Chandigarh, August 8 – Despite the present circumstances arising due to COVID-19, the Office of Haryana Advocate General is working day in and out to ensure early disposal of court cases and to provide all possible assistance to the Courts.
The court is now moving towards digitization and the hearing of cases is being held through video conferencing. Likewise, the Office of Haryana Advocate General is also moving towards digitization in order to ensure hearing of urgent cases for quick disposal.
Giving information in this regard, Haryana Advocate General Mr. Baldev Raj Mahajan said that during COVID-19 in March, the Punjab and Haryana High Court had decided that all the necessary cases would be heard through the process of ‘mentioning’. All important cases will be taken up by the court through video conferencing and only exceptional and urgent cases will be heard. In view of this, the office of the Haryana Advocate General has decided that the Law Officers will remain on duty for important cases.
While sharing details of the frequency of cases he said that initially there were five to 10 cases and one or two Law Officers were engaged for these cases, but due to extension of restrictions imposed in view of COVID-19, the number of complaints increased hence the court augmented its infrastructure and increased the number of hearings. Presently more than 30 courts are functioning, he added. He revealed that the hearing and filing of cases has been digitized and the file of a case is being taken up through software and emails only.
The Advocate General said that around 700 to 800 cases are being heard daily which is challenging for the Haryana Advocate General. Thus, the disposal of cases is being expedited. He said that the Haryana Advocate General’s Office is submitting reply from the Department concerned in more than 50 per cent of the cases being filed before the Court on the same day. Several departments are continuously working for this purpose while the Haryana Advocate General Office is working on alternate basis from 5 am to 12 pm.
He informed that the response from departments concerned is taken on a priority basis and the departments whose response is pending are reminded of the same. The response is then sent to the concerned Law Officer for timely action. Appreciating the Police Department he added that the police department is working 24 hours and is submitting response on time as well. Similarly, the Jail Department is also working 24 hours and everything has been digitized.
He said that the cases of COVID-19 are on the rise and it is very important to maintain social distancing. Besides this, due to increasing dependence on technology, there is a need to increase infrastructure so that the grievances of the people can be dealt with the assistance of the court.
He revealed that in a recently held meeting of the Welfare Trust Committee it has been decided that due to the difficulties being faced by the Advocates owing to COVID-19 an amount of Rs 2 crore should be disbursed as financial assistance to the affected Advocate members. He informed that applications with bank account numbers have been invited for this purpose and soon this financial assistance will be transferred to their bank accounts. He said that this financial assistance will be given as a one-time measure. Apart from this, an informal approval has also been taken from the government to give the financial assistance.