Kazakh judge goes the extra mile to help ethnic villagers

Updated: 2016-02-18 10:08

By Wu Yan(chinadaily.com.cn)

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Kazakh judge goes the extra mile to help ethnic villagers

Mauken holds a temporary court at a villager's home in July, 2015. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]

On the first day of the Lunar New Year of the Monkey, Mauken Habdel viewed the files of legal cases at his desk in the office of the Qiakuertu village committee in Fuyun county, Altay prefecture, in Northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region.

As an upper-level cadre dispatched to this remote and underdeveloped village, he was on duty during the Spring Festival holiday. Unlike other regions of China, populated by lively Han people celebrating the festival, the village, with more than 98 percent of residents being ethnic Kazakhs who have their own culture, was very quiet.

Mauken, 30, also a Kazakh, works as a judge in Fuyun County People's Court. In March, 2014, he moved to Qiakuertu village to help deal with legal affairs, among others for residence, in Qiakuertu town, Dure township and Kalabulegen township.

"Villagers are willing to seek help from us in almost every aspect of their life," said Mauken. There are other three cadres who work and live in the village forming a grass-roots level working group helping local people improve their livelihood.

"For those problems we can solve, we will do it as soon as possible, while for those we can't, we will report them to higher level governmental organs. At least, we can give them an answer," he said.

He once helped a sick villager demand payment from a debtor.

In Sept, 2014, Mauken judged a debt case which decided the defendant should pay back money to the plaintiff. However, the defendant delayed payment, while the plaintiff waited for the money to treat his illness.

Mauken went to the defendant's home and told him about legal liabilities he may take on, including paying an extra 890 yuan ($136) in deferred payment interest, if he did not fulfill his obligations. The defendant then realized the serious outcome of a default.

The plaintiff got his money the same day and was sent to hospital in Urumqi, Xinjiang's capital, the following day.

"Where people need me is where I will go and set up a court", said Mauken. Some residents, especially herdsmen and farmers, work during the daytime and return home in the evening.

"For their convenience, sometimes, a temporary court will be set up at their homes in the evening, on weekends or on holidays", he said.

Apart from solving legal disputes, Mauken also promotes legal knowledge among local people after realizing they lack legal awareness.

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