Hot Off The PressNews

Delhi High Court issues a circular that, it has come to notice that some of the Advocates/Litigants/Staff/Police & CRPF Personnel are still feeding stray animals like monkeys and dogs within this Court complex.

All the Advocates/Litigants/Staff members/Police & CRPF Personnel of this Court are, therefore, once again directed to strictly refrain from feeding the stray animals like monkeys and dogs within this Court complex.

Delhi High Court

[Circular dt. 28-2-2022]

Case BriefsSupreme Court

Supreme Court: In the case where ten times adjournments were given between 2015 to 2019 and even twice the adjournments were granted as a last opportunity and even the cost was imposed, the bench of MR Shah* and AS Bopanna, JJ has held that the courts shall be very slow in granting adjournments and they shall not grant repeated adjournments in routine manner.

“Time has now come to change the work culture and get out of the adjournment culture so that confidence and trust put by the litigants in the Justice delivery system is not shaken and Rule of Law is maintained.”

The Court was dealing with “a classic example of misuse of adjournments granted by the court”.

A suit for eviction, arrears of rent and mesne profit was filed in the year 2013. Thereafter, despite the repeated adjournments sought and granted by the court and even twice the adjournments were granted as a last opportunity and even the cost was imposed, the defendant failed to cross examine the plaintiff’s witness.

Although the adequate liberty was given to the defendant to cross examine the plaintiff’s witness, they never availed of the same and went on delaying the proceedings by repeated prayers of adjournment and unfortunately the Trial Court and even subsequently the High Court continued to grant adjournment after adjournment and as such contributed the delay in disposal of the suit which as such was for eviction. It was also brought to the Court’s notice that as such now even the main suit has been disposed of.

The Supreme Court called such approach ‘wholly condemnable’ and said,

“Law and professional ethics do not permit such practice. Repeated adjournments on one or the other pretext and adopting the dilatory tactics is an insult to justice and concept of speedy disposal of cases. Petitioner – defendant acted in a manner to cause colossal insult to justice and to concept of speedy disposal of civil litigation.”

Taking the example of the case at hand, the Court noticed that,

“Many a times the suits are filed for eviction on the ground of bonafide requirements of the landlord. If plaintiff who seeks eviction decree on the ground of personal bonafide requirement is not getting the timely justice and he ultimately gets the decree after 10 to 15 years, at times cause for getting the eviction decree on the ground of personal bonafide requirement may be defeated. The resultant effect would be that such a litigant would lose confidence in the justice delivery system and instead of filing civil suit and following the law he may adopt the other mode which has no backing of law and ultimately it affects the rule of law.”

Noticing that arrears are mounting because of such dilatory tactics and asking repeated adjournments by the advocates and mechanically and in routine manner granted by the courts, the Court said that,

“Many a times, the task of adjournments is used to kill Justice. Repeated adjournments break the back of the litigants. The courts are enjoying upon to perform their duties with the object of strengthening the confidence of common man in the institution entrusted with the administration of the justice. Any effort which weakens the system and shake the faith of the common man in the justice dispensation has to be discouraged.”

The Court was also conscious of the fact that whenever the trial courts refused to grant unnecessary adjournments many a times they are accused of being strict and they may face displeasure of the Bar. However, the judicial officers shall not worry about that if his conscience is clear and the judicial officer has to bear in mind his duties to the litigants who are before the courts and who have come for justice and for whom Courts are meant and all efforts shall be made by the courts to provide timely justice to the litigants.

Therefore, it was directed that the courts shall not grant the adjournments in routine manner and mechanically and shall not be a party to cause for delay in dispensing the justice. The courts have to be diligence and take timely action in order to usher in efficient justice dispensation system and maintain faith in rule of law.

[Ishwarlal Mali Rathod v. Gopal, Special Leave to Appeal (C) No(s). 14117-14118/2021, order dated 20.09.2021]

Counsels: Mr. N.K. Mody, Sr. Adv. Mr. Shishir Kumar Saxena, Adv. Mr. R.N. Pareek, Adv. Mr. Prabhuddha Singh, Adv. Ms. Soumya Chaturvedi, Adv. Ms. Sharmila, Adv. Mr. Praveen Swarup, AOR

*Order by: Justice MR Shah

Know Thy Judge | Justice M. R. Shah

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Madras High Court: Observing that, Litigants are compelled to accept the wrong orders in view of inaccessibility to New Delhi and the exorbitant expenses towards engaging a counsel, the Division Bench of N. Kirubakaran and R. Pongiappan, JJ., emphasized that,

When approaching the Supreme Court by a common man remains in dreams only, it would amount to denying justice.

Court’s opinion

While trying to support its opinion, the High Court considered whether Members of Parliament will travel to Delhi to attend Parliament by spending their own money without sponsorship by the Government? Answering that no Member of Parliament would spend his own money to attend Parliament, the Court said that when such is the position regarding the elected members of Parliament, no one could expect an ordinary litigant to travel to New Delhi spending huge amount to file Appeals against the orders of the High Courts or Tribunals.

Elaborating the above, Bench stated that the location of Courts and Tribunals in New Delhi alone, without having Regional Benches, causes injustice to the people living in far-flung places away from New Delhi.

It is very unfortunate that majority of the litigants are compelled to accept unfavorable orders, for lack of resources and access to Appellate Courts.


Present matter revolved around a complaint wherein it was stated that the petitioner was unable to travel to New Delhi, as the appeal against order passed by the Bar Council of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry had to be filed before the Bar Council of India, which was located 2186 kilometres from Chennai and he would submit that keeping the Courts and Tribunals only in New Delhi would amount to denial of justice to majority of people living far away from New Delhi.

Petitioner challenged the dismissal of his complaint by the Disciplinary Committee of the Bar Council of Tamil Nadu filed by him against the second respondent, who was engaged by the petitioner to act as his Advocate, for professional misconduct.

Second respondent was engaged in conducting the Rent Control Proceedings by the Petitioner’s brother. During the course of the Trial only, it came to the notice of the petitioner that second respondent collected the rents and issued receipts based on the alleged oral instructions of the petitioner’s brother. Therefore, the petition was dismissed.

The findings given by the First Respondent was that the Petitioner’s brother, was not examined and it was fatal to the case of the petitioner. Moreover, the complainant alone had to prove and establish through evidence, the professional misconduct committed by the Second Respondent.

By giving such a finding, the Complaint was dismissed. If the Petitioner intends to prove that there was professional misconduct on the part of the Second Respondent, as rightly pointed out by the Disciplinary Committee, the Petitioner’s brother should have been examined who alone competent to speak about the transactions. Merely because the Petitioner’s brother adduced evidence before the Rent Control proceedings are not enough especially when serious allegations of misconduct are alleged against the Second Respondent.

Analysis, Law and Decision

In High Court’s opinion, the first respondent rightly dismissed the petition.

With regard to petitioner’s submission that alternate remedy of filing an appeal under Section 37 of the Advocate Act before the Bar Council of India is not efficacious as the Bar Council of India was located more than 2000 kilometres away, and if one intends to challenge the first respondent’s order, he will have to travel to New Delhi and engage a counsel by spending lakhs of rupees.

Bench stated that Advocates in Delhi are charging very heavily than the State Counsel. Moreover, the petitioner will have to travel and for that also he will have to spend money.

Because of the above reasons, litigants though having a good case, are unable to challenge the same before the Supreme Court or before the Tribunals which are located in New Delhi.

“…many litigants accept the order passed by the Tribunals or the Bar Council or High Courts, in spite of the fact that they have a good case or an arguable case on merits.”

“Litigants are compelled to accept the wrong orders in view of inaccessibility to New Delhi and the exorbitant expenses towards engaging a counsel.”

The above would amount to infraction of Article 21 guaranteed to a citizen as the existence of remedy should be reasonably practicable and access being one of the essential requirements, ought to be provided, as otherwise, it would be a distant dream.

High Court held that the availability of alternate remedy under Section 37 of the Advocates Act is not efficacious, hence the writ petition was maintainable.

Bench noted that because of a decision on the administrative side of the Supreme Court, the efforts taken by the Centre to set up Benches in different parts of the country had been made futile.

No impression should be given that the Supreme Court is meant only for the people living in and around New Delhi or the States surrounding New Delhi.

Further, the Court stated that when the Supreme Court is inclined to grant permission to establish Benches of the High Courts, every citizen expects the same decision to establish Benches of the Supreme Courts in the South, North, East and West.

The Constitution framers thought of establishing Benches of the Supreme Court at various places, other the incorporation of below stated Article 130 would not have taken place.

Article 130 of the Constitution speaks about the seat of the Supreme Court, which is extracted as follows:-

“130. Seat of Supreme Court.- The Supreme Court shall sit in Delhi or in such other place or places, as the Chief Justice of India may, with the approval of the President, from time to time, appoint.”

Adding to the above, Bench observed that there was no constitutional bar for setting up or establishing Benches in various parts other than New Delhi.

Supreme Court is the custodian of rights of not only the litigants but also the entire population. Time has come to establish Benches of Supreme Court at other places apart from New Delhi.

When people are aware of their rights, they should have accessibility and affordability to reach every level of hierarchy of Courts.

High Court added that larger issue pertaining to access to Justice was discussed at length in the case of V. Vasanthakumar v. H.C. Bhatia, (2016) 7 SCC 686, wherein the Court referred the matter to a Constitution Bench on a range of issues, such as inter-alia whether to establish a National Court of Appeal or Regional Benches of the Supreme Court, etc.

The Court, which originally used to sit en banc, rendering seminal Constitutional bench Judgements, has now, owing to the prevalent system of admissions under Article 136 become a regular court of appeal, hearing all kinds of matters on a variety of Jurisdictions. 

For the above-stated matters, Bench expects the Central Government to take some action.

Adding to the observations, Court also stated that

India is having a population of 136 Crores, 34 Supreme Court Judges are not enough and more number of Judges are to be appointed. Hence, this Court hopes and expects that justice would be rendered by all the stake holders by taking a pragmatic, appropriate, justifiable and a fair decision in the interest of the people.

Lastly, disposing the petition, Court granted two week’s time to file an appeal if he wishes so, before the Bar Council of India.

Opinion of R. Pongiappan, J.

I have gone through the judgment and I am of the view that the views and observations given in paragraph Nos.3, 4 and 19 to 32 in the judgment are not related to the prayer sought for in the writ petition. Hence, with great respect, I am unable to persuade myself to subscribe views taken by my esteemed Brother. Accordingly, except approving the decision in negativing the writ petition, I am not agreeing with the views and observations made in the above referred paragraphs of this judgment.

[Karthik Ranganathan v. Disciplinary Committee-IV, WP No. 13796 of 2021, decided on 19-08-2021]

Advocates before the Court:

For Petitioner: Karthik Ranganathan (Petitioner-in-Person)

For Respondents: C.K. Chandrasekkar (For R1)

Rajesh Vivekanandan (For R3 & R4)

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Karnataka High Court: M. Nagaprasanna J. allowed the criminal petition and quashed the impugned order dated 30-07-2016 passed by Additional Civil Judge, Udupi.

The facts of the case are such the wife of respondent 2/complainant borrowed finance from the Karnataka State Finance Corporation (‘the Corporation’) for establishing Sri Durga Printers and Sri Durga Printers Conventional Hall but failed to pay the loan amount on time pursuant to which the property of respondent 2 was brought to sale by way of public auction. The petitioner became the highest bidder of the property and the property was directed to be handed over to him when the complainant made objections to the auction on the ground that the property was worth more than Rs 55/- lakhs had been sold at Rs 29/- lakhs by the Corporation. Thereafter, the complainant registered an FIR against the petitioner alleging that the petitioner had threatened him with life to not interfere with the auction proceedings. Based on the complaint for the alleging offence punishable under Section 506 of the Penal Code, 1860 i.e. IPC, investigation was conducted and ‘B’ report was filed. The petitioner filed a protest petition against acceptance of ‘B’ report under Section 200 of Criminal Procedure Code i.e. Cr. PC. The Magistrate recorded the sworn statement of the complainant and on perusal of the report, directed registration of criminal case against the petitioner for offence punishable under Section 506 of the IPC and summons issued. It is at this stage, the petitioner approached this Court in the subject criminal petition.

Counsel for petitioner Mr K. N. Nitish submitted that the entire allegation against the petitioner would not make out an offence punishable under Section 506 IPC, the petitioner is innocent of the property that was put to auction and because the petitioner purchased the property belonging to the complainant, the complainant to harm the petitioner has registered the criminal case. It was also submitted that the Magistrate while rejecting ‘B’ report and directing registration of the criminal case, did not apply his mind with regard to the offence alleged or the ‘B’ report and has mechanically ordered registration of the criminal case.

Counsel for respondent Ms B.G. Namitha Mahesh submitted that since the Police have conducted investigation and the Court has not accepted the ‘B’ report, it is a matter for trial and the Magistrate at this stage need not apply his mind as everything would be at large in the trial. The petitioner can as well prove his innocence in the trial Court and this Court at this stage should not interfere or interject the criminal trial.

The Court observed that Section 503 IPC, which defines ‘criminal intimidation’ would direct that whoever threatens another person with any injury to his person, reputation or property by an act, he is not legally bound to do and executes certain threats, commits criminal intimidation. Therefore, the intention of the petitioner ought to have been to do any injury to the complainant, his reputation or property. If the complaint is seen qua Section 506 of the IPC, it does not link any action of the petitioner to Section 503 of the IPC, for an offence punishable under Section 506 of the IPC.

The Court further observed that as narrated in the complaint, the property of the complainant was sold by the Corporation for a very less price and the loan was adjusted to the auction money. It is only because the petitioner was the auction purchaser of the property, though, through legal means, the complaint is registered by the complainant. Therefore, there cannot be a better case of giving a criminal colour to a legal act of the Corporation.

The Court relied on judgment Chandrapal Singh v. Maharaj Singh, (1982) 1 SCC 466 wherein it was observed

……a tendency to perjure is very much on the increase and unless by firm action courts do not put their foot down heavily upon such persons the whole judicial process would come to ridicule. We see some force in the submission but it is equally true that chagrined and frustrated litigants should not be permitted to give vent to their frustration by cheaply invoking jurisdiction of the criminal court. Complainant herein is an Advocate. He lost in both courts in the rent control proceedings and has now rushed to the criminal court. This itself speaks volumes. Add to this the fact that another suit between the parties was pending from 1975. The conclusion is inescapable that invoking the jurisdiction of the criminal court in this background is an abuse of the process of law and the High Court rather glossed over this important fact while declining to exercise its power under Section 482, Cr.P.C.”

The Court further observed that merely because a complainant files a protest petition and gives a statement with regard to his protest petition, the Magistrate ought not be swayed away by such protest petition. It is incumbent upon the learned Magistrate to consider ‘B’ report, protest petition and the evidence on record and record his finding as to why he rejects the ‘B’ report and accepts the protest petition. Application of judicious mind by the learned Magistrate while setting the criminal trial in motion, in cases particularly where protest petition is filed against the ‘B’ report by the complainant, becomes sine qua non, failing which, the order taking cognizance notwithstanding the ‘B’ report, becomes a routine exercise. Reasons to be recorded in such circumstances need not be elaborate but must bear application of mind.

The Court thus held The registration of FIR could not have been done by the Police without at the outset referring the matter to the learned Magistrate. This is yet another infirmity in the entire proceedings. Therefore, on the aforesaid reasons with regard to the application of mind on the part of the learned Magistrate and registration of FIR being violative of Section 155 of the Cr.P.C. the entire proceedings stand vitiated.”

[Nagaraj Rao v. State, Criminal Petition No. 8922 of 2017, decided on 17-08-2021]

Arunima Bose, Editorial Assistant has reported this brief.

Case BriefsSupreme Court

Supreme Court: The 3-judge bench of the former CJI SA Bobde and L. Nageswara Rao and S. Ravindra Bhatt, JJ had issued detailed directions to all Courts dealing with suits and execution proceedings after the troubles of the decree holder in not being able to enjoy the fruits of litigation on account of inordinate delay caused during the process of execution of decree were brought to the Court’s notice.

The Court noticed,

“Remedies provided for preventing injustice are actually being misused to cause injustice, by preventing a timely implementation of orders and execution of decrees.”

As on 31.12.2018, there were 11,80,275 execution petitions pending in the subordinate courts.

Hence, considering the urgent need to reduce delays in the execution proceedings, the Court issued the following directions:

  1. In suits relating to delivery of possession, the court must examine the parties to the suit under Order X in relation to third party interest and further exercise the power under Order XI Rule 14 asking parties to disclose and produce documents, upon oath, which are in possession of the parties including declaration pertaining to third party interest in such properties.
  2. In appropriate cases, where the possession is not in dispute and not a question of fact for adjudication before the Court, the Court may appoint Commissioner to assess the accurate description and status of the property.
  3. After examination of parties under Order X or production of documents under Order XI or receipt of commission report, the Court must add all necessary or proper parties to the suit, so as to avoid multiplicity of proceedings and also make such joinder of cause of action in the same suit.
  4. Under Order XL Rule 1 of CPC, a Court Receiver can be appointed to monitor the status of the property in question as custodia legis for proper adjudication of the matter.
  5. The Court must, before passing the decree, pertaining to delivery of possession of a property ensure that the decree is unambiguous so as to not only contain clear description of the property but also having regard to the status of the property.
  6. In a money suit, the Court must invariably resort to Order XXI Rule 11, ensuring immediate execution of decree for payment of money on oral application.
  7. In a suit for payment of money, before settlement of issues, the defendant may be required to disclose his assets on oath, to the extent that he is being made liable in a suit. The Court may further, at any stage, in appropriate cases during the pendency of suit, using powers under Section 151 CPC, demand security to ensure satisfaction of any decree.
  8. The Court exercising jurisdiction under Section 47 or under Order XXI of CPC, must not issue notice on an application of third-party claiming rights in a mechanical manner. Further, the Court should refrain from entertaining any such application(s) that has already been considered by the Court while adjudicating the suit or which raises any such issue which otherwise could have been raised and determined during adjudication of suit if due diligence was exercised by the applicant.
  9. The Court should allow taking of evidence during the execution proceedings only in exceptional and rare cases where the question of fact could not be decided by resorting to any other expeditious method like appointment of Commissioner or calling for electronic materials including photographs or video with affidavits.
  10. The Court must in appropriate cases where it finds the objection or resistance or claim to be frivolous or mala fide, resort to Sub-rule (2) of Rule 98 of Order XXI as well as grant compensatory costs in accordance with Section 35A.
  11. Under section 60 of CPC the term “…in name of the judgment- debtor or by another person in trust for him or on his behalf” should be read liberally to incorporate any other person from whom he may have the ability to derive share, profit or property.
  12. The Executing Court must dispose of the Execution Proceedings within six months from the date of filing, which may be extended only by recording reasons in writing for such delay.
  13. The Executing Court may on satisfaction of the fact that it is not possible to execute the decree without police assistance, direct the concerned Police Station to provide police assistance to such officials who are working towards execution of the decree. Further, in case an offence against the public servant while discharging his duties is brought to the knowledge of the Court, the same must be dealt stringently in accordance with law.
  14. The Judicial Academies must prepare manuals and ensure continuous training through appropriate mediums to 32 the Court personnel/staff executing the warrants, carrying out attachment and sale and any other official duties for executing orders issued by the Executing Courts.

[Rahul S. Shah v. Jinendra Kumar Gandhi, 2021 SCC OnLine SC 341, decided on 22.04.2021]

For Appellant: Advocate Shailesh Madiyal

For Respondent: Advocate Paras Jain

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Delhi High Court: The Division Bench of Manmohan and Asha Menon, JJ., remarked that the present case reflected the bane of the Indian Judicial System, namely, that there is no finality attached to any judicial proceeding.

Instant appeal was filed challenging the judgment and decree dated 18-11-2013 passed by a Single Judge of this Court accompanied by an application seeking condonation of delay under Section 14 of the Limitation Act.

As per the appellant the Single judge had failed to consider that the appellant was not a party to the compromise on the basis of which the civil suit was decreed and thus the finding of the Court that ‘the parties have settled the matter on the following terms’ did not apply to the appellant.

Further, it was added that the handwritten statements on the Index of the Compromise Application stating that ‘This is a joint application by all parties. They are duly served’ were false, as at no juncture, a copy of the said application had been served on the appellant and therefore, on this short score, the impugned judgment was liable to be set aside.

Single Judge had failed to consider that an application for compromise under Order XXIII Rule 3 of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 without the signatures/consent of all parties to the lis could not be allowed against all parties to the lis and be converted into a decree of the Court.

Lastly, the appellant contended that the Single Judge had failed to appreciate that it is settled law that a self-acquired property could not be partitioned during the lifetime of the owner. He contended that the Trial Court had failed to consider that the plaint was a collusive action filed by the respondents in order to lay a concocted claim whereby the plaintiff and his brothers allocated lion’s share of the said property to each other.

High Court’s reasoning

A consent decree is a contract with the imprimatur of the courts superadded.  ‘Lawful Compromise’ means that the agreement or compromise must not be unlawful by the nature of its terms or on the face of it.

‘Consent decree’ is something more than a mere contract and has elements of both command and contract. ‘Lawful Compromise’ would be unlawful if the consideration or the object of the agreement is forbidden by law or is of such a nature that if permitted it would defeat the provision of any law, or is fraudulent or the court regards it as immoral or opposed to the public policy as provided by Section 23 of the Contract Act.

High Court found that the present appeal had been preferred after a delay of over two thousand three hundred and thirty-one days. Appellant voluntarily chose not to enter appearance and therefore she was proceeded ex-parte. Consequently, the limitation for filing the present appeal shall commence from the date of the impugned judgment and order and not from the date of alleged knowledge of the judgment and decree.

Court stated that the appellant would not be entitled to the benefit of Section 14 of the Limitation Act as even the prior proceeding initiated by the appellant had not been filed within limitation and also the said prior proceeding had not been filed due to defect of jurisdiction or other cause of like nature.

No prejudice had been caused to the appellant by the impugned judgment and decree dated 18th November, 2013 as the said decree recognises her share in the suit property as accepted by her in the Family Settlement dated 23rd December, 1999, especially in the absence of any challenge to the said family settlement.

 No prejudice was caused to the appellant.

Further, the submission of the counsel for the appellant that a self-acquired property could not be partitioned during the lifetime of the owner, in view of the Family Settlement dated 23rd December, 1999 duly executed and signed by the appellant is a mixed question of fact and law and it required the appellant to lead evidence.

On the basis of a bald averment in the appeal, the suit filed by the respondent cannot be held to be ex-facie barred in law.

The only remedy to the appellant in the present matter was to prefer an application under Order IX Rule 13, or under Section 114 CPC.

Not even a ‘modicum of explanation’ was offered during the hearing as to why the ex-parte order be recalled or set aside.

High Court expressed that the Additional District Judge had given a clear finding, which order had not been challenged in the present proceedings.

 Adding to the above, High Court elaborated that

There is no law which stipulates that a court is bound to serve any compromise application on a party who had willingly allowed it to be proceeded ex-parte.

To accept the submission of the appellant would amount to reading into the Statue a duty upon the Court to ‘run after a litigant’ who had voluntarily turned to its back to the legal system – a duty which is not provided in any statute.

A bare perusal of the Family Settlement reflects that the appellant had signed on each page of it and the same was based on mutual consent and agreement. In fact, the mutation was also carried out with respect to this 1/6th portion in accordance with the said Family Settlement.

Concluding the matter, Bench held that to now recall or vary the decree at the instance of the appellant who was negligent in defending her rights would amount to placing premium on ‘callousness’ and would place the parties who diligently pursued the litigation at all stages at a serious disadvantage.

Therefore, Court stated that any judicial system which does not provide finality to disputes, can never earn the trust, confidence and goodwill of the society.

Hence, present appeal was dismissed both as barred by limitation as well as on merits. [Deepshree Singh v. Rishi Pratap Singh, 2021 SCC OnLine Del 2348, decided on 20-05-2021]

Advocates before the Court:

For the appellant: Ankur Mahindro, Advocate with Rohan Taneja, Advocate.

For the Respondents: Kritika Bhardwaj, Advocate for R-1 to3 & 5 to 8.

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Himachal Pradesh High Court: A Division Bench of Tarlok Singh Chauhan and Bhusan Barowalia JJ. dismissed the petition refusing to interfere with the transfer order also stating that the government is equally responsible for violating notifications specifically imposing a ban on transfers.

The facts of the case are such that the petitioner after rendering service for a considerable time came to be promoted as Headmaster and was posted at Government High School Naila, Tehsil Churah, District Chamba. Thereafter, the petitioner on 29.09.2020 was appointed as Principal and posted at Government Senior Secondary School, Dugli, Tehsil Churah, District Chamba, where he is serving till date and has filed the instant petition for grant of direction by respondent 1 for transfer from hard area to the soft area/station of the petitioner as he has completed the normal tenure in the hard area and crossed the age of 55 years and family compelling circumstances.

Counsel for the petitioner submitted that the wife of the petitioner is suffering from a hearing problem and is under treatment from Rajiv Gandhi Post Graduate Ayurvedic College and Hospital Paprola, District Kangra, H.P. and the wife of the petitioner is also suffering from Gall Bladder stone and required proper medication and surgery and there is none in the house to look after her as their son is employed in private sector in Noida (U.P.) and two daughters are pursuing their own studies.

The Court relied on judgment Avinash Nagra v. Navodaya Vidyalaya Samiti, (1997) 2 SCC 534 and observed  “The teacher who has been kept in charge, bears more added higher responsibility and should be more exemplary. His/her character and conduct should be more like Rishi and as loco parentis and such is the duty, responsibility and charge expected of a teacher.”

The Court further observed that the petitioner, as mentioned above, is a teacher appointed for educating students and the standards expected of a person practicing the noble teaching profession must be ideal so that the students may know and practice the best principles of civilized life. It would be a very lamentable state of affairs that when teachers who are considered as equal to God, would fall from the highest pedestal to the lowest level by caring and looking after their self-interests alone and not the interest of their pupil(s).

The Court held that the Headmasters, who are later on promoted as Principals, are in all likelihood bound to be above 55 years of age, and on being promoted as such, are liable to be transferred/served anywhere in the State. Therefore, no exception can be taken against the transfer on the ground that the petitioner has crossed the age of 55 years.

In view of the above, petition was dismissed.[Milap Chand v. State of HP, 2021 SCC OnLine HP 560, decided on 22-03-2021]

Arunima Bose, Editorial Assistant has reported this brief.

COVID 19Hot Off The PressNews

Bombay High Court

Advocates and the parties appearing in-person that, considering the precautionary measures due to outbreak of COVID-19, Chief Justice nominated Judges to hear the matters physically at the Principal Seat at Bombay, on an experimental basis with effect from 1st December 2020 to 10th January 2020 (Excluding Vacation).

Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for the resumption of physical hearing at the Principal Seat, High Court of Bombay has also been stated in the following notice below.

Read the detailed notice to know the Judges nominated, here: NOTICE

Bombay High Court

[Notice dt. 27-11-2020]

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Karnataka High Court: A Division Bench of Abhay Shreeniwas Oka, CJ and Vishwajith Shetty, J., laid down the guidelines to be followed for payment of dues to the claimants in Motor Vehicle Accident Claim cases, Workmen’s Compensation Act, 1923 Matrimonial Cases and Land Acquisition Compensation cases etc.

Due to the partial functioning of the district and trial Courts in the State in view of the COVID-19 Pandemic, entry of litigants in the Courts premises has not been permitted.

The above has resulted in large number of litigants and especially the claimants and victims in Motor Vehicle Accident Claim cases, claimants under the Workmen’s Compensation Act, 1923 and claimants in Land Acquisition Compensation cases etc., to not being able to receive the amounts to which they are legitimately entitled, though the amounts payable to them are lying deposited in the judicial accounts of Khajane-2 (for short ‘K-2’).

Thus, in view of the above it is necessary to evolve a procedure to securely release payments to the litigants.

Additional Advocate General submitted that recipients of payments from K-2 are required to file certain documents for recipients registration like UIDAI, PAN or authentic photo identity.

They must also disclose their bank account particulars. AAG further pointed that it would be ideal if the mandate form generated by K-2, which is prescribed by the Reserve Bank of India, is signed by the recipients, as the said mandate form contains all the account particulars of the recipients. 

Court stated that AAG was right in his submission that it is necessary to ensure that the amount should go to the real recipients.

After implementation of K-2, the payments from judicial deposits are done only by way of electronic clearing by transferring the amounts directly to the accounts of the claimants and the cheques are not being issued. In case of current deposits (deposits which have not lapsed), the payment is authorized by the Court by generating the bills on K-2.

As far as the mode of payment through judicial accounts in K-2 is concerned, there are no specific Rules in Chapter XXVII of the Karnataka Rules of Civil Practice, 1967. The only provision is that when an amount exceeding Rs 5,000 is payable to a party, it shall be paid by drawing an account payee cheque only. Thus, the embargo is on paying a sum exceeding Rs 5000 by cash.

At present, all the payments to litigants are being made by direct transfer to their bank accounts from K-2 and the earlier practice of issuing account payee cheques has been stopped.

Thus in the present COVID-19 times, following guidelines shall be adopted by the Courts for making payments:

  • litigant who is entitled to receive the amount shall file an application giving all the details including the details of the decree/order of the Court under which he/she is entitled to withdraw the amount;
  • Along with the application, he/she must furnish the copies of several documents such as first page of the bank passbook containing the details of the bank account, such as the name of the bank, account number, name of the account holder and IFSC code of the bank. If the first page of pass book does not contain photograph of the account holder, a certificate of the Manager of the concerned Bank bearing photograph of the account holder and containing account details shall be produced
  • account must be in the name of the person who is entitled to withdraw the amount as per the Court order;
  • applicant is also required to furnish copies of PAN card/form 16, address proof and photo copies of the authentic identification documents such as Aadhar or election/ voter identity card or driving licence. The photo copies of the documents shall be self-attested as well as attested as true copies by his/her Advocate, if the applicant is represented by an Advocate
  • an affidavit in support shall be filed by the applicant containing all the account details, which are necessary for transfer of money. latest photograph of the applicant shall be affixed near the signature on the affidavit. The affidavit must affirm the correctness of the documents produced along with the application. Along with the application and affidavit, the applicant shall submit a blank voucher for payment of judicial deposit duly signed by him. If there are more than one applicant, affidavits of all of them are necessary. The signature on the voucher shall be identified by an Advocate by affixing his/her signature below the words “signature of the claimant” or below the place for affixing the revenue stamp. Below the Advocate’s signature for identification, he/she shall mention the Bar Council enrolment number. Few copies of the blank vouchers shall be made available by the Principal District Judge to the Bar Associations so that the members of the Bar can take photo copies of the same. The affidavit in support of the application must contain the statement that the blank voucher is signed by the applicant;
  • applications shall be placed before the concerned Court for passing necessary orders
  • If the Court is satisfied on perusal of the application and the documents furnished, the Court will pass an order directing transfer of the amount to the specific account of the applicant through K-2 process;
  • Thereafter, the Court office/accounts section, after logging on K-2 portal, will generate bank mandate form. Print out of the bank mandate form shall be handed over to the Advocate for the applicant for obtaining the signature of the party and the Advocate concerned shall countersign the same by verifying the signature of the party. He/she shall mention his/her Bar Council enrolment number below his/her signature. Physical presence of the party in the Court for signing the mandate form is not required. The mandate form must be returned with the maximum period of three days. Thereafter, the mandate form shall be signed by DDO. Further steps shall be taken by the Court office for generation of miscellaneous bill. As the mandate form containing all the account details is signed by the applicant, his/her signature on the miscellaneous bill is not required. Subsequently, all the procedure required by K-2 shall be followed and the requisite amount will be transferred directly from the judicial account in K-2 to the bank account of the concerned party.
  • Courts cannot insist on the person receiving the money affixing his/her signature on any register.

In the event the applicants are not represented by an Advocate, the payments cannot be made unless the applicants personally appear in the Court.

In case of orders pertaining to payment of maintenance in matrimonial matters, it will be appropriate if the Courts concerned issue directions for payment of maintenance by way of RTGS or in any other mode of direct transfer by the person who is liable to pay the maintenance to the account of the person who is entitled to receive the maintenance.

Bench directed to all the Courts that they shall make an endeavor to dispose of the applications made for payment at the earliest and see that the eligible litigants can get the amounts at the earliest. The Courts cannot restrict the payments per day to a particular number of cases.

State Government is directed to ensure that quick access to K-2 is facilitated to enable the Courts to release the payment

Thus, the issue of making payment out of the judicial deposit during the limited functioning of the Courts during the pandemic of COVID-19 is answered in terms of this order. [High Court of Karnataka v. State of Karnataka, 2020 SCC OnLine Kar 762 , decided on 24-06-2020]