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HC pulls up govt for 2,141 days’ delay in filing appeal

The Madras High Court has come down heavily on an appeal moved by the Commissioner of Revenue Administration seeking to condone a delay of 2,141 days against an order dated March 18, 2014, on a plea moved in 2007, citing reasons including the case bundle being misplaced, the post of assistant remaining vacant and the staff being engaged in election work.

HC pulls up govt for 2,141 days’ delay in filing appeal
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Chennai

The first bench comprising Chief Justice AP Sahi and Justice Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy, said “In our assessment, such reasons are not only unacceptable but clearly indicate the casual approach of the officer, who has filed the affidavit in support of the delay condonation application.”

The bench noted that there was no indication as to when the bundle was misplaced and when it was traced. The second reason that the seat of assistant was vacant was no plausible ground for the delay, as all the officials of the department were not on leave and all the seats were not vacant. The third ground that the delay was due to the assembly election in the State was equally incomprehensible, the bench added.

M Lakshmi, Joint Commissioner (Revenue Administration) had filed a petition under Section 5 of the Limitation Act to condone the delay in moving the appeal. Rejecting the affidavit filed in support of the delay condonation application, the bench directed the Advocate General to take appropriate steps in the matter.

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