In news– Minister for Law and Justice recently stated that 80 Nyaya Mitras will be engaged across the country from 2021-2026.
- The Nyaya Mitra programme under the “Access to Justice” scheme was launched in April 2017.
- Nyaya Mitra (NM) aims to facilitate expeditious disposal of 10-15 years old pending cases in High Courts and Subordinate Courts.
- This forms one of the three key legal aid and empowerment initiatives of the Department of Justice – ‘Pro bono legal services’, ‘Tele law service’ and ‘Nyaya Mitra scheme’ in 2017.
- Functionalized through a retired judicial or executive officer (with legal experience) designated as the ‘Nyaya Mitra’, the project would be operated out of District Facilitation Centres, housed in CSCs.
- Nyaya Mitra’s responsibilities would include among others assistance to litigants who are suffering due to delay in investigations or trial, by actively identifying such cases through the National Judicial Data Grid, providing legal advice and connecting litigants to District Legal Service Authority(DLSA), CSC Tele Law, other government agencies and civil society organisations.
- He/she shall also refer the marginalised applicants to Lok Adalats for dispute resolution and render assistance towards prison reforms within the district, in coordination with the district judiciary and other stakeholders.
- Since introduction of Nyaya Mitra programme in 2017, a total of 38 Nyaya Mitras were engaged in the States of Assam, Bihar, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Odisha, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal as per the details given under Annexure- ‘A’.
- The Nyaya Mitras engaged so far have assisted the Court concerned in disposal of 3495 old cases which includes matrimonial cases, accident claims and also criminal cases.