The Court must display its conscious application of mind even while dismissing the appeal at the admission stage.: Supreme Court

Once the High Court is satisfied, after hearing the appeal, that the appeal involves a substantial question of law, it has to formulate that question and direct issuance of notice to the respondent. In case the appeal does not involve any substantial question of law, the High Court has no other option but to dismiss the appeal as upheld by the Hon’ble Supreme Court through the learned bench led by Justice S. Abdul Nazeer in the case of Hasmat Ali v. Amina Bibi & Ors. (CIVIL APPEAL NO. 7109 of 2021)(Arising out of S.L.P.(C)No.25119 of 2019)

The brief facts of the case are that Late Md. Mukim, who expired during the trial, was the plaintiff and Hasmat Ali was defendant in the Civil Suit No.15 of 2009 on the file of the Civil Judge, Senior Division, Rourkela. This suit was filed to seek a declaration that the defendant was a tenant of the plaintiff till 31.03.2003, eviction of the defendant from the suit scheduled property and for certain other reliefs. The defendant entered appearance in the said suit and filed the written statement. After trial, the suit was decreed in part on 21.07.2015 and the defendant was directed to deliver vacant possession of the suit shop to the plaintiff. The defendant challenged the said judgment by filing an appeal and the Appellate Court dismissed the appeal on 04.08.2017. The defendant filed regular second appeal before the High Court and the High Court dismissed the said appeal in limine. Having regard to the contentions urged, the only question for consideration is whether the High Court was justified in dismissing the second appeal, filed under Section 100 of the CPC, in limine.

The Hon’ble Supreme Court held “In our view, the High Court cannot dismiss the second appeal in limine without assigning any reasons for its conclusion. In the instant case, since the High Court has not assigned any reasons for the dismissal of the appeal, the order needs to be set aside. Therefore, the appeal succeeds and is accordingly allowed. The order of the High Court dated 31.07.2019 is set aside and the matter is remitted back to the High Court for fresh disposal in accordance with law and in the light of the observations made above. There shall be no order as to costs.”

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Judgment reviewed by Vandana Ragwani

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