Justice D Y Chandrachud, Chairperson of Supreme Court E-committee, conducted a meeting yesterday by video-conferencing with committees of High Courts. So to ensure urgent matters are heard quickly and parties are not required to come to court during the lockdown. He said, “prompt measures be adopted at this time of crisis and the use of technology must be institutionalized even after the lockdown is lifted and normalcy returns”.
The possibility of live streaming of court proceedings to be held by video-conferencing was deliberated. But due to technical issues such as bandwidth availability and dedicated servers; it was perceived that the recordings should be hosted on court websites by the next day. So that people have access to them. Preferably, “judicial officers and advocates should work from their homes but this was left to the high courts to resolve to what level this was practicable”.
The meeting included judges of 23 high courts, who headed the computer committees. They opined on steps taken and the challenges faced currently. The measures initiated by them in the operation of virtual courts examined by J. Chandrachud. He heard the complications faced in e-filing of cases by few states. Subsequently, he called a meeting of the chairpersons of the computer committees. He recommended the use of unused funds from Phase II of the e-courts project by the high courts to meet instant requirements. J. Chandrachud convinced HCs that funds or software demands be processed and submitted to the Department of Justice swiftly.
Lastly, chairpersons briefed about an e-filing module which is in an advanced stage of development in the Apex Court.