India Ranks Lowly 78th In Granting Access To Justice

WASHINGTON – India ranks 78th among 97 countries in guaranteeing access to civil justice, according to the World Justice Project’s Rule of Law Index 2012 report. Strengths in freedom of speech and open government were also found.

The report ranks countries across eight areas impacting on the rule of law: limits on government power, corruption, security, fundamental rights, open government, regulatory enforcement, civil justice, and criminal justice. The report is the product of interviewing 97,000 members of the general public and more than 2,500 experts in 97 countries.

According to the report, “India has a robust system of checks and balances (ranked thirty-seventh worldwide and second among lower middle income countries), an independent judiciary, strong protections for freedom of speech, and a relatively open government (ranking fiftieth globally and fourth among lower-middle income countries).

Administrative agencies do not perform well (ranking seventy ninth), and the civil court system ranks poorly (ranking seventy-eighth), mainly because of deficiencies in the areas of court congestion, enforcement, and delays in processing cases. Corruption is a significant problem (ranking eighty-third), and police discrimination and abuses are not unusual. Order and security — including crime, civil conflict, and political violence- is a serious concern (ranked second lowest in the world).”

Sri Lanka leads the South Asia region in most dimensions of the rule of law.

“Achieving the rule of law is a constant challenge and a work in progress in all countries. The WJP’s Rule of Law Index is not designed to shame or blame, but to provide useful reference points for countries in the same regions, with comparable legal cultures and similar income levels,” said World Justice Project founder William H. Neukom.

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