Srinagar: In a sympathetic observation, the High Court of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh on Tuesday said that “lengthy litigation” has caused personal suffering to the litigant and this has been due to misuse of the “judicial process”.
The court while taking note of a litigation over a property suit running since the year 1983, recorded that over the last four decades the litigation has not yielded any fruitful results for the party who first approached the court with a suit for ejecting the occupants.
In 1981, Qazi Abdul Rashid, a property holder of two shops situated at Jawahar Nagar in Srinagar, leased out his property to some persons for a year, but after the expiry of the lease, the property was not handed over to him, which led him to file a suit before the trial court for eviction, a claim which the court upheld.
However, appeals were made by the tenants before the appellate court against the eviction order, but the tribunal dismissed the appeal.
On 31 July, 2019, the tenants filed an appeal before the High Court seeking to set aside the trial court order against their eviction.
The High Court while hearing the case and perusing the record noted that for almost four decades the appellants have continued their possession over the suit property by use of judicial process.
“The respondent who had come to the court almost four decades before is exactly where he was at that point of time. His need to use and occupy his personal property is still being debated because of the lengthy litigation. His need must have gone to dust during the long interregnum. However, the dust needs to be removed to save it from getting completely buried underneath,” Justice Magrey said.
While dismissing the appeal of the tenants, the court upheld the trial court judgement and decree of the appellate tribunal.
The court also said that since the appellants (tenants) are in use and occupation of the suit property for almost half a century, they do not deserve any further leeway in vacating the suit property.
“The appellants, therefore, shall vacate and handover the possession of the suit property to the respondent within a period of two weeks,” Justice Magrey directed.
In the meantime, the court said the respondent (property holder) shall be free to take recourse of execution proceedings if the appellants fail to vacate and handover the possession of the suit property within the time allotted.
“The Civil Second Appeal is, therefore, dismissed on the above lines. The record be returned to the respective courts,” the court directed.