The Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra has launched 3 microsites for litigants and lawyers for e-filing, e-pay, and NSTEP (National Service and Tracking of Electronic Processes). These sites were developed under the leadership of Justice M.B. Lokur, Judge in charge of the Supreme Court’s eCommittee under the e-courts project.

This comes under the second phase of the eCourts project, aimed at ‘ICT enablement’ of all district and subordinate courts in the country.

Sites launched

  • The eFiling site lets lawyers and litigants file cases online. “The facility of eSign is provided for those who cannot afford purchasing token for making digital signatures,” the government said in a release about the microsites’ launch. The site “will start building digital repositories which will auto generate paper books and can be quickly transmitted to Higher Courts which will reduce delays,” the statement says.
  • The ePay site is a portal to pay court fees online. To start with, the site will only be available in Maharashtra and Haryana.
  • NSTEP — the National Service and Tracking of Electronic Processes was introduced to reduce delays in delivering service of process, especially between different jurisdictions. This will also be available as a mobile app. NSTEP will let users upload documents associated with process with GPS tracking.

eCourts phase I

The first phase of the eCourts Mission was implemented during 2011–2015; the current phase is between 2015 and 2019. Rs 639.41 crores was released for computerisation of district and subordinate courts. The government said that it succeeded in its goals of introducing LAN connectivity infrastructure and video conferencing in hundreds of court complexes and prisons.

Under Phase 2, Rs 1078 crores have been released till date, against the financial outlay of Rs 1670 crores. The National Judicial Data Grid (NJDG) for district & subordinate courts was introduced to provide information about judicial proceedings/decisions of 16,089 computerized district and subordinate courts. Case status information of over 10 crore cases are on the grid.

WAN across courts

The Department of Justice is administering a Wide Area Network (WAN) connectivity project connecting all the district and taluka courts through BSNL in a single network grid under the eCourts Project. Department of Justice has issued work order to BSNL in May 2018 for establishing Wide Area Network (WAN) connectivity at 3064 Court Complexes, including 458 unconnected court complex sites under e-Courts Project at a cost of Rs 169.61 crores, to complete in six months.

Check out our Digitisation coverage here.