In the governance of a democracy, judiciary plays a pivotal role. The judicial system is the corner stone of India’s democratic polity. The Constitution entrusts the task of enforcement of the fundamental rights guaranteed under the Constitution with the Judiciary by giving it the power of review of legislative and administrative actions. In fact, the judiciary assumes a significant and special importance by virtue of its very task of judgment and power of interpreting the constitutional provisions.
Good governance and effective justice are Tweedledee and Tweedledum. The judiciary is an imperative part of governance and an efficient judiciary is the paramount promise of healthy society. In a democracy like India, with the sharp growth in number of laws and cases, the Court system is vehemently under pressure. Land revenue is an important source of income of the Government, as it is the cause of generating thousands of disputes in our country. In order to reduce the heavy demand on Court time, efforts need to be made to resolve the disputes by resorting to Alternative Dispute Resolution Methods – arbitration, mediation and conciliation – before they enter the portals of the court.
The Government of Rajasthan has come up with an innovative and effective solution to dispose off the lakhs of pending revenue cases through the alternative dispute resolution methods. Known as ‘Rajasv Lok Adalats’ or ‘Revenue Lok Adalats’, these camps are being organized at every Gram Panchayat in the State under the ‘Nyay Aapke Dwar’ (Justice at your doorstep) campaign. Known for reformative approach and effective translation of good governance, the Chief Minister of Rajasthan Vasundhara Raje has made every possible effort for the effective implementation and expansion of the campaign. Before the campaign, over four lakh cases were pending in revenue courts with a majority of them (87 per cent) in the sub-division magistrate courts. After the completion of first phase of Nyay Aapke Dwar last year, Over 16000 camps were organized in the year 2015 & 21 lakh 43 thousand revenue cases were disposed, much above the set target. 61 Gram Panchayats were even declared litigation-free. Such prodigious results reflect the arduous efforts and steady emphasis by the Rajasthan Chief Minister. More so, the Rajasthan Cabinet gave approval to conducting the second phase of Revenue Lok Adalat camps from 9th of May to 1st July this year.
At the start of the campaign, CM Raje had shared her experiences during the Suraaj Sankalp Yatra and recollected how undisposed revenue cases badly affected the farmers and land holders of the state. “I felt this pain during the Suraj Sankalp Yatra. Then only, I decided that if I get an opportunity to serve the people of Rajasthan, I would get the farmers rid off this problem. Aiming this, I announced in the budget for speedy disposal of revenue cases,” she had said. Now, the revenue Lok Adalats shall be launched every summer.
Happy to share – II phase of the ‘Revenue Lok Adalat – Nyay Aapke Dwar’ campaign to start from May 9 to July 1, 2016.
— Vasundhara Raje (@VasundharaBJP) April 12, 2016
Over 16000 camps were organized in the year 2015 & more than 21 lakh cases revenue cases were disposed under the ‘Nyay Aapke Dwar’ campaign.
— Vasundhara Raje (@VasundharaBJP) April 12, 2016
Under the Nyay Aapke Dwar campaign, conciliation amongst concerned parties are counseled and cases are disposed the very same day under one roof. All Ministers in-charge of the districts are launching this campaign in their respective districts.
The second phase of Rajasthan’s Nyay Aapke Dwaar campaign started this month on the 9th. In a matter of few days, exemplary results have emerged. A 100-year-old Pemi Devi in Nagore’s Jiliya gram panchayat beamed as she narrated how she had been waiting for two and a half decades for decision on a property dispute. She said in a local dialect, “Daam bhi koni lagya, kaam bhi ho gyo, bhala vhe Raj ko”, roughly translating into “I didn’t have to pay, my work is also done – God bless the Government!” 60-year-old Prahlad Taili from the Donda gram panchayat of Jhalarapatan received his khatedari rights and got his name registered in the revenue records. The Atal Seva Kentra at Bithoor, where CM Raje went on a surprise check, was full of happy and relieved faces. 49 people from one village came together to solve a land dispute that existed since the last 50 years. Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje, happy with the results, announced that district administrations with highest number of litigation-free villages would get additional support from the Government.
While in a striking contrast, Allahabad High Court recently directed Uttar Pradesh government to appoint judicial officers for speedy adjudication disposal of revenue cases pendency of which had assumed alarming proportions in the state, the Rajasthan Government’s efforts towards making the lives of the people in rural areas easier and better are applaud worthy. It is good to see how Rajasthan Government has started building a strong foundation for a protected, strengthened and streamlined judicial system right from the lowest level – indispensable if we want to preserve the rule of the law and the democratic basis of our polity.