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Madras High Court Suspends a Lawyer for Engaging in “Eroticism” During a Virtual Court Hearing

As per the statement given by the court, advocate R.D. Santhana Krishnan had engaged in “eroticism” with a woman during a virtual court hearing

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Ishita Chakraborty
Ishita Chakraborty
Editor-in-Chief at Transcontinental Times, Computer Science Graduate, PG diploma in Journalism and Mass communication. Ishita is a youth activist for PETA India, President of Girlup IWO, and a linguaphile. She covers social issues, politics, UN initiatives, sports, and diversity.

INDIA: Work from home was a dream for many before the COVID-19 pandemic. However, now it is becoming a rising dilemma for many. As working professionals around the world are dealing with home video conferences, tensions are pretty high in India.

Half of the country’s 500 million internet users have jumped into the digital world in a few years. But, there are still some people who are unused to video conference app and mostly muddle through them. A recent incident that has happened during a court hearing has proved this right.

Madras virtual court hearing case

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Recently, Madras High Court initiated suo motu criminal contempt proceedings against a lawyer. A lawyer, who forgot to turn off his camera was seen making out with a woman during a virtual court hearing.

As per the statement given by the court, advocate R.D. Santhana Krishnan had engaged in “eroticism” with a woman during a virtual court hearing. Justice R. Hemalatha and Justice P.N. Prakash said that they couldn’t overlook such behavior.

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“This court cannot afford to be a mute spectator and turn a Nelson’s eye when such brazen vulgarity is publicly displayed amidst court proceedings”, the bench said.

The bench has also recommended that the matter should be placed before the Chief Justice of the High Court.

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“We are of the considered view that it is high time that we revisit the procedure of conducting court proceedings in hybrid mode”, said the court.

Meanwhile, the court has ordered the Crime Branch to register an FIR against the advocate since the video violated the IT Act, 2000. The bench has also ordered the Chennai City Commissioner of Police to stop the circulation of the clip.

Earlier, the Bar Council of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry had suspended the advocate for ‘improper behavior’.

Embarrassing incidents during virtual hearings

Since the beginning of the pandemic, mortifying incidents have been quite common during virtual hearings. Many advocates were seen wearing colored clothes, traditional outfits, and even undergarments.

To avoid the occurrence of such incidents, the Allahabad High court issues a dress code for virtual hearings in 2021. The court had also asked the advocates to refrain from attending the hearings from noisy surroundings or public places.

“Advocates should understand that their appearance for hearing of cases through the virtual mode from their house or office or chamber is like an extended courtroom, and it is as serious as attending a proceeding inside a court,” the court said.

In August 2020, the Calcutta High Court initiated contempt proceedings against an advocate for sharing a screenshot of a court hearing on LinkedIn. However, he was let off after a warning.

In another incident, the Delhi High Court imposed a fine of Rs. 10,000 on a man who attended a virtual hearing in his undergarments. They called such conduct “totally unacceptable”.

The most shocking incident occurred when a man appeared semi-naked during a virtual hearing in the Karnataka High Court.

A sexual abuse complaint was filed by senior advocate Indira Jaising against the man. The High Court then issued a notice against him.

These embarrassments are not only restricted to India. Many Western countries had witnessed the same things. During a virtual court hearing in a Miami court, a woman broadcasted a butt injection video.

Also Read: Gender Inequality: A Growing Threat for Nigeria

Author

  • Ishita Chakraborty

    Editor-in-Chief at Transcontinental Times, Computer Science Graduate, PG diploma in Journalism and Mass communication. Ishita is a youth activist for PETA India, President of Girlup IWO, and a linguaphile. She covers social issues, politics, UN initiatives, sports, and diversity.

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