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Order VIII Rule 1A(3) : Refusing To Permit Production Of Additional Documents Even If There Is Some Delay Will Be Denial Of Justice: Supreme Court

LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK
29 May 2022 6:03 AM GMT
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The Supreme Court observed that refusing permission to a party in a civil suit to produce additional documents even if there is some delay will lead to denial of justice.

In such cases, the trial Court can impose some costs rather than to decline the production of the documents itself, the bench comprising Justices Hemant Gupta and V. Ramasubramanian observed.

In this case, the Andhra Pradesh High Court affirming the order passed by the trial Court refusing to permit the defendant to produce additional documents in terms of Order VIII Rule 1A(3) of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908. The defendant approached the Apex Court.

Order VIII Rule 1A

As per Order VIII Rule 1A, where the defendant bases his defence upon a document or relies upon any document in his possession or power, in support of his defence or claim for set-off or counterclaim, he shall enter such document in a list, and shall produce it in Court when the written statement is presented by him and shall, at the same time, deliver the document and a copy thereof, to be filed with the written statement. The Sub Rule (3) provides that a document which ought to be produced in Court by the defendant under this rule, but, is not so produced shall not, without the leave of the Court, be received in evidence on his behalf at the hearing of the suit.

Rules of procedure are hand-maid of justice

Allowing the appeal filed by the defendant, the Apex court bench observed:

We find that the trial Court as well as the High Court have gravely erred in law in not permitting the defendants to produce documents, the relevance of which can be examined by the trial Court on the basis of the evidence to be led, but to deprive a party to the suit not to file documents even if there is some delay will lead to denial of justice... It is well settled that rules of procedure are hand-maid of justice and, therefore, even if there is some delay, the trial Court should have imposed some costs rather than to decline the production of the documents itself.

The court also accepted the request of respondents- plaintiffs that they should be permitted to lead additional evidence, if any, on the basis of the documents now produced by the defendants.

Case details

Levaku Pedda Reddamma vs Gottumukkala Venkata Subbamma | 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 533 | CA 4096 OF 2022 | 17 May 2022

Coram: Justices Hemant Gupta and V. Ramasubramanian

Counsel: AOR B. Sunita Rao,Adv Gunmaya Mann for appellants, AOR Mahfooz Ahsan Nazki, Adv Polanki Gowtham, Adv Rajeswari Mukherjee for respondents

Headnotes

Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 ; Order VIII Rule 1A (3) - To deprive a party to the suit not to file documents even if there is some delay will lead to denial of justice - Trial Court should have imposed some costs rather than to decline the production of the documents itself - Rules of procedure are hand-maid of justice.

Click here to Read/Download Order



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