Omicron: SC to go virtual for next two weeks
One-liner: The Supreme Court on Sunday issued a circular for conducting all hearings in virtual mode for two weeks starting from Jan 3, in view of rising number of cases of the Omicron variant of Covid.
Court opens today: It stated that an earlier circular prescribing standard operating procedure (SOP) for physical hearing (hybrid hearing) will remain suspended for the time being. The top court is reopening today after its winter vacation.
- On Oct 7, 2021, it had issued an SOP stating matters that require lengthy hearings will be taken up on Wednesdays and Thursdays for physical hearing
Need to know: To avoid overcrowding on miscellaneous days like Mondays and Fridays, hearing of cases was done through virtual mode only, and on Tuesdays, it was through a hybrid mode.
- The top court has been hearing cases through video-conferencing since March 2020 due to the pandemic
Background: The Oct 7, 2021, SOP was issued after several bar bodies and lawyers demanded that physical hearings should be resumed immediately as there was a fall in coronavirus cases at that time.