Kolkata: The City Civil Court (Amendment) Bill, 2013 providing for the enhancement of the pecuniary jurisdiction of the City Civil Court, Kolkata, from Rs 10 Lakh to Rs one crore was passed in the West Bengal Assembly on Monday.
After the bill was passed through a division of votes, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said that the amendment was necessary to enable poor people to get justice.
With the amendement, the Calcutta High Court and the City Civil Court would have concurrent jurisdiction over suits and proceedings of a civil nature whose value exceeds Rs 10 lakh, but not exceed Rs one crore.
Opposition leader in the Assembly Surya Kanta Mishra opposed the clause providing for concurrent jurisdiction of suits of civil nature in the Calcutta Hight Court and the City Civil Court, saying in no other state this provision existed.
Justifying the clause of concurrent jurisdiction, the Chief Minister said that now options were kept open in the interest of the litigant public to move the case either in the Calcutta High Court or the City Civil Court, Kolkata for the property valued above Rs 10 Lakh and upto Rs one crore.
The wealthy litigants would now be able to move the High Court, but the poor litigants would have the option to move their cases in the City Civil Court, the Chief Minister explained.
While replying to protest by the Leader of the Opposition Surya Kanta Mishra, the Chief Minister said that her government was committed to serve the poor and she did not care about what the opposition parties were saying about the amendment bill.
Replying to the bill, state Law Minister Chandrima Bhattacharya explained that since 1990, there had been a steep fall in the monetary value and therefore it was necessary to upgrade the pecuniary value to Rs one crore.
An amendment to the provisions of sub-section(2) of Section 5 and the Second Schedule of the City Civil Court Act 1953 was also mentioned in support of the concurrent jurisdiction.