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Writ Petition By Association Maintainable Only When Court Satisfied That All Members Will Be Bound By Litigation: MP High Court

Zeeshan Thomas
25 March 2022 4:36 AM GMT
Writ Petition By Association Maintainable Only When Court Satisfied That All Members Will Be Bound By Litigation: MP High Court
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The Madhya Pradesh High Court recently affirmed the decision of a Single Judge, dismissing a writ petition filed by an Association on the ground that the resolution passed by its members neither specified that the Association was being authorised to file the petition on their behalf nor did it clarify whether the members would abide by the decision rendered in the...

The Madhya Pradesh High Court recently affirmed the decision of a Single Judge, dismissing a writ petition filed by an Association on the ground that the resolution passed by its members neither specified that the Association was being authorised to file the petition on their behalf nor did it clarify whether the members would abide by the decision rendered in the petition.

The division bench of Chief Justice Ravi Malimath and Justice P.K. Kaurav was dealing with a writ appeal preferred by the Appellant/Association which was aggrieved by the decision of the single bench of the Court. While dismissing the writ petition, the Writ Court had cited the decision of a division bench of the Court in Prabhat v. Barkatulla University and held that the Petitioner/Association did not fulfil the criteria as laid down in the case.

The Association argued that they had filed a resolution alongwith the list of their members to substantiate the argument that the Appellant/Association was authorized to file the writ petition.

Scrutinizing its decision in Prabhat case, the Court observed-

The Division Bench of this court in the matter of Prabhat Vs. Barkatulla University, has held that a writ petition for enforcement of the rights of its members, as distinguished from the rights of the Association as a body, can be filed by the Association acting through its office bearers or members, whether the Association is registered or unregistered, incorporated or not, only when the Association can satisfy the Court that if an adverse decision is given in that petition, all the members of that Association or "Body of Individuals" will be bound by the decision. It has also been held that if the same principle is not followed, immediately after adverse decision, any other members of the said Association may come before the Court in an independent writ petition saying that he has not been heard and he had not authorized such Association or office bearer or member to represent him in the litigation.

Concurring with the decision of the Writ Court, the Court noted that the resolution produced by the Association did not categorically mention whether it was authorised by its members to file the petition or that the members would abide by the decision of the Court in the petition-

Therefore, to bind the members by the decision in a litigation brought before the Court on behalf of such members by any Association, it is necessary that such Association must clearly resolve that who authorized the Associationto file such litigation. The resolution should also mention that the members will abide any decision rendered in such litigation. In the present case, a perusal of the resolution clearly shows that the same does not fulfill the stipulated requirement. Hence, the learned Single Judge has not committed any error while rejecting the writ petition.

With the aforesaid observations, the Court upheld the decision of the Writ Court and accordingly, the Appeal was dismissed.

Case Title: SWAKSHTAGRAHI SANGH, JANPAD PANCHAYAT NIWAS v. UNION OF INDIA AND ORS. 

Citation: 2022 LiveLaw (MP) 82

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