Lawyers Have To Produce Typed Copies Of HC Judgments Which Are Unreadable Due To Large Watermarks : CJI DY Chandrachud
Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud on Wednesday urged lawyers to follow the directions of the Supreme Court registry to produce typed copies of High Court judgements, which are unreadable owing to the presence of large watermarks on them.The Chief Justice made this remark when an advocate mentioned before him the difficulty caused by the registry's insistence for producing typed copies...
Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud on Wednesday urged lawyers to follow the directions of the Supreme Court registry to produce typed copies of High Court judgements, which are unreadable owing to the presence of large watermarks on them.
The Chief Justice made this remark when an advocate mentioned before him the difficulty caused by the registry's insistence for producing typed copies of judgments along with the petitions.
"Comply with the registry. Type it out! We want to read the judgments and we cannot read with watermarks because they are too large. We cannot read with magnifying glasses", CJI said. He added that judges have to read hundreds of files daily and the watermarks posed a difficulty.
The lawyer then urged the CJI to direct the High Courts to stop putting watermarks on judgments. CJI replied that High Courts are not under his administrative control. Yet, a letter was written to several Chief Justices of High Courts flagging this issue, CJI added.
"You must also understand and co-operate with the bench. What's the point of waving your hands?", CJI told the lawyer making his mind clear that he will not interfere with the directions of the registry.
This is not the first time Justice Chandrachud has raised the issue of watermarks making it difficult to read judgments for judges. In August 2021, Justice Chandrachud, as he then was, had orally remarked that the E-Committee of the Supreme Court would contact the tribunals to request them to remove large watermarks from the pages of their judgments and orders. He had said–
"Tribunals don't come under us, but we will deal with this issue in the E-Committee. We have previously taken up this concern with the High Courts also. We will get in touch with the NGT. It is very bad, their orders just cannot be read."
He had also highlighted how one of his law clerks who was visually challenged could not read the orders at all because due to the watermarks, the orders were not machine-readable and thus, the watermarks impacted the access to justice of the disabled.
Earlier, while speaking at a public function in December 2020, Justice Chandrachud had said that the practice of using watermarks on each page of judgements and orders should be done away wit