India’s first e-court (paperless court) was recently opened at High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad, which is the common high court for the states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.
In a major development towards speeding up the justice delivery system and reducing pendency, India’s first e-court was inaugurated recently at High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad. The inauguration was conducted by the Supreme Court judge Justice Madan B. Lokur who heads the e-Committee of the Supreme Court.
Among the goals envisaged in the e-courts project include providing time-bound services which will enhance judicial productivity while making the justice delivery system cost effective and hassle-free for the litigants and general public. The main advantage of an e-court is that the entire information related to a particular case would be available online. Registered attorneys can file their case document directly from their home or office. These E-Courts would help in the computerization of work flow management in courts, thus ensuring better court management. The e-court is will only refer to digitized case records, ensuring better record keeping and storage. However, since all the evidences cannot be produced in the digital format, one has to see what ways; the court will take to make the entire process less complicated.
The e-Courts were conceptualized on the basis of the National Policy and Action Plan for Implementation of information and communication technology (ICT) in the Indian Judiciary–2005 submitted by e-Committee (Supreme Court of India), with a vision to transform the Indian Judiciary by ICT enablement of Courts.
India’s first Integrated Criminal Justice System (ICJS) was also launched in High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad. Infact, two states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana became the first two states in the country to be chosen for Integrated Criminal Justice System (ICJS) project, as two states made significant progress in technology and IT. The announced system is going to integrate police stations with the courts, with jails, with the prosecution and with the forensic science laboratories.
The opening of the new e-court in Hyderabad scripts a new era of hope for a far effective judicial system in India. In October 2014, an announcement was made by the High Court of Kerala, which stated that two e-courts would be established in the country. At least some progress has been achieved at the ground level, and with other initiatives such as SMS services for lawyers and litigants even in district courts, one can hope that the justice delivery system will transform into an affordable, accessible, cost effective and transparent system.
by Ashwani Srivastva