The President of India, Shri Ram Nath Kovind, inaugurated the Constitution Day celebrations, organised by the Supreme Court, to mark the 70th anniversary of the adoption of our Constitution, today (November 26, 2019) in New Delhi.
Speaking on the occasion, the President said that the Constitution is the scripture of our nation that has to be read in a sensitive and delicate manner. The Constitution gave this onerous task to the judiciary. Keeping the role of the Supreme Court as final interpreter of the Constitution and the laws enacted under it, the judiciary assumes the role of its guardian. The authors of our Constitution took extra care in providing it the necessary powers and freedoms to function without any undue influence. Over these eventful seven decades, the judiciary has remained alive to the high responsibility placed on it.
The President noted that the Supreme Court has initiated several innovative measures to reach out to people. But for a large section of people, justice is still beyond reach.
Pointing the issue of making justice accessible to all, the President said that one way out of the high cost is the provision of free legal aid. Remembering, veteran lawyer Ashoke Sen, he said that in the multiple roles Shri Sen played in the field over a long career, his sole objective was the pursuit of justice, for one and all. He expressed hope that more and more law professionals will take inspiration from the example of Shri Sen and distribute freely the fruits of their knowledge among the needy. He said that the task of making justice more accessible to all has to be a collective effort of all the stakeholders in the bench and the bar.
The President said that the question of access is not limited to the cost factor alone. Language too has been a barrier for many, for a long time. He was happy to note that the Supreme Court has started making its judgments available in nine regional languages. He said that another hurdle in the way of justice is the delay and the resulting backlog. Clearing this bottleneck requires detailed deliberations and systemic efforts. Information and communication technology can bring about amazing results in this domain. He was happy to note that beginnings have been made to take help of technological innovations.
The President said that we should strive to spread the awareness about the making of the Constitution, its provisions and its fundamental principle of equality. We need to especially narrate to the young generation the grand vision of our founding fathers. After all, we stand as a mere link between two generations in the continuing saga of this nation. Interpretation of the Constitution is a work in progress, and it will be up to the youth of the nation to carry forward the task of realizing its ideals.