The Delhi High Court on Tuesday resumed limited physical hearings after a gap of nearly five months when the second wave of COVID-19 hits the national capital. After the second wave struck the national capital, the Delhi High Court on April 8, 2021, suspended its physical hearing till April 23 which was later extended from time to time. Two division benches including the division bench headed by Delhi High Court Chief Justice DN Patel are holding a physical hearing today while seven single judge benches are conducting proceedings via physical mode.
However, the Court granted liberty to those advocates and litigants, who do not want to attend physical Court proceedings, to opt for virtual hearing.
Hence limited benches holding physical hearings have permitted advocates and litigants to attend hearings via a hybrid model.
Earlier on August 24, physical hearings in the district courts in Delhi had resumed in a graded manner.
The HC in its earlier notification said that on physical hearing days, the courts shall permit hybrid/video conferencing hearing where a request to such effect is made by any of the parties and/ or their counsel.
The Delhi High Court earlier issued two notifications one for High Court and the other for the district courts.
In partial modification of its earlier Office Order dated August 12, the Full Court of Delhi High Court has ordered that physical hearings in this Court shall resume from August 31 and a suitable number of Benches of this Court, for physical hearings, shall be constituted as per the directions of the Chief Justice of Delhi High Court while the remaining Benches shall continue to take up the matters through videoconferencing, as per the existing system of listing of matters.
All other pending routines and non-urgent matters listed before this Court till September 3 shall stand adjourned en bloc, as already notified.
The courts of Registrar and Joint Registrar (Judicial) of the Court will take up all the matters as per their respective cause lists with effect from August 31.
A roster will also be prepared for the said courts in such a manner that every Registrar/Joint Registrar (Judicial) holds physical court on alternate days while the others continue to hold courts through video-conferencing, as per the existing arrangement, on non-physical days.
The notification said that all the Principal District and Sessions Judges and Principal Judge, Family Court (HQs) were directed to prepare the roster of judicial officers in such a manner that every judicial officer holds physical court on alternate days while the others continue to hold courts through video-conferencing, as per the existing arrangement, on non-physical days.
Thus, on any given day, 50 per cent of the total strength of judicial officers shall hold the court physically while the remaining 50 per cent shall hold the courts through virtual mode.
Endeavour shall be made to take up stay applications, bail applications and other miscellaneous urgent matters on physical days, wherever request to such effect is made.
(With ANI inputs)