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e-Lok Adalats

  • Category
    Polity & Governance
  • Published
    16th Jul, 2020

Chhattisgarh becomes the first state to start e-Lok Adalats.

Context

  • Chhattisgarh becomes the first state to start e-Lok Adalats.

More on News

  • Chhattisgarh has set a new milestone at the time of ongoing Covid-19 pandemic with the state high court organizing nation’s first state-level e-Lok Adalat and disposing nearly of 2270 cases by resolving cases through mutual agreement through video conferencing.
  • Chhattisgarh State Legal Services Authority (CGSLSA) confirmed that over 5,067 cases were heard in the e-Lok Adalat and a settlement amount of about Rs 43.72 crore was made.
  • As many as 195 benches, including two benches of the High Court, were set up in 23 districts to resolve matters in e-Lok Adalat.
  • In e-Lok Adalat, the parties and lawyers will be able to sit in their respective homes and connect to the court by video conferencing through the given link. If the parties and lawyers have difficulty in connecting through video conferencing, then they have also been given the facility to present their case by making a WhatsApp video call.

Lok Adalat

  • NALSA along with other Legal Services Institutions conducts Lok Adalats. Lok Adalat is one of the alternative dispute redressal mechanisms, it is a forum where disputes/cases pending in the court of law or at the pre-litigation stage are settled/ compromised amicably.
  • Lok Adalats have been given statutory status under the Legal Services Authorities Act, 1987. Under the said Act, the award (decision) made by the Lok Adalats is deemed to be a decree of a civil court and is final and binding on all parties and no appeal against such an award lies before any court of law.
  • If the parties are not satisfied with the award of the Lok Adalat though there is no provision for an appeal against such an award, but they are free to initiate litigation by approaching the court of appropriate jurisdiction by filing a case by following the required procedure, in the exercise of their right to litigate.
  • There is no court fee payable when a matter is filed in a Lok Adalat.
  • The Lok Adalat shall not decide the matter so referred at its instance, instead the same would be decided based on the compromise or settlement between the parties.
  • The members shall assist the parties independently and impartially in their attempt to reach an amicable settlement of their dispute.

The National Legal Services Authority (NALSA)

  • The National Legal Services Authority (NALSA) has been constituted under the Legal Services Authorities Act, 1987 to monitor and evaluate the implementation of legal aid programmes and to lay down policies and principles for making legal services available under the Act.
  • NALSA was formed on 9 November 1995 under the authority of the Legal Services Authorities Act 1987.
  • Its purpose is to provide free legal services to eligible candidates (defined in Sec. 12 of the Act) and to organize Lok Adalats for the speedy resolution of cases.
  • The Chief Justice of India is patron-in-chief of NALSA while the second senior-most judge of the Supreme Court of India is the Executive-Chairman.
  • There is a provision for similar mechanisms at state and district levels also headed by Chief Justice of High Courts and Chief Judges of District courts respectively.
  • The prime objective of NALSA is speedy disposal of cases and reducing the burden of the judiciary.
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