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Do not seek adjournments in fresh matters: CJI tells Lawyers

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Says he doesn’t want Supreme Court to become 'tarikh-pe-tarikh' court

New Delhi: Chief Justice of India D Y Chandrachud urged lawyers on Friday to not seek adjournments in fresh matters, saying he does not want the Supreme Court to become a ‘tarikh-pe-tarikh’ court as such deferment “defeats trust of citizens”.

At the start of the day’s proceedings, the CJI flagged the issue of lawyers seeking adjournment in fresh matters and said in the last two months of September and October, adjournment slips were moved in 3,688 cases by advocates.

“Unless it is very, very necessary, please don’t file the adjournment slips…I don’t want this court to be a tarikh-pe-tarikh’ court,” the CJI, who was sharing the bench with justices J B Pardiwala and Manoj Misra, said.

“On one hand, the listing of matters are expedited and on the other hand, they are first mentioned seeking listing and then they are adjourned. I request the members of the bar to not seek adjournments unless really, really necessary. This cannot become a tarikh-pe-tarikh’ court. This defeats trust of citizens in our court,” the CJI said.

“Tarikh-pe-Tarikh” (repeated adjournments) was a famous Sunny Deol dialogue in Bollywood film ‘Damini’ where the actor rued the adjournment culture in courts.

Justice Chandrachud said now, with the help of lawyers’ bodies, the time gap in the listing of fresh matters after their filing in the top court has been significantly reduced.

He, however, rued the fact that after their listing before the benches, lawyers seek adjournments which sends a bad signal to the outside world.

“I have been seeing that the period from filing to listing is reducing. We could not have achieved this without the support of the SCBA (Supreme Court Bar Association) and the SCAORA (Supreme Court Advocates-on Record Association),” the CJI said.

“For November 3, we have 178 adjournment slips. For each miscellaneous day since October, 150 adjournment slips were there on each day, and from September to October, 3,688 adjournment slips were circulated..,” he said, adding, “This defeats the very purpose of expediting the case”.

Referring to statistics, Justice Chandrachud said 2,361 cases were mentioned for urgent listing in the top court since September 2023.

However, once the matters get listed for hearing, adjournments are sought by lawyers and this creates a “paradox”, the CJI said.

Press Trust of India

Press Trust of India is lead news agency of India

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