19. ORGANISATION OF LOK ADALATS. –
(1) Every State Authority or District Authority or the Supreme Court Legal Services Committee or every High Court Legal Services Committee or, as the case may be, Taluk Legal Services Committee may organize Lok Adalats at such intervals and places and for exercising such jurisdiction and for such areas as it thinks fit.
(2) Every Lok Adalat organized for an area shall consist of such number of –
- (a) serving or retired judicial officers; and
- (b) other persons, of the area, as may be specified by the State Authority or the District Authority or the Supreme Court Legal Services Committee or the High Court Legal Services Committee, or as the case may be, the Taluk Legal Services Committee, organizing such Lok Adalats
(3) The experience and qualifications of other persons referred to in clause (b) of sub-section (2) for Lok Adalats organised by the Supreme Court Legal Services Committee shall be such as may be prescribed by the Central Government in consultation with the Chief Justice of India.
(4) The experience and qualifications of other persons referred to in clause (b) of sub-section (2) for Lok Adalats other than referred to in sub-section (3) shall be such as may be prescribed by the State Government in consultation with the Chief Justice of the High Court.
(5) A Lok Adalat shall have jurisdiction to determine and to arrive at a compromise or settlement between the parties to a dispute in respect of –
- (i) any case pending before; or
- (ii) any matter which is falling within the jurisdiction of and is not brought before, any court for which the Lok Adalat is organized:
Provided that the Lok Adalat shall have no jurisdiction in respect of any case or matter relating to an offence not compoundable under any law.
20. COGNIZANCE OF CASES BY LOK ADALATS .-
(1) Where in any case referred to in clause (i) of sub-section (5) of Section 19-
- (i)(a) the parties thereof agree; or
(b) one of the parties thereof makes an application to the court, for referring the case to the Lok Adalat for settlement and if such court is prima facie satisfied that there are chances of such settlement; or
- (ii) the court is satisfied that the matter is an appropriate one to be taken cognizance of by the Lok Adalat,
The court shall refer the case to the Lok Adalat:
Provided that no case shall be referred to the Lok Adalat under sub-clause (b) of clause ( i) or clause (ii) by such court except after giving a reasonable opportunity of being heard to the parties.
(2) Notwithstanding anything contained in any other law for the time being in force, the Authority or Committee organizing the Lok Adalat under sub-section (1) of Section 19 may, on receipt of an application from any one of the parties to any matter referred to in clause (ii) of sub-section (5) of Section 19 that such matter needs to be determined by a Lok Adalat, refer such matter to the Lok Adalat, for determination:
Provided that no matter shall be referred to the Lok Adalat except after giving a reasonable opportunity of being heard to the other party.
(3) Where any case is referred to a Lok Adalat under sub-section (1) or where a reference has been made to it under sub-section (2), the Lok Adalat shall proceed to dispose of the case or matter and arrive at a compromise or settlement between the parties.
(4) Every Lok Adalat shall, while determining any reference before it under this Act, act with utmost expedition to arrive at a compromise or settlement between the parties and shall be guided by the principles of Justice, equity, fair play and other legal principles.
(5) Where no award is made by the Lok Adalat on the ground that no compromise or settlement could be arrived at between the parties, the record of the case shall be returned by it to the court, from which the reference has been received under sub-section (1) for disposal in accordance with law.
(6) Where no award is made by the Lok Adalat on the ground that no compromise or settlement could be arrived at between the parties, in a matter referred to in sub-section (2), that Lok Adalat shall advise the parties to seek remedy in a court.
(7) Where the record of the case is returned under sub-section (5) to the court, such court shall proceed to deal with such case from the stage which was reached before such case from the stage which was reached before such reference under sub-section (1).
21. AWARD OF LOK ADALAT. –
(1) Every award of the Lok Adalat shall be deemed to be a decree of a civil court or, as the case may be, an order of any other court and where a compromise or settlement has been arrived at, by a Lok Adalat in a case referred to it under sub-section (1) of Section 20, the court-fee paid in such case shall be refunded in the manner provided under the Court Fees Act, 1870 (7 of 1870).
(2) Every award made by a Lok Adalat shall be final and binding on all the parties to the dispute, and no appeal shall lie to any court against the award.
22. POWERS OF LOK ADALAT OR PERMANENT LOK ADALAT.-
(1) The [Lok Adalat or Permanent Lok Adalat] shall, for the purposes of holding any determination under this Act, have the same powers as are vested in a civil court under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (5 of 1908), while trying a suit in respect of the following matters, namely:-
- (a) the summoning and enforcing the attendance of any witness and examining him on oath;
- (b) the discovery and production of any document;
- (c) the reception of evidence on affidavits;
- (d) the requisitioning of any public record or document or copy of such record or document from any court or office; and
- (e) such other matters as may be prescribed.
(2) Without prejudice to the generality of the powers contained in sub-section (1), every Lok Adalat or Permanent Lok Adalat shall have the requisite powers to specify its own procedure for the determination of any dispute coming before it.
(3) All proceedings before a Lok Adalat or Permanent Lok Adalat shall be deemed to be judicial proceedings within the meaning of Sections 193, 219 and 228 of the Indian Penal Code (45 of 1860) and every Lok Adalat or Permanent Lok Adalat shall be deemed to be a civil court for the purpose of Section 195 and Chapter XXVI of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973
Permanent and Continuous Lok Adalat Scheme
ORISSA HIGH COURT PERMANENT AND CONTINUOUS LOK ADALAT SCHEME-2003
- Short Title : The scheme may be called the “ORISSA HIGH COURT PERMANENT AND CONTINUOUS LOK ADALAT SCHEME-2003”.
- Definition : In this Scheme unless the context otherwise require;
- “Act” means the Legal Services Authorities Act, 1987 (No. 39 of 1987).
- “Chairman” means the Chairman of the Orissa High Court Legal Services Committee.
- “Committee” means Orissa High Court Legal Services Committee constituted under Section 8 A of the Act.
- “Patron-in-Chief” means The Chief Justice of Orissa High Court.
- “State Authority” means Orissa State Legal Services Authority constituted under Section 6 of the Act.
- “Chief Justice” means the Chief Justice of Orissa High Court.
- “Lok Adalat” means Permanent & Continuous Lok Adalat under the Scheme.
CHAPATER – II
Procedure for organizing Lok Adalat
- The Committee shall organize Lok Adalats as and when it thinks proper To begin with Lok Adalat sitting shall be held at least once in a month on a Saturday.
- The Secretary of the Committee shall issue notices to the parties of the case for their consent to get the case decided by the Lok Adalat.
- The Chief Justice or any other Judge may refer cases to the Lok Adalat along with the record of the case for settlement. The Secretary of the Committee shall also prepare the list of such cases in which parties have consented to get their cases disposed of through Lok Adalat.
- The number of sittings shall be worked out by the Lok Adalat depending upon the workload in consultation with the Committee.
CHAPTER – III
Composition of Lok Adalat
- The Secretary of the Committee shall with the approval of the Chief Justice or any other Judge so authorized by him constitute Benches of the Lok Adalats.
- Every Lok Adalat organized by the Committee shall consist of serving or retired Judges of the High Court.
- The Patron-in-Chief with the consultation of the Executive Chairman of the State Authority may prepare a panel and nominate the retired Judges as members of the Lok Adalat.
- The Patron-in-Chief may nominate the sitting Judge of the High Court with the consultation of Chairman as and when he thinks it proper.
CHAPTER – IV
Maintenance of the Records
- The Secretary of the Committee shall be responsible for safe custody of the records of the Lok Adalat.
- The Secretary of the Committee shall maintain a Register of the Lok Adalat giving particulars of the –
- Date of the receipts,
- Category and subject wise nature of the case,
- Details of the parties.
- Such other particulars, as maybe deemed necessary, and
- Date of settlement and return of the case file.
- When the case is finally disposed of by the Lok Adalat, result of the case will be entered in the register.
CHAPTER – V
Functioning of Lok Adalat
- The Secretary of the Committee may prepare a cause list for each bench of the Lok Adalat and the same shall be duly notified to all concerned.
- Every Award or order of the Lok Adalat shall be signed by the members constituting the Lok Adalat.
- The original award or order shall form part of the Judicial records and a copy of the award or other shall be given to each of the parties duly certified by the Secretary of the Committee.
- The parties of the dispute shall be required to sign or affix their thumb impression, as the case may be, on the award or order of the Lok Adalat.
- The members of the Bench of Lok Adalat shall be entitled to honorarium at the rate as may be fixed by the State Authority.
- The Secretary of the Committee shall submit monthly statements of the Lok Adalats to the State Authority.