Live Recording Of Court Proceedings
Video and audio recording of court proceedings is the future of law. In Pakistan where there is an extremely large number of lawyers, judges and the number of cases heard every day, if live recordings come into place in the courtrooms it would undoubtedly increase the transparency in the judicial system and decrease the risks of disputes on a day-to-day basis. This way the entire judicial system will be under constant pressure to act properly while addressing the court and additionally this will create pressures to approach the court with clean hands. Article 10A of the Constitution, the right to a fair trial, supports video and audio recording of proceedings and will in fact strengthen the underlying article.
It is an absolutely undeniable fact that courts have always welcomed everyone to come and witness the proceedings and have also given the privilege to observe the manner in which the judicial system of the country functions. However, various times due to unavoidable circumstances or personal difficulty it might happen that an advocate, a witness or a litigant party is not able to show up on the date of hearing and in such circumstances it would be beneficial for them if they could access the recording. Being incapable of attending an important matter would leave the advocate or the party at a disadvantage and clueless about the way in which they should proceed with the next stage and approach the judge, thus video recording would serve as an efficacious remedy.
In short, live coverage will improve the confidence in our legal system as a whole. Providing a spotlight on our judges should encourage efficiency, best practices and good behavior. The public at large will no longer have to rely on the media and/or newspapers and will be able to observe court proceedings themselves. Instead of relying merely on stenographic notes, the court would be able to observe the actual proceedings that transpire.
There are two sides to every coin. There could be a lot of debate and discomfort on this topic – taking this wholesale exposure to public scrutiny may be wholly unjustified if the accused is subsequently acquitted.
The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of CourtingTheLaw.com or any organization with which she might be associated.