Prashant Bhushan Current Affairs - 2020

Supreme Court directs states to set up Gram Nyayalayas

On February 3, 2020, the Supreme Court of India directed the states to establish “Gram Nyayalayas” within four weeks’ time span. The apex court has directed the corresponding state high courts to expedite the process of consultation with the state governments.

Highlights

The Gram Nyayalayas act, 2008 was passed to provide establishment of Gram Nyayalayas at the grass root level. The main objective of the judicial body is to provide inexpensive justice in rural areas.

The current scenario of the states with respect to the Gram Nyayalayas were submitted by the SC Advocate Prashant Bhushan.

Current Scenario of the States

According to the report presented by the Advocate, Goa has issued two notification to establish the Gram Nyayalayas. However, none are functioning at the moment. Haryana had issued notification for 3 and Currently only two are functioning.

In Jharkhand, 6 were notified, but only one is functioning. The state of Uttar Pradesh notified 113 Gram Nyayalayas. However, only 14 are functioning. The state had to establish 822.

At present, only 208 Gram Nyayalayas are functioning as against 2,500 required to function according to the 12th five-year plan.

SC sets up panel for to suggest reforms for holding competitive exams

The Supreme Court has suggested setting up of a three-member panel comprising of Nandan Nilekani, a co-founder of Infosys, and renowned computer scientist Vijay P Bhatkar to suggest reforms for conducting of competitive examinations fairly by government bodies.

The Supreme Court has asked advocate Prashant Bhushan, appearing for the petitioner, to suggest a name besides Nilekani and Bhatkar for constituting the panel.

What is the case?

The petitioner Shantantu Kumar had sought cancellation of 2017 SSC examination due to alleged tampering and leaking of question papers. The Supreme Court has put a stay on the declaration of results of SSC 2017 examinations.

The allegations of tampering and leaking of question papers had led to large scale protests from the aspirants. The SSC had recommended the CBI investigation in the case.

CBI had stated in the Supreme Court that FIR has been registered and people involved have been identified, therefore there was no need to cancel the 2017 examination. But the Supreme Court was not convinced and stated that it was not possible either identify the beneficiaries of question paper leaks or who all are innocents.

To overall the structure of conducting competitive exams by the government agencies and to bring in transparency, the SC has suggested setting up of a three-member panel to suggest reforms.