22 Jan 2121

The Supreme Court directs the trial in a matrimonial matter to be conducted through video-conferencing amidst the Covid-19 pandemic

Case : Anjali Brahmawar Chauhan v. Navin Chauhan Review Petition (C) No. 472 of 2018 In Transfer Petition (C) No. 1252 of 2016

Court : Supreme Court of India

Bench : Justice S. A. Bobde, Justice L. Nageswara Rao and Justice Vineet Saran

Decided on : 22 Jan 2121

Relevant Statues

Article 137 of the Constitution of India

Brief Facts and Procedural History

1. The Petitioner preferred Transfer Petition seeking transfer of suit under Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 filed by the Respondent from the Principal Judge, Family Court, District Gautambudh Nagar, Uttar Pradesh to the Court of Principal Judge, Family Court, Saket District, New Delhi.

2. The Transfer Petition was dismissed considering that no serious inconvenience will be caused to the Petitioner for travelling between Gautambudh Nagar to Saket.

3. The Supreme Court dismissed the Transfer Petition and directed the trial to be conducted at Gautambudh Nagar, Family Court through video conferencing.

4. Petitioner filed the Review Petition on the ground of non-availability of video conferencing facility at the District Courts of Gautambudh Nagar, and that video conferencing is not permissible in matrimonial matters in accordance with Santhini v. Vijaya Venketesh, 09.10.2017.

Issue of the Case

Whether the review petition should be allowed?

The Observations of the Court

The Honourable Supreme Court observed that:

1. The courts are not physically functioning since March 2020 due to the ongoing pandemic. Proceedings in all Courts are being conducted only through video conferencing.

2. In the normal course, the judgement of Santhini v. Vijaya Venketesh would have been followed. However, in the given situation where all proceedings are conducted through video conferencing, the same shall be followed in the present case.

The Decision Held by the Court

1. The Honourable Supreme Court dismissed the review petition and directed the Family Court, District Gautambudh Nagar to conduct the trial through video conferencing.

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