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Supreme Court to live-stream constitution bench proceedings from September 27
9/22/2022 10:40:54 PM
NEW DELHI, Sept 22: In a bid to enhance transparency and accessibility in its functioning, the Supreme Court has decided to live-stream its proceedings of all constitution bench hearings from September 27, exactly four years after a path-breaking verdict in this regard was delivered in 2018.
A unanimous decision was taken by the 30 judges of the Supreme Court in the full court meeting headed by Chief Justice of India UU Lalit held on Tuesday evening to implement an top court verdict of 2018 in the Swapnil Tripathi case.
On August 26, for the first time since its inception, the Supreme Court had live streamed its proceedings of a bench headed by then Chief Justice NV Ramana through a webcast portal.
It was ceremonial proceedings as Justice Ramana was to demit office on August 26. Exactly four years back on September 26, 2018, the Supreme Court had taken a major leap in imparting transparency in the functioning of the judiciary by allowing live-streaming of court proceedings of cases of "constitutional and national importance", saying this openness was like "sunlight" which is the "best disinfectant". It had said as a pilot project, only a specified category of cases that are of constitutional or national importance and are being argued before a constitution bench should be live streamed.
The Supreme Court had said that sensitive cases such as those dealing with matrimonial disputes or sexual assault should not be live streamed. Several important cases are to be heard by the five-judge constitution benches of the top court next week including the validity of the 103rd constitution amendment granting a 10 per cent quota to the Economically Weaker Section (EWS), pleas challenging the constitutional validity of the Citizenship Amendment Act and others. Recently, activist-lawyer Indira Jaising, who had also filed a separate petition in 2018, seeking live streaming of the court proceedings has written a letter to CJI UU Lalit seeking implementation of the 2018 verdict and live broadcast of proceedings of constitution bench cases heard by the top court. According to sources, initially, the top court may live stream the proceedings through 'YouTube' and would later host them on its server. People would be able to access the proceedings of the top court on their cell phones, laptops, and computers without any hassle. On September 6, Justice DY Chandrachud, who is next in line to become chief justice of India and heads the E-Committee of the top court while hearing a case recalled an incident when he had seen someone recording court proceedings on a cell phone.
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