Avoid mobiles, use desktop/laptop for virtual hearings, SC to lawyers

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday issued a notice urging lawyers to avoid joining virtual hearing through a mobile phone, and instead use a laptop or desktop with a stable Internet connection.

The notice said: “All advocates and party-in-person are requested to join the cisco webex application for joining the court hearings through video conference (VC) via a desktop /laptop with a stable internet connectivity, preferably wired, to avoid any disruption in the court proceedings and inconvenience to the judges. Please avoid joining the VC hearings through a mobile phone.”

The notice issued urged the lawyers to join the VC through a single device, laptop or desktop, and they should use a headset-enabled microphone and audio system.

Earlier during the day, a bench headed by Chief Justice N.V. Ramana had expressed unhappiness at lawyers appearing for virtual hearings through their mobile phones – where they were either barely audible or not visible.

The bench, also comprising Justices A.S. Bopanna and Hima Kohli, had to adjourn the hearings in as many as 10 cases listed due to disruptions from lawyers’ end.

The bench queried a lawyer: “Mr. counsel, you are now practising in the Supreme Court and appear regularly…. Can’t you afford a desktop to argue.”

During the hearing in another matter, the bench expressed its discontent on poor internet connectivity at the lawyer’s end. It remarked: “We have no energy to hear cases like this… Please devise a system by which we can hear you.”

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