Supreme Court issues Standard Operating Procedure for physical hearings

Team SoOLEGAL 1 Sep 2020 5:09pm

Supreme Court issues Standard Operating Procedure for physical hearings

The Supreme Court has notified Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for the proposed physical hearings of the matters. However, in the SOPs no date was mentioned as from when the physical hearing of cases will begin in a limited manner.

In the beginning of this month, a seven-judges committee headed by Justice NV Ramana , after consideration of requests by various bar associations , recommended the Chief Justice of India SA Bobde, , that experimental hearing of cases can be resumed while complying with additional safety requirements.

The SOP issued by Secretary General Sanjeev S Kalgaonkar of the Supreme Court said, "On an experimental basis and as a pilot scheme, a physical hearing of the matter may initially begin in three Court-rooms; eventually , the number of cases or the number of Court-rooms may be increased or reduced, as the situation may warrant or permit."

It specified that only certain number of lawyers or parties can appear in courtrooms during a physical hearing so that the total number does not exceed the working capacity of the Court(s) as determined in the light of the physical distance norms.

If there are multiple parties in a case, a lawyer on the Advocate on Record (AOR) record and one arguing counsel per party will be allowed entry, one registered clerk per party, as may be selected by the AOR, will be permitted to bring the paper-books or journals etc. of the Counsels up to the Court-rooms, it said.

Entry into the Supreme Court's high-security zone will be through "special hearing passes" which the registry will issue. Proximity cards, which lawyers normally used to gain access to the high-security zone, will remain suspended.

Meanwhile, the app through which cases are heard online is the Vidyo app which can be downloaded on mobile phones and desktops.

Tagged: Supreme Court   Standard Operating Procedure   physical hearings   Justice NV Ramana   CJI SA Bobde   Secretary General Sanjeev S Kalgaonkar   Advocate on Record   Proximity cards   Vidyo app  
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