1st, July, 2002
Ministry of Law, Justice & Company Affairs  


The Civil Procedure (Amendment) Act, 1999 (Act No. 46 of 1999) and the Civil Procedure (Amendment) Act, 2002 (Act No. 22 of 2002) comes into force with effect from today. Two notifications, to this effect, under the 1999 and 2002 Acts respectively were issued earlier in the Gazette of India.

The Chief Justice of India, Shri Justice B.N. Kirpal, in his message to both the Bench and the Bar all over the country has urged them to extend their wholehearted cooperation in the implementation of the Civil Procedure (Amendment) Act, 1999 and the Civil Procedure (Amendment) Act, 2002 in order to ensure speedy justice to the people. He was speaking at a function organized by the Bar Council of India to felicitate him.

The two amendments to the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, will bring a sigh of relief to those who have been waiting for the outcome of the civil cases pending for a long time or ages in the courts. It also seeks to compress the time frame for disposal of all civil cases within one year by setting a time limit for every stage of litigation.

The main features of the code of Civil Procedure (Amendment) Act, 1999 and the Code of Civil Procedure (Amendment) Act, 2002 include measures taken to reduce delays at pre-trial stage in terms of obligations of the plaintiff, the court are defendant.

The 2002 Amendment Act also modifies the 1999 Amendment Act following a broad consensus arrived at after consultations with the Law Commission of India, representatives of the Bar Council of India, Bar Associations, Law Officers of the Union and others.

Besides restricting adjournments to three times only, it seeks to abolish second appeal in money suits where value does not exceed Rs. 25,000. Further, the general power of the courts to extend the time prescribed in the Code is restricted to 30 days now. Earlier, the court could extend time without any limit. Besides, on the filing of revision application against the orders of a sub-ordinate court, its records shall not be called unless the High Court orders to do so specifically.

The amendments also empower the courts to refer suits in appropriate cases for conciliation and arbitration. This is intended to reduce the bulk of litigation which otherwise increases the pendency of cases in the Civil Courts.