Breaking: Supreme Court To Start Hybrid Physical Hearing On Experimental Basis From March 15

first_imgTop StoriesBreaking: Supreme Court To Start Hybrid Physical Hearing On Experimental Basis From March 15 LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK5 March 2021 11:47 PMShare This – xSupreme Court of India is all set to start hearing cases in a hybrid manner from March 15th 2021. The Apex Court has issued several directions and Standard Operating Procedure for Court’s functioning in consideration of the ongoing Covid 19 pandemic and suggestions given by the Bar Associations. The Court has devised a pilot scheme to hear cases in the hybrid mode on an experimental…Your free access to Live Law has expiredTo read the article, get a premium account.Your Subscription Supports Independent JournalismSubscription starts from ₹ 599+GST (For 6 Months)View PlansPremium account gives you:Unlimited access to Live Law Archives, Weekly/Monthly Digest, Exclusive Notifications, Comments.Reading experience of Ad Free Version, Petition Copies, Judgement/Order Copies.Subscribe NowAlready a subscriber?LoginSupreme Court of India is all set to start hearing cases in a hybrid manner from March 15th 2021. The Apex Court has issued several directions and Standard Operating Procedure for Court’s functioning in consideration of the ongoing Covid 19 pandemic and suggestions given by the Bar Associations. The Court has devised a pilot scheme to hear cases in the hybrid mode on an experimental basis. According to the scheme, the final hearing and regular matters listed on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays will be heard in the hybrid mode , after consideration of the number of parties in a matter and the limited capacity of the Court rooms. However all other matters, including those listed on Mondays and Fridays will continue to be heard through video -conferencing mode. The final hearing and regular matters where the number of Advocates for the parties are more than the average working capacity of the Court rooms being 20 per court room according to the Covid-19 norms will invariably be listed for hearing through video conferencing mode. However, the Bench may direct hearing of such matters through the hybrid mode, and in that case the appearance of the parties, whether by physical presence or through video conferencing, will be facilitated as per the directions of the Bench. The Court has directed that if in a matter listed for hybrid hearing, the number of parties is more, then one Advocate on record and one Arguing Counsel per party will be allowed entry and one registered Clerk per party chosen by the AOR, will be allowed entry to carry paper-books/journals etc. of the Counsels upto the Court-rooms. When the matters are listed for hybrid hearing, all the Counsels appearing for one party can appear either through physical presence or through video conferencing. The preferences for appearing before the Court either physically or through virtual mode will be submitted by the Advocates On Record within 24 hours or at 1:00 PM next day after the publication of the Weekly List of Final Hearing/Regular matters. On failure in opting for either mode i.e. physical or video conferencing mode, it will be presumed that Counsels for the party seek to appear through virtual mode and will be facilitated accordingly. In cases where no party opts for physical hearing, the cases will be heard through virtual mode only. The directions have stated that entry into the High Security Zone through proximity cards or long term passes will be kept suspended, and entry of counsels or parties or such other stakeholders to appear inside Courtroom for hybrid hearing will be through daily “Special hearing passes” which will be issued by the Registry, on the basis of authorization by the concerned Advocate on Record. The Special Hearing Pass holders, on completion of necessary formalities, will be notified in due time, and will be allowed to enter the High Security Zone through the designated Gate, after thermal screening. They will proceed to the designated waiting areas or Bar Lounges or Libraries areas and wait for their turn to enter respective Court Rooms where hybrid hearing of their respective case would be scheduled The Court has also issued the following directions for hearing of cases through hybrid mode: Multiple sets of one chair and table will be placed inside the Court Rooms, in the areas demarcated for Ld. Advocates and it will be incumbent upon the users to maintain minimum prescribed physical distancing norms between each set, which should not be removed from their positions. Subject to the capacity of any Courtroom, the entry of parties in a matter will be permitted not earlier than ten minutes prior to start of hearing of that matter. The entry into and exit from each Court Room will be by separate channels/doors. Wearing of mask, frequent use of hand sanitizer and maintaining physical distancing norms is mandatory for all entrants into the Supreme Court premises, including into the Court-rooms On completion of hearing of their respective cases, the Ld. Advocates and Registered Clerks, etc. will move out of the High Security Zone through the movement corridor and exit from the designated gates Counsels having more than one case for hybrid hearing will be issued separate Special Hearing Pass for each case and after hearing of one case is complete, they may wait in the designated staging/waiting areas for the purpose for appearing for the next hearing. The Court has reiterated that in order to facilitate video conferencing for the Counsels, a dedicated VC Facilitation Centre is located in Block ‘C’, Ground Floor, Additional Building Complex, Supreme Court of India, which can be accessed through Gate No.1 of that Complex. The Coordination Committee of the Supreme Court had on February 13th, 2021 clarified that once physical hearings before Supreme Court resume with Virtual Courts in a hybrid manner, the parties will have an option to appear physically or virtually. The clarification had been given in the meeting conducted on Saturday to discuss the resumption of physical hearings by the coordination committee held by Competent authority of the Supreme Court along with Supreme Court Bar Association and Supreme Court Advocates On Record Association Previously it was notified that the physical courts would resume soon along with Virtual courts in a hybrid manner. In the meeting, a clarification has been given as to what the hybrid manner would mean. It had been explained that when hearings are conducted in a hybrid manner, the Advocates, advocates on Record and the parties in person will have an option to appear in either physically or virtual court while the matter will be heard in physical court. Therefore when the Court will sit and hear the matter in physical Courts, one party will be able to appear physically and the other party can appear virtually. It had also been assured that all courts will resume physically in the said hybrid manner, very soon, and the Standard Operating Procedures and related details will be released soon. Multiple representations had been made to the Chief Justice of India till now seeking resumption of physical court hearings. Previously, the Executive Committee of Supreme Court Bar Association and Supreme Court Advocates On Record Association had submitted a joint representation seeking resumption of physical hearings after their joint meeting. The Supreme Court Advocates On Record Association had also separately written to the Chief Justice of India seeking resumption of physical hearings with the existing virtual Courts in a hybrid mannerClick Hear To Download/Read ProcedureSubscribe to LiveLaw, enjoy Ad free version and other unlimited features, just INR 599 Click here to Subscribe. All payment options available.loading….Next Storylast_img read more