Bangalore Mediation Centre
The BMC is an initiative of the High Court of Karnataka and was conceived in Jan 2007 and became fully operational from June 2007. This centre is headed by a Director, a judicial officer in the rank of the Principal District Judge, a dy director who is a senior civil judge and 6 co ordinators. The BMC has 100+ mediators on its rolls and the state of Karnataka has over 2000 mediators covering all districts and taluks. The taluk and district level mediation processes are monitored by the District Legal Services and Taluk Legal Services Authorities.
The process of mediation took roots subsequent to the amendment of Section 89 (2)(d), of the code of civil procedure. However till date there is no separate legislation on Mediation in India, but steps are being taken in that direction.
The rules of procedure for the BMC has been formulated by the High Court of Karnataka under Karnataka Mediation Rules 2005 and ADR Rules 2005. The rules so formulated are also displayed on the web site for the knowledge of the general public and disputants.
The mediators are generally advocates who have over 15 years of experience in the bar, retired and serving judicial officers and experts. The various processes of ADR can be defined very simply in the following way.
Arbitration – Private and formal court, gives award costly process but short time frame for conclusion.
Mediation – Informal Process , free of cost and reference of the court.
Lok Adalat, Peoples Court, Cases under NI act, MCOP, Partition Suits etc where the court feels that settlement can be reached and binding awards
The mediation centre also carries out pre litigation mediation based on court references
Mediation can be defined as a voluntary, informal and structured process where a neutral party assists the disputants to resolve the matter satisfactorily. The mediator acts as a facilitator, truce maker.
It is a voluntary process as the right of self determination is not taken away. Any party to the dispute has the right to leave the mediation process at any stage and request the matter to be decided through adjudicatory process.
The date and time of the mediation process is communicated to the parties. The mediation centre works for 6 days a week . Once the court refers the parties for mediation the copies of the pleadings filed are sent to the mediation centre by the court.
Every agreement done by the BMC, is to be confirmed by the court, whereas in a lok adalat it is immediate confirmation and decree is passed.
Mediation is an informal and structured process where in the San Francisco Model and UK model is followed. Both the USA and UK have had a longer history of mediation as the process has been available for over 40 years in both these countries. In the US 95% of cases are mediation cases and out of court settlements. Unlike our country the Mediation Agreement in the US is equivalent to a decree of the court.
The process of mediation is as follows
- The opening remarks are made by mediator to set the tone of the process.
- There is no recording of evidence nor is the trial procedure followed.
- Introduction of the parties.
- Private Sessions
- Joint sessions
- Further discussion and if agreement reached Memorandum of Agreement made and signed by the parties. The mediatior does not sign as he is a neutral party.
- The agreement sent to the referring court for confirmation as a decree.
- Since the agreement is accepted by the parties and the court gives a decree based on the agreement, such decree is non appealable
- In case of non compliance with any of the conditions of the agreement entered into by one of the parties, an execution petition for enforcing the claim can be filed directly.
- If case no agreement is reached the matter is referred back to the court for adjudication.
The mediation centre in Bangalore has been in existence for nine years now and has settled over 25,000 cases. The cases are not only referred from Karnataka courts but also from the other states if the parties are willing to come for mediation in Karnataka. There are no jurisdictional constraints for the Bangalore Mediation Centre.
The mediation centre has 18 mediation rooms, 40- 50 mediators on a given day and over 200 cases being mediated every day.
The mediation centre not only gets court referred cases but also matters are referred from other judicial and quasi judicial bodies such as labour courts, industrial tribunals, consumer courts etc.
The important case laws which were given during the interaction with the Director of the Mediation centre were
Afcons infrastructure vs Cherian Varkey Construction Judgment given by Justice R.V. Raveendran which has given an explanation of all ADR systems.
The article by Justice R V Raveendran on the importance of mediation
Srinivas Rao vs Deepa
Arnesh Kumar vs State of Bihar
This case relates to Section 498 A and the supreme court has laid down guidelines in this case on how the police should proceed on receipt of a complaint under this section.
Pre Litigation Mediation
Earlier marriage related issues where not take up by the mediation centre but now with references from the police department, courts at the admission stage , parties themselves the mediation centre is carrying out pre litigation mediation.
To sum up the mediation process does not carry out any counselling, and it can be described as a facilitative process, which enables the parties to reach an understanding by consensus based on the discussions held between them with the assistance of the neutral person the mediator.
State legal services Authority
Member Secretary Mr. Ashok
Dy.Member Secretary Mr. K.Ashok
The genesis of the idea of free legal to the needy was laid in the 42nd Amendment to the constitution of India. The preamble to the constitution also laid the foundation for this. The legal services authority act of 1987 led to the formation of the state and district legal services authority for these three roles
- Creation of legal awareness
- Legal Aid
- Conducting of Lok Adalats
Free legal aid gives freedom to the individual of choice, expression and confidentiality. Legal Aid is provided free to the following categories of citizens
- Income level <= 1,00,000 High Court
- Income level <=1,25,000 Supreme Court
- Physically Challenged
- Mentally Challenged
- Under Trials in Prison
- Women iirespective of age, income
- Senior Citizens
- And a few other groups
Lok Adalat or the peoples court
Reference from court
No bail petition by the lok adalat
Remit to court in case of failure
- Final and Binding decree
- Non appealable except in case of fraud and misrepresentation that too only by the writ jurisdiction under art 226 in the High Court.
- No prescribed time limit
- Lack of procedural rules
- Permanent Lok adalat conducted on 2nd Saturday of every month.
Little Sisters of the Poor
This visit was undertaken to sensitize the group to the plight of the old people who are rejected by their families and society. This organization founded by Sr. Jeanne provides a helping hand to those cast aways. The little sisters of the poor are spread through the world and our country. They are supported by the community and society and the sisters mobilise resources for their running the home from corporate companies and philathropists. The men and women are housed in separate blocks, fed, clothed and taken care of. There are specially trained people to provide succor to the sick in the home.
Labour Commissioner office
Interaction with Mr. Sripadh Deputy Labor Commissioner. Points covered exploitation of labor, archaic labour laws and need for change. Aspects of Safety . Lawyers as consultants both to management and workers Humane lawyers .
Quasi Judicial function of Asst Labor commissioner in gratuity cases and conciliation and labor disputes.
Visit To Shishu Mandir, Transit Home
Shishu mandir 0 -6 years old
18-21 after care home
Child welfare commission
The children are brought to the home by police, NGO’s , unwed mothers , hospitals etc. Adoption of these children is possible. Adoption done online. Criteria for adoption has been very clearly laid out in the web site of the authority
500 applications received. 46 children adopted till date 2 full time doctors 2 nurses for taking care of the childrens health. Visiting consultants from NIMHANS.
Post adoption follow up upto 18 years.
Missing children bureau approximately 125 complaints lodged every month.
Children brought by the following from the following places bustands , child labor, vagrant children,children running away from their homes. Brought by Police, NGO and citizens.
Children are kept for 4 months in the transit home, the following happens
- Claimed by parent
- Transfer to home state or district if from other states, districts with suitable escort
- Else sent to the school at Madivala.
The average stay at the home is for four months. During that time the following vocational courses are offered. Tailoring, Plumbing, carpentry and basic electrical repairs. Current strength is 300 average intake per month 125 . the numbers are maintained by transfers and uniting with parents
Children are fed nutritious food, Dietician on campus.Fruits and ghee served every day evening snacks are also provided. Uniforms given. Two counsellors, One probation office, superintendent and staff. Counsellor outsourced from NGO.
Women and child development
SHG concept promoted.
The following are the programs
This is formed to inculcate the habit of savings and self help. The groups are formed and they formulate their own bye laws. The savings amount per month is fixed at Rs. 20/per head. Most of the members are from the anganwadis. Importance given to financially weaker sections of the society and the Scheduled Castes and Tribes. Taluk level officer introduces the SHG’s to the Bank by giving the letter and accounts are opened. The members decide to whom the loans are to be provided from the bank and the responsibility for the regular payment of the principal and interest is ensured by the group members.
This scheme has been formulated by the Government of Karnataka for the welfare of the girl child. This is set right the imbalance the male female ratio and also to prevent female infanticide. This scheme is exclusively applicable to BPO families and limited to two girl children per family.
The scheme runs as follows
- A sum of Rs. 19,000 is deposited by the Government in a bank for each individual girl child
- It is mandatory that the following are observed
- Education of the girl child till eighth standard
- The Child not to be used for child labor
- No marriage of the child before the age of eighteen.
On completion of 18 years, the maturity amount of Rs. One Lakh is given to the child.
The integrated child development scheme of the Government of India is also operated in the State of Karnataka which ensures nutrition and education.
Central Jail Visit Parapanna Agrahara
4107 inmates two towers male and female prisoners separate blocks.
Modern kitchen boilers for 100 kgs of rice each. Vegetarians provided with sweets non vegetarian meat and poultry products.
The jail has the following workshops for prisoners
Carpentry, Baking, Printing, Weaving, Soap Making, Tailoring, Laundry
Printing is for supply for files and stationery to Government departments. They have offset printing machines and shortly plate making and DTP operations would also be installed in the prison press.
Soap making for internal consumption in this jail and all sub jails in the state.
Mobile Jammers installed in the jail complex.
TV provided in the cell blocks
Morning roll 7 am and blocks opened
Lunch 11 , Evening 4.30 roll call and lock down . Dinner 8 clock in the cells.
More of undertrials and less of convicts.
Sri Sri Ravishanker Ashram
Art of Living and Happiness
Introduction video love for the world, and talk by Ms. Arundhati Supreme Court lawyer and heading legal cell of Ashram.
Guided tour of Ashram by volunteers Eshwar and Taruna
Veda School. The tuition boarding and lodging for the vidhyarthis of this School is totally funded by the Ashram and the students do not pay any fees whatsoever. The normal period taken to learn one veda is approximately 8 to 9 years and the students are also taught English, Mathematics and Science along with the vedic Subjects.
The Sri Sri University in Orissa offers higher education in Management, Media and other related courses.
Ayurvedic Hosptial named after Sri Sri’s FatherMeditation centre named after his mother.
The following initiative of Sri Sri were highlighted
- Prison visit program and teaching of sudharshan kriya to the prisoners to make them more peaceful and amiable.
- World Conferences and Cultural Festivals for the concept of Vishwadatta Kutumba or one world.
- Free schools in rural centres for the benefit of rural children
Report by Students
The students who underwent the practical training for four days from 26/4/2016 to 29/04/2016 were asked to narrate the experiences and learning gained from the practical visits to the Principal and the faculty members to help them understand the importance of the practical visits arranged by the college.