Prime Minister Narendra Modi today addressed the 11th Joint Conference of the Chief Ministers and Chief Justices at Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi.
Terming the Joint Conference as a beautiful illustration of the intricacies of the Indian Constitution, Prime Minister acknowledged the roles played by the Judiciary and the Legislative in harmony. He acknowledged that the Legislature protects the aspirations of the Indian citizens, while the Judiciary plays the extremely crucial role of protecting the spirit and the provisions of the Indian Constitution.
The Prime Minister said that "There have been multiple Joint Conferences of Chief Ministers of the States & Chief Justices of the High Courts, and these conferences have always produced new and innovative ideas for the betterment of India. However, this particular conference is distinct, as this conference is taking place at the juncture where India is celebrating the Amrit Mahotsav, i.e., 75 years of independence. In these 75 years of independence, the roles of the judiciary and the executive alike have been better specified, and their relationship has evolved at every necessary juncture to better govern the country. On the occasion of the Amrit Mahotsav, when India is making new promises and dreaming new dreams, even the governance must look towards the future."
The Prime Minister urged that the legislature and the judiciary must prioritize working in the direction of improving the legal system of India, such that the system is able to fulfil the aspirations and expectations of the India of 2047, when India completes 100 years of independence.
Acknowledging the growing importance of technology worldwide for citizen rights and development, the Prime Minister appreciated the use of technology by the judiciary and stated that the government believes that the use of technology by the judiciary, like the E-Courts project, is an important part of the Digital India mission. He requested the Chief Ministers and the Chief Justices of the High Courts to prioritize the Digital India mission, and help it progress.
The Prime Minister further urged that tech-friendly human resources are a necessity for the futuristic approach and technological development. To that end, he said "technology is a natural part of the youth's lifestyle. It must be ensured that technology must become the youth's expertise and professional strength. In many countries, law universities are teaching the subjects of blockchain technology, electronic discovery, cyber security, robotics, artificial intelligence, and bio-ethics. It is the responsibility of us all to ensure that the legal education in India is in accordance with such international standards."
Further, stating that the basis of harmonious governance in any country is the law of that country, the Prime Minister urged that the law must be connected to the common man and in a language that the common man understands. Therefore, the Prime Minister announced that it is being endeavoured to ensure for every law passed in legal terminology, an equivalent in the common man's parlance is also issued, at the same time.
In furtherance of the same thought, the Prime Minister urged that the Supreme Court and High Court judgements must also be released in local languages, in a manner which can easily be understood by the common man, since this would help ensure that the common man does not feel disconnected from the law.
Addressing the problem of language barrier in legal and technical education, the Prime Minister urged that such education must be provided in local languages as well, which would ensure that everyone has a fair opportunity to avail their societal right to education, thereby indicating that justice is not availed only at the doors of the Courts.
Further, the Prime Minister said that the complexities of law pose difficulties to the common man, and noted that in order to combat the same the Centre had eliminated 1450 archaic and outdated laws, but the States had removed only 75 such laws. To that end, the Prime Minister urged the States to remove unnecessary procedural and outdated laws, to ensure the ease of living of their citizens.
The Prime Minister appealed to the Chief Ministers and Chief Justices of High Courts to include the aspect of human sympathy to the law, especially in cases where people belonging to poor families are stuck in jails owing to the pendency of their trials.
He also acknowledged the importance of Mediation in shortening the length of justice proceedings, reducing the burden on the judiciary, while maintaining the social fabric, especially since Mediation has been a part of Indian culture for centuries. To that end, the Prime Minister said that "We have introduced the Mediation Bill as an umbrella legislation in the Parliament. With our legal expertise, we can become global leaders in solving legal disputes by way of Mediation. We can place a model before the world."
Finally, the Prime Minister said that he was confident that with the right balance of ancient practices and modern technology, India will be able to boast of an even better legal system by 2047, and assured that the Central Government and State Governments will do everything necessary to help realise the short term and long term ideas and goals that are produced as a result of the conference, and play their roles towards helping create such a system that meets the aspirations of India 2047.
Earlier in the day. the Chief Justice of India, N V Ramana had addressed the Conference.