Due to COVID-19, the system has become stagnant, leading to the closure of
and urgent cases remaining unlisted. Thus, to encourage paperless filings and
introduce cost-saving efficiencies, the Supreme Court approved-filing of the
petitions by Advocates on Record (AoR)
and hearing the cases through the Cisco WebEx application during the lockdown
in the country due to the ongoing pandemic.
Last year, Chief Justice Bobde introduced an electronic filing manual developed
by the Supreme Council of the Electronic Court for online case filing in a
webinar hosted by Chief Justice Bobde. During the webinar, theChief Justice stated that
the transition to digitalization would not
be easy, but it will remain the same for now, and it is the only way to do
justice in the country.
The user manual launched at the webinar is a step-by-step guide
to enable e-filing, reduce paper consumption, and improve electronic
registration. Not all documents with digital signatures are uploaded to
the registration portal. This manual explains in detail how to create a digital
signature and use it for filing purposes. There are two ways to digitally
sign affirmations, a formal statement by the parties involved in the litigation,
in the petition.
One way to sign is by using a digital signature token provided
by a Certified Authority approved by the Information Technology Act
2000. Another option to sign the document is to use the electronic
signature facility. This service is provided by the Indian
government (operated exclusively by CDAC). This electronic signature service is
provided free of charge, especially for litigants and lawyers who do
not have digital signature tokens or cannot pay for such signature tokens.
Based on the manual prescribed by the Supreme Court (https://main.sci.gov.in/php/FAQ/5_6246991526434439183.pdf),
the Delhi High court has specifically listed the manner in which a case can be
Similarly, different courts have different methods as prescribed on their
Procedure for filing urgent matters in a virtual courtroom
Procedure of MentioningVarious courts have set timings for mentioning. For example, the Delhi High
Court has changed timings to mentionurgent matter to 9 AM to 10.30 AMfrom10.30
AM- 12 PM on all working days. The applicant is required to prepare a document
not exceeding one page explaining the urgency. This document has to be uploaded
in a PDF format, and its size must not exceed 5MB.
For listing the matter before the Delhi High Court, the applicant must access
the link: https://tinyurl.com/y7se5gl2 and fill in the parties' names, category
of the case, name, email ID and contact number of the counsel for
Petitioner/Plaintiff, whether the matter is fresh or pending and upload the
document explaining the urgency. If the formalities are completed, an SMS
indicating the receipt will be received on the phone number submitted on the
In case the Requested Matter is DeclinedThe counsel will receive an SMS on the mobile number submitted by them on the
link informing them that the request has been declined. There will be an option
to request the designated Hon'ble Judge for reconsideration by 3.00 PM on the
same day itself.
If Mentioning is AllowedThe counsel will receive an SMS informing the acceptance of the matter for
urgent listing. A reference number and date of acceptance will be requested,
along with a direction to effect advance service on the opposite party/counsel
through email and over mobile. Furthermore, the contact information and email
IDs of the government will be provided for effecting advance service. The
pleadings have to be submitted within two hours of the receipt of SMS on the
given email ID. Details of AOJs to be contacted for further follow-up will also
The whole set of pleadings have to be served upon the opposite party through
email and over mobile. Proof of advance service containing email IDs and contact
number of the opposite party must be attached as an annexure to the pleadings.
The applicant then has to mail the entire set of pleadings, a list of advocates
for petitioners, a list of advocates for the respondent, and contact details to
the email address given for this purpose.
Procedure of ListingIf there are any defects in the matter/pleadings, an SMS will be sent on the
mobile number submitted by the counsel informing the defects, a request to clear
defect and the time within which defects have to be cleared. The matter will be
listed only after the defects are cleared.
If there are no defects, SMS informing the diary number, case number, and
tentative date of hearing will be sent to the counsel. A day before the hearing,
Court Master will call on the mobile number of the counsel confirming the Email
IDs of Counsels appearing for the matter.After that, the Court Master will send
the link for the video conference, date and time of the hearing, meeting number
and password, and the iCalender filed,automatically adding the event to the
Procedure of HearingFirst, download the Application called Cisco WebEx Meetings from https://www.webex.com/downloads.html/ and
log in by entering the name and email ID. Click on the 'join meeting' button in
the link sent to the emailID by the Registry.Some minutes before the meeting,
Court Master will inform the Counsels over a call that the next item is of them
and the meeting is about to start.Finally, the Bench introduces all the
counsels, and the proceedings start.
- Requisites of Pleading
- File must be in PDF format
- Scanned soft copy has to be uploaded
- Application with a prayer for exemption from filing duly affirmed
affidavit(s) and an undertaking to pay the court fees/deficit court fees within
72 hours from the date of resumption of the regular functioning of the Court.
- Filing of Proof of Service is mandatory and must be marked as the
- The Party and Counsel should sign pleadings and Applications.
The entire set of pleading, including Affidavits, Annexures, Application(s) and
Last Annexure (proof of service), should be sent as one file.It is important to
note that the pleading must be kept ready before submitting the request for
Urgent Listing. Once the request is allowed, the counsel must mandatorily mail
the entire set of pleadings within 2 hours of receipt of acceptance SMS.
For COVID-19, due to the partial shutdown of the courts, the system has become
stagnant, and emergency cases have not been resolved. Therefore, in unresolved
urgent cases, the court decided to submit cases electronically in a
virtual model. The initiative was adopted by the Supreme Court of India, which
allows Advocates on Record to submitcases electronically because it saves paper
and time and prevents the spread of COVID-19.
also a profitable method because it does not use paper, and urgent cases can
be easily filed from anywhere, saving the litigant's time, and hence
the time to list cases is less than before. Therefore, electronic
filing plays an important role in continuing judicial work without harming the
spread of the virus effectively and inexpensively.
Award Winning Article Is Written By: Mr.Kishan Dutt Kalaskar
Authentication No: JL34649467342-03-0721
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