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'Transparency, inclusivity': SC seeks stakeholders' suggestions on live streaming

'Transparency, inclusivity': SC seeks stakeholders' suggestions on live streaming

New Delhi,   In a bid to begin live streamlining of court proceedings, the Supreme court's e-committee has released the draft model rules inviting inputs, feedback and suggestions from all stakeholders.

Supreme Court Judge and Chairperson of e-Committee, Justice D.Y. Chandrachud has written a letter to all Chief Justices of the High Court, seeking inputs and suggestions on the draft model rules for live streaming and recording of court proceedings.

In the letter, Justice Chandrachud said the right of access to justice, guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution, encompasses the right to access live court proceedings.

"To imbue greater transparency, inclusivity and foster access to justice, the e-committee has undertaken the project of live streaming of court proceedings on priority," said a statement.

The statement added that this will enable access to live court proceedings, including on matters of public interest to citizens, journalists, civil society, academicians and law students on a real time basis, which was not otherwise possible owing to geographical, logistical or infrastructural issues.

A sub-committee consisting of judges of the Bombay, Delhi, Madras and Karnataka High Courts was constituted to frame model live streaming rules.

The committee held extensive deliberations and took into account the principles enunciated in the decision of the Supreme Court in Swapnil Tripathi v Supreme Court of India (2018).

The top court decision included the concerns of privacy and confidentiality of litigants and witnesses, matters relating to business confidentiality, prohibition or restriction of access to proceedings or trials stipulated by Central or state legislation and in some cases, to preserve the larger public interest owing to the sensitivity of the case. The draft model rules are now available on website of the e-committee.

"Suggestions and inputs on the Draft Model Rules for Live-Streaming and Recording of Court Proceedings can be sent in the following email ID ecommittee@aij.gov.in on or before June 30, 2021," added the statement.

The e-committee of the Supreme Court, along with the Department of Justice, is working under the National Policy and Action Plan for implementation of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in the Indian Judiciary.

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