Only Plaintiff’s Pleadings Can Be Looked Into For Order VII Rule 11 CPC Enquiry: SC [Read Judgment]
Under Order VII Rule 11, the court has to take a decision looking at the pleadings of the plaintiff only and not on the rebuttal made by the defendant or any other materials produced by the defendant, the court said.
The Supreme Court, in Kuldeep Singh Pathania vs. Bikram Singh Jarya, has held that for an enquiry under Order VII Rule 11 (a) of Code of Civil Procedure, only the pleadings of the plaintiff can be looked into even if it is at the stage of trial of preliminary issues.
A high court had dismissed an election petition on the ground that it lacked material facts as required under Section 83(1) (a) of the 1951 Act and as such did not disclose any cause of action. In the order dismissing the petition, the high court made reference to the replies furnished by the respondents.
On an appeal by the plaintiff before the apex court, it held that under Order VII Rule 11, the court has to take a decision looking at the pleadings of the plaintiff only and not on the rebuttal made by the defendant or any other materials produced by the defendant. “The stage at which such an enquiry is undertaken by the court makes no difference since an enquiry under Order VII Rule 11(a) of the Code can be taken up at any stage,” a bench comprising Justice Kurian Joseph and Justice Khanwilkar said.
The court further observed that since the scope of the enquiry at that stage has to be limited only to the pleadings of the plaintiff, neither the written statement nor the averments, if any, filed by the opposite party for rejection under Order VII Rule 11(a) of the Code or any other pleadings of the respondents can be considered for that purpose.
Read the Judgment here.
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