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Let Peace Be Upon Them, Says Madras HC About Those Who Sent Them Letters In Wakf Succession Dispute [Read Order]

‘This Court felt that in a society where degeneration is fast, rapid, and goes almost unchecked, litigants, or may be his rivals, too are easily consumed by it, and hence we decided to consign their unholy efforts to the dustbins of our chambers.’

“For the present, let peace be upon them,” said a Madras High Court bench to those who sent them letters regarding the case of succession to the office of wakf trusts,  which was being heard by it.

The bench of Justice M Sathyanarayanan and Justice N Seshasayee made this ‘revelation’ of getting letters, while pronouncing the order disposing of various writ petitions pertaining to dispute about succession to office of wakf trusts. The bench, in these cases, held that the civil court has jurisdiction to decide on the successor to the office of the trustee.

In the concluding para of the judgment, the bench ‘revealed’ that it kept receiving several letters with and without the senders’ address during the course of hearing. It said it received them ‘almost right through the commencement of the hearing, and intermittently during the interregnum between the conclusion of the arguments and pronouncing the Order’.

“This included in one instance a letter in the name of the Nagapattinam Bar Association. Whether the senders actually sent them, or in their guise somebody else has sent them, is in the realm of the heavenly God,” the bench said.

The court also said that this was brought to the notice of the counsel appearing for the parties, but it did not take the spirit out of the mail-senders to keep repeating it. Such conduct, the bench said, ‘is pernicious, and every ounce of the attitude that breeds this conduct amounts to criminal contempt of court as they aim to interfere with the course of justice’.

The court further said: “However, this Court felt that in a society where degeneration is fast, rapid, and goes almost unchecked, litigants, or may be his rivals, too are easily consumed by it, and hence we decided to consign their unholy efforts to the dustbins of our chambers. They are now cautioned that law is not loaded with excessive generosity to condone the deliberate faults of the litigants ad infinitum, and that it has the vitality to act, and to act sternly. For the present, let peace be upon them.”

Explains Delay In Pronouncing Orders

Another interesting aspect in this judgment is that the bench has explained the delay caused in pronouncing judgment after it was reserved for judgment in December, last year. The bench said: “The hearing of the cases commenced on 16-08-2017, and till it was reserved for orders on 21-12-2017, was heard on 11 days, spread over four months. Several authorities have been placed before this Court, and this Court too was required to do its own research to ascertain some aspects of law. Added to this was the fact that one of us (M. Sathyanarayanan J) was posted to preside the Madurai Bench of the High Court from January to March, 2018, which delayed the internal discussion between us. All the above factors led to some delay in preparing the Orders.”

Read the Order Here

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