Law must adopt itself to changed requirements: President

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Bangalore, Feb 1 (UNI) President Pratibha Patil today said law cannot be a static-body of rules but must adapt itself to changed requirements so as to serve its purpose in a better way.

Delivering her address at the first anniversary celebrations of the Bangalore Mediation Centre here, she said since the purpose of law was to serve the ever-changing needs of the community, there was a constant requirement to maintain a balanced relationship between the legal system, delivery of justice and social needs.

''An important element of a 'friendly legal system' is to offer simplified options to litigants so that justice is neither delayed nor denied to them'', she added.

Ms Patil said currently, a combination of factors had resulted in making judicial remedy a time-consuming process and it was sometimes said that people were leaving behind their children a 'legacy of litigation.

She said the formal court system in the country was currently overwhelmed. Many factors had contributed to this, such as, criminal justice reforms, new substantive laws, new civil rights, new forms of cognizable claims and also because of the fact that citizens were aware of their rights and entitlements.

She said with a backlog of more than 30 million cases, it takes years for a case to be heard and resolved. ''And hence Parliament amended Section 89 of the Civil Procedure Code to redress the situation and introduced Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) mechanisms, which included Arbitration, Conciliation, Judicial Settlement and Mediation,'' she added.

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