Restorative Justice - a Need of Hour in India

Topics: Criminal law, Police, Crime Pages: 9 (2755 words) Published: June 17, 2013


“Restorative justice in developed and few Asian countries have made a number of effectiveness of restorative and reparative areas in relation with petty/juvenile offences related with first timers as well as beginners etc. This article will examine the use of restorative justice as to have better offender’s management with respect to India where Indian Police and criminal laws are playing major role. It concludes that the role of community is very minimal and Police is also forbidden by law not to be involved in negotiation process or convince either side rather register criminal case and make charge sheet/ final report to the court of law. Thus there are inherent deficiencies in the criminal law which are forbidding justice reaching the door steps of the victims even in minor / bailable offences.”

Key words:- Restorative justice, reparative, victimology, compensation, community policing, Procedural fairness, legitimacy. Plea bargaining.


In a criminal case both parties i.e. accused and victims, come close to each other and voluntarily agree to settle the matter by way of either forgiveness ,fine or compensation without registering criminal cases in the police station,. Thus victims get suitable compensation as agreed by the Accused .Since parties are getting settled the matter voluntarily , so further cases are not initiated by the Police. As all of us know that courts are over burdened, it takes a lot of time to get a decision from the court. Most often, witnesses turn hostile and Justice goes out of reach for poor victim. Thus Restorative justice has come with a great hope in the realm of criminal law. It would be a great success if the offenders are reintegrated into society without incarcerations and stigmatization and at the same time the victim get suitably compensated. This makes the situation better for both the criminal as well as for the society.

Few criminologist have also defined the Goals of Restorative justice which requires punishment as a component of an educative to an re-integrative process(Duff;2002:2003, APA formal Daly 2000;2002).So it has been argued, Restorative justice is not an alternative to Punishment. Rather, it is an alternative form of Punishment (Duff 1992;Daly2000;2002). Constitutional Mandate

We all know that in a society, conflicts of interest will always be there due to some issue or other and sometimes it may lead to verbal clashes which goes up to assaults etc. on the individual, resulting which injuries are caused to the victim both physical as well as mental. In fact such incidents are coming into the category of Crime where the rights of a victim are encroached forcefully by the other dominant party. It is the duty of State to protect through its instrumentalities ie Administrative machineries like Police, Magistrates, Judiciary and Local bodies etc the rights of an affected individual or victim.. Therefore it becomes a long battle to get justice through formal way of Judicial system and in majority of cases it becomes too difficult for a victim to get justice within a limited time. Undue delay in a criminal trial has the effect of bringing about blatant violation of the rule of law and adverse impact on the common man’s access to justice. A person’s access to justice is a guaranteed fundamental right under the constitution and particularly Article 21. Denial of this right undermines public confidence in the justice delivery system and incentivizes people to look for short cuts and other for a where they feel that justice will be done quicker. In the long run, this also weakens the justice delivery system and poses a threat to the rule of law. Thus to overcome from the existing problems and to get speedy justice, now days Alternate Dispute Redressal system such as mediations , conciliations and arbitrations have been...

References: Books and Articles:
Cossine, Annie (2008)
Basu, Durga Das (2005). Fundamental Rights and Fundamental Duties. Introduction to the constitution of India, 79-143.
Zernova, Margarita (2007). Aspirations of restorative justice proponents and experiences of Participants in family group conferances. British Journal of Criminology, 47, 491-509.
Seyko, Ronald J (2001)
Chattoraj, B.N. (2008). Restorative Justice in India: Prospects and Constraints.The Indian Journal of Criminology and Criminalistics. 29 (1). 21-32.
Imtiyaz Ahemd Vs State of UP (2012)
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