Frivolous and luxurious litigation is one of the predominant causes of the mounting arrears of cases and the courts of this country owe a duty to the citizens to purge the system of such an evil, a Delhi Court said in an order passed in a domestic violence case.
The man had challenged an order directing him to sign the school transfer certificate of his children, who lived with his estranged wife, to a new school. It came on record that though he hadn’t signed the certificate till date, the children had been admitted to the new school. Counsel appearing for the man, therefore, urged the Court to waive off the direction to put his signatures on the document.
The Court not only dismissed the plea, but also saddled the appellant with Rs 30,000 costs. Before parting with the judgment, Additional Sessions Judge Anuj Agrawal observed,
“…it would be pertinent to observe here that this court is anguished and appalled by the insidious and cavalier approach of the appellant herein. There cannot be any second thought about the right of an individual to seek judicial redressal of his grievances by filing a petition before the appropriate court but at the same time the right to litigate cannot be reduced into an exercise in wager or an activity of amusement.”
It went ahead to underscore, “The menace of frivolous and luxurious litigation is damaging the cause of justice on twin counts. On the one hand, an insouciant litigant can mischievously stall the pending trial court proceedings by simply filing a frivolous petition and on the other hand it tantamount to a direct onslaught upon the fundamental rights of the litigants attempting to seek speedy and effective justice, by unnecessarily over burdening the dockets and directly impinging upon the precious judicial time of the Appellate Court.”
Unless the courts start imposing appropriate costs, the menace of such litigation would continue to mar the entire system, the Court further opined. The present appeal was stated to be not only frivolous but also an “insidious effort” to delay the trial court proceedings.
The order, therefore, held, “I deem it appropriate that the instant appeal not only deserves to be dismissed but the appellant also deserves to be saddled with the cost of ₹30,000 for his mischievous approach. The appellant/accused in the instant matter is directed to deposit the sum of ₹30,000 with the Lawyers Welfare Fund, Saket Bar Association within seven days from the date of the instant order.”
Earlier, the order highlighted that since the children were residing with their mother, the trial court had rightly observed that it was in the best interests of the children to study at any school in the city where they resided with their mother as opposed to commuting to another city on a daily basis. The situation was stated to have taken a toll on their physical as well as mental well-being.
“In view thereof, this appeal must need its waterloo. Hence, it stands dismissed being devoid of any merit,” it noted.