The Bombay high court has recalled a notice issued by the Prothonotary & Senior Master on September 15, 2023 dismissing civil suits filed before December 2021, in default, for non-removal of office objections within eight weeks.
While recalling the notice, Justice Riyaz Chagla observed that the common notice could not have been issued under Rule 986 of the Bombay High Court (Original Side) Rules, 1980 without first listing of matters. The HC then restored the dismissed suits.
Notice by senior master of high court rejected
Justice Chagla observed: “In my considered view, there is no power to issue such blanket directions of removal of office objections within the period stipulated in the common notices without first listing these matters and accordingly, the common notices dated 15th September 2022 are being recalled.”
The notice issued by the Prothonotary & Senior Master of High Court directed rejection in default of all suits filed before December 2021 if office objections weren’t removed within the stipulated period of eight weeks. Following this, several interim applications were filed in these dismissed suits challenging the notice.
Clients not aware about the rejection
During the hearing in one such application filed by Lok Everest Co-op. Hsg. Soc. Ltd. Versus Jaydeep Developers, its advocate Abhinav Chandrachud contended that his clients were not even aware about the rejection of their suit pursuant to the notice. He argued that under the high court Rule, rejection is effected only when office objections have not been removed within 30 days, prior to which the matter is placed before the Prothonotary & Senior Master of the Court for directions.
Time must be granted for objections
Only then the Prothonotary & Senior Master can exercise its discretion and either reject the suit for non-removal of objections or grant more time for the same, said Chandrachud. Advocate Rohaan Cama, appearing for petitioners in another suit, said that the suits need to be restored and thereafter time should be granted for office objections. Recalling the notice, Justice Chagla restored the dismissed suits.
The judge said that the suits should be listed on board before the Prothonotary & Senior Master of this Court for directions who, on a case to case basis, will decide on time to remove office objections.
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