SRINAGAR, JUNE 19: To speed up the process of trial in the court and improve the quality of prosecution, the Minister for Rural Development & Panchayati Raj and Law & Justice Abdul Haq Khan today convened a meeting to review the disposal of criminal cases.
The Minister said that government is committed to provide fair trial and speedy justice to people and in this regard several steps are being taken. He said that efforts are on to improve the quality of prosecution and trial in the courts so that criminal cases are brought to the logical conclusion.
The meeting was attended by Advocate General, Mr. Jehangir Iqbal Ganai, Principal Secretary Home, Mr. R. K. Goyal, Commissioner Secretary Law, Mr. Mohammad Ashraf Mir, DIG North/South, Director Prosecution J&K, Director Litigation, Joint Directors Prosecution, Chief Prosecuting Officers (CPO), Senior Prosecuting Officers (SPO), Public Prosecutors and other officers.
The Minister expressed concern over poor rate of convictions in criminal cases and stressed upon all Public Prosecutors and prosecuting officers to improve their record and ensure better rate of conviction.
He said that the Public Prosecutors and Prosecuting Officers play an important role in dispensation of criminal justice in the State adding that the increasing crime rate would be checked only if the guilty are brought to justice and a strong deterrent message is given to all that one has to bear the consequences of his actions.
The Minister expressed his concern over the large number of cases lost by government in the courts and poor rate of convictions in criminal cases. “Despite giving every facility to public prosecutors, they fail to win cases for government. But this needs to be changed. From now on we will review the performance of every public prosecutor and if we feel they are not giving results, we will remove them,” said Abdul Haq. “Everything will be now performance based for officers. We won’t just remove Public Prosecutors, we will recommend cancellation of licenses of such lawyers too.”
He said that from now on every officer will have to explain why he failed to deliver in his particular case or work. While reviewing the status of prosecution cases of each district, he warned all Public Prosecutors and Prosecuting Officers to do their home work properly and improve the conviction ratio. The Minister ordered disengagement of six Public Prosecutors with immediate effect for non performance. The Public Prosecutors whose services have been disengaged are Syed Mujeeb Andrabi, 3rd Additional Public Prosecutor Srinagar, Mr. Wasim Makhdoomi, 4th Additional Public Prosecutor Srinagar, Ms. Nuzhat Mughloo, Additional Public Prosecutor TADA/POTA Srinagar, Mr. Suhail Ashraf Mir, Additional Public Prosecutor Baramulla, Pir Saifuddin, Public Prosecutor Ganderbal and Molvi Shabir Ahmad, Public Prosecutor Shopian.
The Minister said that he will be having district wise review meeting of all criminal cases to streamline the working of the department.
The Minister informed the meeting that Government has decided to constitute a State level monitoring committee
headed by Advocate General of the State and police zone level monitoring committees headed by DIG of the concerned zone to monitor the performance of Public Prosecutors and Prosecuting Officers. The Minister said that henceforth the continuance of a Public Prosecutor or the Prosecuting officer shall be decided on the basis of the reports of the monitoring committees about their performance.
Mr Haq asked the officials for filling of replies/responses by Departments in the court in time bound manner so that passing of adverse order against the Government is avoided.
The Minster also laid emphasis on professional training and sensitization of investigating officers so that fool proof case are made and presented to the Court. The Minister directed the District Litigation Officers to actively monitor and coordinate court cases both criminal and civil in the respective districts and send periodic reports to the Department of Law and justice about the performance of Public Prosecutors and prosecuting Officers in the concerned Districts.