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Sita Ram v. Sri Dhar & Others - FIRST APPEAL FROM ORDER No. 3207 of 2004 [2006] RD-AH 10993 (5 July 2006)


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Court No. 24

First Appeal From Order No. 3207 of 2004

Sita Ram


Sri Dhar and others

Hon'ble  Barkat Ali Zaidi, J.

(1) A civil appeal being  number 5195 pending in the court of  Special Judge ( E.C. Act)/ Additional District Judge Jalaun at Orai was dismissed by the Presiding Officer on 2.3.2002, subsequent to, dismissal of appellant's (plaintiff's) application for adjournment.

(2) The appellant did not apply for restoration of appeal within the Prescribed period of 30 days and thereafter made an application  Under Section -5 Limitation Act for condonation of delay and restoration  of  the appeal which the court dismissed, vide the impugned order dated 27.9.2004, and that is how the appellant has come up before this Court by filing this appeal.

(3) Counsel for the parties have been heard.

(4) Presiding Officer has, in his order, mentioned that the appeal had been pending for the last 7 years  numerous   adjournments  were taken by the appellant and on 21.2.2002 when an application was moved by the appellant for adjournment it was clarified in the order that it is the last adjournment and no further adjournment  would be allowed and 2.3.2002 was fixed for hearing of the appeal.  On the said date again an application was given for adjournment by the appellant which was dismissed by the Presiding Officer. It was mentioned by the appellant in his application for adjournment  that owing to remaining busy preparations could not be made for argument in the appeal and another date may, therefore, be given. The Judge mentioned in his order that no plausible reason has been assigned in the application as to why arguments could not be prepared and he further clarified that on the last date  it was specifically mentioned in the order that no further adjournment would be allowed and with this observation the Presiding Officer dismissed the application in consequence whereof the appeal was also dismissed.

(5) Thereafter the appellant did not apply for restoration within the stipulated period of 30 days and gave an application Under section -5 Limitation Act for condonation of delay on 16.4.2002. It was mentioned in the application that the appellant remained busy in his professional work as a teacher and , therefore, could not apply earlier. The Presiding Officer noted in his order that  in the application under Section 5 Limitation Act no specific reason has been given for seeking condonation of delay, and it has not been indicated, that what were the compulsions, under which, the appellant could not apply for restoration of appeal within time. It will appear from the above that the reasons given by the appellant  for adjournment of the appeal as also subsequently for condonation of delay were wholly unsubstantial, hazy and inadequate. It was not mentioned in the adjournment application, as also noted by the Presiding Officer,  as to why arguments could not be prepared in the appeal.  No sufficient reason was assigned for the same. Similarly in the application given for condonation of delay,  15 days  after expiry of the period of limitation,  it was not mentioned as to what specific work kept the appellant engaged for which   reason he could not apply for restoration of appeal. A mere cursory statement  that the appellant remained busy in his school work cannot be  considered sufficient reason for condonation of delay. It cannot, therefore, be said that the Presiding Officer was wrong in dismissing the appellant's application.

(6) Previously courts did show lenience and latitude in dealing with applications for adjournments and condonation of delay. It is high time a changed perspective and attitude is adopted, since the courts are already overburdened with cases resulting in inordinate delay in disposal of cases. Those days of condonation of  dalliance and delay should now be over and in cases where no sufficient and  proper reason   is assigned for delay,  the court must adopt   the stern attitude and  refuse relief. That will also help in transmitting  a message  that the court will no more be indulgent and parties beware.

(7) Appeal dismissed.




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