Speedy Trial- A Step Towards Justice

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An integral aspect of a fair jury is speedy trial. A speedy trial is not only critical for the defendant but also for the accused. Speedy Fair proceedings are the best way to avoid justice miscarriages, and are an integral aspect of a fair society. Yet it’s not just about prosecuting criminals and accusers. The constitutional guarantees that ensure a timely jury are an essential protection to avoid unfair and arbitrary detention before conviction; to mitigate the uncertainty that surrounds criminal trials and to reduce the likelihood that lengthy delays may hinder an accused’s right to defend himself.The right to a jury trial was first stated in the landmark English legal book, the Magna Carta. The legal theory advocated that the right to speedy justice has expanded by almost two and a half decades of age; the target is far-off yet to be reached. It is a philosophy concerned with the timely dismissal of cases in order to make the courts more effective and to deliver justice as soon as possible.
This was held that inmates remain detained without trial for more than permissible length, if sentenced, their incarceration is absolutely unjustified, which is a breach of human rights without Article 21. Delay in court grants the convicted unfairly the right to apply for bail. Read with 483, Cr., under sec. 482 P.C sets down for every action must be taken must settle the case within six months of today.

Suggested Measures for Speedy Trial in India:
•6 Days / week of client and counselor whenever practicable, but probably double change.
•Increase retirement age for Judges to 70 years and a further 2 years increase in SC.
•One-time Appointed Judges Short Term Committee for a 5-year period to control the pendency.
•Strict rules on abuse of key crime cases, to be reviewed every 5 years
•Civil cases to have WS, Rejoinder and Duplication procedure to be concluded at the level of the registrar in all courts within 15 days of each.
•Video / Audio logging will be made mandatory in all cases.
•The right to swift justice to become a constitutional right, with State punishments for courts taking more than five years. Unless the perpetrator is cleared after 5 years, otherwise he is convicted of being regarded as a suspect and given police security.

Constitutional approach:
In India the fundamental requirement for the prompt administration of justice is overwhelming. Justice, including its prompt dispensation, constitutes a legislative and universal right granted by the Indian State to the people of India. It is also a fundamental duty of the Indian State in the context of the Directive Principles of State Policy outlined in Articles 38(1), 39 and 39-A of the Indian Constitution and also in view of the universal legal obligations of India to guarantee the prompt administration of justice.
The Indian Constitution preamble mandates the State to uphold civil, economic , and political justice for all its people. Article 38(1) provides that a State shall pursue a constitutional order through which that law guides all national life structures. Article 39-A allows the State to offer legal assistance. This further states that ‘the State shall guarantee that the functioning of the judicial system ensures justice … in order to guarantee that opportunities to achieve justice are not denied to any person on account of economic or other deficiencies.’ The legislative obligation to prompt justice derives from the collective reading of Articles 14, 19 and 21 of the Constitution of India .

Statutory provisions: Code of Criminal Procedure:
There is no clear provision in the Indian judicial system that grants the right to timely trial, such as the United States Speedy Trial Act 1974. As Justice Chandramouli Kumar Prasad aptly pointed out, the need for a timely jury is not simply an inherited requirement from American jurisprudence, but is likewise the inarticulate principle underlying our Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973. It was pointed out that, as regards both the prosecution and the court, the need for pace is explicitly or unambiguously inferred and has therefore permeated the whole spectrum of the code in that case.
Under Section 309 of the Cr.P.C., any investigation or court will be held “quickly” and, after the questioning of witnesses has began, the same shall proceed from day to day until all the witnesses have been examined. Interpreting the Constitutional rules, the court emphasized that an expeditious jury is a law, and an exception is adjournment.

Where Delay Caused:

Delay in Police Investigation-
Since filing a FIR, the procedure is set in action and an investigation occurs. When part of the investigative procedure, whether the police officer requests another person’s detention for pre-indiction or pre-trial questioning, he will sign an affidavit sworn by him detailing the grounds not just for such detention but also the pause in obtaining police custody for any. In the lack of a coherent strategy on forensic research and facts, court trials begin in old-fashioned formats, creating considerable delays and expenses and even miscarriage of the justice system.

Delay in Services of Summons/Warrants-
Absence of some or all the accused or non-production of undertrial prisoners at the stage of framing of charges and during the trial contributes for the delay. Earnest efforts are not being made by the Police in apprehending and producing the absconding accused. Execution of warrants has become the least priority for the police who have their own reasons, may be genuine or artificial.
The Code of Criminal Procedure provides for various modes of service. Section 62 of the Code provides that summons shall be served by a Police Officer, or subject to such rules being framed by the State Government, by any officer of the Court or other public servant.Unfortunately rules have not been framed by many State Governments.
Delay in Submission of Expert Reports-For lack of new technology such as cameras, recording equipment etc., the police are most frequently handicapped in conducting fruitful inquiries. Forensic science labs are small and there is no facility at the district level that can provide the investigating police with appropriate assistance. However, it is common knowledge that there is a lack of forensic and cyber specialists in different State police forces. As a result, investigators are moving strongly towards anecdotal testimony, rather than relying on factual and circumstantial facts.

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