The Hon’ble Chief Justice
High Court, Madras
Chennai – 600104
Respected The Hon’ble Chief Justice,
Pursuant to the decisions of the Government of India the State Government to impose Lockdown in the wake of the Pandemic COVID-19, the Hon’ble High Court took a decision to close the Court Halls and paved way for email filing of emergent cases and hearing through video conferencing. As of now the Lockdown has been extended by the Governments upto 03.05.2020. The Hon’ble High Court also has extended the same system of email filing and video conferencing hearing upto 30.04.2020. While so, Notification No.47/2020 was issued by the Registry of the High Court on 18.04.2020 that the summer vacation of the High Court stands postponed sine die SUBJECT TO ANY DECISION BEING TAKEN IN FUTURE and that the Principal Bench and Madurai Bench of the High Court will function regularly from 01.05.2020 to 31.05.2020. On seeing the said Notification we received several requests from members of the Bar to request Your Lordship to reconsider the said decision. To ascertain the views of the members of our Association we sought for suggestions from them. In the light of the views expressed by the members, we are to place before Your Lordships that members of the Bar feel that the situation is not safe as of now to have open Court hearings during May 2020.
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Instead the following may be considered by the Hon’ble High Court
(i) Continue with the email filing of EMERGENT cases.
(ii) Hearing of EMERGENT cases through video conference
(iii) Hearing of HCP detention cases which are pending for more than 3 months, keeping in mind that many cases may become infructuous and further they are decided mostly on technical points only.
(iv) Also provide OPTION for physical filing of EMERGENT cases, with designated counters to receive the case papers, and put up for hearing through VIDEO CONFERENCING.
(v) In respect of subordinate courts also to continue with filing and hearing of emergent cases only, through video conference.
The above suggestions are submitted to Your Lordship on behalf of the members of the Bar, keeping in view the Risks to Life that continues due to the Pandemic COVID 19.
We request Your Lordship to kindly consider our suggestions and take appropriate decision in the interest of SAFETY OF ALL THE STAKE HOLDERS INCLUDING THE HON’BLE JUDGES.
The Registrar General
High Court, Madras