Advance Magazine Publishers Inc Versus Bombay Rayon Fashions Ltd & Ors.
Court / Forum : High Court of Delhi
Citation : TR.P.(C.) 39/2020
Coram : Justice Navin Chawla
Subject : Section 24 of Civil Procedure Code,1908 (“CPC”)
Date of Decision : 2020-09-29
- The present petition has been filed seeking transfer of the suit seeking permanent injunction, infringement of trademark, passing off and damages against the respondents, from the Court of the learned Additional District Judge-5, (South-East), Saket to the Court of Sh. Sanjay Sharma-II, who is presently posted as the Additional Sessions Judge-3, Central, Tis Hazari Courts.
- Further, by an order dated December 04, 2017 passed by the Supreme Court it was directed that the said should suit be disposed of within a year from the date of the order.
- However, by a Notification dated August 26, 2020 issued by the Delhi High Court, Mr. Sanjay Sharma-II, who was hearing the said suit, was transferred from his post of Additional District Judge-5, South-East, Saket as Additional Sessions Judge-3, Central, Tis Hazari Courts with effect from September 07, 2020. The Ld. Presiding Judge in his order dated August 27,2020, informed the parties about his transfer, however, at the request of the Ld. counsels for the parties, continued to hear the arguments in the suit as the suit involved a number of witnesses and voluminous documents and the Ld. Judge had already expended considerable time in hearing arguments.
- Whether the suit can be transferred to another court which does not have territorial jurisdiction on the request of the parties?
- The Court observed that the Sessions Judge or the Additional Sessions Judge which is appointed by the High Court to exercise jurisdiction as is vested in the Court of Sessions Judge by the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973. However, they do not get denuded of their powers as the learned District Judge /Additional District Judge. Further, in Delhi, their nomenclature is as District and Sessions Judge. Also, they are also freely transferable from one jurisdiction to another, that is, from Civil to Criminal jurisdictions, depending upon the discretion of the High Court.
- The Court further noted that merely because a particular Judge has been assigned the work of Additional Sessions Judge under the Code of Criminal Procedure, he/she would not lose competence to try the civil suits, where so empowered by the High Court in exercise of its powers under Section 24 of the CPC or by the general order.
- The Court relied upon the case of Paramount Plastic Industries vs. Corporation Bank MANU/DE/2413/2014, whereby it was held that in exercise of powers under Section 24 of the CPC, objection of lack of territorial jurisdiction cannot be a bar to such exercise and the proceedings can be transferred to a Court which does not even enjoy territorial jurisdiction.
- Further, as held by the Supreme Court in Kulwinder Kaur vs. Kandi Friends Education Trust & Ors. MANU/SC/7058/2008, the power under Section 24 of the CPC for transfer of the suit is to be exercised by the Court inter alia in the interests of justice.
- It was observed that the Ld. Judge has already spent considerable judicial time hearing the petitioner and the respondents in part. In fact, at the request of the parties, he had continued hearing the case even after his transfer orders were issued. Therefore, it was held to be a fit case where the discretion vested in the Court under Section 24 of the CPC needs to be exercised to prevent wastage of judicial time and to ensure timely conclusion of the suit which has been expedited pursuant to the orders of the Supreme Court.
- Accordingly, the present suit was transferred from the Court of the learned Additional District Judge -5, (South-East), Saket to the Court of Sh.Sanjay Sharma-II who is now posted as the Additional Sessions Judge-3, Central, Tis Hazari Courts.
Vipul Ganda is a Delhi based Advocate practicing largely at the Delhi High Court. His practice focus is Dispute Resolution and Litigation and his practice areas include Arbitration, Commercial, Civil, Constitutional, Corporate and Criminal Litigation.