Live-streaming opens SC to public perception of justice- The New Indian Express

Express Message Service

NEW DELHI: Four years ago, the Supreme Court, while allowing live streaming of its hearings, ruled that the right of access to courts, which derives from Article 21 of the Constitution, only makes sense if the public has access to receives proceedings that take place in the courts of law.

“Sunlight is the best disinfectant. Live streaming as an extension of the principle of open jurisdiction will ensure that the interface between a court hearing and virtual reality leads to the dissemination of information in the broadest sense and brings transparency and accountability to the court process,” the SC had ruled in its 2018 judgment.

But the ruling, which aimed to give the public the opportunity to witness court hearings live and offer them an open judiciary, was not implemented in the truest sense of the word until the Supreme Court finally decided to go live on constitutional matters of constitutional and national importance transfer.

September 27th marked the beginning of this historic move as it allowed people from every nook and cranny to follow the Supreme Court’s ongoing proceedings on their screen. Around eight lakh spectators were tuned in for the first live session to watch the proceedings, which took place in front of three constitutional banks. The general public witnessed on day one a bank led by CJI UU Lalit reserved judgment on pleas challenging the 10% reservation for economically weaker sections (EWSs) in admissions and jobs. A bench of five judges headed by Judge DY Chandrachud let ECI go ahead with the pleading of Maharashtra CM Eknath Shinde to be recognized as the “genuine Shiv Sena” and the “bow and arrow” symbol of the claiming party, and the bench under the guidance of the third senior SC judge, Judge SK Kaul, hearing pleas for the validity of the All India Bar Exam.

On the second day of the live broadcast of the proceedings, viewers had the opportunity to witness a bench led by Judge S. Abdul Nazeer passing an order to consider whether objections to the center’s 2016 demonstration policy had become “academic”. and all require an examination on October 12th. The third day of live streaming allowed the public to follow on YouTube the trial before another five-member panel of judges, led by Judge KM Joseph, on the petitions related to WhatsApp’s privacy policy, with objections to laws of the Tamil Nadu governments and Maharashtra approved bull taming sport Jalikattu and the center’s petition aimed at exempting members of the armed forces from the scope of the 2018 ruling decriminalizing adultery.

Although live events would increase public confidence as they allow even those with logistical problems and infrastructure limitations to attend them in person. However, it can also lead to the common man developing a positive or negative perception of justice. With that in mind, this paper spoke to few legal experts about whether this decision is a game changer or a major issue?

Senior Advocate Vikas Pahwa said: “The aim of live streaming is to facilitate the concept of public court hearings. It makes the Justice Delivery System more transparent and accountable. I applaud the Supreme Court for allowing this to happen. I am sure that this is a great milestone in the history of our country’s justice system.”

Govind Mathur, former Chief Justice of Allahabad HC said: “Live streaming of court proceedings will increase people’s trust and accountability towards the institution. At the same time, judges must be prepared for debate and criticism, not only from legal experts and academics, but also from inexperienced, amateurish and biased viewers and critics, in relation to their approach, observations, views, attitudes, etc. If executed with absolute maturity and perfection, it would be a game changer.”