evening1The state government has finally responded to a call by the Supreme Court and issued a notification that will make evening courts a reality. The courts will operate from 6 to 8 pm every day, except on holidays. The need for such courts was first mooted by the then Chief Justice of the Supreme Court in 2004. Now, after consultations with the Bombay High Court, the state has issued the notification – Maharashtra Evening Court Rules-2009 – a few days ago. The court will hear cheque bouncing cases under Section 138 of Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881 (26 of 1881), cases pertaining to offences that can be tried summarily under Chapter XXI of the Code Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974) and any other case transferred to the evening court with the consent of other parties. The HC will appoint, depute or transfer any serving judicial officer as an Evening Court Judge. With hundreds of cases pending and years taken to close cases, the decision of the state to have evening courts is likely to speed up the closure of cases.

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