DY Chandrachud
Credits: Indian Express

Justice Chandrachud advices judiciary to use new media channels more

Justice DY Chandrachud of the Supreme Court argued on Sunday in favour of justices and justice system using technology and new media communication. In order to reach the public and gain the community’s respect, the legal system must stop resisting the adoption of new communication tools, according to Supreme Court justice DY Chandrachud, who described himself as a “self-confessed geek on-technology” during his speech.

The apex court judge, who will take over as India’s Chief Justice before the end of this year, claimed that courts had been reluctant to use contemporary communication methods. Justice Chandrachud emphasized that the legislature’s opposition to embracing new media tools must alter since it can communicate with the public simply by employing the discursive vocabulary which is currently so pervasive in society.

“We have been very reticent. The Supreme Court has been very reticent. So, the high courts are even more reticent and the district courts, which look up to the high court, are therefore even more reticent on the use of modern means of communication, including Twitter and Telegram” according to the judge, who was speaking at the closing ceremony of the First All India District Legal Services Authorities Meet in New Delhi.

He then went on to explain his regret on courts refraining from the usage of technology. “Unless we, as judicial institutions, shake this resistance to adopting the means of communication which is so widespread in society today, we would perhaps have lost the game. And, I believe that we are already in the process of losing the game, unless we shed fear about what is going to happen if we use modern means of communication,” he exclaimed.

Justice Chandrachud, who serves as the chief of the Supreme Court eCommittee and has been leading the nation’s e-court and digital court projects, also addressed the concerns of judges about the live streaming of court hearings, noting that judges all over the nation believe they would be judged by the public if court proceedings were broadcast.

He also emphasized a number of technical innovations that the Supreme Court and the judicial system are implementing under the direction of the E-Committee. He stated that the establishment of a system where information about every inmate serving time or facing sentencing is accessible and where court processes from the district level to the state level may be followed will receive special attention. Judicial UU Lalit and Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul, in addition to Justice Chandrachud, spoke at the event and emphasised the work of District Legal Services Authorities (DLSA) in providing legal help to the public and granting them access to the justice system.