In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic that has infected over 62,000 people in the country, the court proceedings will continue to be held through video conferencing for some quite some time, said Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Sunday, May 10.
As per reports, during an interaction with a team of law officers headed by the Attorney General KK Venugopal and Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, Prasad said that digital court proceedings may remain a norm for some time. The virtual meeting was also attended by Additional Solicitors General and Assistant Solicitors General, Secretary of Department of Legal Affairs and Secretary of Department of Justice.
The Law Minister stressed on taking this challenge as an opportunity to make digital systems a powerful tool in delivering justice. A statement issued by the Ministry of Law and Justice said that the Attorney General and many other law officers also emphasised that there is a need to strengthen the e-courts system by addressing the connectivity issues and by training lawyers in e-courts management.
Citing a surge of PILs filed in various courts during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Union minister said that during these challenging times overzealous PILs need to be avoided and called for an effective response to such interventions.
Ravi Shankar Prasad directed the Secretary Justice, who is also a member of the e-Court Committee of the Supreme Court, to bring these challenges before the committee and improve the system with the help of National Informatics Centre and other agencies.
"As many as 1,282 advocates have registered for e-filing of petitions during lockdown out of which 543 advocates have registered in the last one week alone. Secretary, Department of Legal Affairs, explained the coordination system available in the Law Ministry about following the cases related to COVID-19. It was a common consensus that there has to be uniformity in our approach and the orders of the Supreme Court should be immediately conveyed to various high courts", the statement.
(Image Credits: PTI file photo)