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Supreme Court gets digital makeover, 3 top courtrooms turn paperless

The Supreme Court of India

The Supreme Court of India reopened today after the summer vacation with three IT-enabled courtrooms for the first time which will be paperless to ensure a faster delivery of justice.

Pop-up screens for judges will replace physical copies of documents, and a digital library will replace law-related books. These changes will appear in the courts of the Chief Justice of India and two senior-most judges. However, gradually other courtrooms will also go digital.

Modernising digital infrastructure in the first three courtrooms is part of the third digitisation project of the Supreme Court court in 2023. The courts include those of the

Chief Justice of India (CJI) DY Chandrachud had hailed the Union Government’s allocation of Rs 7,000 crore for the third stage of e-courts project in the Union Budget presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in February this year.

The first is the e-SCR project which offered decades’ worth of Supreme Court judgments for free online.

The second is the start that has been made for the live transcription of arguments made in Constitution Bench hearings.

Apart from this, the Supreme Court has also modernised the system of filing cases. The court introduced electronic filing of cases during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Phase III of the e-Courts project aims to create a judicial system that is more affordable, accessible, cost-effective and transparent for every individual.

The detailed project report (DPR) of eCourts Phase III mentions various new features such as Digital and Paperless Courts aimed at bringing court proceedings under a digital format. It also mentions use of emerging technologies like Artificial Intelligence and its subsets like Optical Character Recognition (OCR) etc for analysis of case pendency, forecasting future litigation, etc.