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Two day Conference on ‘India’s Progressive Path in Administration of Criminal Justice System’ concludes

Assam Governor Gulab Chand Katria and Low Secretary Rajeev Mani greeting Gov Gulab Chand Katria (Photo: ANI)

The two-day-long conference on the theme of ‘India’s Progressive Path in the Administration of the Criminal Justice System’ organised by the Department of Legal Affairs, Ministry of Law and Justice, concluded late in the evening on Sunday in Guwahati.

In his valedictory address, the Governor of Assam, Gulab Chand Kataria, said that the learning and takeaways from the conference will have a catalytic impact on the effective implementation of these three new laws. They mark a tectonic shift from the earlier laws that were meant to subserve the colonial interest and thus instil pride in the heart of every Indian by shedding the vestiges of colonial legal legacy not only in Assam but also in the entire region.

He also emphasised how these laws have been made humane in their approach. He also made special mention of the provisions relating to hit-and-run cases, crimes against women and doing away with the provisions of sedition.

Addressing the gathering, Justice Vijay Bishnoi, Chief Justice of Gauhati High Court, mentioned that the new laws are a step in the right direction in modernising and contemporaryizing our legal system. Their effectiveness shall be tested over a period of time once they are implemented, any improvements that might be required could be considered as we go along. The law has to percolate to the last man on the street to be effective. In this context, he appreciated the outreach initiatives made by the Ministry of Law and Justice through conferences like this. He also detailed the various steps taken by the Gauhati High Court in collaboration with the Assam Judicial Academy for the capacity building of judicial officers.

Justice Manas Ranjan Pathak and Judge Gauhati High Court flagged the need for sensitising the general public and the training and orientation of all those involved in the implementation of these new laws.

Justice (Rtd) Mir Alfaz Ali, Vice Chancellor NLUJA, Assam, highlighted in his speech that the new laws can be successfully implemented in the interest of the common man only if there is a change in the mindset of the implementing stakeholders, who must understand the philosophy and spirit of these new laws, which mark a transition from the colonial to the nationalistic and citizen-centric approach.

At the outset of the valedictory session, Rajiv Mani, Secretary, the Department of Legal Affairs, summed up the deliberations of the two-day conference and highlighted the points that emerged therefrom.