In India, if a party is not satisfied with the judgment or order of the Supreme
Court, they have the option to file a review petition as a legal remedy. The
review petition is presented before the same court that issued the original
judgment. According to Article 137 of the Constitution of India, the Supreme
Court has the authority to review any of its judgments or orders.
However, this power is subject to Rules established by the Supreme Court under
Article 145 and also subject to any laws enacted by parliament. Additionally, as
per the Supreme Court Rules (2013 - XLVII.2), a review petition must be filed
within 30 days from the judgment or order for which a review is being sought.
The petition must be presented before the same Bench that delivered the original
Grounds for Review
A review petition can only be filed on specific grounds. There are several
grounds for filing a review petition in court, but it's crucial to understand
their strict definitions and not misuse them to reargue the case or introduce
The main grounds include identifying clear errors in the record, presenting
previously unavailable evidence that is both new and significant, or providing a
compelling reason for review based on specific circumstances or if there is an
apparent mistake or error on the record itself or if there is any other valid
reason, as stated by the Supreme Court in the case of Union of India v. Sandur
Manganese & Iron Ores Ltd decided on April 23, 2013.
A review petition must typically be filed within 30 days of the judgment or
order being reviewed. It's important to understand that anyone who is affected
by a court ruling has the right to request a review, not just the parties
directly involved in the case. Although rare, the Supreme Court might permit an
extension of time limit for filing the review petition if there are significant
reasons to justify it.
Procedure for Filing
To file a review petition, it is advisable to seek assistance from an
experienced advocate or lawyer who can help draft and submit the petition. The
petition should clearly outline the grounds for review and include legal
arguments and supporting precedents. Additionally, all required court fees must
be paid before filing the review petition.
Consideration by the Court
In general, review petitions in court are typically considered without oral
arguments from lawyers. Instead, they are reviewed "through circulation" by the
judges in their chambers. There are exceptional cases where an oral hearing may
be permitted. For instance, in a 2014 case, the Supreme Court decided that all
review petitions concerning death penalty cases would be heard in open court by
a panel of three judges.
Additionally, review petitions are usually heard by the same combination of
judges who issued the original order or judgment being reviewed. The Supreme
Court will assess the petition to determine if it qualifies for review. In cases
where the arguments lack substantial merit, the petition may be rejected.
However, if the review petition is accepted, the Supreme Court will thoroughly
reevaluate its initial judgment considering the presented evidence and
arguments. Depending on the strength of the review, the court may choose to
modify, uphold, or overturn its original ruling. Conversely, if the review
petition is denied, the original judgment remains unchanged.
If a party remains unsatisfied with the result of the review petition, there are
other legal options available. They can consider filing a curative petition in
exceptional cases or pursuing remedies provided by other laws. It's important to
note that review petitions are not commonly used as a way to challenge court
decisions. They are specifically intended for cases where there are clear errors
or strong justifications for reconsidering the judgment.
For submitting a review petition, it's recommended to consult with experienced
attorneys who have knowledge of Supreme Court procedures. The rules and
requirements can be intricate and differ based on each unique case.
Review petitions are not heard in open court. Instead, they are reviewed by
judges privately in their chambers through a process known as "circulation."
During a review petition case, lawyers typically present their arguments through
written submissions rather than oral arguments. It's an opportunity for the
accused side to seek justice from the Supreme Court even after declaration of
the final court judgment.
Written By: Md.Imran Wahab
, IPS, IGP, Provisioning, West Bengal
Email: [email protected]
, Ph no: 9836576565