A Supreme Court panel has recommended resuming physical hearing in at least two or three of its courtrooms on a trial basis in a fortnight, PTI reported on Thursday. The court had been holding hearings through video conferencing since March 25 because of the nationwide lockdown imposed to contain the spread of the coronavirus.
Supreme Court Advocates on Record Association President Shivaji M Jadhav said the judges committee was “seriously considering to start at least 2-3 physical courts from the next week.” The committee had met Bar leaders.
A seven-judge bench led by NV Ramana, the senior-most judge of the Supreme Court, had in last week of July informed bar leaders that it would not initiate hearings “for the time being” and will look into the matter again after two weeks.
An unidentified official told The Hindu that preparations were being made in courtrooms to hold hearings. The official said that aluminum frame was installed in Justice Arun Mishra’s room, possibly for having a glass partition between the judge and the lawyers.
Senior advocate Manan Kumar Mishra, who met the judges committee, told the newspaper that many lawyers were angry as they were suffering financially and professionally because the courts were not holding physical hearings. The lawyers struggled with the virtual court system, Mishra said, adding they have urged the committee to resume hearings in a limited manner.
Members of the committee include Justices Ramana, Rohinton Nariman, AM Khanwilkar, LN Rao, UU Lalit, DY Chandrachud and Arun Mishra.