Nearly a year after physical hearings were discontinued in the Supreme Court amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, the top court is set to experiment with a "hybrid mode" as the second phase of coronavirus vaccines gives a boost to India's fight against the deadly virus. With an option for the lawyers to choose to attend hearings physically or online, the top court will switch to the experimental mode from March 15.
On Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, the cases in the final stage of hearing will be heard in both the modes. This is the first step towards resuming physical hearings in the court.
"On an experimental basis, and as a pilot scheme, the final hearing or regular matters listed on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays may be heard in the hybrid mode, as may be decided by the Hon'ble Bench, considering the number of parties in a matter as well as the limited capacity of the Court rooms; all other matters, including those listed on Mondays and Fridays shall continue to be heard through video/tele-conferencing mode," the top court registry in its release said.
The Supreme Court has set up vaccination facilities for sitting and retired judges and their families; the inoculative drive began earlier this week.
Yesterday, 14.9 lakh people got the Covid shots across the country, highest in a day. More than 1.9 crore doses have been administered so far. The government has set a target to inoculate 30 crore people till July.
With 1.1 crore total cases, India has logged the second highest number of infections in the world after the United States since last year.