Chandigarh, February 28
Simply two days after it was reported in these columns that some circumstances weren’t developing for listening to for years or being adjourned for months collectively with out being taken up, the Punjab and Haryana Excessive Court docket has achieved away with the system of “automated adjournments”.
The Excessive Court docket made it clear that “with impact from March 2, extraordinary circumstances won’t be adjourned by way of Nationwide Informatics Centre (NIC) and all circumstances mounted March 2 onwards might be listed for listening to on the date mounted”.
The choice comes lower than a month after the Excessive Court docket selected adjournment of circumstances to September and October. The Excessive Court docket in its order dated January 30 had, in actual fact, made it clear that the circumstances already mounted/listed from February 1 to February 28 could be adjourned by the NIC for future dates. The order additional made it clear that the adjourned circumstances could be mounted between September 15 and October 18. Comparable orders on automated adjournment of circumstances have been issued earlier as effectively by the Excessive Court docket following the outbreak of pandemic.
The Excessive Court docket had initially shifted to digital mode of listening to in March 2020. Restricted bodily listening to was ordered to be resumed from February 8, 2021, nevertheless it needed to be suspended because the second wave took in its grip the Excessive Court docket Judges, judicial officers within the subordinate judiciary, advocates, and the workers. The Excessive Court docket was compelled to return to restrictive performing from April 19 final yr.
Following a “large surge” in circumstances, the functioning needed to be restricted farther from April 28, 2021. However all of the Benches resumed functioning by way of the digital mode from July 28 final yr, with discount within the severity of the second wave.
The Excessive Court docket determined to partially resume bodily listening to of circumstances from September 6, 2021. The variety of Benches listening to circumstances bodily elevated step by step until the third wave as soon as once more pushed the Excessive Court docket again to digital listening to. As of now, all of the Benches are taking on issues each offline and on-line.
The Excessive Court docket has a complete pendency of 4,50,912 circumstances in opposition to 4,47,890 circumstances in January first week. The circumstances embrace 1,65,472 prison issues involving life and liberty. As many as 61,683 or 13.68 per cent circumstances remained pending as much as one yr; 93,625 or 20.76 per cent between one and three years and 1,04,914 or 23.27 per cent between 5 and 10 years.