Mumbai: In a first of its kind incident, a
litigant sent a cheque of Rs 20,000 to the Bombay High Court
seeking a hearing of one hour in return, prompting a division
bench to ask him to apologise in writing.
Anil Tilotekar, a resident of Pune, sent the cheque to
the High Court Registry seeking to buy time. He also wrote a
letter and sent an e-mail to the Court for an early hearing.
Taking a serious note of his conduct, a bench of Justices
P B Majumdar and Amjad Sayed observed: "How can such a request
be made? In case, if someone deposits Rs one crore should we
hear him for the full day?" they asked.
The judges felt that this sort of request for `buying the
time of court` amounted to interfering with the administration
of justice. They threatened to take contempt action against
Tilotekar if he failed to tender an apology.
Tilotekar apologised verbally, saying he was unmindful of
the law and had written the letter and sent the cheque due to
However, the judges asked him to tender the apology in an
affidavit by January 27.
The Court was hearing an appeal in an arbitration case
filed in 2004 by Tilotekar`s wife against a company.
In the letter, the litigant wrote, "I am a senior citizen
and have come to the court from Pune. I am unable to walk
properly and am under treatment for the same. Please allot me
a particular date and arrange to put the matter high on board
so that I am saved the agony of going through the
uncertainties and travelling problem."