The Sindh High Court (SHC) has observed that all the subordinate courts working within territorial jurisdiction of the province shall ensure that principles of natural justice and legal mandate given to them under statute shall not be violated while deciding the cases.
Headed by Justice Aqeel Ahmed Abbasi, a division bench made these observations in its verdict on a petition that raised serious objections to the verdict handed down by a banking court in a lawsuit.
It noted: “The courts, subordinate to SHC, including banking, labour, customs and anti-corruption courts and special tribunals functioning within the territorial jurisdiction of province are required to pass well-reasoned and speaking orders after providing complete opportunity of hearing to litigant parties strictly in accordance with law and also the requirement of smooth administration of justice equity and fair play.” It added that its compliance would substantially reduce unnecessary litigations which may follow the sketchy and bald judicial orders.
The court set aside the verdict of a banking court that had rejected Balochistan Glass Limited’s leave to defend to an application in a lawsuit of a private bank for non-payment of liabilities. It also remanded matter to the banking court with direction to decide it afresh after providing complete opportunity to both the parties and thereafter pass a well-reasoned speaking order preferably within a period of two months from the date of receipt of this order.
The petitioner, Balochistan Glass Limited, a glass manufacturing company, approached the SHC against a verdict issued by the presiding officer of Banking Court No 2. The counsel for petitioner submitted that the adjudicator rejected the leave to defend an application filed under Section 10 of the Financial Institutions (Recovery of Finances) Ordinance of 2001 without considering his petitioner’s contention.
The counsel said that the presiding officer of banking court dismissed client’s plea in a summary manner through a stereotypical order without proper application of mind. “Unfortunately, the presiding officer of banking court had set up a order template and was using the same in all the cases which is not just violation of the principles of natural justice but also is defiance of Article 10-A of the constitution,” he added.
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