NEW DELHI: The Central government has so far issued 16,795 Unique identification numbers to judges of various district and subordinate courts as part its e-Court project, which aims at modernizing the process of judicial proceedings. The project also has the backing of the Supreme Court of India and the higher court can use the data collected from the lower courts to analyze their functioning.
However, the judges of the High Court and Supreme Court are exempted from using the Unique Identification numbers to deliver judgments.
As part of the e-Court project, the government will provide all the necessary equipment like Printers, Laptops, and Internet connectivity to facilitate the process of using technology in judicial proceedings. Every court will run on the Case Information System(CIS) software designed by the National Informatics Centre. The software will be upgraded from time to time to improve performance and to patch security issues if any.
Modernization of the court reduces the workload on a judge by allowing the judicial authority to digitally sign the judgements which can be uploaded in real-time. The basic idea behind the e-Courts project is to better monitor the working of the judges and to bring more transparency. Also, now it becomes mandatory for every judge to record the status of a hearing on whether it has been closed, adjourned or in the process of recording arguments. This helps in the better monitoring of a court’s functioning by the State high court and the Supreme Court. At the end, Public can access all the judgment details and the judgments passed by a judge in his lifetime through the National Judicial Data Grid, which will be publicly accessible.
Modernisation of the courts, monitored by the apex court as part of the e-Court project, is slated to be completed in three phases. The first phase of the project has been completed in March 2015 and the second phase is underway with 2,458 judges to receive unique identification numbers. The overall progresss of the project will be monitored by the e-Courts committee appointed by the Supreme Court of India.