Ju­di­cial sys­tem too faces the chal­lenges

Bhutan Times - - Front Page - Sonam Pen­jor

Al­though the coun­try have the strong ju­di­ciary sys­tem un­der the benev­o­lent guid­ance of The His Majesty the King but still the ju­di­ciary faces lots of chal­lenges which in­cludes the dif­fi­cul­ties aris­ing from nu­mer­ous amend­ments and en­act­ments.

Ac­cord­ing to the An­nual Re­port 2015 of the ju­di­ciary of the King­dom of Bhutan states that Bhutanese have lim­ited un­der­stand­ing of the op­er­a­tion of court sys­tems. It states that ap­peal­ing sys­tem that is statu­to­rily de­signed to rem­edy the ag­grieved lit­i­gants by higher ju­di­cial au­thor­ity is of­ten as­so­ci­ated with friv­o­lous com­plaints against the ju­di­cial per­son­nel.

The re­port states that over the years, with­out con­sid­er­ing dif­fer­ent facts and the cir­cum­stances of the cases, peo­ple have started to al­lege a base­less, generic and stereo­typed crit­i­cism.

The an­other chal­lenges that have faced by the ju­di­ciary sys­tem, the re­port stated that to­day with the new con­cept con­sti­tu­tional supremacy over the par­lia­men­tary in the coun­try, no­tably re­al­ized through the pass­ing and amend­ment of the statutes, the court will never re­main free of its re­spon­si­bil­ity of de­cid­ing whether leg­is­la­tion is con­sis­tent with or of­fends the Con­sti­tu­tion.

With the given present prac­tice of lib­eral ap­pli­ca­tion of the ap­pel­late sys­tem, the re­port states that the lit­i­gants had

and have the priv­i­lege of ex­ces­sively and in­dif­fer­ently ac­cess­ing the ap­pel­late courts. The sys­tem has let most of the cases too go for ap­peal and bur­den the ap­pel­late courts, even by ac­cept­ing the ap­peals that are not nec­es­sary and un­war­ranted.

Some lit­i­gants ap­peal to ha­rass the other party and use the ap­peal sys­tem as de­lay tac­tic es­pe­cially in the mon­e­tary cases, states the re­port.

Ac­cord­ing to the re­port, main­tain­ing its in­de­pen­dence in this con­tin­u­ally chang­ing so­ci­ety poses an­other chal­lenge.

Al­though ju­di­cial in­de­pen­dence is the com­plete lib­erty of an in­di­vid­ual judges to hear and de­cide the cases that come be­fore him or her with­out in­ter­fer­ence but re­port stated that the na­ture of cases brought be­fore the courts to­day are such that places the ju­di­ciary at the cen­ter of many de­bates about so­cial change, so­cial en­gi­neer­ing and so­cial val­ues. As­sur­ing the judges to main­tain dis­tance, but pre­vent­ing their iso­la­tion from the com­mu­nity in which a judge lives, is a ju­di­cial chal­lenge, es­pe­cially in a small so­ci­ety where ev­ery­body knows ev­ery­one.

The re­port fur­ther added that he or she must be sen­si­tive to the is­sues and con­cerns that come be­fore them, to make a value- based de­ci­sion which is dif­fi­cult in prac­tice.

In­fras­truc­tural de­vel­op­ment is a vi­tal for the in­sti­tu­tion to func­tion in­de­pen­dently and to ful­fill its con­sti­tu­tional man­date of en­sur­ing ac­cess to jus­tice. The re­port stated that with­out the ad­e­quate in­fras­truc­tural, to pro­vide ac­cess to jus­tice is a chal­lenge.

Al­though the in­fras­truc­tural de­vel­op­ment by con­struct­ing new court build­ings have spread across the na­tion, the re­port says that there are still some courts which in­cludes Thim­phu, Haa, Paro, Ch­hukha, Sarpang, Tashi Yangtse, Gasa, Wer­ingla, Sak­teng, Lingzhi and Som­baykha courts which needs proper in­fra­struc­ture and fa­cil­i­ties.

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