SC, Delhi HC to hear only urgent matters in view of coronavirus scare

There will be restriction on visitors entering the court complexes

Supreme Court of India Supreme Court of India

In a fallout of the spread of novel coronavirus, the Supreme Court and the Delhi High Court have decided to restrict their functioning to urgent matters only, and there would be a restriction on the visitors entering the court complexes.

The Supreme Court administration, upon reviewing the advisory issued by the Centre on COVID-19 and in view of the opinion of public health experts and also considering the safety and welfare of all the visitors, litigants, lawyers, court staff, security, maintenance and support staff, student interns and media professionals, has directed that the functioning of the apex court shall be restricted to urgent matters with such number of Benches as may be found appropriate.

It also issued a notification making it clear that no persons except the lawyers who are going to act in the matter, i.e. either for argument or for making oral submissions or to assist along with one litigant only, shall be permitted in the court room.

As per the notification, mentioning of matters will be made before the Mentioning Officer only.

The Delhi High Court issued similar directives, saying it has been decided that functioning of the court shall be restricted to urgent matters only from March 16.

Members of the Bar have been advised by the high court not to recommend issuance of visitor passes. The court said it will not insist on personal appearance of parties unless the same is indispensable.

The high court stated it was sending a separate advisory to the district courts on measures that need to be taken to control the spread of coronavirus infection.

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