Mumbai, August 26: The Bombay High Court will resume physical court proceedings in criminal appeal cases from August 31, over four months after virtual hearings in urgent matter began due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Two division benches comprising Justices PB Varale, VG Bisht, SS Jadhav and NJ Jamadar and two single benches of Justices AS Gadkari and PD Naik will take up final hearings of criminal appeals from August 31 to September 15 in the high court.

The other Justices, including Chief Justice Dipankar Datta, will continue virtual hearings till September 15, it was stated, news agency PTI reported.

“As a precautionary measure, in view of COVID-19, hearing of criminal appeals only will be conducted physically in the Court. At a time, a limited number of advocates will be allowed to enter the courtroom with an intent to observe social distancing and wearing of masks is compulsory,” a notice issued by VR Kachare, registrar judicial of the Bombay High Court, stated.

Limited cases will be listed for hearing for the day and till the matter is called out, advocates will have to wait in the waiting room, in which necessary arrangements will be made, it was stated.

If an advocate is unwilling to be present for a physical hearing, he or she can be heard through video conference, the notice said.

The high court had started hearing urgent matters from April after a nationwide lockdown was announced from March 23 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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