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Ensure participants are properly dressed: CAT

New Delhi: The Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT), that adjudicates service matters of central government employees, has said that its benches in the red and orange zones would hear urgent matters via video conference and asked participants to be properly dressed, according to a Personnel Ministry statement issued on Saturday. 

As regards the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) benches that are in Red and Orange zones, the cases of urgent nature can be filed through electronic mail service (e-mail) by contacting the registrar of the concerned bench, who in turn shall furnish the e-mail id to the intending advocate or party, it said. 

“If the Registry is satisfied that the OA (original application or petition) is otherwise in order and needs to be dealt with urgently, the head of department (HoD) of the bench shall be informed of the same.  The HoD in turn shall decide whether or not to take up the case. If it is proposed to hear the case, it shall be done through CISCO WEBEX online video conferencing facility,” the statement said.

The details thereof shall be worked out by the HoD of the benches in consultation with the registry of the principal bench, it said. 

“It shall be ensured that the participants in the video conference put on the apparel or at least, are properly dressed,” the Personnel Ministry said.

If the advocates of the bar association of such benches are agreeable for hearing of pending cases through such mechanism, the cases shall be identified by the registry and hearing thereof shall take place through the same system in a time slot that may be decided by the HoD on a daily basis, it said. 

The CAT benches located in the green zone areas would resume work from Monday.

The tribunal has not worked since the announcement of the nationwide lockdown in March-end.

“Wherever the benches/courts are located in green zones, they shall function duly following the guidelines that are issued by the Home Affairs Ministry such as maintaining the social distance, making the sanitary arrangements and avoiding the direct contact,” it said in a statement.

To the extent possible, the method of functioning of the high courts in the concerned area shall be adopted, the ministry said.   The HoD of the concerned bench shall take decisions on this behalf in consultation with the president of the bar association, it said. 

The feedback as to the convenience of the employees and their method of functioning shall be taken from the registrar of the bench. The decisions taken in this regard shall be forthwith forwarded to the registry of the principal bench, the statement said.

The government has recently issued the guidelines for identification of the red, green and orange zones, depending on the severity of COVID-19 cases and the nature of activities that are prohibited and permitted in the zones so declared.

“This arrangement shall be in force till May 17, 2020 or until further orders,” it added. 

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