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Lawfully yours: By Retd Justice K Chandru

Your legal questions answered by Justice K Chandru, former Judge of the Madras High Court Do you have a question? Email us at

Lawfully yours: By Retd Justice K Chandru

One can file CRP under Article 227 if case unfairly prolonged

Q: A civil case for a residential house property filed by the plaintiff against eight defendants on June 13, 2019, is in the evidence stage at the sub-court, Ambasamudram, Tirunelveli. The cross-examination of the plaintiff by the defendant’s counsel was completed on August 12. At the request of prosecution witnesses (PWs), three adjournments were fixed on 9/9/22, 19/9/22 & 13/10/22. Subsequently, on 13/10/22, PW2 was present and an affidavit was filed. For the consequent two adjournments, on 28/10/22 & 15/11/22, PW2 did not attend. The court stated, “PW2 called absent. At the request of plaintiff counsel for the appearance of the cross by 28/10/22 & 15/11/22. NFA. Evidence”.

My question is if NFA means “no further adjournment”, how PW2 was granted multiple adjournments? Is it legally permissible? Defendants aged 65+ had come from Chennai spending a sizable amount to assist their counsel. Please explain the viability of extending adjournments.

— K Annamalai, Pallikkaranai, Chennai

A: Requests for adjournments are a curse on the litigation system in this country. When the Code of Civil Procedure (CPC) clearly states that the recording of evidence of witnesses must be done on a day-to-day basis, the trial judges give indulgence by several adjournments lest they may be labelled as anti-bar.

If you think there is any unfair indulgence and prolongation, you can file a civil revision petition (CRP) under Article 227 and get a time fixed for final disposal. CPC provides for penal costs to be awarded for such delay tactics adopted by the other side. Anyhow your lawyer is the best judge to advise you. Go by his advice as he is the man on the spot.

Though a poll promise, supply of free power is a subsidy

Q: This refers to the TN government order whereby it requested consumers of electricity to link their Aadhaar with their service numbers. In so asking the consumers, the order quotes the central government mandate to link the Aadhaar card to any scheme that provides a subsidy.

The issue at hand is the supply of 100 units of free power to all consumers. The said supply of 100 units of free power is a poll promise made by the then government to win elections. Can this be construed as a ‘subsidy’? Please clarify.

— VS Jayaraman, Motilal Street, Chennai

A: Whether it is due to a poll promise or not the supply of 100 units of free power is a subsidy by the government. All subsidies are to be linked with Aadhaar to prevent fraud and bogus claims.

Hence there is no conflict with free power supply and linking your EB card with your Aadhaar. The minister has gone on record that there is no intention to withdraw the scheme.

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