The Orissa High Court on Tuesday imposed Rs. 5,000/- on a lawyer who remained absent during the VC hearing despite a specific date having been fixed for the matter which is being represented by him.
The Bench of Chief Justice Dr. S. Muralidhar and Justice S. K. Panigrahi fined Advocate Sanjat Das, who was absent during his matter and had instructed his colleague to simply inform the Court that he was unable to attend the Court.
“The Court fails to appreciate it,” said the Court.
The Bench further remarked:
“What is worse still is that learned counsel appearing on behalf of the Petitioners, who has stated that he has filed the Vakalatnama, does not even have copies of the orders passed by this Court in the matter including the order dated 20th April 2021, which is fairly a detailed one and poses specific questions for the learned counsel for the Petitioners to answer.”
Observing that the petition was being unnecessarily adjourned, the Orissa High Court directed that costs of Rs.5000/- be deposited by him with the Orissa High Court Legal Services Committee on or before 5th July, 2021.
Further, considering that the matter was taken up on remand by the Supreme Court by its order dated 10th January 2018, and although the Court was prepared to go on with it and the learned counsel for the Petitioners was not, as the last opportunity, the Court listed the matter on 29th July 2021.
The Orissa High Court in February this year imposed Rs. 500 fine on an advocate who was not wearing a Neck Band while arguing before the Court in virtual mode.
While imposing the penalty, the Bench of Justice S. K. Panigrahi observed,
“The profession is solemn in nature and its profundity is complemented by its attire. Being an Advocate, he is expected to appear before the Court in a dignified manner with proper dress, even if it is a virtual mode.”
Other related orders
While noting that a Lawyer appeared for a virtual hearing from a stationed car and “in a casual manner”, the Madras High Court on Wednesday (03rd February) expressed its displeasure at Lawyer’s conduct.
“The learned counsel for the petitioner, by sitting in a stationed car in a casual manner, representing the case, which is impermissible in view of the Video-Conferencing Rules notified by the High Court,” said the Court.
Further, as reported by the PTI, the Delhi High Court on Thursday (04th February) said that it is “simply shocking” that advocates are arguing or attending matters through video-conferencing while being on “roads, sitting in parks and even running up on stairs“, making it difficult for the court to conduct proceedings as are not audible properly.
In November 2020, the Presiding Officer DRT-I Ahmedabad, Vinay Goel had imposed a cost of Rs. 10,000 upon an Advocate Vishal Gori who attended the virtual hearing while sitting inside his Car.
Case title – Ganesha Chandra Sahoo and others v. The State of Orissa and others