Today, the Delhi Court dismissed a Public Interest Litigation which highlighted a singular issue concerning the listing procedure adopted by the Court which "is causing extreme inconvenience to the litigants" and is also "largely illogical", as per the petitioner.

The petitioner, who is an Advocate by profession, was aggrieved by the manner of listing adopted by the registry which indulges in the issuance of 'branch-wise' cause lists for the current roster bench which has been assigned to exercise original as well as company jurisdiction.

"Company list is never called out," said the Advocate Rishabh Jain, the petitioner-in-person, to a Bench comprising Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Subramonium Prasad. "Talk to the Bar President and Registrar General", said the Court while dismissing the petition and indicating that the matter may be dealt with on the administrative side.

"This bench is given two cause lists on a daily basis, one listing judicial business of original side matters and a second one listing business for company side matters. Due to the fact that random calling of matters can create a chaotic situation, this roster bench calls out matters 'list wise', and for compelling reasons and to maintain judicial decorum exhausts original side cause lists before beginning to hear company side matters", read the plea.

"The roster bench on many days is unable to even call out matters from the company side supplementary cause list since the cause list of the original side at times takes up all the judicial time", said the plea further.

The petitioner approached the court on the judicial side seeking directions to the registry of the Court to issue only bench-wise consolidated cause list henceforth and desist from issuing a separate cause list for company side matters.

Until 2015, the Delhi High Court published a roster with a single judge exclusively dealing with company matters. The company branch of the registry published (and continues to) a separate cause list for company side matters. After the change in company related laws and with the creation of company law tribunals across the country, the Court decided to do away with an exclusive company bench and give additional responsibility of exercising company jurisdiction to a roster bench otherwise also exercising original jurisdiction.

As per the plea, the novel Coronavirus raised fresh concerns over the long pendency of matters before the courts and has necessitated a review of listing/hearing/case management processes while the judiciary is doing their level best to increase output in the limited judicial time available at their hand.

Ordinarily, in the Delhi High Court, each bench has one single cause list enlisting the judicial business it has to deal with on any particular day, though it contains multiple categories of cases like writs, letters patent appeals, civil suits, etc.

The Court was not inclined to interfere in the issue raised on the judicial side and indicated that the matter may be resolved on the administrative side, while dismissing the petition.

Cause Title- Rishabh Jain v. High Court of Delhi