Observing that the confidence in the minds of the litigants regarding judicial functions would be shaken, if the vacate stay petitions are not listed within the prescribed time schedule, the Madras high court has directed the Registry of Madurai Bench of Madras high court to adhere to 2016 order as well as the consequential circular issued by the Registrar General of the Madras high court dated October 1, 2018, relating to time schedule for filing vacate stay petitions, counter affidavits and listing of the cases, in all the petitions which all are now pending.
Justice S.M. Subramaniam gave the directive while dismissing a petition from S.Thirumalaikumarasamy, challenging his transfer order and to direct the authorities to permit him to continue to work as assistant at the district library office, Theni district.
The judge said the director of Public Libraries issued a transfer order in proceedings dated December 10, 2010 transferring the petitioner from district library office, Theni to the office of the Director of Public Libraries, Chennai, on administrative grounds. The said transfer was under challenge in the present petition and pursuant to the interim order of stay granted in this petition, the petitioner has been allowed to continue in the office of the district library, Theni and working as such for the past more than eight-and-half years.
“It is unfortunate situation where the interim order of stay was obtained by the petitioner and he is continuing in the same post and in the same office for more than eight-and-half years, in spite of the fact that the order of transfer was issued on administrative grounds”, the judge added.The judge said the Principal Bench of the Madras high court had passed an order on September 26, 2018 prescribing time limit for scrutinizing the vacate stay petitions and listing the petitions for hearing. Similarly for fixed time limit for filing counter affidavits.
Pursuant thereto, the Registrar General of the Madras high court issued a circular dated October 1, 2018 giving instructions on the time-limit prescribed by the Madras high court.
The Registrar General in unambiguous terms has stated that the instructions shall be scrupulously adhered to. The copy of the circular was communicated to all the registrars, officers and section heads of the Madras High court as well as its Madurai bench. So also, the copy was also communicated to all the appeal examiners, posting clerks as well as record keepers. In respect of the Madras High court order and the consequential circular issued by the Registrar General of the Madras high court, it was found that no effective steps have been taken by the Registry of the Madurai bench of Madras high court for listing the vacate stay petitions, which were numbered long back. In the present case on hand, the vacate stay petition was numbered during the year 2012 and the said vacate stay petition filed by the department has not even been posted for hearing at least once for past seven years. “It is an unfortunate situation that the circular was issued on October 1, 2018.”...