Cameras In Indian Courtrooms: A Bliss Or A Misery?- Learning From The American Experience
Salonika Kataria & Aneesh Sharma*
Volume 1 Issue 2 (2008)
The debate surrounding the Indian Judicial System has been deliberating on the means and ways that can be employed to improve its efficiency and functioning. Ina new development, the theme of these debates has focused on the feasibility of having cameras in courtrooms. This proposal can be traced to the United States of America, where camera access to court room proceedings has been in place for the last three decades with the objective of promoting fairness and public awareness about the judicial system. It is envisaged that by adopting a similar approach in India, the justice delivery mechanism would be improved, the masses would be educated about the working of the Indian Judicial System, thereby promoting rule of law in the society. In the United States of America, there exists no Constitutional Right to broadcast courtroom proceedings, and whenever such broadcasts have been made concerns have been voiced regarding their impact on the citizen’s right to a fair trial and due process of law. In India also, there is no constitutional right to televise court proceedings, however the same is not expressly prohibited either. The possibilities arising from this juxtaposition is fertile ground for academic debate, which shall form the subject matter of this paper. Through this paper we seek to do a cost-benefit analysis of introducing cameras in Indian courtrooms and thereby establish that the existing set up would not be able to sustain such an arrangement.