Recently, the Delhi High Court ordered the Delhi government to ensure the creation of a new OTP (One Time Password) based mechanism on the Online Single Window System (OSWS) site to ensure the quick payment of professional fees to Standing Counsel in the matter of Piyush Gupta v. Govt of NCT of Delhi.
A Division Bench consisting of Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad ruled that the current payment mechanism was burdensome and incompatible with the seamless filing of invoices.
..the State is directed to ensure that some provision of OTP based signature is made available as the present process is cumbersome and defeats the purpose of seamless submission of bills. Let the same be done within four weeks’ from today.”
The Court remarked that it had earlier ordered the Delhi government to pay the outstanding bills for these advocates in August 2020. The same, however, has not been done thus far. As a result, the Court ordered:
The following hearing will take place on December 12. Santosh Kumar Tripathi, the standing counsel for the Delhi Government, informed the court during the hearing that the new OSWS portal for paying standing counsel’s fees was now active.
According to Tripathi, the procedure is still drawn out and empanelled attorneys are required to obtain the form, complete the bill’s information, and then upload the signed and scanned copy once again to the portal.
In order to speed up the process of sanctioning the bills, he continued, the OSWS portal should make some provisions for an OTP-based system available.
The petitioners were represented by advocates Prince Arora and Rakohit Pandey.
Santosh Kumar Tripathi, an advocate, spoke on behalf of the Delhi government.