The National Judicial Academy, Nepal with support of the Supreme Court of Nepal and the International Commission of Jurists, Nepal organized the first "Regional Conference of Judges and Judicial Educators on Judicial Education and Enhancing Access to Justice" on September 22 to 24, 2013 in Kathmandu. The Conference was inaugurated by Rt. Hon. Damodar Prasad Sharma, Acting Chief Justice of Nepal and attended by Justices, Judges and legal and judicial educators of Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Malaysia, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.
The participating Justices, Judges, legal and judicial educators deliberated and shared experience in areas of common concern regarding judicial education and judicial reform initiatives in respective jurisdictions. Problems, challenges and opportunities relating to access to justice generally and barriers and obstacles faced by specific groups who are disadvantaged, excluded or restricted from exercising their fundamental rights of access to justice and to equality, more particularly women and children were discussed.  We also noted with interest the initiatives taken to introduce fast-track courts and alternative dispute resolution including mediation as a mechanism to promote access to justice and amicable settlement of disputes and were in agreement that networking of justices, judges and legal and judicial educators in the region would optimize the resources and facilitate the sharing of judicial knowledge, skills and experiences as well as best practices.   
While taking note of and in full appreciation of the initiatives undertaken to introduce and pursue judicial education programs, linking judicial education to the promotion of access to justice, rule of law, human rights, the independence of the judiciary and judicial reform, the Conference adopted the following Declaration:

  1. Being cognizant of the importance of judicial education to capacity building of judges and other human resources associated with the administration of justice, in achieving independent, impartial, efficient and effective  justice, and in ensuring judicial good governance, and thereby contributing to the entrenchment of the rule of law, we judges, and legal and judicial educators note with satisfaction the initiatives taken by our respective judiciaries in establishing judicial education institutions in our jurisdictions, and express our commitment to channel our individual and collective experiences and expertise to assist, if asked for, in the establishment of such institutions of education of judges where they are yet to be established.
  2. Taking note that judicial education should not suffer due to lack of resources, we emphasize that  respective judiciaries, in liaison with the judicial academies and institutions, desirably workout per- judge-cost that may be incurred on judicial education and ensure availability of financial, human and knowledge resources to judicial education institutions.
  3. Being aware of the need to tailor judicial education programs according to legal, judicial and reform needs of  specific countries, we are convinced that the existence of common legal tradition among many countries in South Asia and in the Asia Pacific region, and also the increasing influence of international law in areas of trade and commerce, information and technology, environment and conservation of biodiversity, natural resources etc., has impelled  our countries and our institutions to forge closer cooperation in harmonizing our laws, improving the quality of justice to promote and protect human rights and  where necessary, develop special defensive mechanism in ensuring equality, dignity and respect of individual and communities especially the poor, marginalized and disadvantaged section through accessible and effective justice, and thereby, safeguard our national and regional interests.
  4. Convinced of the advantages of increased cooperation for quality judicial education, cross-fertilization of jurisprudence and judicial practices, and emergence of regional standard, and pooling in financial and human resources, we express our commitment for more intensive collaboration and cooperation in the design and implementation of judicial education programs through exchange of faculties, creation of possibilities for participation in education and training programs on issues of common concern for judges   and law officers, and explore the possibility of establishing a regional judicial education institution in South Asia that caters for the educational and research needs of the people of Asia and Pacific region.
  5. As an immediate practical step in promoting regional collaboration, we are committed to exploring the possibility of conducting research in areas of common concern such as independence of the judiciary, access to justice,  human rights and other cutting edge areas of law and justice. We also commit to exploring the possibility of linking the library systems of judicial academies and training institutions, so that the possibility of easy access to online resources is availed to the users.
  6. Convinced of the needs to establish a network of the judicial education institutions within the region for the common benefit of the judiciaries, we propose to establish a network entitled "Asia Pacific Judicial Education Institutions Network (APJEIN)". We also propose that a team of experts under the leadership of the Executive Director of the National Judicial Academy, Nepal shall be formed to carry out the necessary preparatory work for the establishment of APJEIN. The NJA, Nepal will also work as its secretariat.

We place on record our sincere appreciation to the Chief Justice of Nepal, the Supreme Court of Nepal, Executive Director of the National Judicial Academy and the NJA family, and the International Commission of Jurists, Nepal for successfully hosting the Conference and, with a view to promote more intensive dialogue among justices and legal and judicial educators, work further to organize similar Conferences in other countries of the Asia Pacific region in the future.

Adopted in Kathmandu on 24th day of September of the Year 2013. 

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September 22 to 24, 2013
Hotel Himalaya, Lalitpur (Kathmandu), Nepal

 

MC: Hon. Rishikesh Wagle, Faculty/Judge, NJA

Inaugural Program

Day I (September 22, 2013, Sunday)

3:30 – 3:50 pm Arrival of guests and Hi Tea
3:50 pm Chair: Hon. Raghab Lal Vaidya, Executive Director, National Judicial Academy, Nepal 
3:50 - 4:00 pm Welcome Remarks from Hon. Rajendra  Kharel, Faculty/Judge, NJA
4:00 - 4:05 pm Inauguration by the Chief Guest Rt. Hon. Damodar Prasad Sharma, Chief Justice, Supreme Court of Nepal
4:05 - 4:15 pm  Remarks from International Commission of Jurists (ICJ), Nepal
4:15 – 4:25 pm  Remarks from Hon. Hari Prasad Neupane, Minister for Law, Justice, Constituent Assembly and Parliamentary Affairs, Nepal 
4:25 – 4:55 pm  Keynote Speech on the Role of Judges and Judicial Educators on Judicial Education and Access to Justice from Hon. Kalyan Shrestha, Justice, Supreme Court of Nepal
4:55 – 5:10 pm Inaugural Speech from Chief Guest Rt. Hon. Damodar Prasad Sharma, Chief Justice, Supreme Court of Nepal
5:10 – 5:20 pm  Concluding Remarks with Vote of Thanks from the Chair, Hon. Raghab Lal Vaidya, Executive Director, National Judicial Academy, Nepal

 

Day II (September 23, 2013, Monday)

8:00 - 9:00 am Breakfast
9:00 - 12:30  Theme I: Judicial Education and Judicial Reform (25 minutes for each speaker)
  Chair: Hon. Kalyan Shrestha, Justice, Supreme Court of Nepal
  Speakers:  
9:00 - 9:25 am  International Cooperation in the Field of Judicial Education – Ms. Shiela Varadan, International Legal Advisor, International Commission of Jurists, Bangkok, Thailand
9:25 - 9:50 am  Experience Sharing on Judicial Education – Hon. Mr. Parvaiz Ali Chawla, Director General, Federal Judicial Academy, Pakistan
9:50 - 10:15 am  Experience Sharing on Judicial Education and Judicial Reform – Hon. Justice Hadhariah binti Syed Ismail, High Court Judge of Shah Alam, Malaysia 
10:15 - 10:30 am Tea Break
10:30 - 10:55 am Experience Sharing on Judicial Education and Judicial Reform in Nepal – Hon. Dr. Anand Mohan Bhattarai, Acting Chief Judge, Court of Appeal Tulsipur, Nepal
10:55 - 12:00 am Floor Discussion and Response 
12:00 - 12:30 pm Concluding Remarks from the Chair 
12:30 - 1:30 pm Lunch
1:30 - 4:00 pm  Theme II:  Mediation and Access to Justice (25 minutes for each speaker)
  Chair: Hon. Kalyan Shrestha, Justice, Supreme Court of Nepal
  Speakers:
1:30 - 1:55 pm   Women's Access to Justice in Nepal – Hon. Shushila Karki, Justice, Supreme Court of Nepal
1:55 - 2:20 pm  Mediation  in Bangladesh – Hon. Justice Naima Haider, High Court Division of Supreme Court of Bangladesh 
2:20 - 2:45 pm  Mediation in Sri Lanka – Hon. Justice Ms. Shiranee Tilakwardane, Supreme Court of Sri Lanka 
2:45 - 3:00 pm  Tea Break
3:00 - 3:45 pm  Floor discussion and Responses
 3:45 - 4:00 pm Concluding Remarks from the Chair


Day III (September 24, 2013, Tuesday)                 

8:00 - 9:00 am  Breakfast
9:00 - 11:30 am  Theme III:  Fast-track Court and Access to Justice (25 minutes for each speaker)
  Chair: Hon. Mr. Prakash Chandra Osti, Justice, Supreme Court of Nepal
  Speakers:
9:00 - 9:25 am  Enhancing Access to Justice, Speedy Trial and Fast-track Court - Professor Dr. Mahendra Pal Singh, Chairperson, Delhi Judicial Academy, India
9:25 - 9:50 am  Fast Track Court and Access to Justice - Hon. Justice Gita Mittal, Delhi High Court, India
9:50 - 10:05 am  Tea Break
10:05 -11:05 am  Floor Discussion and Responses
11:05 -11:30 am Concluding Remarks from the Chair
11:30 – 12:30 pm Lunch
12:30 - 3:30 pm Networking and Cooperation among the Judicial Academies
  Chair:  Hon. Justice Ms. Shiranee Tilakwardane, Supreme Court of Sri Lanka
  Group Deliberation for Way Forward
2:00 - 2:15 pm  Tea Break
2:15 - 3:30 pm  Group Deliberation for Way Forward (Contd.)
3:30 - 3:45 pm  Tea Break
3:45 - 4:00 pm  Adoption of Kathmandu Declaration 
4:00 - 5:00 pm  Concluding Ceremony
  Chair: Hon. Raghab Lal Vaidya, Executive Director, National Judicial Academy
  Remarks from participants
  Vote of Thanks from the Chair Hon. Raghab Lal Vaidya, Executive Director, National Judicial Academy
5:00 Onwards Reception and Farewell Dinner
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The NJA Nepal, International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) Nepal,§ has developed a program to hold a conference of judges and judicial educators on “Enhancing Access to Justice through Judicial Educators” on 22nd to 24th September 2013 in Kathmandu. The conference is designed to have a plenary presentation on access to justice through judicial education and best practices sharing across the region along with workshop on network building for future initiatives.


Objectives of the Conference

  • Discuss promotion of access to justice through judicial education
  • Share best practices from different jurisdictions access to justice and
  • Discuss on common agenda among participating institutions for future working

Participants

The conference is intended for the heads or high level officials of judicial education institutions within the region and for the members of the judiciary from around the region. We anticipate judges from across the judiciaries of the region. In addition, we anticipate participants from the following judicial education institutions:

  • National Judicial Academy, India
  • Delhi Judicial Academy, Delhi
  • Federal Judicial Academy, Islamabad-Pakistan
  • The Judicial Administration Training Institute (JATI), Dhaka, Bangladesh
  • Judicial Research and Training Institute, Republic of Korea
  • Judicial and Legal Training Institute (ILKAP), Malaysia
  • Russian Academy of Justice, Moscow, Russia
  • Research and Training Institute, Ministry of Justice, Japan
  • National Judicial Academy, Nepal (host organization)

Conference date

Date: 22nd to 24th September, 2013
Venue: Himalaya Hotel, Lalitpur, Nepal (Kathmandu)

Contact for the Conference

Mr. Shreekrishna Mulmi
Research Officer
National Judicial Academy, Nepal
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Contact Details:
National Judicial Academy
Harihar Bhawan, Lalitpur, Nepal
Tel: 977-1-5549057 / 5549067
Fax: 977-1-5530662
GPO Box No: 24865, Lalitpur, Nepal
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
URL: www.njanepal.org.np


§ The International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) is an international non-governmental organization.  It is dedicated to ensuring respect for international human rights standards through the law. The ICJ has been working in Nepal since 2005 in the field of human rights and judicial reform process, particularly in relation to enhancing access to justice for poor and marginalized groups in Nepal.
 
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Address

Address:
National Judicial Academy, Tarakeshwor - 20, Manamaiju,Kathmandu,Nepal
Tel:
(977) 4027449 / 4027451
Fax:
977-1-4027140
Website:
www.njanepal.org.np
Email:
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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The National Judicial Academy (NJA), a member of International Organization of Judicial Training, was established in 2004 to serve training and research needs of the judges, government attorneys.

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