BIG News: Supreme Court agrees to extends limitation period to file cases across the country in view of COVID-19

The Supreme Court on Monday agreed to relax the limitation period to file cases under all general and special laws across the country in view of the surge in COVID-19 cases [In Re: Congizance for Extension of Limitation].

A Bench of Chief Justice of India NV Ramana and Justices L Nageswara Rao and Surya Kant said that it is agreeing to the request by Supreme Court Advocates-on-Record Association to suspend the limitation period to file cases.

“We are accepting the prayer of SCAORA,” CJI Ramana said.

A detailed order in this regard will be uploaded on the Supreme Court website later which will contain further details like the period for which the relaxation will apply.

Attorney General (AG) KK Venugopal requested that the relaxation should be from October 2, 2021 since the original order of March 2020 was in force until October 1, 2021.

The Bench then requested the Attorney General to submit a note in this regard.

“I have already sent one,” the AG responded.

The Court then said that it will look into the same before passing its order.

The SCAORA had sought restoration of a March 2020, order of the top court whereby the Court had taken up the issue suo motu, directing the suspension of the limitation period in view of the difficulties faced by the litigants in approaching the courts amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

On March 23, 2020, the Supreme Court had directed the suspension of the limitation period running under all general and special laws, with effect from March 15, 2020, in view of the difficulties faced by the litigants in approaching the courts amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

Thereafter, the said order was extended from time to time.

However, on March 8, 2021, the Court had recalled that order after a dip in COVID cases.

But the devastating second wave had hit and SCAORA had then approached the Supreme Court seeking suspension of limitation periods in view of the surge.

The Supreme Court had then on April 27, 2021 ordered that the limitation period be extended.

However, this extension also came to an end on October 2, 2021 after the COVID cases dipped.

The SCAORA moved the top court again last week to revive the March 2020 order in view of surge in COVID cases and impending third wave.