Live streaming of Supreme Court hearings: An analogy

The following is a brief introduction to the topic

In a historic first, India’s Supreme Court started streaming its constitutional bench hearings live. The CJI U. U. Lalit made this decision in a full-court meeting, where it was unanimously decided that the live streaming of constitutional bench hearings should begin on September 27, 2022.

The Supreme Court of India has live-streamed the proceedings of its Constitutional Bench for the first time since its inception. The Supreme Court live-streamed the formal bench proceedings on August 26, 2022, for the first time since it was founded. This was done to bid farewell to then CJI N. V. Ramana.

The legal genre is a popular one amongst all audiences. From blockbuster Hollywood shows to best-selling books to inspirational autobiographies.

Tripathi v. Supreme Court of India: The long-awaited PIL

Facts that led to the discovery

The Supreme Court has issued a precedent-setting decision following a PIL filed in 2017 by senior advocate Indira Jaising and advocates SwapnilTripathi and Matthews J. Nedumpara. They sought live streaming of cases with constitutional and national significance, which could impact the public.

The PIL states that live streaming and videography will align with the principle of access to justice. This is especially true for matters of public importance. The PIL also noted that this exercise would help instill trust in the judiciary and maintain the respect they deserve as state guardians.

The petition argues that the right of individuals to understand the reasoning behind court decisions, which may impact their rights, is an integral part of the right to dignity, and Article 21, of our Constitution.

The petition also mentions environmental courts, triple-talaq, and air pollution. It calls for a ban on alcohol to prevent deaths on the national highways. An embargo is placed on firecrackers to reduce air and noise pollution.

Judicial findings

On August 26, 2018, a bench headed by the then CJI, Dipak Misra, with Justices A.M. Khanwilkara & D.Y. Chandrachud delivered the landmark judgment in SwapnilTripathi v. Supreme Court of India, which became the basis of many High Courts and the Supreme Court to begin live-streaming of their cases.

The Court emphasized the importance of rights involved in this case and the need to balance the right to access justice, the privacy of litigating parties, and the dignity of courts.

The case referred to was Naresh Sridhar Mirajkar V. State of Maharashtra, which had ruled the right to freedom of expression guaranteed by Article 19 could be interpreted as allowing journalists to continue working by attending court proceedings.

The Court explained the Mirajkar Decision (supra), which held that journalists had the right to freedom of speech under subsections (a), (d), and (g), meaning that they could publish a faithful account of proceedings they had seen and heard at Court in their capacity as journalists.

The Court found that, although the Constitution did not guarantee an “Open Court hearing,” a href=””>Article 145(4)/a> states all judgments are to be rendered in open Court. Similarly, if you go to The Constitution did not guarantee an “Open Court Hearing,” but Article 45(4) stipulates that all judgments must be rendered in a public court. Section 327 of the Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 and Section 153-B of the Code of Civil Procedure 1908 also require courts to be open.

The Court acknowledged that in 2014 the National Mission of Justice Delivery and Legal Reforms Advisory Council had proposed introducing audio and video recordings as an experiment but that a decision would be made only after the Supreme and High Court Judges could be consulted.

The Court acknowledged that it was necessary to involve judges in decisions regarding the use of live streaming for court hearings to preserve the dignity and majesty of the Court while also taking into account concerns about privacy and secrecy and avoiding unrest.

The concurring judgment emphasized the principle of transparency justice and described how it could be applied in the current judicial system. The conclusion states that an open court forms a key procedural element of the broader concept of open justice.

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