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Supreme Court Refuses Urgent Listing For Plea To Declare Virtual Court Hearing A Fundamental Right

Sohini Chowdhury
29 April 2022 7:11 AM GMT
Supreme Court Refuses Urgent Listing For Plea To Declare Virtual Court Hearing A Fundamental Right
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The Supreme Court, on Friday, refused to permit urgent listing of the plea seeking a declaration that virtual court hearing is a fundamental right. On 06.09.2021, a Bench conspiring Justice L. Nageswara Rao and B.R. Gavai had issued notice on the writ which sought retention of the hybrid mode of hearing matters as it augments the right to access. On Friday, Senior Advocate,...

The Supreme Court, on Friday, refused to permit urgent listing of the plea seeking a declaration that virtual court hearing is a fundamental right.

On 06.09.2021, a Bench conspiring Justice L. Nageswara Rao and B.R. Gavai had issued notice on the writ which sought retention of the hybrid mode of hearing matters as it augments the right to access.

On Friday, Senior Advocate, Mr. Siddharth Luthra mentioned the matter before a Bench led by Justice Rao. He submitted that given the COVID-19 cases are rising, the matter needs to be urgently heard by the Apex Court.

The Bench noted that there is no urgency. However, it was of the view that if the situation worsens in future, then the Court will take a call accordingly.

As the Counsel insisted, J. Rao reckoned -

"There are more urgent matters. People are in jail. There are bail matters. Will list in July."

The petition was filed by an organisation of lawyers called "All India Association of Jurists" and legal reporter Sparsh Upadhyay, challenging the decision of the Uttarakhand High Court to revert to complete physical hearings, without hybrid option.

It was contended that the High Courts of Uttarakhand, Bombay, Madhya Pradesh and Kerala were not providing joining links for attending cases through virtual mode. The petition argued that the denial of access to the facility of hearing cases through virtual mode is akin to denial of Fundamental Rights under Articles 19 and 21 of the Constitution of India. In view of the same mandamus was sought against the Registrar Generals of the 4 High Courts.

Case Title : All India Association of Jurists and another v. High Court of Uttarakhand and others

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