Justice A.S.Naidu, former Judge of the Orissa High Court, has expressed concern over the judiciary losing its charisma while calling for restoration of its old glory.
“If democracy survived in India it is because of the judiciary which was the best. But the judiciary is losing its charisma,” Justice Naidu commented while addressing the inauguration of the 4th edition of ‘Legal Spectra’, a four-day All India Law School Meet organized by the faculty of law of SOA (Deemed to be University) here on Thursday.
Students from different law schools in the country are participating in the meet.
“There was a time when no one could point a finger at a judge, but the judiciary today is being criticized by the media. We have failed to provide the litigant public fast justice,” he said.
Justice Naidu urged the students not to be lured by the corporate sector which offered fat pay packages to law graduates but join the bar and become good judicial officers. “You have a duty to the people who don’t get the service of brilliant lawyers in the court rooms,” he told the students while asking them to help restore the “lost glory of the judiciary.”
Mr. S.C.Sinha, Member of the National Human Rights Commission, Mr. S.P.Misra, Odisha’s Advocate General and former bureaucrat Ms. C.Narayanaswami also graced the function as the International Women’s Day was observed on the same platform. Vice-Chancellor of SOA, Prof. Amit Banerjee presided over the program. Prof. Banerjee also felicitated Ms. Narayanaswami on the occasion. Three women employees of SOA, Ms. Dharashree Mohanty, Ms. Trupti Das and Ms. Aurolipy were felicitated as well to mark the day.
Prof. Prabir Patnaik, Dean of the SOA National Institute of Law (SNIL), SOA’s faculty of law, Prof. Jayadev Pati, Professor and Advisor at SNIL and Dr. Madhubrata Mohanty, Associate Professor also spoke.
Mr. Sinha dwelt on the problem of gender inequality in the Indian society saying it impeded the contribution of women to the nation building activity. “It is a matter of regret that women continued to lag behind in areas of literacy, access to health and nutrition and parity in wages. Even today the male child is preferred leading to female foeticide,” he said.
“While the country’s economic development is good, it was lagging behind in human development which is painfully slow,” Mr. Sinha said adding “if the country has to realise its true potential, women must get their due place in society.”
Mr. Misra also stressed the need in the society to respect women while pointing out that members of the fair sex were the first to practice law in India in 1921 which became possible due to the efforts of Utkal Gourab Madhusudan Das, the architect of modern Odisha.
He urged the students to inculcate human values as legal practitioners if they wished to excel in their profession.
Ms. Narayanaswami, former Chairperson of the State Administrative Tribunal, said India, after winning independence, chose to allow women to vote at the age of 21 at a time when women in England could not exercise their franchise until they were 35 years. She expressed concern over the growing attacks on women while calling for change in attitude and orientation in the society.
Ms. Narayanaswami also advised women not to voluntarily expose themselves to dangers while pointing out that often they became victims because of recklessness. Dr. Nachiketa K. Sharma, a faculty member of SOA, recited a poem on women on the occasion.