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New CJI issues tight new mentioning guidelines with form, affidavit & strict time window

Lodha: Wasting no time
Lodha: Wasting no time
The Supreme Court has issued new guidelines for mentioning matters before it, according to a notice posted on the Supreme Court noticeboard yesterday, the first Monday of new Chief Justice of India (CJI) RM Lodha taking over for five months from P Sathasivam.

From now on the deputy registrar for mentioning will "process the request for mentioning in accordance with existing guidelines", and if not accepted by the registrar because it is not urgent, advocates can mention matters orally before the court of the Chief Justice of India (CJI) within strict parameters.

Advocates wanting to orally mention a matter before the CJI must submit a set of “paper book(s) along with Listing Proforma and an Urgency Affidavit in between 10:30AM and 11AM to DR (mentioning) and those matters may then be orally mentioned on that day at 2.00pm except on Miscellaneous Hearing days”, according to the notice.

On miscellaneous days, which usually fall on Monday and Friday at the Supreme Court, “matters may be orally mentioned just after the normal work is over”.

If the CJI is unavailable for mentioning, only the next senior most judge sitting on that day may hear oral mentions.

CJI Altamas Kabir, who preceded Sathasivam, had reintroduced oral mentioning in the Supreme Court after his predecessor CJI SH Kapadia had banned the practice.

Oral mentioning can be used to expedite the hearing date for matters in cases of urgency, or orally call for an early adjournment of a matter that has been listed for a specific day before a bench. While useful for advocates managing cases, it can also result in delays and increasing pendency because it becomes hard for the registry and CJI to timetable matters, and cases mentioned out of turn can end up delaying and adjourning other matters.

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