Ahmedabad: Emphasizing on the urgent need to expedite the wheels of justice, Chief Justice of India Altamas Kabir said a major problem being faced in delivery of criminal justice was delay and the entire process takes almost 15-16 years.
Delivering Justice P. D. Desai memorial lecture here on Sunday 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."
"And because of inordinate delay, sometimes we see angry reaction from public feeling that something should be done immediately. I hope everybody involved in the process would perform their duty to expedite the wheels of justice," he added.
Citing the horrific incidence of Delhi gangrape, he said, "One such incident took place on December 16 last year in Delhi. First reaction was let us set up fast track courts for the offences against women and girls."
"On January 2, 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.
Justice Kabir also highlighted lack of infrastructure and logistical facilities for courts in the country, high amount of arrears of cases particularly those under the Negotiable Instruments Act. He also expressed concern over lack of awareness about alternate mechanisms like compounding the offences, Lok Adalats and plea-bargaining.