GUWAHATI, March 31 - To contain the spread of novel coronavirus, courts across India are adopting various technological tools, including video conferencing facility, to hear cases from afar. The Gauhati High Court has also regulated court working only to urgent matters till April 4 in view of the COVID-19. The High Court has already heard 17 cases via video conferencing facility during this ongoing lockdown period, including the bail plea of the peasant leader Akhil Gogoi.
Justice Ajai Lamba, Chief Justice, Gauhati High Court, heard his bail plea via a video conferencing link on March 26. The Court has granted bail to Akhil Gogoi, who is facing charges of �waging a war� for his involvement in the protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act, 2019.
The functioning of the Court is interlinked with other important services. So the use of technology has come to the fore at this juncture, where it can help smooth functioning of the Court in the deliverance of justice.
When the entire country is under total lockdown to prevent the spread of the deadly virus, the people can avail the judicial services through the use of the e-Courts services.
The Gauhati High Court had recently released a short film titled as �Ghore Ghore e-Courts� to generate awareness on the benefits of the e-Courts services among the common people and legal practitioners. The short film has been directed by documentary filmmaker Dip Bhuyan, produced by the Gauhati High Court and conceptualised by the High Court�s ICT Committee.
Moreover, along with the High Court, the District Judicial Courts of Assam are also taking up urgent matters in this lockdown period along with production of UTPs (Under Trial Prisoners) before the Courts from the Jail premises using video conferencing technology provided under the e-Courts Project. Email services, SMS services, websites of the Courts are also functioning for case-related information. Introduction of e-Filing and Virtual Courts in near the future will be an added advantage in these kinds of situations.