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‘High cost of litigation a challenge for judiciary’

‘We are in a very strange conundrum whereby the cost of litigation in this country has become increasingly high and it is not only excluding the poor or the disempowered or the marginalised, it is excluding very large swathes of upper middle class or the salaried people,’ Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari said here.

The Ludhiana MP was addressing the newly-enrolled advocates at a function organised by the Punjab and Haryana Bar Council here last night.

‘I often joke to myself that the salary I draw as a minister, God forbid that if I have to go to court or something, I may not be able to afford (referring to his senior lawyer friend Anmol Rattan Sidhu who was present) Mr Sidhu’s daily fees,’ he said.

Pointing that the high cost of litigation is a ‘great challenge’ before the judiciary system, he said, ‘If a person who feels that he is aggrieved and believes he has a chance to have his day in court does not decide to exercise that option merely because he is not able to afford it, I think that is an extremely sad day not only for democracy, but also for legal the profession collectively.’
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