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Report No. 230


1.62 We have modern technology, which facilitates us to collect a lot of information and making it available to Chief Justices, so that they are able to allocate their manpower efficiently. Digital techniques and tools are at our disposal, to collect information from an entire database from the time a case is instituted in a court of law to the final stages of appeal. Building up a judicial database will enable us to assess the performance of the courts as an institution, and the Chief Justices will be able to use it to assess the individual performance of judges. This will go a long way in identifying what the backlog is, what types of cases are clogging the dockets, etc.

1.63 As a part of digital resource management, we have home pages and websites, where judgments of courts can be instantly posted. At the moment, it takes a long time for courts to give copies of judgments; with being instantly posted on the home page, they will be easily and readily available to everyone. This is an important step for using the technology effectively, to expedite the process of judgments being accessible.

1.64 Now, digital technology offers us new packages like database, ERP tools, court management practices - these will help in increasing the productivity of courts; video-conferencing - through which we can record evidence. There is, therefore, vast technology available for the courtroom, for enhancing the quality of justice, and finding the truth - after all, justice is the finding of truth. Coming back to accountability, like any institution, judiciary is not devoid of vices, but still they are akin to temples of justice.

But still, corruption cannot be acceptable. How does one deal with corruption? Impeachment was thought to be the 28remedy to deal with errant judges, but we found that it is not working well; we have to find some internal institutional mechanism, a sort of peer committee, enabling judges to deal with such issues. We are not very sure that increasing number of courts and judges will ameliorate the situation, unless there is a simultaneous productivity increase in courts! We feel strongly about the issue!

1.65 Judicial reform, as is being looked at, is essential for the country's overall development, not just economic; in India, the problem is more human than economic. Ninety per cent of the litigation is by rural people; parties are fighting for even half an acre of land; families are being ruined. Therefore, there has to be an overall solution.

Reforms in the Judiciary - Some Suggestions Back

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