SC imposes cost of Rs 15,000 on UP govt for wastage of judicial time

The Supreme Court has imposed a cost of Rs 15,000 on the Uttar Pradesh government for “wastage of judicial time” in a case in which the state had filed an appeal in the apex court after a delay of over 500 days.

Noting the delay in the filing of the appeal, a bench headed by Justice S K Kaul said there was not even the “courtesy” of setting out the dates as to how the files had moved.

“The special leave petition is delayed by 576 days (535 days as the senior counsel contends). There is not even the courtesy of setting out the dates as to how the files have moved, possibly because we have been directing responsibility to be fixed and costs to be recovered from such persons who are responsible for the delay,” the bench, also comprising justices Dinesh Maheshwari and Hrishikesh Roy, said in its December 1 order.

“We dismiss the special leave petition on the ground of delay, but for wastage of judicial time, consider appropriate to burden the petitioner with costs of Rs 15,000 to be deposited with the Supreme Court Advocates-on-Record Welfare Fund…,” the bench said.

It said the cost be recovered from the officers responsible for the delay in the filing of the appeal in the top court.

“Thus, we are once again faced with a matter so as to obtain a certificate of dismissal and such cases we have categorised as certificate cases, brought before this court only to put a quietus to the matter and not fix the responsibility on the officers who are responsible for the situation,” the bench noted.

The apex court was hearing an appeal filed by the state against the October 2018 order of a division bench of the Allahabad High Court.

The division bench of the high court had dismissed the states appeal against the January 2018 order passed by a single-judge bench, which had directed the department concerned to regularise the service of a man.

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