Delhi High Court disposes of plea seeking enhancement in pecuniary jurisdiction of Civil Judges at Delhi District Courts from Rs. 3 lakhs

  • Aishwarya Iyer
  • 11:35 AM, 01 Dec 2021

The Delhi High Court today disposed of a plea which sought rational distribution and enhancement of pecuniary jurisdiction of Civil Judges posted at District Courts in Delhi for adjudicating original suits from the present maximum pecuniary jurisdiction i.e. Rs. 3 Lakhs.

Disposing of the plea, the Court said, "Rs. 3 lakhs is a very nominal amount, we will look at it from the administrative side."

Remarking thus, the Bench proceeded to dispose of the plea with directions for it to be treated as a representation to be decided in accordance with laws. The Court also granted the petitioner liberty to approach it in case required again in future with respect to the issue.

A division bench comprising of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh dismissed the petition which sought issuance of a writ of mandamus or any other writ to the High Court and the government of Delhi.

Filed by and through Advocate Amit Sahni, the plea submitted that the pecuniary jurisdiction of Civil Judges posted at various Delhi Courts have been changed from time to time starting from Rs. 25,000/-, Rs. 1 lakh and finally upto Rs. 3 lakhs in 2003.

In this backdrop, the plea argued that there has been no change in pecuniary jurisdiction of Civil Judged posted at various Courts of Delhi since 2003 while pecuniary jurisdiction of District Judges and Additional District Judges have increased nearly 10 times i.e. Rs. 20 lakhs (in 2003) to Rs. 2 crores (in 2015).

"It is pertinent to note that District Courts in neighbourhood of Delhi, Gurgaon, Noida, Gaziabad and Faridabad enjoy unlimited pecuniary jurisdiction. District  Courts in Delhi need to be equated with District courts in adjourning areas of Delhi so far as pecuniary jurisdiction is concerned.", the plea further stated.

It was further the case of the petitioner that the pecuniary value of Rs. 3 lakhs entrusted to Civil Judges is extremely low and since no property in Delhi is worth “Rs. 3 lakhs”, the same has led to stern stagnation as Civil Judges are adjudicating Injunction Suits and petty suits for recovery amounting upto Rs. 3 lakhs only.

Sahni thus averred that if the pecuniary jurisdiction of the civil judges is increased upto Rs. 20 to 30 lakhs, it would lessen the burden upon District as well as the Additional District Judges as some of such cases would then be heard by Civil Judges.

Cause Title: Amit Sahni vs State (Govt of NCT of Delhi) & Ors.