The Gujarat High Court stated on Wednesday that courts are for litigants and that any challenges judges or attorneys may encounter should not put litigants at risk.
Chief Justice Aravind Kumar and Justice Ashutosh J. Shastri’s division bench stated that it encourages people to approach courts and not be afraid to do so. “We want people to approach the courts. Our difficulties cannot cause difficulties to the litigants. It is for them that these courts are meant,” the bench observed.
The statement was made as Senior Advocate Yatin Oza was being compelled by the bench to continue a special civil application (SCA) that had been pending since 2005 after lunch. The attorney asked the bench to allow him to argue the matter before the break because he had another court appearance scheduled for after the break.
The bench also expressed disbelief that the case had been on hold since 2005 throughout the hearing. “It is appalling to note that even 2005 matters are pending. This is very very shocking. More shocking is the fact that directions of this court are ignored,” the Chief Justice remarked.
The CJ has previously discussed the open cases in the State in his remarks. The CJ noted on Tuesday that despite the high number of cases still pending, people shouldn’t lose faith in the legal system, therefore it was crucial to get rid of the growing backlog of cases that had been unresolved for more than 30 years.
Nearly 10 judicial officers received notices of contempt of court on December 19, 2022, from the bench chaired by CJ Kumar for failing to resolve a case that had been pending since 1977. The bench of CJ Kumar had earlier highlighted in November 2022 that over 137 cases have been pending before the High Court for more than 40 years. Therefore, he stated that these old issues will be resolved first.