ORF-Hammurabi & Solomon suggestions to Justice Verma Committee

ORF and Hammurabi & Solomon, a law firm, have submitted a memorandum to Justice Verma Committee, detaling suggestions in the law and the government setup to provide for speedier justice and enhance safety and security of women.

In response to the public notification issued on 26 December 2012 by the Justice J.S. Verma Committee, set up following the massive outrage against the barbaric gangrape in Delhi, Observer Research Foundation and Hammurabi & Solomon, a legal services firm, based in New Delhi, have jointly submitted their suggestions for reviewing the present laws to provide for speedier justice and enhanced punishment in cases of aggravated sexual assault.

The memorandum detailed our feedback and views that have in turn been informed through a rigorous process of internal and external consultations. Many suggestions have been made to ensure safety and security of women.

It suggested a special department/section of ’Gender Justice’ should be created in the Supreme Court to monitor all rape cases exclusively on day-to-day basis.

Another suggestion is that the High Courts, under the direction of the Supreme Court, should create fast track sessions courts which shall deal with cases involving crime against women.

There should be a norm/rule regarding the number of daily substantive hearing; and adjournments should not be granted except in cases of natural calamities.

These courts should take day-to-day hearing of cases and finish the trial within 15 working days. Delay in the passing of judgment should attract with it pecuniary punishment of that specific judge concerned by way of daily fine/fines which should be deducted from the emoluments of the judges concerned.

Another important suggestion is that a Committee of Union Ministers, headed by the Law Minister, must meet once in a month to review the cases.

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