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If governments discharge their duties responsibly, there would not be any need of public interest litigations, a senior judge of the Supreme Court has said.

Justice T S Thakur of the apex court, said this while delivering a lecture here, and held “lacunae in system” responsible for piling cases in the courts.

He was addressing a legal fraternity at the ‘Second Marudhar Mridul Memorial Lecture’ last night on the topic ‘Widening Horizons of Public Interest litigation’.

“If the governments discharge their duties responsibly, there would not be any need of PILs,” Thakur said.

“If so happens, the judiciary would not have any need to intervene in the functioning of the governments by way of PILs or any other means”, he said.

While throwing light on the PILs in Indian judicial system, he also said that the “PILs strengthen the democracy”.

“Earlier, a person could file a petition for his or her personal rights but the issues pertaining to public interest could now be raised through PIL”, he said, while reiterating the need in the judiciary to hear them (PILs) with sensitivity.

Endorsing Thakur’s view point, chief justice of Rajasthan high court Sunil Ambwani said that PILs have important role to play, specially in social and environmental security, and stressed on the need of a litigant to be fully prepared with substantial material, before filing a PIL.

Ambwani said that the courts play their role but it is the governments, which has to “finally act”.

“We can issue orders, directions or guidelines but the actual work would have to be done by the government itself so the people do not have to come to the court against the government”, he said.

The Rajasthan high court Chief Justice also said that PILs were “the result of faulty systems”, following which, affected persons seek their refuge in the courts, in the form of such litigations.

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