By LE Staff

New Delhi, March 6: The Supreme Court will begin limited physical hearing of old/regular matters on three days in a week beginning March 15 where lawyers will have the option to either appear in person or argue through videoconferencing.

A circular was issued in this regard by the Supreme Court Secretary General on March 6 stating that the hearing of cases through the hybrid mode is a pilot scheme carried out on an experimental basis following requests to restart physical hearing of cases received from Bar Associations. 

A Committee of Judges of the Supreme Court comprising the top seven senior most judges had held wide-ranging consultation with lawyer bodies and recommended starting limited physical hearings in August last year. Lawyers were asked for consent but very few lawyers consented, due to which the plan was dropped.

In January this year, Chief Justice of India SA Bobde ruled out any reopening of courts during the current pandemic situation. “We have received medical advice from medical authorities that it is dangerous for people to congregate at this time. If physical courts are started, the number of fatalities will increase,” the CJI had remarked while sitting in a three-judge bench.

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