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SC asks lawyers to avoid mobiles and use desktop/laptop for virtual hearings

SC asks lawyers to avoid mobiles and use desktop/laptop for virtual hearings

New Delhi: Amid disruptions during virtual hearings due to the use of mobiles, the Supreme Court on Monday directed the advocates and litigants to use a desktop or the laptop with a stable internet connection to join proceedings conducted through video conferencing.

"All advocates and party-in person are requested to join the CISCO Webex application for joining the court hearing through video conferencing (VC) via a desktop or laptop with a stable internet connection, preferably wired, to avoid any disruption and inconvenience to the Hon'ble Judges," the notification issued by the top court registry said.

The notification advised the lawyers and litigants to join the virtual proceedings through a single device either a laptop or a desktop.

The notification further asked the advocates, party-in-person to join the VC hearings preferably using a headset enabled microphone and audio system.

All background applications running on the devices have also been asked to be closed for the best VC experience.

The notification comes after the hearing in as many as 10 cases had to be adjourned by the bench headed by the Chief Justice of India as the lawyers were either inaudible or invisible or both.

Earlier during the day, a bench headed by Chief Justice N.V. Ramana had expressed unhappiness at lawyers appearing for virtual hearings through their mobile phones - where they were either barely audible or not visible.

The bench, also comprising Justices A.S. Bopanna and Hima Kohli, had to adjourn the hearings in as many as 10 cases listed due to disruptions from lawyers' end.

The bench was worried over frequent disruptions as the lawyers or litigants were mostly joining the proceedings through phones using mobile data and even observed that it may have to ban participation through mobiles.

During the hearing of a case, the bench had taken note of poor internet connectivity at the lawyer's end and said, "We have no energy to hear cases like this. Please devise a system by which we can hear you. Ten matters are over like this and we are shouting." The top court has been hearing cases through video-conferencing since March 2020 due to the pandemic and has been relaxing or tightening the conditions from time to time keeping in mind the changing pandemic situation.

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TAGS:Supreme Court of India
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