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Soon after assuming office, Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi had said that a new system for hearing fresh cases filed in the Supreme Court will be set in place

In a move that is expected to help better utilization of the working hours of the Supreme Court, Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi has approved a new system of listing fresh cases filed in the court which, once functional, will do away with the current practice of ‘urgent mentioning’ of fresh matters before the court on a regular basis.

Ever since he assumed office in October last year, Chief Justice Gogoi had repeatedly said that the current system of mentioning fresh matters and requesting the court to give such petitions an urgent hearing was eating into precious working hours. The Chief Justice had, on several occasions, ticked off petitioners who tried to mention fresh matters in his court and said that he was working on putting in place a new system that would completely do away with the ongoing practice.

Mentioning of fresh matters has been a long running practice in the Chief Justice’s court wherein a petitioner seeking urgent hearing of a new case that has not yet been listed for hearing can approach the chief justice with a request for immediate or early hearing. Mentioning is done prior to the court beginning its proceedings in petitions that are already listed in the day’s cause list. Chief Justice Gogoi has been of the view that often urgent mentioning of matters kicks of arguments by petitioners and this takes away anywhere between 30 minutes to an hour of the court’s time, thereby reducing the time left for hearing pending cases that are listed in the cause list.

As per the new system announced by the Supreme Court’s Registrar, on Wednesday (January 30), fresh cases will now be listed for hearing within a week of their being filed with the court’s registry.

“It is hereby notified for information of the members of Bar, party-in-person, and all concerned that the Competent authority has directed as under:

  1. a)Fresh matters verified on Friday in the post lunch session, Saturday, Monday and Tuesday in the pre-lunch session, i.e. upto 1 pm, shall be listed on Friday in the same week and those verified on Tuesday in the post lunch session, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday in the pre-lunch session, i.e. upto 1 pm, be listed on Monday in the next week.
  1. b)The final cause list of Monday shall be published/uploaded on the website on Friday in the previous week and that of Friday on Tuesday in the same week.”

The circular adds that the new system of listing will come into effect from February 4.

Additionally, it has been directed that matters verified from January 28 to January 31 and on February 1 in the pre-lunch session (before 1 pm) will also be listed on February 4 in chronological order.

— India Legal Bureau

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