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National Institute Of Mental Health And Neuro Sciences V C Parameshwara 2004- Case Analysis

Facts of the case:
  • C Parameshwara was employed as senior pharmacist in the National institute of mental health and neuro sciences.
  • The disciplinary committee of National institute of mental health and neuro sciences, removed tge respondent under allegation of misappropriation of drugs worth around ₹ 1,80,000 and also ordered the respondent to reimburse the money in the institute's account.
  • The respondent failed to reimburse the money and in consequence of the same, the appellant filed a civil suit in the civil court of Bangalore in the year 1995.
  • While in the past, the respondent had raised an industrial dispute to the labour court at Bangalore against his removal from the job and in lieu to that the Labour court decided in favour of the respondent and set aside the order of removal.
  • The appellant when getting knowledge of that filed writ petition in the High Court of Karnataka under Article 226 of the Indian Constitution.
  • The High Court of Karnataka put stay on the execution of the judgment passed by the Labour court by an interim order.
  • In the year 2003, the respondent filed an application under sec 10 read with section 151 of the CPC, 1973 in order to seek stay on the suit filed in 1995, till the disposal of the writ petition in thr high court, which was dismissed by the civil court and therefore, the respondent filed the petition for Revision under section 115 of the civil procedure code.

National Institute Of Mental Health And Neuro Sciences V C Parameshwara

Year of case: December, 2004
Citations: AIR 2005 SC 242, 2005 (2) ALD 49 SC, 2005 (2) AWC 1865 SC, 2005 (1) CTC 156, 2005 (2) JCR 93 SC, 2005 (1) KarLJ 486, (2005) ILLJ 566 SC, 2005 (2) MhLj 1, (2005) 2 SCC 256
Appellant: National institute of mental health and neuro sciences v/s Respondent: C Parameshwara

Background
Revision under sec. 115
The Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 doesn't give revision applications a specific definition, but it has been clarified by numerous judges in their rulings as a matter of law. In the Indian judicial system, the High Court has been given the option of revision and has been given the authority to review matters that were determined by lower courts.

The Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, Section 115 (1) grants the High Court the authority to monitor and review any actions of the lower/subordinate courts in cases where:
  • If the subordinate court lacks subject-matter jurisdiction in that case
  • In the event that the subordinate court declines to exercise its jurisdiction over that matter
  • if the subordinate court does not properly exercise its authority.
However, in accordance with the section, the revision provision may only be utilised when an appeal is not possible.

Objective of the Revision
Here, the term "revision" refers to carefully, completely, and attentively going through something. The High Court has the authority to review cases since it is granted revisional jurisdiction under Section 115 of the Code of Civil Procedure. In order to guarantee the administration of justice and the maintenance of fairness, the High Court has the authority to review decisions resolved by lower courts.

Who may file an application for a revision petition?
Once the case's final judgement has been rendered and no appeal is allowed, the aggrieved party may file a revision application with the High court. However, the High Court may suo moto file a revision application in accordance with the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, if the circumstances warrant it.

Res-subjudice under section 10
Section 10 of the CPC is intended to prevent the concurrent courts from hearing two parallel cases at the same time. Such a prohibition is necessary to avoid conflicting judgments, many lawsuits, and party harassment.

According to the Supreme Court's ruling in Indian Bank v. Maharashtra State Cooperative Marketing Federation Ltd. (1998) 5 SCC 69, a lawsuit must only be stayed and not dismissed when the following criteria are met:

Two suits are available.
The subject matter at issue in both actions must be same and immediately related: In light of the cause of action, subject matter, relief, etc., it is necessary to take the identification of the matter in question into consideration. The honourable apex of CPC Section 10 would apply only if the subject matter at issue in both lawsuits is the same. The standard is whether the judgement in an earlier lawsuit would serve as res judicata in the later lawsuit, in which case the latter one must be stayed.
  • The same parties or their successors must be involved in both lawsuits.
  • In both lawsuits, parties are engaged in the same type of litigation.
  • The court where the first lawsuit was filed must be one with the authority to give the remedy requested in the second lawsuit.
  • As stated in Manohar Lal Chopra vs. Seth Hiralal 1962 AIR 527, when the aforementioned criteria is met, section 10 of the CPC becomes necessary and does not cease to be relevant on a court holding that the previously instituted suit is a vexatious or has been instituted in violation of the terms of the contract.

Issue Raised
Whether the respondent's application, dated 20.6.2003, for a stay of civil suit No. 1732/95 in the Court of City Civil Judge, Bangalore, was maintainable under Section 10 read with Section 151 CPC.

Judgement
  • The purpose of Section 10 is to prevent Courts with concurrent jurisdiction from hearing two parallel lawsuits at the same time over the same subject matter. The purpose of Section 10 is to prevent inconsistent decisions on topics that are directly and materially at issue in an earlier lawsuit from being recorded by two courts conducting concurrent trials on the same issue.

    The wording of Section 10 suggests that it only applies to lawsuits filed in civil court; it cannot be applied to lawsuits filed under any other statute. Section 10's purpose is to prevent courts with concurrent jurisdiction from hearing two parallel lawsuits between the same parties about the same topic at the same time.
     
  • The basic inquiry in determining whether to use Section 10 is whether the conclusion of the prior lawsuit would be deemed conclusive in the later lawsuit. Only when the entire subject matter of both lawsuits is similar does Section 10 apply. The phrase "the matter in issue is directly and substantially in issue" in the previously instituted lawsuit is the essential phrase in Section 10.

    In contrast to the phrases "incidentally or collaterally in issue," the phrase "directly and significantly in issue" is employed. Therefore, Section 10 would only be applicable if the subject matter of both lawsuits was the same, making each proceedings' whole subject matter the same. In the present case, due to allegations of drug misappropriation, the appellant had started disciplinary proceedings against the present respondent.

    The respondent was found guilty of alleged drug misappropriation in the aforementioned disciplinary procedures. The respondent in this case was fired based on the conclusions of the disciplinary investigation.
     
  • The two proceedings' topics are wholly independent from one another. The two proceedings' causes of action are independent from one another. The damage incurred by the appellant as a result of the medicine scarcity is the basis for the filing of the aforementioned lawsuit. On the other side, the management has contested the Labour Court's decision allowing the respondent's reinstatement in the aforementioned writ case No. 24348/02.
     
  • The proceedings before the Labour Court cannot be compared to the proceedings before the Civil Court because Section 10 CPC only refers to a suit brought in a civil court. They are not concurrent jurisdictional courts. Section 10 CPC does not apply to the facts of this case under the circumstances.
     
  • The High Court noted in the impugned judgement that it was preferable to halt the Civil Court's adoption of the decree because the appellant's writ petition No. 24348/02 challenging the Labour Court's decision was still continuing in the High Court and the High Court was superior to the Civil Court. It should be noted at this point that the respondent filed an application for a stay of the ongoing trial in the City Civil Court of Bangalore pursuant to Section 10 read with Section 151 CPC.

    Since the management's writ petition was submitted in a completely different and unrelated matter from the lawsuit it filed in the Civil Court, we believe that the High Court erred in ruling that the management had erred in telling the trial Court not to continue with the decree's drafting.

Analysis
Section 10 of the Civil Procedure Code 1908, states that a subsequent suit cannot be tried in any court in India having jurisdiction to grant the relief claimed or in any court beyond the limits of India established or constituted by the central government and having like jurisdiction if a suit is already pending before a court.

Here, the stress is upon the word any court. It is nowhere written 'a court of concurrent jurisdiction' or 'the court having like nature' as stated in the above case. It has been 18 years but the words of the code have not been amended yet. Despite of the fact India accept precedents as a source of law, amendment of laws is necessary, judiciary interpret the law but it is the duty of the parliament to amend the laws as according to the interpretation stated by the courts, in order to remove discrepancy and promote clear understanding.

This vagueness in the law tends to waste the time of court. There exist a great confusion in the wordings of section 10 and the verdict of this case related to the scope of section 10 of CPC, 1908.

Written By:
  1. Pallavi Tripathi
  2. Shashwat Ramesh Kumar

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