Understanding the Power of High Courts in Rule-Making: An In-depth Study of Section 122 of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908
By-the legal experts at SimranLaw
The Indian judiciary has always played a pivotal role in the socio-economic development and evolution of our democratic country. The High Court, especially, wears multiple hats – it is not just an appellate authority, but also has substantial powers in rule-making, as evidenced by Section 122 of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908. In this article, the legal experts at SimranLaw dissect this complex legal provision, drawing upon years of professional experience and case law, to provide thoughtful insights and promote a deeper understanding of this key aspect of law.
Section 122: The Backbone of High Courts’ Rule-making Powers
Section 122 of the Code of Civil Procedure constitutes the backbone of rule-making powers conferred upon High Courts. It allows High Courts to make rules regulating their own procedure and the procedure of the Civil Courts subject to their superintendence. This includes rules regarding issues pertaining to the issuance of summons, discovery, inspection, adjournments, costs, execution of decrees, and all matters procedural.
Scope & Limitations
While section 122 empowers High Courts with significant authority, it is not without limitations. Any rules framed must be consistent with the provisions already present in the Code. The rules cannot override or contradict any concept or precept embedded in the Code. It’s important to remember that the High Court is a rule-making body under the Code, not a law-making body per se.
Case Laws and Judgments
Drawing from case law, we find important illustrations that bring more clarity to the understanding of Section 122.
Ramchandra Rao v. Ramchandra Rao
In the landmark case of Ramchandra Rao v. Ramchandra Rao, the Apex Court observed that rules made by the High Court under Section 122 are not only intra vires but also operative and binding. This further establishes the importance of the rule-making power vested in the High Courts.
Abhinandan Jha v. Dinesh Mishra
The Supreme Court, in the case of Abhinandan Jha v. Dinesh Mishra, noted that a procedural rule cannot be challenged on the grounds that it affects the rights of the parties. The purpose of such rules is “to secure an inexpensive, expeditious and effective remedy for the citizens’ grievances”.
Anand Gopal v. State of Maharashtra
In Anand Gopal v. State of Maharashtra, it was clearly stated that procedural rules are handmaids of justice and that they cannot defeat the cause of justice on grounds of mere technicality.
The rule-making power under Section 122 plays an instrumental role in regulating court procedures, ensuring an efficient and effective justice delivery system. It is subject to checks and balances to prevent its misuse, with the proviso that it can only supplement the provisions of the Code, not supplant them. Its importance has been emphasized by several judgments and it continues to be a vital clog in the wheel of justice.
Understanding the power and implications of Section 122 in their entirety requires careful study and deep legal acumen. Here at SimranLaw, we endeavour to simplify and present these complex legal provisions for our readers, enabling better understanding and fostering productive conversations.