Supreme Court judge Justice DY Chandrachud on Tuesday pushed for the need to communicate bail orders passed by courts to jail authorities on time so that the liberty of individuals is not adversely affected, reported Bar and Bench.
“A very serious deficiency in the criminal justice system is the delay in the communication of bail orders, which we need to address on war footing,” said Justice Chandrachud. “Because this touches upon human liberty of every under-trial, or even a convict who has got suspension of sentence.”
He was speaking at the inauguration of virtual courts and e-Sewa Kendra (online service centres) at the Allahabad High Court and district courts.
Recently, Aryan Khan, the son of actor Shah Rukh Khan, had to spend an extra day in jail as his bail order had not reached the Arthur Road Jail authorities on time.
Earlier in July, a Supreme Court bench led by Chief Justice NV Ramana had taken suo motu cognisance of the delay in releasing 13 prisoners from Agra Central Jail after the court granted them bail, reported The Indian Express.
The bench had announced its plan to set up a system for swift and secure electronic transmission of its rulings to jail authorities so that prisoners, who have been granted relief, do not have to wait for a certified order copy for being released.
In September, the Supreme Court had ordered the implementation of a system for electronic transmission of its orders called Fast and Secured Transmission of Electronic Records, or Faster.
On Tuesday, Justice Chandrachud referred to the “e-custody certificate” initiative being launched at the Orissa High Court by Chief Justice S Murlidhar.
“That certificate will give us all the requisite data with regard to that particular under-trial or convict, right from initial remand to the subsequent progress of each case,” he said.
The judge added: “This will also help us in ensuring that bail orders are communicated as soon as they are made, from the place they are communicated, to the jails for immediate implementation.”
Justice Chandrachud also said that live streaming of Allahabad High Court proceedings would soon become a reality under its new Chief Justice Rajesh Bindal.
Stressing on the need of e-Seva Kendras, the judge said it was needed due to the digital divide in the country.
“A large part of the population does not have personal access to computers, though of course now smartphones are proliferating even in our rural areas,” he said. “But there is this great digital divide and the members of the bar are representative of society at large.”
Justice Chandrachud also suggested replacing manual registers with modern electronic registers across the country.
He also recalled his experience at the Allahabad High Court as its chief justice.
“Allahabad is truly a special place, so is Lucknow, both have their own traditions, but representing vibrant India, it represents the heart land of India,” he said.