Dear friends, legal luminaries and others,
I was in Delhi to file a SLP in Supreme Court recently. I had seen that entire office procedures are fraught with Red Tapism. I had prepared the SLP strictly according to the Supreme Court Rules, 1966 (Order XVI) which deals with subject Appeals by Special Leave.
After reaching there one Advocate clerk had told me that if you prepare Index like this, it will come in objections. I had prepared Index Alphabet wise, say, B1 to B6 List of dates, D1 to D10 SLP, E1 to E173 Annexure P1 and so on. I was told that up to List of dates, the Alphabets should be used, from Certified copy of judgement/order which is challenged in SLP, it would start with numbers 1, 2, 3..... and so on.
After reaching Supreme Court, from Hyderabad with 2 days of hard journey in train, I was told like this. I wanted to avail one seat somewhere to re-prepare the Index and renumber the 4 sets of documents. I did not find a place there. I came out of Supreme court and caught Autorickshaw, went to Connaught place and spent Rs.400/- and 4 hours time to prepare index on those lines that the Advocate clerk said. If I prepare index like that, the numbering of documents will change. I have changed numbers in around 1200 pages (4 sets).
The advocate clerk told me you need to file another form called Listing Proformas which will be A. I did so accordingly and having satisfied with that I went back to file at the counter. At counter, the clerk told me, I need 3 more copies of documents. I had spent Rs.600/- catching another clerk and got that prepared and filed at counter utilizing his services. Still there are many defects they are saying. And they will give one Diary number, after 4-5 days, the Office of registrar will point out defects and upload in the Net for which I have to make another trip to Delhi from Hyderabad to cure the defects. There is a counter called "Curing of Defects counter" at Supreme court for this purpose.
The point is, I did not know all this before starting at Hyderabad. The only information available to me was the Supreme court Rules, 1966 and I prepared the petition accordingly. After reaching there one after the started pointing out, it should not be like this, it should not be like that and so on.
Important to note is, the Court administration treats the Delhiites and non-Delhiites coming from far away places from all over India alike. If there are defects to be pointed out and need to be cured or rectified, it is easier for a Delhiite to revisit court two times, three times or four times. How is it possible for non-Delhiite to visit the Supreme court as many times as a Delhiite can visit?
If I am to stay there for five more days, it involves boarding and hotel expenses. If I go back to Hyderabad and travel back, it involves Travel expenses.
I came back home with extreme dissatisfaction that our case will not even be seen by the Judge, it will be stuck up in the Office itself.
The only simple question that I want to ask the legal luminaries of this website is, IS IT ANY KIND OF DELIBERATE ATTEMPT TO MAKE THE SYSTEM ADVOCATE-CENTRIC AND MAKE GENERAL PUBLIC ADVOCATE-DEPENDENT?
Why don't the Supreme Court upload one Sample Petition which is perfect in all respects in every category (Petition filed by Advocate/Petition filed by Petitioner in person etc) and convey to people through its website to bring the SLP on those lines?
Secondly, it involved Rs.11000/- expenses for me to visit Delhi and file the SLP. The Court fee paid was only Rs.290/-. Why cannot Supreme Court open filing counters at least in Capital cities and collect more amounts from General Public to transfer the SLPs from Capital cities to Delhi? I had travelled in Second AC because I had to book tickets urgently. If I had gone by Sleeper the expenses would have been around Rs.4000/-. When the expenses involved are so much to reach Supreme Court for non-Delhiites, why cannot the Supreme Court open counters at least in all Capital cities for time being and collect the SLPs in Capital cities of all States?
People don't mind spending Court fees of even Rs.2000/- or Rs.3000/- in place of spending for Travelling expenses and Hotel expenses to come and stay in Delhi to file petitions.