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The remaining Benches continued to hear cases through video conferencing mode.
After five months of continuous virtual proceedings, the Delhi High Court today began physical hearing in its premises amid COVID-19 pandemic.
On day one of the High Court's second phase, while two Division Benches and three Single Judge Benches conducted physical proceedings from their respective courtrooms, the remaining Benches continued to hear cases through video conferencing mode.
As per the causelist, as of 2:30 pm, the two Division Benches heard 11 cases and the Singles benches took up a total of 48 cases.
None of the courts touched the maximum threshold of hearing 25 cases in a sitting.
Although the High Court has clarified that the suspension of physical court work cannot continue indefinite, as of now, the advocates are free to opt for virtual mode of hearing.
Entry of advocates is being regulated by the High Court and provisions have been made for complete sanitization of the building on a daily basis.
In view of increasing COVID-19 cases, the decision to restrict court functioning to urgent matters came on March 13.
Soon after, the High Court suspended its functioning and declared that the period of suspension shall be treated as closure of court under Section 4 of the Limitation Act.
While the period of suspension was revived from time to time, the High Court adopted virtual mode to hear urgent matters.
Notably, the month-long summer vacation of the High Court was also suspended to make up for the loss of court working hours on account of the pandemic.
As per the data provided by the High Court, from April 1 till July 31, the High Court heard around 13,000 matters through video conferencing mode.
On the administrative side as well, the High Court held around 300 virtual meetings.
In August, with the decline in the number of COVID-19 cases and representation from the Bar, the High Court ultimately decided to move towards gradual resumption of physical hearing from September 1 onwards.