Court pulls up state minister over ‘hasty’ judicial hearing
Declaring that quasi-judicial hearings were often “hasty and meaningless” the Bombay high court recently pulled up state cooperatives minister Harshwardhan Patil for passing orders without a proper hearing.mumbai Updated: Aug 11, 2011 00:59 IST
Declaring that quasi-judicial hearings were often “hasty and meaningless” the Bombay high court recently pulled up state cooperatives minister Harshwardhan Patil for passing orders without a proper hearing.
The court was hearing a petition filed by Oshiwara cooperative housing society, challenging an order passed by the minister, de-registering the society. The case related to a complaint filed by two erstwhile members of the society, seeking to have it de-registered. However, senior counsel PK Dhakephalkar, appearing for the society before the HC, had argued that the minister’s office passed orders without giving them a proper hearing.
Calling this an example of how quasi-judicial hearings are conducted before the state government, justice SC Dharmadhikari observed that, “routinely, orders are passed by authorities in a casual and cavalier manner, completely disregarding the orders of this court and in any event, principles of natural justice.”
The petition states that the hearing before the minister’s office was delayed for various reasons and on October 19, 2010, they received a phone call from the minister’s office, for a hearing at 3 pm. It alleges that the minister arrived at his office at 3.30pm and parties directed to make their submissions in less that a minute.
The court directed the secretary in the Department of Cooperation and Textiles to hear the case and pass the orders.