Don’t want Supreme Court to be ‘tareekh pe tareekh’ court: Justice Chandrachud

Lawyers seeking frequent adjournments invited the ire of the Supreme Court yet again on Friday with Justice D Y Chandrachud, presiding over a two-judge bench, telling a counsel who sought an adjournment: “We don’t want the Supreme Court to be ‘tareekh pe tareekh’ court.”

The court said it will only pass over the matter but not grant any adjournment.

“We will not adjourn the matter. At most, we can pass over the matter to be taken at the end of the board but you have to argue the matter. We don’t want the Supreme Court to be ‘tareekh pe tareekh’ court. We want to change this perception,” Justice Chandrachud told the counsel.

Sharing the bench with Justice Hima Kohli, he added, “This is the highest court of the land and we want certain dignity to be attached to this court.”

Justice Chandrachud had expressed similar concerns in the past too.

In July last year, the judge had told a counsel who sought adjournment: “We are not a tareekh pe tareekh court. We are a hearing court. So please argue.”

On Friday, Justice Chandrachud said while judges have to sit late in the night and wake up early to go through case files, some lawyers keep seeking adjournments. “I had to wake up at 3.30 am to read the case files. The judges are working hard but it is the lawyers, who are not willing to argue their case. This is not done.”

The “tareekh pe tareekh” question had also cropped up before Bombay High Court in December 2020, when it was hearing a plea by social media user Sunaina Holey, who challenged an FIR against her for objectionable tweets. As the hearing got prolonged, Holey tweeted using “tareekh pe tareekh”, referring to her case getting adjourned frequently.

Justice Chandrachud’s son Advocate Abhinav Chandrachud, who was defending Holey, told the court that she had since deleted the tweet. The HC bench said it does not have any problem with her saying “tareekh pe tareekh”. The court even said there was a TV programme by that name.

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