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SC issues guidelines for online hearing of matter from May 18 onwards

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The Supreme Court released a Standard Operation Procedure (SOP) on Sunday in which it has said that it will hear all cases via video and audio links between May 18 and June 19.

Earlier, the SC had been hearing only urgent cases through video-conferencing during the lockdown. It had also decided on May 15 to postpone its summer vacation by five weeks and declared that it would remain functional from May 18 to June 19.

The apex court has also scaled up its ‘1881’ helpline to assist advocates and litigants in e-filing and virtual hearing and the helpline will remain functional from 10 am to 5 pm.

A communication from the top court said the proceedings by video-conference should not be recorded/stored or broadcast, in any manner whatsoever.

The fresh matters lying in the pool which could not be listed due to the pandemic have been scheduled to be listed before the virtual court for hearing during the period, it said.

It also said that the timing of the virtual courts will be notified in the respective causelists. It also said that the advocates should specify whether they would like to link to the Bench through their own computer or would prefer to avail the facility for video-conferencing in the Supreme Court premises.