Friday, July 3, 2020 | ePaper

Writ challenges virtual court functions

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Staff Reporter :
A Supreme Court lawyer on Monday filed a writ petition with the High Court challenging the Chief Justice's decision to run virtual activities of the courts across the country.
Advocate Eunus Ali Akond submitted the writ petition as a public interest litigation to the High Court through an email seeking stay on the circular issued by the Supreme Court administration for operating the virtual court proceedings.
In the petition, the lawyer prayed to the High Court to direct the authorities concerned to resume the courts' regular activities across the country.
Citing the writ petition, the lawyer said that there is no provision in the Constitution and Appellate and High Court rules for virtual court functions.
The petitioners must swear affidavit for filling any petition with the Appellate and High Court division as per their relevant rules, but there is no scope for swearing affidavit in the virtual court functions and therefore the virtual court system is illegal and unconstitutional, he said.
The virtual court functions started on May 11 after a gap of 46 days in order to deal with the urgent cases.
Earlier on May 10, Chief Justice Syed Mahmud Hossain issued some directives for the courts about dealing with urgent cases, using information and communication technology during the ongoing closure.
The Chief Justice on May 30 decided to run the functions of all the courts through virtual system using information and communication technology without physical presence (of lawyers) from May 31 till June 15 in order to contain the coronavirus outbreak.

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