Reportedly, courts in India are switching to videoconferencing to hear cases amid coronavirus outbreak. The Supreme Court today said, according to an ANI report, that there will be no more in-person hearings before further orders in line with the guidelines for social distancing. The court will be holding videoconferencing to hear important matters as all low-proceedings have been postponed. It even shut down the chambers of lawyers inside the courthouse.
Many of the other courts that have already taken similar decisions like the Gujarat High Court, which adopted e-filing and video conferencing to prevent large court proceedings, and the Karnataka High Court, which announced that it should use OTT devices such as Skype to hear cases before further notice.
Supreme Court says lawyers chambers inside the Court premises to be closed down due to #COVID19. SC also says that there will be no more in-person hearings till further orders. The Court will conduct videoconferencing to hear urgent matters. pic.twitter.com/xHp2qvAxmS
— ANI (@ANI) March 23, 2020
New Delhi, where the Supreme Court is based, is reportedly in a lockdown as part of a state government order on Sunday evening until 31st March. Schools, colleges, shopping centres, restaurants, pubs and several other public meeting places in the city are closed, and even ride aggregators such as Uber and Ola have suspended their transportation services till 31st of the month.
Believed to have originated in Wuhan, China, the novel coronavirus has now killed more than 16,000 people worldwide (at time of writing this article) and resulted in billions of dollars worth of losses worldwide. Unfortunately, with no proven solution and an appropriate vaccine due at the earliest late next year, most researchers tend to believe that up to now the tragedy is just the tip of the iceberg, that things can only get worse before they get any better.
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