Supreme Court, while taking stock of applications for resumption of physical hearings, called on Advocates and Parties-in-Person to give their written consent stating that the same is only to be considered upon receipt of the same consent i.e. joint Consent For Resuming Physical Hearings
The circular signed under the additional registrar 's hand was issued today and states that, It also made it clear that the order for the initiation of physical court hearings would only take place according to the order of the competent authority and the social distancing requirements necessary.
'In view of the request received from different quarters and in order to explore the feasibility of the physical appearance of the advocates in court, while adhering to the norms of social distancing, All advocates and the party-in-person shall be informed hereby of their mutual consent to the physical presence of the advocates and shall appeal in court only upon receipt of the consent of both parties to that effect”.
Today, the Supreme Court Advocates on Records Association (SCAORA) sent a letter to CJI SA Bobde urging him to restore the functioning of the Courts in a physical setting from July 2020 onwards.
The letter highlighted that the Indian judicial system 's Open Court hearings are the cornerstone and that virtual courts are not a replacement for physical courts. Attention was also drawn to the 'practical challenges' in the electronic filing and hearing of cases by video conferencing. The report claimed that about 95 percent of lawyers are not familiar with the Virtual Court hearings because they are not well equipped with computer usage skills. "The general feedback seems to be that lawyers are unable to present their cases effectively in virtual media, and the same applies to those virtual hearings as a significant deterrent to lawyers".
The Bar Council of India had previously registered the CJLnot to continue the program of E flings and Virtual headings, post lockdown, on 28 April. There is a humongous variation in the technique of knowing people often by age gap, and also by variation in educational style and manner, and available services and technology from place to place, "the Council said.