Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Lok Adalat creates history by settling 2.61 lakh cases in Karnataka

Topics Covered: Structure, organization and functioning of the Executive and the Judiciary Ministries and Departments of the Government; pressure groups and formal/informal associations and their role in the Polity.

Lok Adalat creates history by settling 2.61 lakh cases in Karnataka:


Context:

The High Court of Karnataka and the Karnataka State Legal Services Authority (KSLSA) have created history in settlement of cases.

Key Points:

  1. A record 2,61,882 cases were settled in a single day at the mega Lok Adalat held on December 19.
  2. This has resulted in a 12.17% reduction of cases pending before courts in taluks and districts, apart from the High Court.
  3. A total of ₹669.95 crore was awarded as compensation or settlement amount by amicably resolving cases related to motor vehicle accident claims, land acquisition, and other civil matters.
  4. The settlements also yielded a revenue of ₹41.45 crore for the State exchequer by way of fine through the compounding of around two lakh pending criminal cases.

What is a Lok Adalat?

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 pre-litigation stage are settled/ compromised amicably.

  • The Lok Adalats are formed to fulfil the promise given by the preamble of the Indian Constitution– securing Justice – social, economic and political of every citizen of India.

Constitutional basis:

  • Article 39A of the Constitution provides for free legal aid to the deprived and weaker sections of the society and to promote justice on the base of equal opportunity.
  • Articles 14 and 22(1) of the Constitution also make it compulsory for the State to guarantee equality before the law.

Statutory provisions:

Under the Legal Services Authorities Act, 1987 Lok Adalats have been given statutory status.

Final award:

The decision made by the Lok Adalats is considered to be a verdict of a civil court and is ultimate and binding on all parties.

No appeal:

  • There is no provision for an appeal against the verdict made by Lok Adalat.
  • But, they are free to initiate litigation by approaching the court of appropriate jurisdiction by filing a case by following the required procedure, in exercise of their right to litigate.

Court fee:

There is no court fee payable when a matter is filed in a Lok Adalat. If a matter pending in the court of law is referred to the Lok Adalat and is settled subsequently, the court fee originally paid in the court on the complaints/petition is also refunded back to the parties.

Nature of Cases to be Referred to Lok Adalat:

  • Any case pending before any court.
  • Any dispute which has not been brought before any court and is likely to be filed before the court.

Provided that any matter relating to an offence not compoundable under the law shall not be settled in Lok Adalat.

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. Who organises National Lok Adalat?
  2. What are Permanent Lok Adalats?
  3. Composition of Lok Adalats.
  4. Nature of cases to be referred to Lok Adalat.
  5. Article 39A of the Constitution.
  6. Decisions made by Lok Adalats- are they binding?

Mains Link:

Discuss the significance of Lok Adalats as an effective dispute resolution institution in present scenario.

Sources: the Hindu.