SC agrees to extend the period of limitation upto 28th Feb 2022 for all proceedings
In March, 2020, this Court took Suo Motu cognizance of the difficulties that might be faced by the litigants in filing petitions/ applications/ suits/ appeals/ all other quasi proceedings within the period of limitation prescribed under the general law of limitation or under any special laws (both Central and/or State) due to the outbreak of the COVID19 pandemic.
On 23.03.2020, the Hon SC had directed extension of the period of limitation in all proceedings before Courts/Tribunals including this Court w.e.f. 15.03.2020 till further orders. On 08.03.2021, the order dated 23.03.2020 was brought to an end, permitting the relaxation of period of limitation between 15.03.2020 and 14.03.2021. While doing so, it was made clear that the period of limitation would start from 15.03.2021.
Thereafter, due to a second surge in COVID19 cases, the Supreme Court Advocates on Record Association (SCAORA)
intervened in the Suo Motu proceedings by filing Miscellaneous Application No. 665 of 2021 seeking restoration of the order dated 23.03.2020 relaxing limitation. The aforesaid Miscellaneous Application No.665 of 2021 was disposed of by
this Court vide Order dated 23.09.2021, wherein this Court extended the period of limitation in all proceedings before the Courts/Tribunals including this Court w.e.f 15.03.2020 till 02.10.2021.
The present Miscellaneous Application has been filed by the Supreme Court Advocates on Record Association in the context of the spread of the new variant of the COVID19 and the drastic surge in the number of COVID cases across the country.
Considering the prevailing conditions, the applicants are seeking the following:
i. allow the present application by restoring the order dated 23.03.2020 passed by this Hon’ble Court in Suo
Motu Writ Petition (C) NO. 3 of 2020 ; and
ii. allow the present application by restoring the order dated 27.04.2021 passed by this Hon’ble Court in M.A.
no. 665 of 2021 in Suo Motu Writ Petition (C) NO. 3 of 2020; and
iii. pass such other order or orders as this Hon’ble Court may deem fit and proper.
Taking into consideration the arguments advanced by learned counsel and the impact of the surge of the virus on public health and adversities faced by litigants in the prevailing conditions, The Hon SC has directed that the period from 15.03.2020 till 28.02.2022 shall stand excluded for the purposes of limitation as may be prescribed under any general or special laws in respect of all judicial or quasi judicial proceedings.