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Revised National Litigation Policy Under Process, Centre Tells Delhi HC

Press Trust of India
14 Jan 2021 6:05 AM GMT
Physical Hearing Subordinate Courts

The Centre told the Delhi High Court on Wednesday that a "new and revised" National Litigation Policy (NLP) was in the works and would be in place in times to come.

The submission by the central government was made before a bench of Chief Justice D N Patel and Justice Jyoti SIngh during the hearing of a PIL seeking implementation of the NLP launched in June 2010.
Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Chetan Sharma, appearing for the Law Ministry, told the court that presently there was an application called Legal Information Management and Briefing System (LIMBS) which allows various government departments to see the status of their cases at a glance.
He said, "A new and revised NLP would be in place in times to come."
Taking note of the ASG's submission, the bench simply adjourned the matter to February 12.
The PIL by N Bhaskara Rao, a mass communications expert and Shanmugo Patro, a lawyer, has said that NLP was launched in 2010 with the purpose that the government should not involve in frivolous litigation, especially where the stakes are not high.
"The policy aimed to transform the government into an efficient and responsible litigant. The underlying purpose of the policy is to reduce government litigation in courts so that valuable court time is spent in resolving other pending issues to enable the average pendency of a case in a court reduced from 15 years to 3 years," the petition has said.
During the brief hearing, Patro told the court that the central government has been over the years claiming before various fora that the NLP would be implemented soon, but till date nothing has been done.
He urged the court to issue notice in the matter, but the bench declined to do so at the present stage.
The petition has claimed that under the NLP, the government would identify bottlenecks and appeals would not be filed where stakes are not high.
The policy would also ensure that all pending cases involving the government would be reviewed to filter frivolous and vexatious matters from the meritorious one.
"Cases so identified would be withdrawn, which would also include cases covered by previous decisions of courts. Such withdrawal of the cases would be done in a time bound fashion," the petition has said.
It has further said that "Union of India, however, was not adhering to its own aforesaid policy. Neither it is implementing the policy uniformly nor in totality and was, thereby, causing great injustice to the poor."

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