Lawyers should en­sure they don’t suf­fer from ‘dis­ease of ad­journ­ment’: CJI

Business Standard - - ECON­OMY - PRESS TRUST OF IN­DIA

Lawyers should en­sure they do not suf­fer from the “dis­ease of ad­journ­ment” and de­lay the progress of cases, Chief Jus­tice of In­dia Di­pak Misra on Sat­ur­day said.

In his ad­dress at the 125th an­niver­sary cel­e­bra­tions of the Madras High Court Her­itage Build­ings, Misra also said, “punc­tu­al­ity is facet of rule of law”.

“All of us, mem­bers of the Bench and the as­sist­ing coun­sel, should clearly un­der­stand that it is our obli­ga­tion to sit on time as a judge (and) as lawyers to be­ing pre­pared to ar­gue a case,” he said.

“If a lawyer de­lays, or pro­cras­ti­nates, or a judge doesn’t sit on time, both of them vi­o­late the rule of law,” he said.

Misra said no lawyer should suf­fer from “any kind of dis­ease”.

“I would say (that is the) dis­ease of ad­journ­ment... When you ask for an ad­journ­ment, you must un­der­stand you are be­ing killed by al­lergy...,” he said, adding judges should de­velop an an­ti­dote to­wards ad­journ­ment.

Lawyers should keep in mind that “we should not de­lay the cases,” he said, point­ing out not all of them re­quire prepa­ra­tion.

“It is not that ev­ery case re­quires so much of prepa­ra­tion and all of you know it as well... Please come pre­pared, don’t seek ad­journ­ment,” he said.

Even if a judge is in­clined to grant ad­journ­ment, the lawyer should po­litely in­form the for­mer that he is ready with the case and that he could be heard.

Union Min­is­ter of Law and Jus­tice, Elec­tron­ics and IT, Ravi Shankar Prasad said, the gov­ern­ment’s fo­cus was on dis­posal of cases pend­ing for 10 years and above.

“What I am try­ing to fo­cus on... is that dis­posal of cases 10 years and above must be set­tled and ad­ju­di­cated on a pri­or­ity ba­sis,” he said.

Of the 297,000 pend­ing cases in Tamil Nadu, a lit­tle over 77,000 cases were over 10 years, Prasad noted, and called for a “mis­sion-mode ini­tia­tive” for their dis­posal.

Cit­ing statis­tics ended De­cem­ber 31, 2016, he said the num­ber of such cases at the Madras High Court was 33,960, and 44,721 in dis­trict and sub­or­di­nate courts.

“On the oc­ca­sion of the 125 years’ erec­tion of this mag­nif­i­cent build­ing, this tem­ple of jus­tice, may I re­quest that make a mis­sion mode ini­tia­tive to dis­pose of all the cases which are more than 10 years old. That should be the bench­mark and the com­mit­ment on this happy oc­ca­sion,” Prasad said.

Misra said if a lawyer de­lays, or pro­cras­ti­nates, or a judge doesn’t sit on time, both of them vi­o­late the rule of law

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