SC: High Court registry cannot answer the maintainability of a petition

The Hon’ble Supreme Court, on 29th March 2019, in the matter of P. Surendran v. State by Inspector of Police, observed that a High Court registry cannot reject the numbering/registration of a petition on grounds of maintainability. Deciding the maintainability is a judicial power which cannot be delegated to the registry.

The Hon’ble Supreme Court observed that:

The nature of judicial function is well settled under our legal system. Judicial function is the duty to act judicially, which invests with that character. (Para 9)

The distinguishing factor which separates administrative and judicial function is the duty and authority to act judicially. (Para 9)

Judicial function may thus be defined as the process of considering the proposal, opposition and then arriving at a decision upon the same on consideration of facts and circumstances according to the rules of reason and justice. (Para 9)

The act of numbering a petition is purely administrative. (Para 9)

High Court Registry cannot answer the maintainability of a petition, when the same is in the realm of the Court, because it is a judicial power which the registry cannot exercise. (This inference has been drawn on the basis of Para 10)

As the power of judicial function cannot be delegated to the Registry, therefore an order rejecting the numbering/registration of the Petition, by the High Court Registry on the basis of maintainability is not sustainable in the eyes of law.(This inference has been drawn on the basis of Para 10)

Copy of order: Order_29-Mar-2019

-Tushar Kaushik  

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