Poonch: Chief Justice, High Court of Jammu Kashmir & Ladakh, Justice N. Kotiswar Singh on Saturday inaugurated 3rd National Lok Adalat at District Court Complex here.
Principal Secretary to Chief Justice, MK Sharma; Member Secretary JKLSA, Amit Kumar Gupta; Principal District & Sessions Judge Poonch, Ashwani Kumar; Deputy Commissioner, Yasin M Choudhary; Senior Superintendent Police, Vinay Kumar, President Bar and all advocates were present on the occasion.
Upon his arrival to court complex, the Chief Justice was given grand welcome as well as guard of honour by JKP.
Speaking on the occasion, the Chief Justice called the Lok Adalat an important legal innovation. He said that in a population of about 140 crore with huge burden of pending cases , the alternative dispute resolution method of Lok Adalat provides public speedy justice.
He highlighted that Lok Adalat is a simple process during which both parties settle their disputes amicably. He added that this system puts an end to the continuing litigation process wherein the party which loses goes in appeal but in the resolution by Lok Adalat, a settlement by agreement puts end on further litigation and both parties win.
He also appreciated the new Legal Aid Defence Counsel (LADC) system wherein public who are poor and cannot afford Advocate in sessions trail of heinous offences are given an Advocate named as Legal Aid Defence Counsel free of cost.
The Chief Justice on the occasion asked the LADCs of district Court Poonch to brief the audience about their work profile. He also directed the trained mediators to brief the audience about the another method of alternate dispute resolution.
The Chief Justice in his address also highlighted the role of para Legal Volunteers which are the bridges between the poor people and judiciary.
Earlier, in his welcome address, Principal District and Sessions Judge gave a brief outlook about the district judiciary.
Deputy Commissioner Poonch also extended gratitude and welcomed the Chief Justice of J&K on behalf of district administration and he assured all cooperation to the district judiciary. He also appreciated the efforts of district legal services Authority (DLSA) Poonch for organising this event and also raising legal awareness among the masses.
The beneficiaries of the MACT cases, Labour Court cases and Revenue Courts were handed over cheques by the Chief Justice. He also inspected the district court complex Poonch and the ADR Centre Poonch.
In the Lok Adalat on Saturday, a total of nine benches were constituted including the revenue and social welfare benches at the district headquarter. A total number of 2432 Cases were taken up in the Lok Adalat including civil, criminal, MACT, Bank Recovery and other cases.
Out of these 2302 cases were settled by all the above mentioned benches by way of mediation, conciliation and compromise. In MACT 10 cases were settled, 50 Criminal cases, 61 Civil cases were also decided and total amount settlement of Rs. 7100650/ was also done.
Later, Chief Justice also interacted with the students from different schools and encouraged them to get more knowledge about their legal rights and duties.
The Chief Justice also distributed about 14 scooties to the specially abled persons identified by the district Social Welfare department.
Later on, the Chief Justice inspected district Jail Poonch and reviewed all the facilities for the jail inmates. He also interacted with Jail inmates.
He also visited Govt. Girls Higher Secondary School, Sheesh Mahal Poonch.
Later on, the Chief Justice held a formal meeting with officers of district administration. He urged for synergy between the executive and the judiciary. He even asked the Deputy Commissioner to arrange Legal literacy clinics in the Panchayat ghars at all panchayat levels in the district Poonch.
The Chief Justice also held an interaction with the bar members. The members raised several issues of legal fraternity with the Chief Justice on the occasion.