Thursday, February 29, 2024

Redefine customary laws: Governor

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By Our Reporter

Governor RS Mooshahary releases an information booklet after inaugurating 'Legel Awareness Programme with Special Emphasis on Customary and Traditional Laws' in city on Wednesday. (ST)

 Shillong: Governor RS Mooshahary has underlined the need to redefine and reinforce the traditional laws in the present context.

Delivering the inaugural address at the “legal awareness programmes with special emphasis on customary and traditional laws,” here on Wednesday, Mooshahary said “if the traditional head takes any decision it should not be politically motivated”.

Referring to the recent cases at Jongksha and Mawsynram wherein the Dorbar Shnongs had decided to ostracize certain section of villagers for filing RTI applications on implementation important schemes like the PDS and MGNREGS, the Governor said “anyone seeking information under the RTI Act cannot be ostracized”.

Highlighting the practice of traditional laws in the State, Mooshahary said, “this involves superstitions which should be seriously looked into as it hinders the credibility and acceptability in delivering the justice in the society.” “The justice delivery system must be uncomplicated, accessible, affordable and prompt”, he added.

Chief Minister Dr Mukul Sangma in his speech said traditional laws are effective tools of justice delivery system.

He, however, pointed out that the modern statutory laws have diluted the traditional customary laws. “In the three decades of statehood customary laws have been overshadowed by statutory laws,” the Chief Minister said.

The traditional customary laws should be preserved with values and ethics so that it can be used in the right perspective in decision-making. “There is a need to codify the customary laws, if the system of traditional court is to be utilized”, added Dr Sangma.

Meanwhile, delivering the presidential address the Chief Justice of the Gauhati High Court Madan B Lokur said both traditional and modern system of justice delivery should co-exist with the sole goal of delivering quality justice.

The others who spoke at the function include Meghalaya Chief Secretary WMS Pariat, president of High Court Bar Association-Shillong, KS Kynjing, Chief of Maharam Syiemship, Niandro Syiemiong and Co-Chairman State Planning Board, John Kharshiing.

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