The Bombay High Court today directed Maharashtra government to ensure that video conference facility is installed in all courts across Maharashtra by March 2017.
A division bench of Justices V M Kanade and Nutan Sardessai was informed by the High Court administration that out of 2200 courts in the state video conference facilities have not been installed in 248 courts due to certain difficulties which have been brought to the notice of the state government.
Advocate S R Nargolkar, appearing for the HC administration, said all other courts in the state have video conference facilities and accused can be produced before the court from jail on video conference.
The bench noted that out of 248 courts, some are in Mumbai, Yavatmal and Wardha. “The state government shall ensure that all courts in the state should have video conference facility by March 2017. The advantages of this facility are many,” the court said.
Referring to a study conducted by the Maharashtra Judicial Academy the main reason for delay in disposal of cases is non-production of the accused before the concerned court. “This non-production of the accused is mainly because of lack of police personnel to escort the accused or non-availability of transportation,” the court said.
“With video conference facility, not only will there be expeditious disposal of cases but also a reduction in the expenditure incurred by the state government in producing the accused persons in jail,” Justice Kanade said.
When Nargolkar informed the court that the state government had earlier said that the facility would be installed on priority basis due to paucity of funds, Justice Kanade said, “They (state government) have plenty of funds.
Paucity of funds is not the problem. The problem is they are spending it at the wrong place.”
The directions were passed while hearing a public interest litigation filed by one Shaikh Abdul Naeem, an accused in the Aurangabad arms haul case claiming that he is not being produced in court due to lack of escort police.