Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday assured Chief Justice J S Khehar that his government will make all efforts to back his resolve to reduce burden on the judiciary and pendency of cases.
"I assure the chief justice that government will back his 'sankalp' (resolve) to bring down the burden on the judiciary and reduce pendency of cases," Modi said while speaking at the closing ceremony of Allahabad High Court's sesquicentennial celebrations here.
Noting that he felt that there was an element of "pain" in the speech of Justice Khehar, Modi said the government had done away with 1200 old laws to find a way out of the maze of the statues and also help the judiciary in modernising the system.
Modi also exhorted the use of technology in judiciary and said it will not just empower the judicial system but also save money and time.
He asked the people working on startups to bring about innovations to strengthen the judicial system.
Modi also said video conferencing should be used for deposition made in courts by those facing trial, the witnesses and officials to prevent wastage of time and money.
"With the aide of technology, even the judiciary’s work can be made easier. Why shouldn’t we use video-conferencing to communicate instead of transporting prisoners to court... Even start ups can help the judiciary by creating innovative services and apps for them," Modi said.
"Technology is playing a big role in this century and I see technology having a big scope in the judiciary as well. It will empower the judiciary, and save money and time, the Prime Minister said.
He lauded the steps being taken by the chief justice to make use of technology in simplifying the working in the courts and bring about qualitative change.
He appealed to the judiciary, the government and the people to make 2022, the 75th year of Independence, a target year to take the country to greater heights.
Earlier addressing the gathering, Justice Khehar raise the issue of pendency of cases in courts including the Supreme Court and said he was taking steps to reduce the burden on the judiciary.
He asked the judges to consider sitting in courts for five days during vacation to clear at least 10 cases each day and bring down the pendency.
"This way thousands of small matters like matrimonial disputes and mediation cases can be settled and arrears of cases brought down" he said and referred to a system of court management under which pendency of cases in Malaysia had been brought down to one-fifth.
He said he proposes to have three constitution benches during this summer vacation to help reduce the arrears in the apex court.
On the issue of simplification of procedure, Justice Khehar said he is making efforts to make the system paperless in the Supreme Court in a month or so.
The gathering was attended by UP and West Bengal governors Ram Naik and K N Tripathi, Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, UP Chief Minister Yogi Adtiyanath, Allahabad High Court CJI Dilip B Bhosale and members from the legal fraternity.
The year-long sesquicentennial celebrations were inaugurated in March, 2015 by President Pranab Mukherjee.
The Prime Minister arrived at Bamrauli airport on the outskirts of the city at 10:20 am and was received by Ram Naik and Yogi Adityanath, among others.
He was the driven to the High Court premises, about 20 kms from the airport, where he was joined by Chief Justice of India J S Khehar and Union Minister for Law and Justice Ravi Shankar Prasad and a number of judges of Supreme Court and Justices of various High Courts.
This is the first visit of the Prime Minister to the city after the BJP came to power in the state last month.
From Allahabad, Modi will fly to Jammu and Kashmir to dedicate to the nation India's longest road tunnel on the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway, making it operational for traffic.
It is worth a note that Modi observes a nine-day fast on navratras and lives only on warm water, milk and juice during the period.