More than 500 members of the Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) have made a representation to the Chief Justice of India S.A. Bobde, requesting resumption of regular physical hearings along with virtual hearings amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
A representation has been made by SCBA members lawyers Kuldeep Rai, Ankur Jain, Anubhav, and more than 500 members including Senior Advocates, citing many problems which are being faced by them during virtual court hearings.
They cite many issues including;
1- Network Connectivity issues.
2- No Proper Management by the Registry, regarding virtual hearing.
3- No response to the calls by the dealing officers in hand mentioning branch.
4- Dismissal of mentioning of urgent matters by the mentioning branch without providing any reason for the same.
5- More than 50% of young practitioners of this Bar have been constrained to leave Delhi as they were unable to meet their living expenses.
6- Members staying in Delhi NCR, and practising before this Hon’ble Court have huge effect on their earnings due to which, either they have to depend on their family or on odd jobs.
The lawyers wrote,
“Since last 10 months the Counsels/members practicing before the Court, especially, the young members are still going through a very difficult time. The virtual hearing system has failed to serve adequately as the effective Justice Delivery system.”
They urged the Chief Justice of India to take note of the financial instability of many member advocates who cannot access this virtual court hearing system and who are not well versed with the virtual system.
Therefore, they requested the Chief Justice of India to take note of their difficulties along with many other bar members, who are facing these problems due to closure of courts and resume physical court hearings along with virtual court hearings.
“Your lordship is very much aware of this fact, that most of the members practising before this Hon’ble Court are from diverse States and stay here on rent, but due to this pandemic condition and online system of this Hon’ble court, many of them are compelled to leave Delhi and their practice too. This is also an undisputed fact that majority of members of this Bar are not well versed with this virtual system due to which they are suffering the most and also defeating the purpose of justice system.”