Nyaya Panchayats

Government proposes to establish Nyaya Panchayats in every Gram Panchayat or a cluster of Gram Panchayats, for providing a system of fair and speedy justice, both civil and criminal, to the citizens at their doorsteps, outside the formal judicial system. The Nyaya Panchayats are proposed to be constituted through the election of the Nyaya Panchas by people residing in the area to which the jurisdiction of the Nyaya Panchayats extends. Provisions are proposed for the reservation for women, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes to ensure their representation in the Nyaya Panchayats. The Draft Bill defines the civil, criminal and additional jurisdiction of Nyaya Panchayats. In the Draft Bill, conciliation is proposed as a primary means of dispute resolution. Further, Nyaya Sahayaks, who will assist the Nyaya Panchayat in performing their function of dispute resolution, have been proposed. Nyaya Panchayats are proposed as separate and independent dispute resolution bodies, distinct from the Gram Panchayats.

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