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Judges urged to be cautious about miscarriage of justice

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Stressing that the court is the last resort to justice seekers, Law Minister Anisul Huq on Sunday called upon the newly-appointed judges to be careful about miscarriage of justice."It's the responsibility of the judges to prevent crimes providing exemplary punishment to the culprits through exercising the law effectively without any prejudice," he said.Anisul Huq was addressing the inaugural ceremony of a basic training course for the newly-appointed assistant judges at the Judicial Administration Training Institute (Jati) in the city.The minister said exemplary punishment may reverse crime trend among the criminals."The judges can also play a role in making the society crime free through justice to the justice-seekers," he said, adding that the judges should be careful about inordinate delay in delivering justice and keep in mind the best use of time to avoid public harassment and their financial burden due to unwarranted delay.People do not come to the court until they have any option, and the court is the last resort to the justice seekers, said Anisul Huq.The Law Minister informed that the government has taken an initiative to include the legal concept of plea-bargaining to reduce the long-pending huge backlog of criminal cases across the country.Jati Director General Justice Khandaker Musa Khaled presided over the inaugural function.Forty newly-appointed assistant judges are participating in the two-month long training programme.Meanwhile, the Law Minister in a press conference at the Jatiya Press Club said there are currently 24 lakh cases pending with magistrate and district courts across the country.He said the government's legal aid support programme will help reduce the backlog of cases gradually.Though the Legal Aid Service Act was enacted in 2000, the enforcement of the law started after Sheikh Hasina's government had assumed power in 2009, he said.The Law Ministry organised the press conference on the eve of the April 28 National Legal Aid Day. Secretary of the law and justice division Abu Saleh Sheikh Md Jahirul Haque was present.The minister said the main aim of the day is to raise awareness among people about the government's legal aid services alongside ensuring access of the poor and helpless people to justice.He said a legal aid office was set up in every district judge's court building throughout the country with a view to making the legal aid programmes successful.Director of the National Legal Aid Service Organisation Syed Aminul Islam said some 68,000 people took the government's legal aid services in five years from 2009 to 2013.Of them, 33166 are women, 34500 men and 271 children, he added. A total of 8159 civil and criminal cases have so far been disposed of, he said.

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