Starting today, all hearings of the Constitutional Court before the Supreme Court will be streamed live.
A full court, composed of all judges of the Supreme Court, considered the matter on September 20 and decided to broadcast the constitutional proceedings live starting this week.
Also read: Constitutional matters heard by the CJI can be streamed live: Center to Supreme Court
The entire court session was chaired by Chief Justice of India (CJI) Uday Umesh Lalit, with all judges unanimous that regular live streaming should begin broadcasting constitutional cases.
Constitutional cases expected to be broadcast live include challenges to the EWS quota law, the religious practice of excommunication in the Dawoodi Bohra community, the Supreme Court’s power to dissolve marriages due to irretrievable breakdown, and the center’s request for improved Compensation for victims of the 1984 Bhopal gas tragedy.
Two weeks ago, senior attorney Indira Jaising wrote to the CJI and its fellow judges, urging the Supreme Court to begin live-streaming proceedings on matters of public and constitutional concern. She was one of the petitioners in 2018 calling for the declaration of live streaming as part of the right to freedom of information and the right to access justice for every citizen.
It was last August when the Supreme Court televised its first hearing, more than three years after a Supreme Court ruling recommended that its hearings be broadcast live. However, the move was limited to the negotiations of a ceremonial bank that had to say goodbye to what was then CJI NV Ramana.
In a September 2018 ruling, the Supreme Court declared live broadcasting of court hearings part of the right of access to justice under Article 21 of the Constitution.
Subsequently, the E-Committee of the Supreme Court, led by Justice Dhananjaya Y Chandrachud, released model guidelines regulating live streaming of court proceedings in India.
Currently, six Supreme Courts in the country, namely Gujarat, Orissa, Karnataka, Jharkhand, Patna and Madhya Pradesh, are live streaming their proceedings through their own channels on YouTube.
The Supreme Court’s E-Committee has been working on a proposal to set up an exclusive platform for live-streaming court cases, HT has learned.
The proposal to have an exclusive platform for live streaming of top court proceedings was part of the third phase of the E-Courts project, an ambitious initiative to implement the use of information and technology in the Indian judiciary.