Justice: Second edition of Lok Adalat is underway

Opportunity to settle disputes through mutual consent

The District Legal Services Authority has organised Lok Adalat from September 1 to December 6 aiming to dispose 19 types of litigations, including civil, criminal (barring heinous crimes like murder) and service sectors related disputes through mutual settlement.

Addressing the media at the court premises on Monday, Senior Civil Judge Dinesh Hegde, also the Member Secretary of District Legal Services Authority said that the current edition of Lok Adalat has been organised for the second time in the year, after the previous exercise held between January 6 and April 12. A total of 10,189 cases were settled then, Hegde added.

In the ongoing Adalat, it has been decided to improve the success rate. Of the total 69,360 cases pending in various courts (as on September 8), 34,848 are civil suits, and 34,512 criminal petitions.

Earlier, in an attempt to seek the cooperation of the fraternity, especially advocates, Principal District Sessions Court Judge K S Mudgal, also the Chairperson of DLSA said that among the total 43 courts functioning in the district, a majority of 31 were in Law Court’s complex in Mysore, thereby demanding active participation of advocates in large numbers.

Mudgal explained that,in Mysore city courts alone there were 46,974 cases pending, including 23,602 civil suits, and 23,372 criminal cases. The cases varied from criminal compoundable cases, to cheque bounces, motor accidents, matrimonial/ family disputes, labour disputes, land acquisitions, and bank recoveries.

Apart from them, revenue cases pending in various other departments like the office (court) of deputy commissioner, assistant commissioners and tahsildars, and other types of cases related to Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA), water and electricity bills, sales tax, income tax, service matters (gratuity), Forest Act, Railway, were liable for settlement in the Adalat.

Upon settlement of the cases, the court fee will be refunded to the plaintiff, and the order passed will be deemed as final.

Pre-litigation cases

Senior Civil Judge and the Member Secretary of District Legal Services Authority Dinesh Hegde said, the Adalat provides a rare opportunity to settle the disputes under the procedure called ‘Pre-litigation cases’. Here, one can settle the disputes, if any, with the legal aid, without even filing a petition in the court. As many as 602 such cases were settled the during previous Lok Adalat.

The plaintiff may file the application at the office of legal services authority and wait for certain procedures to be fulfilled, as the authorities concerned will accept the case only after studying its merits and demerits. This procedure has proved beneficial for many, especially banks and other financial institutions. Here, the judge plays the role of a facilitator.

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