The Kerala High Court is set to inaugurate e-filing, video conferencing, e-office and e-Sewa kendras in all three court centres in the Union territory of Lakshadweep on February 10.
TO facilitate access to justice, the Kerala High Court is set to inaugurate e-filing, video conferencing, e-office and e-Sewa kendras in all three court centres in the Union territory of Lakshadweep on February 10.
This is the first time that such facilities have been made available on the islands, which come under the administrative control of the High Court of Kerala.
The e-filing system will enable litigants and lawyers to file cases online from anywhere without visiting the court premises physically. The video conferencing facility will allow the courts to conduct hybrid hearings, where some parties can appear remotely and others can be present in the courtroom.
The Chief Justice of the High Court of Kerala, Justice A.J. Desai is slated to inaugurate the facilities in the presence of Justice A. Muhamed Mustaque, chairman of the committee in charge of computerisation, Justice Bechu Kurian Thomas, Justice Shoba Annamma Eapen and others at Kavaratti, the capital of Lakshadweep.
The e-office aims to make administrative work paperless and faster. The e-Sewa kendras will provide various services to the public, such as information on case status, judgments, Orders, cause lists and court fees, and will facilitate witnesses to give evidence through video conferencing, etc.
Sources in the Kerala High Court say that the inauguration of these facilities in Lakshadweep is another milestone in the digital transformation of judiciary in India.
Last year, a Supreme Court Bench headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) Dr D.Y. Chandrachudobservedthat the use of technology by the Bar and the Bench was no longer an option but a necessity.
“Members of the Bench, the Bar and the litigants must aid each other to create a technologically adept and friendly environment. The above directions must be implemented by all concerned stakeholders in letter and in spirit,” the Supreme Court had said while directing all high courts and tribunals not to refuse the video conferencing option to lawyers and litigants.
The Supreme Court was of the view that technology plays an essential role in securing access to courtrooms and as a result, access to justice for citizens across the country.
“Lawyers and litigants using electronic gadgets to access files and legal materials cannot be asked to turn the clock back and only refer to paper books. In the march of technology, the courts cannot remain tech-averse,” the Supreme Court had observed.