Tripura HC Directs A Trial Judge To Undertake Refresher Course On CPC [Read Judgment]
"The Judicial Officer who had passed the judgment and decree shall undertake a refresher course on all the provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure at the said Judicial Academy."
The Tripura High Court directed a Judicial Officer, who had passed a judgment 'totally ignoring the elementary provisions of law', to undertake a refresher course on all the provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure at the Judicial Academy.
The Trial Judge, in this case, had held that he had no jurisdiction to partition the properties outside the territorial limits of Agartala, even though the suit pertained to the partitioning of immovable properties situated both within and outside the territorial jurisdiction of the State of Tripura.
In the appeal, the bench comprising Chief Justice Sanjay Karol and Justice Arindam Lodh quoted Section 17 of the Code of Civil Procedure which provides that, if the immovable property situates within the jurisdiction of different Courts, the suit can be instituted in any Court within the local limits of whose jurisdiction any portion of the property is situate. Also referring to some precedents in the matter, the bench said:
"Now, in the instant case, the plaintiffs had categorically averred that the suit for partition pertained to immovable properties, both within and outside the State of Tripura. In fact, the trial Judge partly decreed the suit in relation to the properties situated in Agartala... Whether the plaintiffs were able to establish their case of joint ownership and have any right in the property situate in Kolkata is a different matter, but, however, in view of the settled position of law, suit qua the properties situated outside the territorial jurisdiction of State of Tripura could not have been dismissed on the ground of lack of jurisdiction. The trial Judge did have jurisdiction to entertain the suit and pass necessary orders in relation thereto."
While remanding the matter back to the Trial Court, the bench made some remarks about the Trial Judge who had passed the impugned judgment. It noted:
"The trial Judge as on the date of the passing of the judgment had sufficient experience with himself. He was not a new inductee. It is a matter of record that periodical training is imparted to the Judicial Officers by the Tripura Judicial Academy established by the High Court of Tripura."
The bench also directed the judicial officer to undertake a refresher course on all the provisions of the Code of Civil Procedure at the said Judicial Academy. The court further added:
"It is high time that such refresher courses are periodically conducted, on non-working days in the Academy with the use of technology. An officer need not necessarily travel to the Academy, for modern tools and gadgets, such as, Video Conferencing facility etc. can be fully utilized to optimize efficiency."sf
SC caution against passing strictures
Quite recently also, the Supreme Court had cautioned High courts from making adverse remarks against the judicial officers and administrative authorities. The bench comprising Justice Abhay Manohar Sapre and Justice Indu Malhotra had said:
"The question as to what should be the role of the higher judiciary in making adverse remarks and passing strictures against the judicial/administrative authorities, whose order/action is under challenge has been the subject matter of several decisions of this Court. This Court in these decisions has held that the higher judiciary must avoid as far as possible from making any disparaging harsh remarks and strictures against any judicial/administrative officer while examining their action/order impugned in the judicial proceedings."