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HC May Decline To Entertain A Writ Petition Which Raises Complex Questions Of Facts: SC [Read Judgment]

LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK
7 May 2020 12:07 PM GMT
HC May Decline To Entertain A Writ Petition Which Raises Complex Questions Of Facts: SC [Read Judgment]
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The High Court may decline to entertain a writ petition when it raises complex questions of facts, the Supreme Court has reiterated. In this case,one Atmanand Singh had filed a writ petition before the High Court praying for direction to Punjab National Bank to pay his lawful admitted claims in terms of agreement and also to deposit the income-tax papers with immediate effect. The bank...

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The High Court may decline to entertain a writ petition when it raises complex questions of facts, the Supreme Court has reiterated.

In this case,one Atmanand Singh had filed a writ petition before the High Court praying for direction to Punjab National Bank to pay his lawful admitted claims in terms of agreement and also to deposit the income-tax papers with immediate effect. The bank contested the petition raising the issue of maintainability of the writ petition on the assertion that the case involved complex factual matters which cannot be adjudicated in exercise of writ jurisdiction. It also filed affidavit disputing the transactions and documents in question.

However, the writ petition got allowed by the High Court.The Single Judge observed that the petitioner had produced plethora of documents and came to a conclusion that the bank wanted to 'wriggle out of the ticklish situation by raising technical objection of maintainability of the writ application'. Disapproving this approach, the bench comprising of Justices AM Khanwilkar and Dinesh Maheshwari observed:

"When the petition raises questions of fact of complex nature, such as in the present case, which may for their determination require oral and documentary evidence to be produced and proved by the concerned party and also because the relief sought is merely for ordering a refund of money, the High Court should be loath in entertaining such writ petition and instead must relegate the parties to remedy of a civil suit. Had it been a case where material facts referred to in the writ petition are admitted facts or indisputable facts, the High Court may be justified in examining the claim of the writ petitioner on its own merits in accordance with law."

Allowing the appeal, the Court said that the High Court should have been loath to entertain the writ petition and should have relegated the party to appropriate remedy for adjudication of all contentious issues between the parties.  


Case no.: SLP(C) No. 11603/2017)  Case name: Punjab National Bank Vs. Atmanand Singh 
Coram: Justices AM Khanwilkar and Dinesh Maheshwari
Counsel: Sr. Advocates Dhruv Mehta, J.S. Attri and Adv Devashish Bharu
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