High Court disposes PIL against Holiday Family Courts
Chennai: The Madras High Court today disposed a PIL which sought to declare functioning of Holiday Family Courts as illegal and ultra vires to the Family Courts Act.
A Division Bench comprising Justice N Paul Vasanthakumar and Justice M Sathyanarayanan, which recorded the opinions by advocates for restricting the Holiday Family Courts to Saturdays only, directed the Registrar General to consider the matter administratively.
The petitioners contended that the functioning of the Holiday Family Courts at Chennai has no legal basis and by not declaring holidays/vacation to such courts in advance, advocates engaged as conciliator/amicus curiae were affected.
V Vijayasankar, appearing for Registrar General, submitted that the high court introduced Holiday Family Courts for the benefit of litigants and there was no illegality in it.
During the pendency of the petition, the high court on its administrative side considered the request of the Women Lawyers Association and decided to restrict the sittings of Holiday Family Courts at Chennai on Saturdays only with effect from March 11, 2014, he submitted.
The bench said "by a reading of Article 235 of the Constitution read with the objects of the Family Courts Act, we are of firm view that the jurisdiction of this court to notify that Family Courts in Chennai will function on holidays is having legal sanction."
"Only for speedy settlement of disputes and considering the fact that in Chennai, large number of persons filing family disputes were in employment, this court thought fit that functioning of Family Courts on holidays would be more convenient for the litigants and it was also welcomed by the litigants and also proved as successful from the data furnished by the Registry regarding the number of cases disposed in Holiday Family Courts.
The counsel appearing for the petitioner expressed their satisfaction for restricting the holiday family courts to Saturdays only.
"This court is of the view that the petitioner and the associations can submit representation to that effect to this court on administrative side," the bench said.
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