15 March 2023 4:45 AM GMT
The Sikkim High Court on Monday underlined the difference between Order VIII Rule 1 A (3) CPC which deals with timeline of filing written statement by the defendant and producing relevnant documents on record, and Order XLI Rule 25 CPC which paves way for a party to tender additional evidence before the trial court after new issues are framed by the appellate court.Justice Bhaskar Raj...
The Sikkim High Court on Monday underlined the difference between Order VIII Rule 1 A (3) CPC which deals with timeline of filing written statement by the defendant and producing relevnant documents on record, and Order XLI Rule 25 CPC which paves way for a party to tender additional evidence before the trial court after new issues are framed by the appellate court.
Justice Bhaskar Raj Pradhan observed that Order VIII Rule 1 A (3) CPC relates to an "early stage" of a civil proceeding when written statements are filed within a period as provided therein and Rule 1A makes it a duty of the defendant to produce documents upon which relief is claimed or relied upon by him.
Order XLI however, relates to appeals from original decrees and deals with the form of the appeal, grounds and various other matters relating to appeals and Rule 25 of Order XLI CPC permits the Appellate Court, if necessary, to frame issues and direct the Trial Court to take additional evidence required.
It said where an appellate court has passed directions to the Trial Court under Order XLI to conduct a trial to ascertain the issues and to take additional evidence, it becomes incumbent upon the defendant to place the additional evidence before the Trial Court, show its relevance to the issues framed to permit the Trial Court to examine them as to its relevancy, conduct the trial and ascertain the issues.
This implies that the timeline prescribed under Order VIII Rule 1 A (3) CPC is distinct from the proceedings under Order XLI Rule 25.
In this case the bench was hearing a revision petition in terms of which challenge the original defendant had challenged trial court's refusal to take additional evidence in Order XLI proceedings, saying the defendant-revisionist had nowhere in the application pleaded the relevancy of the documents and the respondent would be prejudiced if the revisionists was allowed to place those documents at this stage of proceedings.
Rejecting this approach, the High Court said,
"The learned Trial Court however, did not consider the relevancy of the documents placed before the court by the revisionists in the application although it was their submission that it was pertinent. This court is therefore, of the considered view that the impugned order passed by the learned Trial Court cannot be sustained and is accordingly set aside. The learned Trial Court shall consider the relevancy of the five documents mentioned in paragraph 2 of the application filed by the revisionists under Order VIII Rule 1A (3) CPC afresh keeping in mind the direction of this court dated 12.04.2022 and the provision of Order XLI Rule 25 CPC and proceed to conclude the trial of the three issues framed by this court."
Case Title: The Divisional Forest Officer South Vs Shri. Ashok Tshering Bhutia
Citation: 2023 LiveLaw (Sik) 2
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