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CJI urged to resume physical hearings in apex court

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New Delhi, Jan 29 (IANS) Senior advocate and former Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) President Vikas Singh on Friday wrote to Chief Justice S.A. Bobde, seeking resuming physical hearings in the top court at the earliest.

In his letter, Singh said the situation is beginning to return to normal in the country, amid declining Covid-19 cases, therefore the top court can exit hearing through video conference.

He said that if an immediate response is not received in this matter, then lawyers would hold a peaceful protest in the apex court lawns.

He also said SCBA elections were “unduly delayed by the outgoing President leaving no active representation on behalf of the Bar Association”.

“Sir, you will appreciate that this institution (SC) has been created for the benefit of the ordinary litigants and during this pandemic, ordinary litigants have been the biggest sufferers, because the virtual mode of hearing is not able to take up the same number of matters which are possible in physical hearing due to the limitation of bandwidth etc. and thus the number of matters being decided by this Court are far fewer than would be decided in open physical hearing,” said Singh in the letter.

He noted that the government in its last notification on January 27, has relaxed almost all restrictions in the country with effect from February 1.

Beginning February 1, the government has permitted cinema halls to open in full capacity, as well as public swimming pools, while marriages can be conducted with 200 people in closed spaces etc, he said.

He also said that the positivity rate in Delhi has declined to 0.3 per cent and as per the WHO, any positivity rate below 5 per cent was near normal.

Singh had earlier also written letters to the Chief Justice in the same context, where he cited that recent turn of events have created a situation whereby the interests of the Bar are being neglected and the Bench is taking unilateral decisions with regard to the functioning of the institution.




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