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  • Writer's pictureDevesh Saxena

Step Towards Saving the Environment: Use of A4 Size Paper Permitted by Allahabad High Court.

The High Court of Allahabad via a communication dt. 23/11/2020 addressed to the petitioners and Advocates in W-PIL No. 665/2020, Saumitra Anand & ORS. vs Registrar General, High Court of Judicature at Allahabad & ORS., has informed that the Demand Notice dt. 28/07/2020 of the Petitioners tendered in pursuance of the Order of the High Court dt. 27/07/2020 in the said petition where it held that the “the matter requires serious consideration on the administrative side”, has been accepted to the extent of use of A4 size paper for all Judicial and Administrative purposes in the High Court, Allahabad, and all other Courts, Tribunals and District Courts subordinate to the High Court of Judicature at Allahabad.

It has been further resolved to place the matter before the Rules Committee for necessary amendments in the Allahabad High Court Rules, 1952, General Rules (Civil), 1957 and General Rules (Criminal), 1977. As per the said communication, the matter is scheduled to be considered by the Hon’ble Rules Committee in the next meeting of the Committee.

The petitioners: Saumitra Anand, Sagar, Shubham Mishra, Anup Shukla and Vidit Jaiswal, all law students of the Faculty of Law, University of Allahabad, through Advocates Shashwat Anand (Legal Consultant and Advisor, S&D Legal Associates) and Ankur Azad, pursuant to Order of High Court dt. 27/07/2020, had tendered a Demand Notice dt. 28/07/2020 and a subsequent Reminder Notice dt. 15/10/2020. Upon receiving no intimation in the said behalf, they had recently filed a fresh PIL in the High Court on 19/11/2020, for directing the use of A4 Size Paper with printing on both sides in all Courts in the State of U.P..

According to Advocates Shashwat Anand and Ankur Azad, peculiarly, the said communication dt. 23/11/2020 is silent on the issue of printing on both sides of the paper. According to him, “A4 size paper with printing on both sides – if has not been allowed, will have serious and devastating repercussions for the environment, resulting in even a greater amount of damage to the flora and fauna, resulting from the incessant chopping of trees and sheer wastage of water. To illustrate the same, for instance, a writ petition which takes about 100 Legal/Foolscap size pages to print, will take around 120-130 A4 size pages to print, and if the petition is not allowed to be printed on both sides, the same will end up consuming more than 200-300 litres of extra water, in that one finished sheet of paper requires 10 litres (avg.) of water to prepare, in addition to resulting in chopping of more trees. This will end up doing more harm than good, if printing on both sides is not allowed.”

Significantly, the regime of using A4 size paper with printing on both sides has been adopted and put in place in the Supreme Court of India and several other High Courts, being Kerala High Court, Karnataka High Court, Tripura High Court, etc., and the colonial-era practice of printing on Legal/Foolscap size paper with singe side printing has been junked and done away with.

Read the order dated 27.07.2020:

Download PDF • 27KB

Read the Communication by Registrar dated 23.11.2020:



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