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Supreme Court launches pilot project in Telangana’s Warangal to integrate police stations, courts

With inter-operable criminal justice system (ICJS), an initiative of the apex court’s eCommittee, in place, the courts can access live data of FIRs and charge sheets from the police, provided both are ready, in electronic form in the police system. Judges will have access to details of cases, FIR numbers, names of the accused and details of arrest the moment they are uploaded into the system.

india Updated: Dec 27, 2018 10:06 IST
Bhadra Sinha
Bhadra Sinha
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Telangana,Supreme Court,Warangal
A Supreme Court panel has launched a pilot project in Telangana’s Warangal district to integrate two crucial pillars of the criminal justice delivery system -- the courts and police stations. (Sonu Mehta/HT File PHOTO)

A Supreme Court panel has launched a pilot project in Telangana’s Warangal district to integrate two crucial pillars of the criminal justice delivery system -- the courts and police stations.

The inter-operable criminal justice system (ICJS), an initiative of the apex court’s eCommittee, seeks to make live exchange of data possible between all criminal courts and police stations. This would help save precious time spent on completing paper work and documentary evidence such as the first information reports (FIR) and charge sheets. Tracking court proceedings would become easier for investigating officers.

With ICJS in place, the courts can access live data of FIRs and charge sheets from the police, provided both are ready, in electronic form in the police system. Judges will have access to details of cases, FIR numbers, names of the accused and details of arrest the moment they are uploaded into the system.

In reciprocation, the court will be able to send details of remand orders, bail, property release and other information to the police electronically. Police officers will be able to access live update of court proceedings in each case and also orders passed.

Similarly a charge sheet in electronic form will be notified through the ICJS interface directly to the court concerned. Details of the sections under which suspects are charged by the police, whether the accused are on bail or in jail, the charge sheet number, list of witnesses and name of the investigating officer would be available with the court online. The police will get to know the lawyers appearing in a particular case, access and judicial business records and also the next date of hearing.

Police will continue to get updates along with all the details of the case from day to day until the final termination of a case. The system would also help in bringing fugitives and those facing non-bailable warrants to justice more effectively and quickly.

“There are plans to extend the ICJS data sharing to other states. So far five states have shown interest,” justice MB Lokur, who heads Supreme Court’s eCommittee, told HT. Justice Lokur, also the chairman of ICJS, inaugurated the pilot project through video conferencing on December 15.

With the project, e-courts have now become interoperable with other pillars of the criminal justice system. The next phase would include expanding it to prisons, forensic facilities, the prosecution system and juvenile homes.

Advocate Gyanant Singh lauded the effort of the eCommittee and said live exchange of data between the courts and police would make the criminal justice system more transparent and efficient.

The e-courts project is aimed at computerisation of district and subordinate courts across the country. It has reached the final stages of implementation and covered 16,755 district courts. Several electronic services such as e-summons, SMS alerts to lawyers and litigants and e-filing have been initiated under the project. The National Judicial Data Grid hosts a dynamic repository of over 100 million cases.

First Published: Dec 27, 2018 10:06 IST