Dharmender Rana, MCPC observer, A.A.Nandgaonkar, Trainer Judge (Potential Trainer), along with the Judicial Officer of Nagaland as trainee, officials and staffs of the NSLSA during the programme of Training for Referral Judges. (Photo Courtesy: NSLSA)
Kohima, February 9 (MExN): One day training for Referral Judges was held under the aegis of Mediation & Conciliation Project Committee (MCPC), Supreme Court of India in collaboration with the Nagaland State Legal Services Authority (NSLSA) on February 9 at the Hotel De Oriental Grand, Kohima.
A press release from the NSLSA stated that in this training, 18 in-service Judicial Officers of Nagaland which includes Principal District & Sessions Judge, Principal Judge, Family Court and Special Judge, PC Act & TDP Vigilance, District & Sessions Judge, Registrar of Kohima bench, Member Secretary of NSLSA, Chief Judicial magistrate and Civil Judge participated and received training under the MCPC’s structured curriculum of ‘Mediation Training for Referral Judges’.
Mezivolu T Therieh, NJS, Member Secretary, Nagaland State Legal Services Authority delivered the welcome address and thanked the Mediation & Conciliation Project Committee, Supreme Court of India for imparting the one day mediation training for the Referral Judges, a first of its kind in the State with all the in-service Nagaland Judicial Officers participating at the programme.
The training was piloted by a Trainer Judge (Potential Trainer), AA Nandgaonkar, Judicial Officer, Maharashtra and administered by an MCPC Observer, Dharmender Rana, Additional Registrar, Supreme Court of India & Member Secretary, Mediation & Conciliation Project Committee (MCPC), Supreme Court of India.
Importance of Mediation training
MCPC Observer, Dharmender Rana introduced the Mediation training by pointing out the preamble to the Constitution of India where it is seen that securing justice to all citizen is the primary goal of the Nation.
Now, with the three crores of cases pending in the country, it will take another 300 hundred years to dispose of all the pending cases with the present justice delivery system in India. The need of the hour is to resort to Mediation process which promises to secure the spirit of the Preamble by assurance of speedy justice to the citizens of the country. The role of Referral Judges is vital in bringing those cases which can be settled through Mediation process which is one of the most effective Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) methods. He emphasized the desirability to take advantage of the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) which provide flexibility, saved valuable time and money and avoid the stress of lengthy trials.
The MCPC Observer further explained about the various method of dispute resolution such as arbitration, conciliation, mediation and Lok Adalat. Mediation being a part of the alternative dispute resolution mechanism could be one of the best strategies for speedy resolution of dispute and to lessen the burden of pendency of cases in the courts.
Process of mediation
The MCPC Trained Potential Trainer (Trainer Judge) AA Nandgaonkar, Judicial Officer from Maharashtra showed the guidelines for the referral judges and check list on various process of mediation to the Judicial Officers. The training highlighted on various mediation rules and procedures and the role of referral judges as a Judges who refer a particular case for settlement through any of the ADR methods. The role of a Referral Judge is of great significance in court-referred mediation and success of mediation process will depend on the proper selection and reference of suitable cases by referral judges, he added.
Concept of mediation
The press release stated that the concept of mediation received legislative recognition in India for the first time in India in the Industrial Dispute Act, 1947. And Arbitration, as a dispute resolution process was recognised as early as 1879 and also found a place in section 89 of the Civil Procedure Code of 1908. The Legislature by enacting the Legal Services Authority Act, 1987 vested the State Legal Services Authorities with duties to encourage the settlement of disputes by way of negotiations, arbitration and conciliation. Appropriate cases produced in a Court which are suitable for mediation are referred by the Judge known as referral Judge for mediation process.
“Mediation is not uncommon in our Naga society and is indirectly practiced in all decision making and resolutions of conflicts by the village elders and village council members,” NSLSA stated.
The first Mediation centre at Gauhati High Court, Kohima Bench was recently inaugurated at Gauhati High Court, Kohima Bench by Justice Sharad A. Bobde, Judge, Supreme Court of India in his maiden visit to the state on December 1, 2018.