High Court asks Delhi government to decide on plea for internet facilities in courts

- March 29, 2024
| By : Patriot Bureau |

During the hearing, the bench, also comprising Justice Manmeet PS Arora, said the issue has to be first examined by authorities before any order is passed by the court

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The Delhi High Court has instructed the city government to consider a plea advocating for improved internet connectivity, including Wi-Fi access, in all courts across the national capital.

Advocate Arpit Bhargava, in his public interest litigation, highlighted the adverse effects of limited or no internet connectivity in Delhi’s court premises on lawyers, judges, media, litigants, court staff, and other stakeholders.

“The current writ petition is to be regarded as a representation by the respondent, who is further directed to address it in accordance with the law,” said a bench led by Acting Chief Justice Manmohan on Thursday.

During the hearing, the bench, which also included Justice Manmeet PS Arora, emphasised the necessity for authorities to assess the issue before any court order is issued.

Advocate Beenashaw N Soni, representing the petitioner, urged the court to instruct the Delhi government to make a decision regarding the plea.

Citing personal experiences, Bhargava asserted in the petition that “inadequate” or “non-existent internet connectivity” in Delhi’s courts, including the Patiala House Court, Rouse Avenue Court, and the High Court, hindered the smooth administration of justice.

He contended that authorities were fully aware of the situation and its consequences but had chosen to ignore the plight of lawyers and litigants.

The plea emphasised that due to the authorities’ inaction, individuals are unable to access virtual hearings, emails, e-filing portals, etc., from any court premises in Delhi.

“The respondent lacks the will to take immediate action to install, upgrade, and/or provide seamless internet connectivity in Delhi’s courts to ensure access to justice/virtual hearings for lawyers, litigants, and the public,” the plea concluded. (With inputs from PTI)