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CJI Altamas Kabir says delay in justice a major challenge

Chief Justice of India Altamas Kabir said on Sunday a major problem being faced in delivery of criminal justice was delay ‘where the entire process takes almost 15-16 years’.

Delivering Justice P D Desai memorial lecture here on ‘Administration of Criminal Justice’, Justice Kabir said, ‘Today a major problem is delay where the entire process, from the time when an offence is registered to the stage of final conviction, takes almost 15 to 16 years.’

‘I hope everybody involved in the process would perform their duty to expedite the wheels of justice,’ he added.

‘....this (delay) is the main thing which bothers judiciary. And because of inordinate delay, sometimes we see angry reaction from public feeling that something should be done immediately,’ he said while elaborating the challenges in administration of criminal justice.

‘One such incident took place on 16 December last year in Delhi. First reaction was let us set up fast track courts for the offences against women and girls,’ he said citing the incidence of gang rape in a moving bus which created widespread outrage.

‘On 2 January, first fast track court was set up in one of the district in New Delhi to take up such cases. Then you might have come across media reports that trial in one case was completed in 9 days and trial completed in another case in 13 days,’ he added.

‘Something like this happens and people start reacting. It is a knee jerk reaction...But one can not blame any one part of the system. Look at the large population we have, which is at present 1.20 billion and it is increasing,’ he added.
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