By Bizodisha Bureau, Bhubaneswar, June 27, 2024: The Supreme Court on Thursday came down heavily on the Odisha government for filing appeal in a matter even after being aware that a similar appeal was already dismissed in 2023.

The State government came under fire when a vacation bench of Justices Abhay Oka and Rajesh Bindal heard an appeal by the State against a 2022 decision of the Orissa High Court which had refused to condone a delay of over four years in filing a writ petition before it.

The appeal before the top court was also filed after a delay of 512 days.

When the matter was taken up on Thursday, Justice Bindal was quick to note that the decision of the High Court not to condone the delay is probably right.

When Advocate Saileshwar Yadav, appearing for the State, informed the Court that a similar appeal was dismissed by the top court in 2023, a miffed Justice Oka said,

“Is it not correct now that the State of Odisha with full intent has filed this appeal even after being well aware that a similar appeal against the decision of High Court not to condone delay was dismissed? Why have you filed a similar appeal?”

“It is the State that is burdening the court unnecessarily. It is not you (the advocate) who is at fault but the ones in the government who authorised this appeal,” Justice Bindal told the lawyer.

The Court eventually proceeded to dismiss the appeal preferred by the State and imposed costs of ₹50,000 to be deposited with the Odisha State Legal Services Authority.

The Court heard another matter today, where an appeal was filed by the Odisha government after a delay. Justice Oka observed during the hearing,

“I and my brother are sitting for roughly 4 days now and we have seen a total of 36 appeals from State of Odisha with delay. Is there a practice in State to file appeals with delay only and not before that?” Justice Oka questioned.

We have to take permission from various departments and then only file the appeal, the lawyer responded.

The Court eventually condoned the delay and issued notice in the matter after finding that a substantial question of law was raised.

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