Redressal of Grievances in India

By Shivank Goel|Updated : September 16th, 2022

Redressal of Grievances in India is an essential part of our democratic system. The word redressal refers to setting right or put in order. It refers to the process of redressing grievances. Redressal of a grievance involves the correction and reversal of an injustice. It is also known as compensation. The mechanism of the Redressal of Grievances helps to maintain a just and fair society.

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What is the Redressal of Grievances?

Redressal is defined as "the act or process by which justice results from correcting or reversing an injustice." The word redress, in this sense, has been used since the 18th century in both the English language and French languages (Reparer means to set correct). It means compensating someone who has suffered injustice due to some legal or social misconduct.

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The word redress is also used to 'remedying' something wrong, affecting what is straightened out, or making it suitable or better. It may be used metaphorically to refer to a decision by which equity is intended to be achieved through compensation for loss, disadvantage, suffering, and injury.

Significance of Redressal of Grievances in India

Grievance redressal mechanisms are a part of our democracy. It is necessary to protect all citizens' rights and interests and maintain a just and equitable society. Redressal of Grievances is essential in a healthy democratic system where people are able to appeal against injustice, have their grievances redressed, be given compensation, and have their rights protected by the law.

It is an important right provided in the constitution, which every civilized state has safeguarded. It is a prerequisite for justice in any society that should be founded on principles of equity and justice rather than where equality before the law is treated as an illusion.

Redressal of Grievances in India

Redressal of Grievances through the legal systems is a fundamental right in India. Article 226 of the Indian constitution deals with the jurisdiction of civil courts and their powers in redressing grievances. In the Indian legal system, every citizen's the fundamental right to have their grievances redressed by the civil courts.

  • The Supreme Court of India has clearly explained that the redressal of every citizen's grievances is part and parcel of the rule of law in India. Any impediment in this regard amounts to an illegal action.
  • The Indian Constitution guarantees protection to citizens when they approach the Supreme Court or High Courts for the Redressal of Grievances in public interest cases.
  • So as we can see, the Redressal of Grievances through our legal system is not just some vague principle that exists somewhere on paper. Still, it is a fundamental part of which our society operates.
  • It is a fundamental right within the guarantee of life and personal liberty in the constitution. At the same time, Article 32 is the twin article, which specifically deals with access to courts for enforcing Fundamental Rights.

Grievance Redressal: Nodal Agencies and Other Mechanisms

There are 2 significant nodal agencies that are accountable for the readdressing of grievances at the Central level. They are;

  1. Department of Administrative Reforms and Public Grievances (DARPG): It is functioning under the Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions.
  2. Directorate of Public Grievances: It is a component of the Cabinet Secretariat

Other mechanisms for the redressal of grievances include;

  • Ombudsman
  • Lokpal
  • Tribunals
  • Parliamentary Committee on PetitionsParliamentary Committee

Redressal of Grievances: E-Governance

The current administration has been employing information and communications technology (ICT) to address public complaints. Following are examples of the government's notable initiatives to use e-governance to quickly resolve public complaints:

  • Central Public Grievance Redress and Monitoring System (CPGRAMS)
  • Pro-Active Governance and Timely Implementation (PRAGATI)
  • Integrated Grievance Redressal Mechanism (INGRAM)
  • Unified Mobile Application for New-Age Governance (UMANG)
  • E-Nivaran
  • MyGov
  • Nivaran
  • Mera Aspataal (My Hospital)

How can the Redressal of Grievances help?

The Grievance Redressal Mechanism helps punish wrongdoers and protects victims from the repercussions of their actions. It also helps to further social democracy and justice by enabling the victims of injustice to obtain redress for their grievances. It gives redressal to people who have been unjustly treated in some way by others.

The word 'redress' means to set correct. Redressal is the process of setting things right. It is a process of setting things back in order. Redressal is, therefore, the effort to set things back in order by removing injustice or wrongs and restoring fairness and equity.

Redressal means to make good or restore what has been improperly done or unjustly suffered so that justice may prevail.

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FAQs on Redressal of Grievances

  • Redressal of grievances refers to making amends for wrongs committed against people by governments, businesses, and other people. It also covers citizens' rights to seek remedy for any wrong they experience.

  • Redressal of Grievances is important for social and political justice. It inspires public confidence in law-making institutions. Redressal of Grievances is an essential element of a just society where citizens have the right to challenge with impunity those who harm them and seek redress from the courts. In a just society, however, one also expects that there will be a system that will help them to get justice even if they suffer injustice.

  • What is the time limit for the redressal of grievances? Forty-five (45) days. In case of delay, an interim reply with reasons for the delay is required to be given.

  • The concept of the Redressal of Grievances to people has social relevance, and it is essential for the proper maintenance of human rights. Redressal is required both under civil law and criminal law for effective and just manifestation in respect of infringement on rights by an individual, group, or institution. Article 226 of the Indian Constitution deals with the jurisdiction of civil courts and their powers in redressing grievances. It has to be remembered that this fundamental right extends to all citizens, irrespective of caste, creed, or religion.

  • By penalising those who hurt others and giving victims justice, grievance redressal contributes to the upkeep of a just and fair society. It ensures those who experience unfairness that can seek remedy and anticipate justice from the courts. By doing so, the redressal of grievances mechanism helps to maintain the public's confidence in the institutions that make laws.

  • Different tools that have been established as redressal processes include:

    • Creation of a system for handling complaints under the citizens' charter.
    • Establishing deadlines for resolving complaints.
    • Creation of the Lokpal and Lokayukta Institution of Ombudsman at the local level to monitor the resolution of complaints

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