Unlike the usual rush at lok adalats, the district court on Saturday wore a deserted look as the lawyers went on a sudden strike to protest against holding the adalat on second Saturday of the month, which is otherwise a closed day.
For the first time, the State Legal Services Authority (SLSA) had organised the lok adalat, especially for bank cases. These included the recovery cases, cheque bounce and appeals regarding the same.
While only 199 cases were disposed of involving an amount of Rs 1,22,38,987, more than 350 cases were listed for hearing on Saturday. Most of the litigants did not appear as their advocates were on strike.
“The cases under Section 138 (cheque bounce) of the Negotiable Instruments Act, recovery suits of banks, pre-litigative cases were taken up and disposed of with the consent of the parties,” said Lal Chand, member secretary, SLSA. He added that for this year, National Lok Adalats would be held, and in Chandigarh, every time, focus would be on a particular kind of cases.
As many as 545 traffic challans were disposed of and a compounding fee of Rs 1,41,200 was collected.
In all, 12 benches were constituted. These included the special court of cheque-bounce cases of magistrates Ashok Kumar and Manav. Judicial officers Shilpi Gupta and Amaninder Singh were also deputed for the same along with Chief Judicial Magistrate Anubhav Sharma.
Additional District and Sessions Judges Atul Kasana and Najar Singh along with District and Sessions Judge S K Aggarwal headed the benches to look after the appeals.
The District and Sessions Judge also visited the benches constituted. He said, “The twin objective of organising the National Lok Adalat was to address the backlog of cases in the courts across India and to make the public aware of the benefits of the settlement of their disputes through the intervention of the lok adalat.”
As many as 12 benches were constituted in Mohali and three benches each at Dera Bassi and Kharar. Cases of all kinds — civil suits, matrimonial disputes, cheque bounce, criminal (compoundable) cases, land disputes, mutation, traffic challans, municipal committee/corporation cases, banks’ regular/pre-litigative cases, co-operative society cases, and BSNL cases — were taken up and disposed of in this lok adalat.
As many as 17,419 cases were taken up, and out of these 12,691 cases involving a sum of Rs 52.22 crore were settled.