The Supreme Court stated on Tuesday that in virtual courtroom hearings, lawyers have different views and the bar is split on the subject of whether courts should return to physical hearings.
On August 16th, the Uttarakhand High court issued a notification decreeing that all lawyers must be present in person beginning on August 24.
When a plea challenging the judgement of the Uttarakhand High Court to revert to full physical functioning from August 24 to the exclusion of the virtual mode of hearing cases was listed for early listing, A Bench comprising Chief Justice of India NV Ramana and Justice Surya Kant pondered the same.
The petitioner was represented by Advocate Siddharth R Guta, and the statement came after he made one. The All India Jurists Association pointed out that the Uttarakhand High Court had chosen to discontinue virtual hearings entirely, creating significant inconvenience for plaintiffs and lawyers.
The petitioner is challenging the decision of the High Court that the right to participate in court proceedings through virtual courts via video conference is a fundamental right under Article 19 (1) (a) and (g) of the Constitution.
The court was further informed that Justice DY Chandrachud, the Chairperson of the Supreme Court e-committee, had requested that all High Courts across the country use the hybrid format of the hearing.
Since the number of covid cases has been decreasing, high courts in different regions are reopening for face-to-face hearing of cases, whereas many high courts have allowed lawyers to continue with virtual sessions if they wish so.