Trademark Dispute Over ‘Pe’ Settled Between Phone Pe and Bharat Pe  ||  Centre Starts Granting Citizenship Under CAA in West Bengal, Haryana and Uttarakhand  ||  Circular Regarding Prioritizing Cases of Litigants/Advocates with Disability, Issued by Delhi HC  ||  Del. HC: Free Wi-fi Facility Launched by Delhi High Court for Lawyers, General Public  ||  Ker. HC: Construction of Illegal Religious Structures Cannot be Permitted on Government Land  ||  Kar. HC: De-Nomination of Chairman of Minorities Commission by Govt. Before Term is Not Arbitrary  ||  Delhi High Court: Question of Property Title Can’t be Decided by Forums Under Senior Citizens Act  ||  Jh. HC: Can’t Cancel Bail Unless There is Violation of Bail Conditions or Accused Impedes Fair Trial  ||  Guidelines Issued by Delhi High Court for Trial Court Judges to Decide Transfer Applications  ||  P&H HC: Presence of Magistrate Mandatory to Prove Compliance With Section 52A of the NDPS Act    

Estate Officer, Haryana Urban Development Authority and Ors. Vs. Gopi Chand Atreja - (Supreme Court) (12 Mar 2019)

Failure of a lawyer in taking timely steps, which resulted in causing delay in its filing/refiling, cannot be regarded as a sufficient cause to condone the delay

MANU/SC/0355/2019

Limitation

In the facts of present case, the Respondent filed a civil suit against the Appellants (HUDA) claiming a decree for declaration with consequential relief of permanent and mandatory injunction in relation to the suit land. The suit was decreed by the trial Court. The Appellants (defendants) felt aggrieved and filed first appeal in the Court of Additional District Judge. By judgment, the first Appellate Court dismissed the appeal and affirmed the judgment/decree of the trial Court.

The Appellants felt aggrieved and filed second appeal in the High Court. Since the appeal filed by the Appellant was barred by 1942 days, the Appellants filed an application under Section 5 of the Limitation Act and prayed for condoning the delay in filing the second appeal. By impugned order, the High Court rejected the application and declined to condone the delay. The High Court held that the cause pleaded by the Appellants for condoning the delay is not a sufficient cause. A review petition is also dismissed. The question arises for consideration is whether the High Court was justified in not condoning the delay of 1942 days in filing the second appeal by the Appellants (defendants).

The delay of 1942 days in filing the second appeal in the High Court was rightly not condoned by the High Court for the reasons mentioned below. First, the delay was inordinate; Second it was not properly explained; and third, the ground alleged in support of application filed under Section 5 of the Limitation Act did not constitute a sufficient cause.

The Appellant-HUDA is a statutory authority created under the Haryana Urban Development Authority Act, 1977. It has its well-established legal department to look after the legal cases filed by HUDA and against the HUDA in various Courts. They have panel of lawyers to defend their interest in Courts.

It is not in dispute that the Appellants had been contesting the civil suit and the first appeal since inception. The Appellants were, therefore, fully aware of the adverse orders passed in the first appeal against them. There was, therefore, no justification on their part to keep quiet for such a long time and not to file the appeal within 90 days or/and re-file it immediately after curing the defects. If, according to the Appellants-HUDA, their lawyer did not take timely steps, which resulted in causing delay in its filing/refiling, then, it cannot be regarded as a sufficient cause within the meaning of Section 5 of the Limitation Act, 1963.

It was equally the duty of the Appellants (their legal managers) to see that the appeal be filed in time. If the Appellants noticed that, their lawyer was not taking interest in attending to the brief in question, then they should have immediately engaged some other lawyer to ensure that the appeal be filed in time by another lawyer.

A delay of 1942 days (4 years 6 months), is wholly inordinate and the cause pleaded for its condonation is equally unexplained by the Appellants. In any case, the explanation given does not constitute a sufficient cause within the meaning of Section 5 of the Limitation Act. It was, therefore, rightly not condoned by the High Court and we concur with the finding of the High Court. The appeals are dismissed.

Tags : DELAY   CONDONATION   ENTITLEMENT  

Share :        

Disclaimer | Copyright 2024 - All Rights Reserved