Supreme Court adopts e-technology; off-duty justices can be assigned cases

Kathmandu, July 29

The Supreme Court has endorsed its new regulation that will enable the chief justice to assign cases to justices during off-duty hours and on public holidays as well.

There is also a provision for providing compensation to victims of false cases.

The regulation states that the SC will remain open till 4:00pm on Fridays and service seekers can register petitions and cases online.

The new regulation also allows courts to communicate through emails, and serve notices and summons through electronic means. The SC can also record statements of witnesses and experts through video conferencing.

The new regulation also states that the court will make available to the parties copies of verdict and orders immediately. It also says that the SC and lower courts can use their own flags and logos.

The newly endorsed regulation was sent to the Ministry of Law and will come into force once it is published in the Nepal Gazette.

SC Spokesperson Mahendranath Upadhyay told THT that implementing some provisions of the regulation could take time, but they could pave the way for effective justice delivery.  Online registration will enable service seekers to seek SC services easily and help the judiciary in going paperless, he argued. He said the SC will discuss the provisions with stakeholders for giving validity to the digital signatures of service seekers and others related to court proceedings.

Upadhyay said the new regulation’s provision of assigning cases to justices during off-duty hours and on public holidays would help the SC settle backlogs. Upadhyay argued that the provisions relating to video conference would enable the court to record the statements of witnesses and experts who live away from the Capital city.

According to Upadhyay, the regulation’s provision relating to compensation for victims of false cases would discourage people from filing false cases.

He further added that the regulation could encourage lower courts to adopt similar provisions in future.