COVID-19: Supreme court functioning to be restricted to urgent matters
Keeping in focus the Advisory issued by Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare cautioning against mass gathering and the declaration by World Health Organisation that Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a global pandemic and it’s advice against mass congregation, it has been decided that the functioning of the Supreme Court of India shall be “restricted to urgent matters with such number of Benches as may be found appropriate”.
On reviewing the advisory issued by the Government of India and in view of the opinion of public health experts including medical professionals and also considering the safety and welfare of all the visitors, litigants, lawyers, court staff, security, maintenance and support staff, student interns and media professionals, the Competent Authority of the Apex Court has decided to restrict the functioning of the Courts and Benches to urgent matters.
It was notified on Friday, 13 March 2020, that no persons except the lawyers who are going to act in the matter, i.e. either for argument or for making oral submissions or to assist along with one litigant only, shall be permitted in the court room. Mentioning of matters will be made before the Mentioning Officer only.
A Supreme Court notification, signed by Sanjeev S. Kalgaonkar, Secretary General, says, considering safety measures for health, all concerned have been requested to cooperate with the instructions of the staff on duty, in the interest of all.