The Delhi High Court has ordered the Delhi government to comply with an order issued by the city’s Labour Commissioner, which requires all quasi-judicial authorities to include a video conferencing link in the cause list itself so that a party to a dispute can participate in the proceedings via video conferencing.
The GO mandates that all quasi-judicial agencies provide VC connectivity for hearings, citing a recent spike in Covid-19 instances.
As a result, a Division Bench made up of Acting Chief Justice Vipin Sanghi and Justice Navin Chawla issued the following order, “GNCTD to continue to comply with the order dated 22.04.2022 till the same remains in force. All officers of the Labour Department are directed to strictly comply with the same.”
The news was revealed in a petition expressing dissatisfaction with the lack of links for hearings before the Labour Department.
Anant and Anil Hajelay, attorneys for the department, contended that the hybrid system should be completely implemented. The Court, on the other hand, believes that courts, including the High Court, face a “genuine difficulty” when it comes to hybrid mode.
“ We are discussing and debating because there are courts that are facing problems with hybrid functioning…there are issues with links, connectivity, sometimes there is echo problem, the system is not working in the same way in all the courts…therefore this is something we don’t want to pass a general direction for,” Justice Sanghi orally remarked.
The Court’s attention was also directed to an incidence of misbehavior involving a proxy advocate and Mr. Gurmukh Singh, Joint Labour Commissioner.
The bench commented, “The complaint, if true, is a matter of worry,” and ordered the Delhi administration to file a status report within two weeks.
On May 11, the case will be heard.