Jurisdiction of Civil Courts In India
Jurisdiction of civil courts can be divided on two basis.
Territorial / Area Wise Classification
Pecuniary jurisdiction of the court divides the court on a vertical basis.
At present the pecuniary jurisdiction of the courts is as follows:
· Suits amounting to Rs.1 – Rs.20, 00,000 lie before district courts.
· Suits over and above Rs. 20, 00,000/- lie before High Courts.
It is very important to note that the amount of pecuniary jurisdiction is different for all High Courts. This limit is decided by respective High Court Rules.
In many states High court has no pecuniary jurisdiction. All civil suits go before District Courts, and only appeal lies before High Court
Territorial Jurisdiction divides the courts on a horizontal basis.
How Is Territory Decided?:
Territory of a court is decided after taking into account several factors. They are:
In Case Of Immovable Property:
If the suit is with regard to recovery, rent, partition, sale, redemption, determination of right of immovable property, it shall be instituted in the court within the local limits of whose jurisdiction the property is situated.
Immovable Property Situated Within The Jurisdiction of Different Courts: In such a case the suit may be instituted in any court within the local limits of whose jurisdiction any portion of the property is situated.
In Case Of Dispute Between Two Or More Persons With Respect To Movable Property, Business Or Any Other Wrong Done:
Where a wrong has been caused to a person, or any damage has been caused to a movable property, then the suit may be instituted either,
· In the place, where wrong or damage has been caused, or
· In the place, where defendant (the person who caused the loss) resides.
Where there is a dispute in business, agreement or any other kind of civil dispute, except matrimonial matter, then the suit may be instituted either,
· In a place, where the defendant resides, or carries on business, or
· In a place, where the cause of action has arisen, i.e. where the dispute or wrong took place
In Case Of Matrimonial Dispute:
Where a dispute arises between Husband and wife in regard to their marital life then the case may be filed either:
· In the place where marriage was solemnized, or ;
· In the place, where opposite party is residing, or;
· In the place, where Husband and Wife last resided together, or;
· In the place, where person filing the case is residing, provided that.
Opposite party has not been heard of as alive for the last Seven years, or
opposite party resides outside the jurisdiction of Hindu Marriage Act 1955
Courts may also have jurisdiction that is exclusive, or concurrent (shared). Where a court has exclusive jurisdiction over a territory or a subject matter, it is the only court that is authorized to address that matter. Where a court has concurrent or shared jurisdiction, more than one court can adjudicate the matter.
International And Municipal Jurisdiction
The fact that international organizations, courts and tribunals have been created raises the difficult question of how to co-ordinate their activities with those of national courts. If the two sets of bodies do not have concurrent jurisdiction but, as in the case of the International Criminal Court (ICC), the relationship is expressly based on the principle of complementarily, i.e. the international court is subsidiary or complementary to national courts, the difficulty is avoided. But if the jurisdiction claimed is concurrent, or as in the case of International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), the international tribunal is to prevail over national courts, the problems are more difficult to resolve politically..
Jurisdiction of Civil Court under Civil Procedure Code
Section 9 of CPC deals with the jurisdiction of civil courts in India. It says that the courts shall (subject to the provisions herein contained) have jurisdiction to try all suits of a civil nature excepting suits of which their cognizance is either expressly or impliedly barred.
A civil court has jurisdiction to try a suit if two conditions are fulfilled:
1. The suit must be of a civil nature; and
2. The cognizance of such a suit should not have been expressly or impliedly barred.
A) Suit of civil nature.
v. Suits of civil nature: illustrations- the following are suits of a civil nature.
1. suits relating to rights to property;
2. suits relating to rights of worship;
3. suits relating to taking out of religious procession;
4. suits relating to right to share in offerings;
5. suits for damages for civil wrongs;
6. suits for specific performance of contracts or for damages for breach of contracts;
7. suits for specific relief’s;
8. suits for restitution of conjugal rights;
9. suits for dissolution of marriages;
10. suits for rent;
11. suits for or on account;
12. suits for rights of franchise;
13. suits for rights to hereditary offices;
14. suits for rights to Yajmanvritis;
15. suits against wrongful dismissal from service and for salaries, etc.
vi. suits not of civil nature- illustrations- the following are not suits of a civil nature:
1. suits involving principally caste questions;
2. suits involving purely religious rites or ceremonies;
3. suits for upholding mere dignity or honor;
4. suits for recovery of voluntary payments or offerings;
5. suits against expulsions from caste, etc.
B. cognizance not barred
as stated above, a litigant having a grievance of a civil nature has a right to institute a civil suit unless its cognizance is barred, either expressly or impliedly.
The complete division of the Pecuniary Jurisdiction is as under:
(a) The City civil courts original pecuniary jurisdiction for suit property of upto 1 crore.
(b) The Hon’ble High Court original pecuniary jurisdiction raised to claims above 1 crore.
(c) The District Courts could to hear appeals for value of property up to 10 lakhs.
Effects of the change in Pecuniary Jurisdiction on the Judicial System:
The immediate positive impact of the change in jurisdiction can be seen in many ways.
(i) Speedy listing, hearing and disposal of cases that were long pending to be listed in the Honble High Court.
(ii) Reduction in the burden of the Honble High Court to a large extent inasmuch as the High Court would now a more of an appeal Court rather than a Court of first inception for a case
(iii) Faster disposal of Justice for the litigants, whose faith in the judicial system has been restored herein.
1. Code of Civil Procedure, 1908
2. The Indian Contract Act, 1872
3. The ‘Specific Relief Act 1963
4. The Indian Limitation Act, 1963
5. The Indian Evidence Act, 1872
6. Land Acquisition Act, 1894
7. The Transfer of Property Act, 1882
Jurisdiction of Courts with respect to Civil Cases
The nature of the offence determines whether court of Civil Judicature or Criminal Judicature will be the one who will have jurisdiction over the matter. If the offence is of civil nature it will follow the hierarchy of the Civil Courts. When it comes to Civil Judicature, the jurisdiction of the Court is divided on the basis of their Pecuniary Jurisdiction and Territorial Jurisdiction.
Section 3 of Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (hereinafter referred as CPC); determines the subordination of the Civil Courts. The District Court are subordinate to the High Court and all the other Civil Courts are inferior to the District Court and all the Court of Small Causes are subordinate to the High Court and District Court.
As per Section 6 of CPC, every Court will have jurisdiction over those disputes which are within its pecuniary limit and every suit has to be filed in the lowest grade competent to try it.[i] This pecuniary jurisdiction is decided on the basis of the value of the suit. After valuation, the Court having pecuniary jurisdiction as well as the territorial jurisdiction over the matter can try the suit.
The plaintiff needs to mention in its plaint the facts which show that the court has jurisdiction over the matter in hand. [Order VII Rule 1(f)] These facts will include the valuation of suit as the pecuniary jurisdiction of any court is decided by the value of the suit.
Court of Small Cause
The Court of Small Causes are established under The Provincial Small Cause Courts Act, 1887. The object of this Act is to consolidate all the laws related to Small Cause Court. In this Act, under Section 15 (2), it has been directed that all suits of civil nature whose value is not more than five hundred rupees will be cognizable by a Court of Small Causes, subject to local Rules and Order issued by the High Court.
The pecuniary limit of the District Court is decided by the High Court. In case the pecuniary limit of District Court was Rs. 20 Lakh which after the amendment is increased to Rs.2 crore.
The original pecuniary jurisdiction of a High Court is for the suits wherein the value of the matter involved is more than 2 crore.
Objection to Pecuniary Jurisdiction
The pecuniary jurisdiction is determined by the value of the suit which the plaintiff determines and mentions in his plaint. In case of an objection regarding pecuniary jurisdiction of Court, the trial court will inquire into that and will pass an appropriate order. In case, the objection is being raised by defendant in an appellate court or a revisional court, there are three conditions given in Section 21 that needs to be fulfilled and they are:
- The objection was taken in the court of first instance,
- At the earliest possible opportunity and in case the issues are settled, before settlement of issues, and
- There has to be a consequent failure of justice.
The territorial jurisdiction of a court will be determined by the territory in which the subject matter related to the suit is situated in and the subject matter can be any property, immovable as well as movable.
Section 16 of the Code gives us five kinds of suits related to immovable property, wherein the suit can be instituted in the Court within whose jurisdiction the property is situated, subject to the pecuniary jurisdiction. The five kinds are, suits:
- For the recovery of immovable property.
- For the partition of property.
- For foreclosure, sale, or redemption (mortgage), or charge upon the property.
- For determining any other right to or interest in immovable property.
- For compensation for wrong to immovable property.
In case, the suit is being filed to obtain relief or compensation for wrong to immovable property, it can be instituted at the option of the plaintiff either in the Court
- Within whose local limit the property is situated, or
- Within whose local limit defendant
- Actually and voluntarily resides
- Carries on business
- Personally works for gains
Provided that the following conditions are satisfied:
- Property is held by or on behalf of the defendant.
- Relief sought can be entirely obtained through the personal obedience of the defendant.
- Property is situated in India.
In case, the property in dispute is situated in the jurisdiction of different courts, as per Section 17, the suit can be instituted in any of the Courts within whose jurisdiction any portion of property is situated. The only condition is that the entire claim must be cognizable by such Court.
If there is uncertainty about the jurisdiction of Court with respect to the disputed property, the suit can be instituted in any of the Court, after recording a statement about the uncertainty. [Section 18]
If the suit is for recovery of movable property which is under attachment, the suit can be filed in the Court within whose local limit such property is situated. [Section 16 (f)]. As per Section 19, if the suit is regarding compensation for wrongs to person or to any movable property the plaintiff will have the option to file the suit either in the court within whose local limit
- the wrong was committed or
- the defendant
- resides or
- carries on business or
- personally works for gain
All other suits, subject to above mentioned conditions, can be instituted in any of the following courts at the option of the plaintiff:
- The Court within whose jurisdiction the cause of action arises.
- The Court within whose jurisdiction, the defendant resides, or carries on business or personally works for gain.
- In case there is more than one defendant, the Court of the place where any of the defendants resides or carries on business or personally works for gain. This is with the condition that either, the leave of the Court is taken or there is acceptance by the other defendant for instituting the suit at such place. [Section 20]
Co-operative judiciary is a separate wing of state judiciary and it is constituted under the provision of The Maharashtra State Co-operative Societies Act, 1960. Co-operative Judges have limited powers of dealing with disputes covered under section 91 of The Maharashtra State Co-operative Societies Act, 1960. Broadly speaking, dispute between society and its members regarding the constitution, election of committee, conduct of general meetings and management or business of the society are referred under section 91 to the co-operative courts. Before the amendment in the Maharashtra State Co-operative societies Act, 1960 in 1982, reference was being made to Registrar of Co-operative Societies. After the amendment in 1982 Judges were appointed and thus for the first time concept of co-operative courts came into existence in 1982. Co-operative Judges have unlimited pecuniary jurisdiction.
There are 25 co-operative courts in the state of Maharashtra and they are under the control of The Maharashtra State Co-operative Appellate Court, Mumbai which has its benches at Nagpur, Pune and Aurangabad.
Cases to be referred to Co-operative Court
• Disputes touching the Constitution
• Elections of the Committee or its officers
• Conduct of general meetings
• Management or business of Society
• A claim by or against a society for any debt or demand due (whether admitted or not);
• A claim by a surety for any sum or demand due to him from the principal borrower in respect of a loan by a society and recovered from the surety owing to the default of the principal borrower (whether such a sum or demand be admitted or not);
• A claim by a society for any loss caused to it (whether such a loss is admitted or not),
• A refusal or failure by a member, past member or a nominee, heir or legal representative of a deceased member, to deliver possession to a society of land or any other asset resumed by it for breach of condition as the assignment.
Who can refer case/dispute to Co-operative Court
• Any of the parties to dispute (specified parties) or
• Federal society to which the society is affiliated or
• Creditor of society
Specified parties under section 91 are:
• A society,
• Committee or any past committee,
• Any past or present officer,
• Any past or present agent,
• Any past or present servant
• Nominee, heir or legal representative of any deceased officer, deceased agent or deceased servant of the society,
• The Liquidator of the society,
• The official Assignee of a deregistered society,
• A member, past member or a person claiming through a member, past member or a deceased member of society,
• A society which is a member of the society,
• A person who claims to be a member of the society,
• A person other than a member of the society, with whom the society, has any transactions in respect of which any restrictions or regulations have been imposed, made or prescribed under sections 43, 44 or 45 and any person claiming through such person;
• A surety of a member, past member or deceased member, or surety of a person other than a member with whom the society has any transactions in respect of which restrictions have been prescribed under section 45, whether such surety or person is or is not a member of the society,
• Any other society, or the Liquidator of such a society or de-registered society or the official Assignee of such a de-registered society.
In case of Housing Co-operative Societies disputes between members or members and society pertaining to following issues can be referred to Co-operative Courts:
• Resolutions of the Managing Committee and General Body,
• The election of the Managing Committee, except the Rejection of Nominations, as provided under Section 152A of the ACT,
• Repairs, including major repairs, internal repairs, leakages,
• Allotment of Flats/Plots,
• Escalation of construction cost,
• Appointment of Developer/Contractor, Architect,
• Unequal water supply
• Excess recovery of dues from the members etc.
Following disputes are specifically excluded from ambit of Co-operative Court
• An industrial dispute as defined in clause (k) of section 2 of the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947
• Rejection of nomination paper at the election to a committee of any society
• Refusal of admission to membership by society to any person who is qualified thereto
• Any proceeding for the recovery of the amount as arrear of land revenue on a certificate granted by the Registrar under sub-section (1) or (2) of section 101 or subsection (1) of section 137
• The recovery proceeding of the Registrar or any officer subordinate to him or an officer of society notified by the State Government, who is empowered by the Registrar under sub-section (1) of section 156
• Any order, decisions, awards and actions of the Registrar against which appeal under section 152 or 152A and revision under section 154 of the Act has been provided
• A dispute between the Liquidator of a society or an official Assignee of a de-registered society and the members (including past members, or nominees, heir or legal representative or deceased members) of the same society.
Appeals under Co-operative Societies Act, 1960
Any dispute arising under this Act can either be referred to Registrar of Societies or Co-operative Court established under section 91 of the Co-operative Societies Act, 1960 depending upon the type of dispute.
Maharashtra Co-operative Societies Act, 1960 provides for independent provisions of appeal in case order passed by Registrar of Societies as well as Co-operative Court.
Section 152 of the Maharashtra Co-operative Societies Act, 1960 provides for appeal against order passed by Registrar of the societies or Co-operative Court.
In either case i.e., an appeal to the State Government or to the Registrar or Co-operative Appellate Court, shall be filed within two months of the date of the communication of the order or decision.
In case, remedy is not available to appeal for any order, decision or award passed under provisions of this Act, and then one can lie revision application under section 154 of the Co-operative Societies Act, 1960.
Indian penal code 1860
Code of criminal procedure 1973
Indian evidence act 1872
Jurisdiction of Courts with respect to Criminal Casess
To ensure that justice is served to the one whose right has been infringed, the Constitution of India gave the judiciary system. To ensure that the judiciary is working in an efficient manner, various courts having different powers were established. Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (hereinafter referred as CrPC) under Section 6, directs that beside High Courts in every state the following criminal courts will be established:
- Courts of Session
- Metropolitan Magistrate in any Metropolitan area
- Judicial Magistrate of the first class in areas other than Metropolitan area
- Executive Magistrate
Court of Session
As per Section 7 of Cr.PC, every state will have session division and the number of such division will be decided by State Government after consulting the High Court. Section 9 of Cr. PC, states that the State Government will have to establish a Court of Session for every session’s division which shall be presided by a Judge and he will be appointed by the High Court. Further, the High Court can also appoint Additional Session Judge and Assistant Session Judge.
As per Section 26, a Court of Session can try any offence given under IPC or any other offence which has shown to be triable by the Court of Session in the First Schedule.
The Assistant or Additional Session Judge appointed by the High Court will be subordinate to their respective Sessions Judge who will distribute the work among them. Session Judge can make rules with respect to the additional and assistant judges but they must be consistent with the Code. [Section 9]
A Sessions Judge and Additional Sessions Judge can pass any sentence that is authorised by law but, in case of death sentence confirmation of High Court is required. An Assistant Sessions Judge can pass any sentence excluding sentence of death or imprisonment for life or for a term exceeding ten years. [Section 28]
Court of Metropolitan Magistrate
Areas having population more than one million and notified by the State Government are Metropolitan areas. The area of Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and Ahmedabad are the areas that are mentioned in the Code as Metropolitan Areas. [Section 8]
As per Section 16, the State Government after consulting the High Court will establish as many courts of Metropolitan Magistrates as it may deem fit in the Metropolitan Area. The High Court will appoint the presiding officer and the jurisdiction of the officer will extend throughout the metropolitan area.
Under Section 17, High Court will appoint a Metropolitan Magistrate as Chief Metropolitan Magistrate (CMM) for a particular area. High Court can also appoint any Metropolitan Magistrate as Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate.
The CMM and every Additional CMM will be subordinate to the Sessions Judge. Every other Metropolitan Magistrate will be subordinate to CMM and the extent of the subordination will be defined by the High Court. Further, the CMM can make rules consistent with the Code and can also distribute the work among the Metropolitan Magistrate. [Section 19]
As per Section 26, Court of Metropolitan Magistrate can try offence which has shown to be triable by the Court of Metropolitan Magistrate in the First Schedule.
CMM may pass any sentence authorised by the law except a sentence of death or of imprisonment for life or a term exceeding seven years whereas a Metropolitan Magistrate can pass a sentence for a term not exceeding three years or fine not exceeding five thousand rupees or both. [Section 29]
Court of Judicial Magistrate
As per Section 7, each division is divided into districts and the State Government in every district after consultation with the High Court will establish as many Courts of Judicial Magistrates of First Class and Second Class as it may deem fit. The presiding officer of such Courts shall be appointed by the High Court. [Section 11]
In every district a Judicial Magistrate of First Class (JMFC) will be appointed as a Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) under Section 12 of CrPC. The High Court can also appoint any JMFC to be an Additional CJM.
A CJM, subject to the control of High Court, can define the local limit of the areas within which the Magistratesappointed under Section 11 or Section 13 can exercise their powers. [Section 14]
As per Section 15, a CJM will be subordinate to the Sessions Judge and the other Judicial Magistrate will be subordinate to CJM, subject to general control of Sessions Judge. Also, the CJM can make rules consistent with this Code and can distribute the work among the Judicial Magistrate subordinate to him.
As per Section 26, Court of Judicial Magistrate can try offence which has shown to be triable by the Court of Judicial Magistrate in the First Schedule.
CJM may pass any sentence authorised by law except a sentence of death or of imprisonment for life or a term exceeding seven years whereas a JMFC can pass a sentence for a term not exceeding three years or fine not exceeding five thousand rupees or both. Judicial Magistrate of Second Class can pass a sentence of imprisonment wherein the term will not be exceeding one year and in terms of fine, the amount will not exceed one thousand rupees, or of both. [Section 29]
Court of Executive Magistrate
Under Section 20, the State Government in every district and in every metropolitan area will appoint as many Executive Magistrates as it thinks fit and shall appoint one of them as District Magistrate (DM). The State Government can also appoint any Executive Magistrate as an Additional District Magistrate (ADM) who will have same power as that of a DM.
The DM subject to the control of State Government will define the local limits in which the Executive Magistrate can exercise their power.
Every Executive Magistrate other than ADM will be subordinate to the DM and every Executive Magistrateexercising power in a Sub-division shall also be subordinate to the Sub-Divisional Magistrate, subject to the general control of DM. [Section 23]
As per Section 3(4)(b), the matters which are administrative or executive in nature will be exercisable by an Executive Magistrate.
Legally, a person can be pronounced guilty by a court of competent jurisdiction. Jurisdiction is the power of the Court to try a case, or entertain a matter. The jurisdiction of criminal courts is governed by the Constitution of India, 1950 and procedural laws like the Cr.P.C.
Broadly speaking, India has a three-tier court structure. The Supreme Court of India is the apex court at the national level. The highest court in a State is the High Court. These Courts are established by the Constitution of India. The jurisdiction of the High Court is co-terminus with the territory of the State. The High Court exercises superintendence over all subordinate Courts in the State (The Constitution of India, article 227). Every State has the
|Pyramid in Criminal Jurisdiction|
|Hierarchy of criminal courts in India and the punishment that they may award|
|Pyramid in Criminal Jurisdiction|
|Hierarchy of criminal courts in India and the punishment that they may award|
Family court is a court of Equity convened to decide matters and make orders in relation to family law, such as custody of children. In common-law jurisdictions “family courts” are statutory creations primarily dealing with equitable matters devolved from a court of inherent jurisdiction, such as a superior court. Family courts were first established in the United States in 1910, when they were called domestic relations courts although the idea itself is much older.
Family courts hear all cases that relate to familial and domestic relationships. Although each state has a different system utilized to address family law cases, each state strives to provide families with the best possible outcome in family law cases. Family courts can also issue decisions regarding divorce cases.
The Family Courts Act 1984 was enacted on 14 September 1984 to provide for the family courts with a view to promoting conciliation in and secure speedy settlement of disputes relating to marriage and family affairs. According to Section 2 (d) of the act, “Family Court” means a family court established under section 3. Section 3 describes the establishment of Family Courts and says that the State Government after consultation with the High Court and by notification shall establish a Family Court for every area of the state consisting of a city or town whose population exceeds ten lakhs and for other areas in the state as it may deem necessary. Family courts are subordinate to the High Court, which has power to transfer the case from one family court to the other.
The matters which are dealt in the Family Court in India are matrimonial relief which includes nullity of marriage, judicial separation, divorce, restitution of conjugal rights, declaration as to the validity of marriage and matrimonial status of the person, property of the spouses or any of them and declaration as to the legitimacy of any person, guardianship of a person or custody of any minor, maintenance including the proceeding under the Cr. P.C.
Family courts are located most of the districts in India, the functioning and the process are different from other courts. You can directly approach the family court in Mumbai, but it’s always better to go with the help of an experienced lawyer. The family court procedure is lengthy and time consuming; here we always recommend settling the matter amicably in a mutual understanding before appearing the court.
The Law Commission in its 59th report (1974) also recommended for setting-up of special courts where rules of procedure would be simpler. The Law Commission also emphasized that such courts may adopt and approach radical steps distinguished from the existing civil courts and that such courts should make reasonable efforts for settlement before commencement of the trial. In 1975, the ‘Committee on the Status of Women’ recommended that all matters concerning the ‘family’ be dealt with separately.
In 1984, the Family Courts Act was passed and it came into force on September 14, 1984. The objective was to take family and marital disputes away from the overcrowded intimidating and congested environment of traditional courts of law and bring them to congenial and sympathetic surroundings. The aim was ‘conciliation’ between the estranged family members and not ‘confrontation’.
Family Court Mumbai was established with effect from 7th October 1989.it began with 5 Courts initially and during May 1995 6th and 7th Court operations started.
(1) Subject to the other provisions of this Act, a Family Court shall-
a. have and exercise all the jurisdiction exercisable by any district Court or any subordinate
Civil Court under any law for the time being in force in respect of suits and proceedings of
the nature referred to in the Explanation; and
be deemed, for the purposes of exercising such jurisdiction under such law, to be a
district Court or, as the case may be. Such subordinate Civil Court for the area to which
the jurisdiction of the Family Court extends.
Explanation -The suits and proceedings referred to in this subsection are suits and proceedings
of the following nature, namely:
a. a suit or proceeding between the parties to a marriage for decree of a nullity marriage
(declaring the marriage to be null and void or, as the case may be, annulling the
marriage) or restitution of conjugal rights or judicial separation or dissolution of marriage;
b. a suit or proceeding for a declaration as to the validity of a marriage or as to the
matrimonial status of any person;
c. a suit or proceeding between the parties to a marriage with respect to the property of the
parties or of either of them;
d. a suit or proceeding for an order or injunction in circumstances arising out of a marital
e. a suit or proceeding for a declaration as to the legitimacy of any person;
f. a suit or proceeding for maintenance;
g. a suit or proceeding in relation to the guardianship of the person or the custody of, or
access to, any minor.
(2) Subject to the other provisions of this Act a Family Court shall also have and exercise;
a. the jurisdiction exercisable by a Magistrate of the first class under Chapter IX (relating to
order for maintenance of wife, children and parents) of the Code of Criminal Procedure,
1973 (2 of 1974); and
b. such other jurisdiction as may be conferred on it by any other enactment.
8. Exclusion of jurisdiction and pending proceedings.
-Where a Family Court has been
established for any area:
a. no district Court or any subordinate Civil Court referred to in sub-section (1) of Sec. 7
shall, in relation to such area, have or exercise any jurisdiction in respect of any suit or
proceeding of the nature referred to in the Explanation to that sub-section;
b. no Magistrate shall, in relation to such area, have or exercise any jurisdiction or powers
under Chapter IX of the C9de of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974);
c. every suit or proceeding of the nature referred to in the Explanation to sub-section (1) of
Sec. 7 and every proceeding under Chapter IX of the Code of Criminal Procedure,
1973(2 of 1974)-
( i ) which is pending immediately before the establishment or such Family Court before district
Court or subordinate Court referred to in that sub-section or, as the case may be, before any
Magistrate under the said Code; and
( ii ) which would have been required to be instituted or taken before or by such Family Court if,
before the date on which such suit or proceeding was instituted or taken, this Act has come into
force and such Family Court had been established,
shall stand transferred to such Family Court on the date on which it is established
Establishment of Fast Track Courts (FTCs)
The Eleventh Finance Commission recommended the creation of 1734 Fast Track Courts (FTCs) in the country for disposal of long pending cases in Sessions courts and other courts. The FTCs were established to expeditiously dispose of long pending cases in the Sessions Courts and long pending cases of under trial prisoners. The term of the Fast Track Courts which were recommended by the Eleventh Finance Commission ended on 31st March, 2005. Based on the directives of the Supreme Court of India, the Government accorded its approval for the continuation of 1562 FTCs that were operational as on 31st March, 2005 for a further period of 5 years i.e. up to 31st March, 2010 with a provision of Rs. 509 crores. The scheme was further extended for a period of one year i.e. up to 31st March, 2011. It was then decided that there would be no central funding to FTCs beyond 2011.
Fast Track Courts were meant to expeditiously clear the large scale of pendency in the district and subordinate Courts under a time-bound programme. A laudable objective of the five year experimental scheme was to take up on top priority, the cases involving under trials. Under the government’s action plan, the fast track courts would take up as their next priority, cases pending for two years or more, particularly in which the accused persons had been on bail.
A laudable objective of the five-year experimental scheme is to take up on top priority basis sessions and other cases involving under trials. These cases will be taken up in the first year itself. An estimated 1.80 lakh under trials are languishing in various jails in the country. A majority of them are behind bars on account of petty or minor offences not warranting prolonged imprisonment. Yet many of them are under lock up in the absence of trial.The fast track courts are expected to substantially reduce the number of under trials in jails at the end of the first year. A vast majority of them will be set free, thereby reducing expenditure as well as burden on jails.
Under the government’s action plan, the fast track courts will take up as their next priority sessions cases pending for two years or more, particularly in which the accused persons have been on bail. According to an official figure, the total number of cases pending in the nearly 13,000 district and subordinate courts in the country is a whopping 2.40 crore (latest estimate). Of these, over 50 lakh criminal and over 25 lakh civil cases are pending for a period ranging from one to three years. These are in addition to over 10 lakh pending sessions cases. The others are more than three years’ old. The 21 High Courts account for over 34 lakh pending cases. Over ten per cent of these are more than ten years’ old.
Appointment of Judges
Indian labour law
Indian labour law refers to laws regulating labour in India. Traditionally, Indian governments at federal and state level have sought to ensure a high degree of protection for workers, but in practice, legislative rights only cover a minority of workers. India is a federal form of government and because labour is a subject in the concurrent list of the Indian Constitution, labour matters are in the jurisdiction of both central and state governments; both central and state governments have enacted laws on labour relations and employment issues.
The scheme envisages the appointment of ad hoc judges from among retired sessions/additional session’s judges, judges promoted on ad hoc basis and posted in these courts or from among members of the Bar. Selection of judges will be done by the High Courts. The Centre has directed the State Governments that consequential vacancies resulting from ad hoc promotion of judges be filled through a special drive.
Indian labour law is closely connected to the Indian independence movement, and the campaigns of passive resistance leading up to independence. While India was under colonial rule by the British Raj, labour rights, trade unions, and freedom of association were all suppressed. Workers who sought better conditions, and trade unions who campaigned through strike action were frequently, and violently suppressed. After independence was won in 1947, the Constitution of India of 1950 embedded a series of fundamental labour rights in the constitution, particularly the right to join and take action in a trade union, the principle of equality at work, and the aspiration of creating a living wage with decent working conditions.
In the Constitution of India from 1950, articles 14-16, 19(1)(c), 23-24, 38, and 41-43A directly concern labour rights. Article 14 states everyone should be equal before the law, article 15 specifically says the state should not discriminate against citizens, and article 16 extends a right of “equality of opportunity” for employment or appointment under the state. Article 19(1)(c) gives everyone a specific right “to form associations or unions”. Article 23 prohibits all trafficking and forced labour, while article 24 prohibits child labour under 14 years old in a factory, mine or “any other hazardous employment”.
Articles 38-39, and 41-43A, however, like all rights listed in Part IV of the Constitution are not enforceable by courts, rather than creating an aspirational “duty of the State to apply these principles in making laws”. The original justification for leaving such principles unenforceable by the courts was that democratically accountable institutions ought to be left with discretion, given the demands they could create on the state for funding from general taxation, although such views have since become controversial. Article 38(1) says that in general the state should “strive to promote the welfare of the people” with a “social order in which justice, social, economic and political, shall inform all the institutions of national life. In article 38(2) it goes on to say the state should “minimise the inequalities in income” and based on all other statuses. Article 41 creates a “right to work”, which the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act 2005 attempts to put into practice. Article 42 requires the state to “make provision for securing just and human conditions of work and for maternity relief”. Article 43 says workers should have the right to a living wage and “conditions of work ensuring a decent standard of life”. Article 43A, inserted by the Forty-second Amendment of the Constitution of India in 1976, creates a constitutional right to codetermination by requiring the state to legislate to “secure the participation of workers in the management of undertakings”.
Contract and rights
Scope of protection
Indian labour law makes a distinction between people who work in “organised” sectors and people working in “unorganisedsectors”.The laws list the different industrial sectors to which various labour rights apply. People who do not fall within these sectors, the ordinary law of contract applies.
India’s labour laws underwent a major update in the Industrial Disputes Act of 1947.Since then, an additional 45 national laws expand or intersect with the 1948 act, and another 200 state laws control the relationships between the worker and the company. These laws mandate all aspects of employer-employee interaction, such as companies must keep 6 attendance logs, 10 different accounts for overtime wages, and file 5 types of annual returns. The scope of labour laws extend from regulating the height of urinals in workers’ washrooms to how often a work space must be lime-washed. Inspectors can examine working space anytime and declare fines for violation of any labour laws and regulations.
Among the employment contracts that are regulated in India, the regulation involves significant government involvement which is rare in developed countries. The Industrial Employment (Standing Orders) Act 1946 requires that employers have terms including working hours, leave, productivity goals, dismissal procedures or worker classifications, approved by a government body.
The Contract Labour (Regulation and Abolition) Act 1970 aims at regulating employment of contract labour so as to place it at par with labour employed directly. Women are now permitted to work night shifts too (10 pm to 6 am).
The Latin phrase ‘dies non’ is being widely used by disciplinary authorities in government and industries for denoting the ‘unauthorised absence’ to the delinquent employees. According to Shri R. P. Saxena, chief engineer, Indian Railways, dies-non is a period which neither counted in service nor considered as break in service. A person can be marked dies-non, if
- absent without proper permission
- when on duty left without proper permission
- while in office but refused to perform duties
In cases of such willful and unauthorized absence from work, the leave sanctioning authority may decide and order that the days on which the work is not performed be treated as dies non-on the principle of no work no pay. This will be without prejudice to any other action that the competent authority might take against the persons resorting to such practises.The principle of “no work no pay” is widely being used in the banking industry in India. All other manufacturing industries and large service establishments like railways, posts and telecommunications are also implementing it to minimize the incidences of unauthorized absence of workers. The term ‘industry’ infuses a contractual relationship between the employer and the employee for sale of products and services which are produced through their cooperative endeavor.
This contract together with the need to put in efforts in producing goods and services imposes duties (including ancillary duties) and obligations on the part of the employees to render services with the tools provided and in a place and time fixed by the employer. And in return, as a quid pro quo, the employer is enjoined to pay wages for work done and or for fulfilling the contract of employment. Duties generally, including ancillary duties, additional duties, normal duties, emergency duties, which have to be done by the employees and payment of wages therefor. Where the contract of employment is not fulfilled or work is not done as prescribed, the principle of ‘no work no pay’ is brought into play.
The Payment of Wages Act 1936 requires that employees receive wages, on time, and without any unauthorized deductions. Section 6 requires that people are paid in money rather than in kind. The law also provides the tax withholdings the employer must deduct and pay to the central or state government before distributing the wages.
The Minimum Wages Act 1948 sets wages for the different economic sectors that it states it will cover. It leaves a large number of workers unregulated. Central and state governments have discretion to set wages according to kind of work and location, and they range between as much as 143 to 1120 per day for work in the so-called central sphere. State governments have their own minimum wage schedules.
The Payment of Gratuity Act 1972 applies to establishments with 10 or more workers. Gratuity is payable to the employee if he or she resigns or retires. The Indian government mandates that this payment be at the rate of 15 days salary of the employee for each completed year of service subject to a maximum of 1000000.
The Payment of Bonus Act 1965, which applies only to enterprises with over 20 people, requires bonuses are paid out of profits based on productivity. The minimum bonus is currently 8.33 per cent of salary.
Weekly Holidays Act 1942 Beedi and Cigar Workers Act 1967
Health and safety
The Workmen’s Compensation Act 1923 requires that compensation is paid if workers are injured in the course of employment for injuries, or benefits to dependents. The rates are low.
- Factories Act 1948, consolidated existing factory safety laws
- The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 that seeks to protect and provides a mechanism for women to report incidents of sexual harassment at their place of work.
Pensions and insurance
The Employees’ Provident Fund and Miscellaneous Provisions Act 1952 created the Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation of India. This functions as a pension fund for old age security for the organized workforce sector. For those workers, it creates Provident Fund to which employees and employers contribute equally, and the minimum contributions are 10-12 per cent of wages. On retirement, employees may draw their pension.
- Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme
- National Pension Scheme
- Public Provident Fund (India)
The Employees’ State Insurance provides health and social security insurance. This was created by the Employees’ State Insurance Act 1948.
The Unorganized Workers’ Social Security Act 2008 was passed to extend the coverage of life and disability benefits, health and maternity benefits, and old age protection for unorganised workers. “Unorganized” is defined as home-based workers, self-employed workers or daily-wage workers. The state government was meant to formulate the welfare system through rules produced by the National Social Security Board.
The Maternity Benefit Act 1961, creates rights to payments of maternity benefits for any woman employee who worked in any establishment for a period of at least 80 days during the 12 months immediately preceding the date of her expected delivery.On March 30, 2017 the President of India Pranab Mukherjee approved the Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Act, 2017 which provides for 26-weeks paid maternity leave for women employees.
The Employees’ Provident Funds and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1952, provides for compulsory contributory fund for the future of an employee after his/her retirement or for his/her dependents in case of employee’s early death. It extends to the whole of India except the State of Jammu and Kashmir and is applicable to:
- every factory engaged in any industry specified in Schedule 1 in which 20 or more persons are employed.
- every other establishment employing 20 or more persons or class of such establishments that the Central Govt. may notify.
- any other establishment so notified by the Central Government even if employing less than 20 persons.
HISTORY AND INFORMATION OF COURT OF SMALL CAUSES, MUMBAI
1)Court of Small Causes, Mumbai:-
The Court of Small Causes, Mumbai has been established under the provisions of the Presidency Small Causes Courts Act, 1882. The procedure of this Court is governed by the provisions of the Presidency Small Causes Courts Act, 1882, Civil Manual, 1986 and the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, as it is
Applicable to this Court by the rules framed by the Hon’ble High Court under the said Act.
2) The sanctioned strength of the Judicial Officers of the Court of Small Causes, Mumbai is 44, which includes the Chief Judge, 10 Additional Chief Judges and 33 Judges. However, the working strength as on 01st January, 2014 is 39, which includes 6 Additional Chief Judges and 33 Judges.
3) The “Head of the Administration” of this Court is the “Chief Judge”. As per the provisions of Section 13 of the Presidency of Small Causes Courts, Act, 1882, the “Registrar” is the “Chief Ministerial Officer” of this Court. Besides, there are 4 Additional Registrars on the establishment of this Court. The Registrar and Additional Registrars to look after the Administrative Side. The Registrar is also empowered to hear and dispose of undefended suits and interlocutory applications and matters under section 9(i) (aa) of the Presidency Small Causes Court Act, 1882. He also exercise Judicial Powers like Judge under Sections 14, 33, 34, 35, 53, and 61 of thePresidency Small Causes Court Act, 1882. The Registrar also dealt with Rent Act matters up to the stage of filing of Written Statement by the Defendant/s. The Chief Judge of this Court is Controlling Officer, whereas, Registrar is Drawing and Disbursing Officer of this Court. The Registrar, Court of Small Causes, Mumbai is the Public Information Officer and the Additional Chief Judge, Court of Small Causes, Mumbai is the First Appellate Authority, as per the provisions of The Maharashtra District Court Right to Information (Revised Rules), 2009 framed by the Hon’ble High Court under Right to Information Act, 2005.
4) Powers exercised by the Judges of the Small Causes Court at Mumbai:
The Judges are empowered to hear and dispose off the money suits, wherein, the claims does not exceed Rs. 10,000 subject to exception laid down under Section 19 of the Presidency Small Causes Courts Act, 1882. The said Pecuniary Jurisdiction of Rs. 10,000/- has been enhanced to Rs. 25,000/- by the Government of Maharashtra, vide Maharashtra Act. No. XV of 1987. However, the said Act of enhancement of Pecuniary Jurisdiction of Bombay City Civil Court and Court of Small Causes, Bombay has not been implemented till today. They are also empowered to hear and dispose off suits under Section 41 of the said Act. As per the provision of Section 38 of the Presidency Small Causes Court Act, 1882, the Full Court Applications are heard by a Bench consisting of two Judges of this Court. The Bench consisting of two Judges also hears the Appeals and Revision Applications under Section 42 of the Presidency Small Causes Courts, Act, 1882.
5) The Court of Small Causes, Mumbai has exclusive Jurisdiction under Section 28 of the Bombay Rents, Hotel and Lodgings House Rates Control Act, 1947 irrespective of value of the subject matter and as such, hears all the suits under the said Act in Greater Mumbai. An Appeal/Revision from a decision of a Judge under the Bombay Rent Control Act, 1947 is heard by a Bench consisting of the two Judges under Section 29 of the Mumbai Rents, Hotel and Lodgings House Rates Control Act, 1947. The Court of Small Causes, Mumbai hears all applications under Section 11 of Bombay Rent Control Act for the fixation of the Standard Rent and all application under Section 24 for restoration of Essential Service or supply. This Court has also exclusive jurisdiction in the matters under the Maharashtra Rent Control Act-1999 which came into force with effect from 31 March, 2000.
6) (a) Appeals and proceedings under Sections 217,218_A, 218_B, 218_C and 394(5) of the Bombay Municipal Corporation Act, 1888 are heard by the Chief Judge or any of the Additional Chief Judge. The applications under Sections 503, 504 and 507 are also heard by the Chief Judge or any of the Additional Chief Judge. Similarly, the Election Petitions under Section 33 of the said Act are heard and disposed of by the Chief Judge or any of the Additional Chief Judge. The Governmentvides its Notification, Law and Judiciary Department, No.SSC-2964/2175-H, dated 3rd January, 1968 has empowered the Additional Chief Judge to exercise the powers and performed the duties of the Chief Judge.
(b) The Chief Judge is empowered to hear and dispose of applications, Anti-Corruption matters under the provisions of Section 3 read with Section 4 of the Criminal Law (Amendment) Ordinance, 1944.
7) Appeals under the Payment of Wages Act, 1936 are heard by single Judge of this court.
8) The Court of Small Causes, Mumbai has also following Jurisdictions:-
(a) Section 12-A of the Maharashtra Ownership Flats (Regulations of the Promotion or Construction, Sale, Management and Transfer) Act, 1963.
(b) Section 23 of the Maharashtra Debt Relief Act 1975.
(c) Appeals under Section 42 of the Mumbai Rents, Hotel and Lodging House Rates Control Act, 1947, from an order passed by the Controller.
(d) The Judges of this Court have also exercised the powers to entertain and try the Applications under the Displaced Persons Act, 1954.
9) Head Office and Branch Office:
A) HEAD OFFICE : Head Office of this Court is situate in Old and New Annex Building, at Dhobi Talao, Lokmanya Tilak Marg, Mumbai – 400 002. The Territorial Jurisdiction of Head Office is from Colaba to Mulund on Central Suburban Railway Side and upto Mankhurd on Harbour Railway Side and upto Mahim on Western Suburban Railway Side. There are 31 Court Halls, which includes 5 Appellate Benches, 26 Trial Courts including 1 Registrar’s Court. Appellate Bench, Court Room No.2 is a Special Court for Matters of Bonafied Requirements. Court Room Nos. 10 and 16 are designated as “Special Courts” for Matters of Bonafied Requirement. Court Room Nos. 11 and 12 are special Courts for fixation of Standard Rent and these Courts are designated as “Standard Rent Court”. Court Room No. 18 and 30 are Special Courts for matter filed under the provisions of Bombay Municipal Corporation Act, 1888 and the said Courts are designated as “B.M.C. Courts”. Court Room Nos. 19 and 23 are designated as “Special Court” for matter filed U/s.41 of P.S.C.C., Act, where there is no
Protection under the Rent Acts i.e. T.E. & T.E.R. Suits. Court Room No. 21 is designated as Special Court for trying Money Suits i.e. Summary Suit and Regular Suit etc. Court Room No. 24 is designated as “B.P.T.Court” for matter filed by or against the Bombay Port Trust. At present, Appellate Bench, Court Room No.5 and Trial Courts i.e. Court Room Nos. 24, 27, 28 and 29 are presently vacant.
B) BRANCH OFFICE:
The Branch office of this Court is situate in Bhaskar Building, Anant Kanekar Marg, Bandra (East), Mumbai-400051. In the Bhaskar Building, 3rd floor to 8th floor are in use occupation and possession of this Court. The said Branch has been started functioning with effect from 6th August, 1990. The Territorial Jurisdiction of Bandra Branch is from Mahim to Dashisar on the Western Suburban Railway Side. There are 11 Courts at Bandra, out of which 2 Appellate Benches and remaining 9 Trial Courts including 1 Registrar’s Court. Court Room No. 32 is designated as “Special Court” for trying matters filed under Bonafied Requirement under the provisions of the Rent Actand T.E. & T.E. & R Suits under the provisions of Section 41 of the Presidency Small Causes Court Act, 1882.
COURT OF SMALL CAUSES – PROCEDURES, JURISDICTIONS, AND TYPES OF CASES
All suits of a civil nature of which the value does not exceed five hundred rupees are cognizable by the Court of Small Causes. The State Government, by order, can also direct that all suits of a civil nature, up to the value of one thousand rupees, can also be cognizable by a Court of Small Causes.
PROCEDURE & DOCUMENTS FOR FILING A CASE IN THE COURT OF SMALL CAUSES:
1. Name of the Court, Nature of Complaint, Names and Address of parties to be suit has to be clearly mentioned.
2. Plaint should also contain the facts constituting the cause of action and when it arose, the facts showing that the court has jurisdiction, the relief which the plaintiff (the person making the complaint) claims, a statement of value of the subject matter of the suit in order to ascertain jurisdiction and court fees.
3. A person/ party filing a case may also represent their own case personally in any court. However, due to lack of knowledge of Law and Technical Procedures, Lawyers are engaged to report the interest of parties.
On issuance of notice to the opposite party, the plaintiff is required to do the following:
• File requisite amount of procedure-fee in the court.
• File 2 copies of plaint for each defendant in the court, i.e. if there are 3 defendants, 6 copies has to be filed.
• Of, the 2 copies for each defendant, one shall be sent by Register/post/courier, and one by Ordinary post.
• Such filing should be done within 7 days, from date of order/notice.
• When the notice has been issued to the defendant, he is required to appear on the date mentioned in the notice. Before such date, the defendant is required to file his “written statement”. The time period of 30 days, for filing a Written Statement, can be extended to 90 days after seeking permission of the court.
Court of Small Causes
Where an order specified in clause (ff) or clause (h) of sub-section (1) of section 104 of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (5 of 1908) is made by a Court of Small Causes, an appeal lies to the District Court.
However, there are certain matters which are exclusively exempted from the jurisdiction of Small Causes Courts given under:
1. A suit concerning any act done by the order of the Central Government or the State Government
2. A suit concerning an act done by any person in pursuance of a judgment or order of a Court.
3. A suit for the possession, partition, mortgage, sale of immovable property or for the recovery of an interest in such property;
4. A suit for the assessment, enhancement, abatement or apportionment of the rent of immovable property;
5. A suit for the recovery of rent, other than house-rent.
6. A suit to restrain waste;
7. A suit for the specific performance or rescission of a contract;
8. A suit for the rectification or cancellation of an instrument;
9. A suit to obtain an injunction;
10. A suit relating to a trust, including a suit to make good out of the general estate of a deceased trustee the loss occasioned by a breach of trust, and a suit by a co-trustee to enforce against the estate of a deceased trustee a claim for contribution;
11. A suit for property which the plaintiff has conveyed while insane;
12. A suit to alter or set aside a decision, decree or order of a Court or of a person acting in a judicial capacity;
13. A suit to contest an award;
14. A suit—
(a) For a dissolution of partnership or for the winding up of the business of a partnership after its dissolution;
(b) For an account of partnership-transactions; or
(c) For a balance of partnership-account, unless the balance has been struck by the parties or their agents;
15. A suit for a general average loss or for salvage;
16. A suit for compensation in respect of collision between ships;
17. (34) A suit on a policy of insurance or for the recovery of any premium paid under any such policy;
18. (35) A suit for compensation—
(a) For loss occasioned by the death of a person caused by actionable wrong;
(b) For wrongful arrest, restraint or confinement;
(c) For malicious prosecution;
(d) For libel;
(e) For slander;
(f) For adultery or seduction;
(g) For breach of contract of betrothal or promise of marriage;
(h) For inducing a person to break a contract made with the plaintiff;
(i) For obstruction of an easement or diversion of a water-course;
19. A suit for the restitution of conjugal rights, custody of a minor, or for a divorce; or relating to maintenance;
20. Any such matter for which the Court of Small Causes is barred by any enactment for
the time being in force.
Establishment of Special Courts.
The Central Government shall, by notification in the Official Gazette, establish an adequate number of courts to be called Special Courts.
A Special Court shall consist of a sitting Judge of a High Court nominated by the Chief Justice of the High Court within the local limits of whose jurisdiction the Special Court is situated, with the concurrence of the Chief Justice of India. Explanation. – Any reference to a High Court or to the Chief Justice or Judge of a High Court shall, in relation to a Union territory having a Court of the Judicial Commissioner, be construed as a reference to the said Court of the Judicial Commissioner or to the Judicial Commissioner or any Additional Judicial Commissioner, as the case may be.
Cognizance of cases by Special Courts: A Special Court shall take cognizance of or try such cases as are instituted before it or transferred to it as hereinafter provided.
Declaration by Central Government of cases to be dealt with under this Act.
(1) If the Central Government is of opinion that there is prima facie evidence of the commission of an offence alleged to have been committed by a person who held high public or political office in India and that in accordance with the guidelines contained in the preamble hereto the said offence ought to be dealt with under this Act, the Central Government shall make a declaration to that effect in every case in which it is of the aforesaid opinion.
(2) Such declaration shall not be called in question in any court.
Effect of declaration: On such declaration being made in respect of any offence, notwithstanding anything in the Code, any prosecution in respect of such offence shall be instituted only in a Special Court designated by the Central Government and any prosecution in respect of such offence pending in any court shall stand transferred to a Special Court designated by the Central Government.
Pending appeal or revision to be transferred to Supreme Court. If at the date of the declaration in respect of any offence an appeal or revision against any judgment or order in a prosecution in respect of such offence, whether pending or disposed of, is itself pending ill any court of appeal or revision, the same shall stand transferred for disposal to the Supreme Court.
Jurisdiction of Special Courts as to joint trials: A Special Court shall have jurisdiction to try any person concerned in the offence in respect of which a declaration has been made, either as principal, conspirator or abettor and all other offences and accused persons as can be jointly tried therewith at one trial in accordance with the Code.
Procedure and powers of Special Courts.
A Special Court shall in the trial of such cases follow the procedure prescribed by the Code, for the trial of warrant cases before a magistrate.
A Special Court may, with a view to obtaining evidence of any person suspected to have been directly or indirectly concerned in or privy to an offence, tender a pardon to such person on condition of his making full and true disclosure of the whole circumstances within his knowledge relating to the offence and to every other person concerned whether as principal, conspirator or abettor in the commission thereof and any pardon so tendered shall for the purposes of section 308 of the Code be deemed to have been tendered under section 307 thereof.
Save as expressly provided in this Act, the provisions of the Code shall, in so far as they are not inconsistent with the provisions of this Act, apply to the proceedings before a Special Court and for the purposes of the said provisions of the Code a Special Court shall be deemed to be a Court of Session and shall have all the powers of a Court of Session and the person conducting a prosecution before a Special Court shall be deemed to be a Public Prosecutor.
A Special Court may pass upon any person convicted by it any sentence authorized by law for the punishment of the offence of which such person is convicted.
Power of Supreme Court to transfer cases.
Whenever it is made to appear to the Supreme Court that an order under this section is expedient for the ends of justice, it may direct that any particular case be transferred from one Special Court to another Special Court.
The Supreme Court may act under this section only on the application of the Attorney- General of India or of a party interested, and every such application shall be made by motion, which shall, except when the applicant is the Attorney- General of India or the Advocate- General of a State, be supported by affidavit or affirmation.
Where any application for the exercise of the powers conferred by this section is dismissed, the Supreme Court may, if it is of opinion that the application was frivolous or vexatious, order the applicant to pay by way of compensation to any person who has opposed the application such sum not exceeding one thousand rupees as it may consider appropriate in the circumstances of the case.
Notwithstanding anything in the Code, an appeal shall lie as of right from any judgment, sentence or order, not being interlocutory order, of a Special Court to the Supreme Court both on facts and on law.
Except as aforesaid, no appeal or revision shall lie to any court from any judgment, sentence or order of a Special Court.
Every appeal under this section shall be preferred within a period of thirty days from the date of any judgment sentence or order of a Special Court:
Provided that the Supreme Court may entertain an appeal after the expiry of the said period of thirty days if it is satisfied that the appellant had sufficient cause for not preferring the appeal within the period of thirty days.
Chapter IV Special Courts
11. Power of Central Government to constitute Special Courts. –
1. The Central Government shall, by notification in the Official Gazette, for the trial of Scheduled Offences, constitute one or more Special Courts for such area or areas, or for such case or class or group of cases, as may be specified in the notification.
2. Where any question arises as to the jurisdiction of any Special Court, it shall be referred to the Central Government whose decision in the matter shall be final.
3. A Special Court shall be presided over by a judge to be appointed by the Central Government on the recommendation of the Chief Justice of the High Court.
4. The Agency may make an application to the Chief Justice of the High Court for appointment of a Judge to preside over the Special Court.
5. On receipt of an application under sub-section (4), the Chief Justice shall, as soon as possible and not later than seven days, recommend the name of a judge for being appointed to preside over the Special Court.
6. The Central Government may, if required, appoint an additional judge or additional judges to the Special Court, on the recommendation of the Chief Justice of the High Court.
7. A person shall not be qualified for appointment as a judge or an additional judge of a Special Court unless he is, immediately before such appointment, a Sessions Judge or an Additional Sessions Judge in any State.
8. For the removal of doubts, it is hereby provided that the attainment, by a person appointed as a judge or an additional judge of a Special Court, of the age of superannuation under the rules applicable to him in the service to which he belongs shall not affect his continuance as such judge or additional judge and the Central Government may by order direct that he shall continue as judge until a specified date or until completion of the trial of the case or cases before him as may be specified in that order.
9. Where any additional judge or additional judges is or are appointed in a Special Court, the judge of the Special Court may, from time to time, by general or special order, in writing, provide for the distribution of business of the Special Court among all judges including himself and the additional judge or additional judges and also for the disposal of urgent business in the event of his absence or the absence of any additional judge.
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