Following the contemporary judicial trends which is transforming itself to accommodate with the recent technological developments, Hon’ble Punjab and Haryana High Court allowed an NRI litigant residing in the United States of America to depose via video conferencing applications like whatsapp, skype etc.
While deposing off two revision petitions preferred before the Hon’ble High Court, it was observed by the court as follows-
“I am of the view that the evidence of Mr. Sucha Singh [the petitioner] who is a party to the case is very material. Therefore, his evidence is required to be recorded. He is living in USA. Since, there is a 12 hours difference of time, therefore, when it is a day time in India, there is a night time in USA. Therefore, there will be difficulty in approaching the Public Authority at night time to allow video conferencing facility. The Video Conferencing is now available at Computer and the mobile and so many applications are available like Facetime, Whatsapp, Skype and other similar applications.”
It will be befitting to take a look at the background of the case Sucha Singh v. Ajmer Singh and Anr. In this matter, there was a civil suit pending between both the parties to the suit filed before the Civil Judge Junior Division at Samrala, Punjab wherein the hon’ble civil judge dismissed an application for grant of extension of time to record the statements of the Petitioner through video conferencing. Thereby, the Hon’ble High Court of Punjab and Haryana asked the petitioner to approach the Indian Consulate nearest to him in order to facilitate the video conferencing facility owing to the fact that evidence of the petitioner is vital in the pending civil suit. Unfortunately, it was later on observed that due to a time difference between India and USA, the abovementioned option will not fulfil the needs of the present case.
Therefore, Hon’ble Justice Kuldip Singh disposed of the Revision Petitions with the abovementioned judgment which falls in line as well as judiciously utilizes recent technological development for doing justice.
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Order: Sucha Singh Versus Ajmer Singh and Another