New Delhi, May 28: More than three months after the Punjab and Haryana High Court went into restricted functioning mode, it on Thursday constituted a high-level committee of its senior judges for further streamlining the process of hearing cases before it and the subordinate courts in Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh.

Available information suggests Chief Justice Ravi Shanker Jha ordered the setting up of a seven-judge committee to work out the modalities for hearing matters and adoption of preventative measures, making clear the High Court’s intent to prevent the period from turning itself into denial of justice phase, The Tribune reported.

The committee, headed by Justice Rajiv Sharma, would comprise Justice Rakesh Kumar Jain, Justice Jaswant Singh, Justice Daya Chaudhary, Justice Rajan Gupta, Justice Tejinder Singh Dhindsa and Justice Gurvinder Singh Gill.

Among other things, the committee would look into the procedure of filing and hearing cases, besides regulating entry into the court complexes. It would also study the sanitisation of courtrooms, record, offices, common areas and the retiring rooms.

It would further deliberate on the norms regarding social distancing, air-conditioning and common facilities such as public toilets, canteens, barrooms, litigant sheds and parking. Available information suggests the issues sought to be deliberated upon indicate High Court’s willingness to travel beyond the mode of virtual hearing.

An order issued on behalf of Registrar General Sanjiv Berry stated: “Keeping in view the prevalent conditions and in order to deliberate and suggest the modalities and preventive measures to be taken up for the High Court as well as in district courts in Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh, the Chief Justice has been pleased to constitute a special committee for the purpose.”

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