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The Karnataka High Court has decided to permit physical filing of new cases on an experimental basis on May 13, 14 and 15 from 11:00 am onwards, amid the on-going COVID-19 lockdown.
The circular issued in this regard states that the advocates/parties-in-person/clerks who wish to file matters on the aforesaid dates will have to apply for seeking appointment for physical filing of the matters. The applications shall be made on the e-mail id: firstname.lastname@example.org
On application, those who intend to physically file matters will be told the date, time and counter number, the circular states.
It was further informed that medical screening shall be conducted for all entering the High Court premises. Only those persons who are found to be asymptomatic will be allowed entry. Adding on, the circular states,
"For approaching the filing counters, Advocates/parties-inperson/ Advocates’ clerks will have to stand in queue in the pendal specially erected near Northern wing of Athara Kacheri, opposite Vidhana Soudaha. Social distancing shall be maintained while standing in the queue. Needless to add that no person will be allowed to enter in the High Court precincts without wearing a mask."
Karnataka High Court circular
The circular further states that as many as five matters can be physically filed at a time.
This apart, the High Court circular highlighted that if there is an urgency for hearing, then a memo in that regard will have to be moved for fixing the date by as per the procedure set out in the notification dated April 30.
It was further noted that the present facility of e-filing shall continue until further orders.
The circular also makes it clear that once the filing is completed, the concerned persons will have to immediately leave the Court premises, and will not be allowed to enter the Court building.
The persons who appear to physically file matters are required to maintain social distancing and wear masks.
No one will be allowed entry for the purpose of physical filing of matters without showing a print out or a soft copy of appointment for filing.
On a conculding note, the circular states,
"The aforesaid arrangement is made on the trial basis and the same is liable to be cancelled in the event it is found that the Advocates/parties-in-person/Advocates’ clerks are not following the safety norms of wearing masks and maintaining social distancing."
[Read circular here]