delayed or in other terms denied.
Justice hurried is justice buried’ the Delhi High Court remarked while censuring a trial court here for hurriedly examining 22 of 24 witnesses in a day in a case of murder of a 14-year-old boy, leading to a questionable judgment convicting two innocent men. A Bench of Justice S. Muralidhar and Justice I.S. Mehta quashed the trial court’s October 2014 judgment in which it had convicted two men for the crime and sent them to life imprisonment. The case relates to the murder of a boy at a vacant plot in Ram Garh at Jahangir in Delhi on November 8, 2012. When the police reached the spot, the deceased’s trousers were found pulled down to the ankles and there were injury marks on his neck and chest.
The Bench questioned why the trial court rushed through the prosecution evidence in a case of such serious nature, resulting in a serious miscarriage of justice. It noted that the trial court committed a “serious error” by examining a disproportionately large number of prosecution witnesses on a single day in the judge’s enthusiasm for speeding up the proceeding. “The court finds merit in the contention of counsel for the appellants [convicts] that grave prejudice was caused to the accused by the above ‘super-fast’ track procedure adopted by the trial judge,” the Bench said. Noting that the circumstances do not form a complete chain, the Bench acquitted both the men.
The pressure on trial courts to resolve cases within a year, when combined with limited resources, has the potential to be disastrous. One erroneous conviction with a sentence of more than two years in prison would result in the immediate disqualification of an incumbent MP or MLA, tarnishing the reputation he or she has built over decades. It will not clean up politics; rather, all politicians, good and bad, will be cleaned up.
- There is a need to build fast-track courts and set upper limits on lawyer fees.
- By increasing transparency in the judicial process.
- Expanding the role of information technology in the legal system.
- Raising the bar for law graduates.
- Lawyers should be brief, bright, and off the clock.
According to the apparent logic of the quoted axiom, the answer is YES. However, justice denied due to delay is not the same as ‘injustice was done’ by the court. Reread that carefully. Delays occur due to factors beyond the Courts’ control. They cannot be held solely responsible. The entire system of investigation and administration of justice must be reviewed and streamlined. It will not be easy, but it must occur. Certainly, we must take the time to make sure the determinations are right but, if it drags on and on, as some cases seem to in Courts, the victims get no justice. Sometimes these victims are the Community at large and, sometimes even, more direct victims of a criminal repeating crimes while his justice is delayed.
Author(s) Name: Srija Singh (Amity Law School Noida)