Power under S. 5 of Limitation Act is not to be exercised in a mechanical manner

Himachal Pradesh High Court: A civil petition was decided by a Single Judge Bench comprising of Ajay Mohan Goel, J., wherein the application of the appellant praying to condone the delay of 2376 days in filing the appeal was dismissed.

The ground which appellant took in order to justify such delay in filing the appeal was that she was wrongly informed by her counsel that the matter was still pending in the court and that she came to know that her case stood dismissed only six months prior to the filing of this petition.

The High Court was not convinced by the explanation given by the appellant for such delay. The Court observed it to be a routine excuse which is given in an application for condonation of delay. The Court further observed that principle of limitation envisages that in case a person is not diligent in pursuing his legal remedy, then after the limitation period, though the right survives but remedy goes. The Court held that the power under Section 5 of Limitation Act to condone delay is not to be exercised in a mechanical manner and is only to be exercised if Court is convinced that the applicant was not negligent in pursuing his legal remedy and proceedings could not be initiated for the reasons beyond the control of the party concerned. In the instant case, the Court was not satisfied with the averments made in the application and consequently, the application was dismissed. [Runa Devi v. Singhu Ram, 2018 SCC OnLine HP 248, order dated 15.3.2018]

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