Monday, December 5, 2022

Vacation bench of SC to be set up for first time during Holi break to hear urgent matters

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The Supreme Court, for the first time, will set up a vacation bench during the seven-day Holi break starting Monday till March 15. Urgent matters will be heard by this bench which is yet to be constituted.

Chief Justice SA Bobde said the bench will sit through the week except for the day of Holi. So far, the top court had a vacation bench only during the summer break which is nearly two-month-long. However, it can sometimes assign a vacation bench during winter holidays as well.

The announcement was made today after an advocate mentioned a case and sought an urgent hearing in some matter before a bench headed by the Chief Justice.

A vacation bench of the Supreme Court is a special bench constituted by the Chief Justice of India under the Supreme Court rules under Rule 6 of Order II of The Supreme Court rules, 2013.

The court takes two long vacations each year, the summer and winter breaks, but is technically not fully closed during these periods.

While there is no specific definition as to what is an urgent matter, during vacations the court generally admits writs related to habeas corpus, certiorari, prohibition and quo warranto matters for enforcement of fundamental rights.

During this time, litigants can approach the vacation bench if they feel some urgency. However, the ultimate power rests with the bench to decide whether the matter is urgent enough to be heard or not.

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