Supreme Court to deliver judgement on automatic vacation of stay today

The constitution bench of the Supreme Court will decide on Thursday whether the stay given in civil or criminal cases should remain in operation for six months only unless extended.

The five-judge bench comprising Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud, Justices Abhay S Oka, JB Pardiwala, Pankaj Mithal, and Manoj Misra, was reconsidering a March 2018 judgement of automatic vacation of stay in Asian Resurfacing of Road Agency Pvt Ltd and Another vs Central Bureau of Investigation.

In 2018, a three-judge bench comprising Justices Adarsh Kumar Goel, Navin Sinha and Rohinton Nariman held that in ordinary circumstances, a stay order should not exceed two to three months and held that a stay should not be unconditional or for an indefinite duration.

During a day-long hearing, Senior advocate Rakesh Dwivedi argued that, “When an order of stay is automatically vacated, there is no application of mind involved and which is the essence of judicial decision-making.”

At this, CJI Chandrachud had said, “Automatic vacation of stay is a judicial act, not an administrative act.”

Solicitor general Tushar Mehta cited instances where contempt cases were filed against judges for not resuming trials, suggesting that the solution might be more severe than the underlying issue of delayed justice and stressed that laying down timelines for judicial proceedings was a matter of parliamentary discretion, and not judicial discretion.

Published By:

Ashutosh Acharya

Published On:

Feb 29, 2024

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