A new petition claims that courts take too many holidays. After the Diwali Break, to be Heard

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A new petition claims that courts take too many holidays. After the Diwali Break, to be Heard

The Bombay High Court said today that it would consider a public interest lawsuit challenging the practice of courts taking lengthy vacations, which affects the filing and hearing of cases following the Diwali holidays.
The Diwali break for the Bombay High Court begins on October 22 and ends on November 9.

In her appeal, Sabina Lakdawala criticized the high court’s vacations, arguing that they violated the basic rights of plaintiffs and would impair their ability to seek justice.

The petitioner is not against judges taking vacations. Still, members of the judiciary shouldn’t take time off at the same time to keep the courts open all year long, according to Mr. Lakdawala’s attorney Mathews Nedumpara.

Mr. Nedumpara brought up the urgent hearing request in his petition before the division bench of Justices SV Gangapurwala and RN Laddha today.

The bench questioned the attorney as to why the petition was submitted now rather than when the high court’s 2022 schedule was made public in November of the previous year.

On November 15, the top court said that it would hear the plea.

The high court has three breaks each year: a one-month summer break, a two-week Diwali break, and a month-long Christmas break (one week). Special vacation benches are available for last-minute court business over the holidays.

In her appeal, Mr. Lakdawala said that the lengthy court vacations are a holdover from the colonial past and that they are to blame for the breakdown of the judicial delivery system.

In the argument, it was argued that closing courts for any reason for more than 70 days are a breach of the basic rights of litigants since it prevents courts from hearing cases because of a lack of time.

The appeal stated, “Such habit of taking lengthy vacations is likely to come to a stop.”

The petition demanded that the high court be fully operational over the approaching Diwali holiday by designating an appropriate number of judges to hear and decide all cases, as well as giving the registry instructions to accept all petitions without needing approval from the vacation bench.

Without closing down the entire institution, a necessary break for lawyers and judges can be provided, according to Mr. Lakdawala.

She said that her argument did not call for judges and attorneys to be denied vacation time or to have their workload increased.

The petitioner claimed that judges might only be urged to take time off at certain points throughout the year.

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