• Dr. Mohan Dewan | Adv. Sachi Kapoor

The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has forced all businesses and functioning of various organizations to come to a standstill. One such majorly affected system is the Judicial System. As on date, only high priority/high urgency matters are being heard vide remote access provided to the judges. We are well-aware of the plethora of cases which are pending with the Courts in our country today and time again hear citizens complaint of delayed justice. The present stall in activities will only add to the pile of existing cases and pressurize the legal fraternity once things resume to normalcy. However, amongst us all, there was a visionary who in the year 2008, filed for a process patent for – Electronic Justice System.

The patent covred a carefully laid down process encompassing the varied aspects which under normal circumstances emphasize the inevitable physical presence of manpower, paving way for a revolutionary form for ‘Delivery of Justice’. The patent was applied for under the Patent Co-operation Treaty and was published by the WIPO bearing the International application no. PCT/IN2009/000412 claiming priority from July 18, 2008. The patent was applied by the inventor - Mohan Dewan.

The invention focused on dispensing civil justice and proposed a futuristic approach which indeed would’ve assisted the present situation of a lockdown. We can all agree to the fact that, the time taken for a suit to conclude is immense and is dependent on numerous factors such as, availability of the persons involved viz., the lawyers representing the respective parties, the Judges, the respective Clients, witnesses, clerks, the Nazar, and the like. The absence of even one of the parties at a required time is capable of delaying the case by a couple of weeks if not months. Further, the numerous religious and public holidays in our country add to the delays. Most often, the entire case is heard by a particular Judge, however, at the time of taking the evidence on record or passing a final order, the Judge is transferred, which not only breaks the flow in a case but also, the time taken in ensuring the facts are put forth as it is before the newly transferred judge leads to inordinate delays. Another persistent issue that is faced is the, strict territorial nature of the judicial system, which results in lack of instant access of public documents of one jurisdiction in another.

This futuristic patent model combats with the abovementioned situations and many other such day to day difficulties faced by legal fraternity and inadvertently the citizens awaiting justice. The model carefully disintegrates the legal system into multiple components and provides alternate E-Systems such as:

1. the availability of a precedents database – would include case studies, judgements, commentaries which can be used as citations for supporting the suit;

2. a search engine – would scan the e-plaint after it was uploaded and append the plaint with the suitable provisions from the enactments and precedents database respectively. This will be then be recorded in the case file and can be accessed by the concerned lawyer who can add/attach enactments and/or precedents as desired, however the automatically generated enactment or precedent cannot be deleted. There will also be a provision to request a version of the finalized plaint in a language of the Plaintiff’s choice;

3. a court fee tool – this feature will calculate the fees payable as soon as the e-plaint upload is completed. The payment maybe be made online vide e-transanctions and upon completion, the e-plaint with the precedents, enactments, etc. will be stored and relayed upon the defendant;

4. multiple user/lawyer access – this feature will be password/unique identification key protected;

5. a process serving section – through which summons maybe served in addition to providing the next date for hearing;

6. an issue framing section – which will be adapted to frame e-issues and also co-relate with the analyser means which will conduct analysis inclusive of the human and machine analysis;

7. the behavioral analysis section – will typically be used at the time of recording witness statement or cross-examination, wherein the blood pressure, heart rate and the like primarily assisting in analyzing the witness’s psychology, psychiatry, etc., constituting a list of approximately 16-17 such tools with a designated role ensuring the smooth filing of a suit, trial of the suit and the final judgement;

8. An Administrative panel – that will supervise the pleadings taken on record and will also assist in the ‘Objection’ removal;

9. A judicial panel – who will be responsible to deliver judgments; and such other detailed mechanisms with their respective functions were suggested.

In addition to providing an entirely tech based system, the process emphasized on advantages such as: decrease in the amount of storage of paperwork, clearance of backlog of cases to a substantial extent, the issue of transfer of a judge will no more be an issue since the physical presence will not be required to adjudicate the matter, documents maybe filed easily at either party’s leisure instead of waiting for a particular date of filing, the system will emphasize on the mental acumen of the lawyers only and not the influential ability of the lawyers of parties involved and many others.

As referred to above, the detailed structure proposed was an ideal solution to combat difficulties in the present times and will be a good start to devise a software for future too.

“Justice delayed is Justice Denied,

E-Justice is Justice in Time”



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