Gujarat High Court


Gujarat High Court: While deciding the application, the division bench of Aravind Kumar, CJ., and Ashutosh J. Shastri, J., calls upon the Judicial Officers to show cause as to why contempt proceedings should not be initiated against them for wilfully disobeying the order and direction issued by this Court.

In the case at hand, the original dispute arose in 1977 which culminated in filing of the suit and then the appeal was filed in 1985 which was disposed of by High Court on 25-11-2004 by remanding the matter to the Trial Court to dispose of the suit expeditiously with directions to give top priority to the suit since it was filed way back in the year 1977. On the account of aforesaid direction not being complied the applicant filed this application for deciding the case.

The Court directed the Registrar General to call for explanation from all Presiding Officers who have presided the Court during that time. Pursuant to the same, the Registrar General filed a report along with explanation received from the respective Judicial Officers.

The Court noted that though proceedings before Trial Court moved at a snail’s pace after remand, the matter was listed for arguments on 27-12-2016 and till date the matter has been adjourned for hearing final arguments. The records and proceedings of the suit disclose that without assigning any reason matter has been adjourned many a time.

The Court further stated that despite there being a direction issued by this Court, the concerned Judicial Officers who handled the matter have ignored the direction so issued by this Court.

Hence, the Court issued show-cause notice to 9 Judicial Officers to explain why contempt proceedings should not be initiated against them for wilfully disobeying the order and direction issued by this Court on 25-11-2004.

The Court further directed the Registrar General to issue a circular specifying thereunder that henceforth in all such matters where a direction has been issued by the High Court for disposing of the matter in a time frame or where there has been stay of further proceedings before the High Court, the same shall not only be entered in the record and proceedings of the Trial Court but such entry shall continue to be reflected in the record and proceedings on every date of hearing till the matter is disposed of or till the directions so issued is modified or varied.

The Court further said that at least a fortnight before the expiration of the time frame fixed by the High Court, a request letter through the concerned presiding officer of the Court be transmitted to the Court for being placed before the appropriate Bench and such request should be routed through concerned Principal District Judge to avoid any delay being caused.

[Patel Ambalal Kalidas v. Patel Motibhai Kalidas, Misc. Civil Application (For Direction) No. 1 of 2022, decided on 19-12-2022]

Advocate who appeared in this case :

Counsel for Petitioners:- Advocate Hemang H Parikh

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