The apex court in an unprecedented move has directed high courts to install CCTV cameras inside courtrooms in two districts of every state and Union territory within three months to record case proceedings.
“The report of such experiment be submitted within one month of such installation by registrar generals of the respective high courts to the secretary general of the Supreme Court who may have it tabulated and place it before us,” ordered a bench of Justices A K Goel and U U Lalit.
However, the access of video footage to lawyers, litigants and the general public would be barred through Right to Information (RTI) Act.
“We may make it clear that footage of the CCTV cameras will not be available under the RTI Act and will not be supplied to anyone without the permission of the concerned high court. Installation may be completed within three months from today,” the bench reiterated.
The Supreme Court had been mulling over it and waiting to seek further inputs from stakeholders and wider consultations on the same.
Centre has also been insisting on the audio-video recording of court proceedings on a pilot basis to start with. Recording of the court proceedings can apparently lead to the transparency of court processes and better case management.
The apex court posted the matter for further hearing on August 9 when it will examine the report on the installation of CCTVs in trial courts.