Delhi HC to transfer over 12,000 cases to lower courts under amended law
The Delhi High Court will soon transfer thousands of cases, mostly related to property disputes, to the district courts of the Capital as the President has signed into law a bill which enhances the pecuniary jurisdiction of civil courts from the existing Rs 20 lakh to Rs 2 crore.
The Delhi High Court (Amendment) Bill, 2015, earlier passed by Rajya Sabha, was adopted by a voice vote by the Lower House last week.
A Law Ministry gazette notification said the President has given his assent to the bill on August 10.
The amended Act will allow transferring of civil suits, valued up to Rs 2 crore, to the district courts in Delhi from the high court.
Pecuniary jurisdiction refers to the jurisdiction of a court over a suit based on the amount or value of its subject matter. According to an estimate put before the parliamentary committee which examined the bill, there are over 12,000 cases which will stand transferred to the lower courts. The Bill was introduced by the UPA government in Rajya Sabha in February 2014 and referred to the Standing Committee on Law and Personnel, which cleared it.
The NDA government approved the measure without any changes and the measure was passed by the Upper House in the Budget Session. Replying to the debate on the bill, Law Minister D V Sadananda Gowda had said that the measure would considerably reduce the workload of the Delhi High Court.
"People staying in far-flung areas will also get relief as they won't have to come to the High Court," he had said.
Lower court lawyers in Delhi were on a strike till recently demanding expeditious passage of the Bill, while those of the high court struck work for about six days from July 22 opposing the measure.
“The Chief Justice of the High Court of Delhi may transfer any suit or other proceedings which is or are pending in the High Court immediately before the commencement of this Act to such subordinate court in the National Capital Territory of Delhi as would have jurisdiction to entertain such suit or proceedings had such suit or proceedings been instituted or filed for the first time after such commencement,” reads the Act.