Imposition of exemplary costs is a necessary instrument to be deployed to weed out and to prevent the filing of frivolous cases

Supreme Court in the case of Dnyandeo Sabaji Naik and Anr. v. Mrs. Pradnya Prakash Khadekar and Ors [SLP (C) Nos. 25331-33 of 2015], a three Judge Bench observed that the Supreme Court must view with disfavour any attempt by a litigant to abuse the process.

While observing that Courts across the legal system – this Court not being an
exception – are choked with litigation and “frivolous and groundless filings constitute
a serious menace to the administration of justice” with the process of dispensing
justice being “misused by the unscrupulous to the detriment of the legitimate”, it was
held that “this tendency can be curbed only if courts across the system adopt an
institutional approach which penalizes such behavior. Liberal access to justice does
not mean access to chaos and indiscipline. A strong message must be conveyed
that courts of justice will not be allowed to be disrupted by litigative strategies
designed to profit from the delays of the law. Unless remedial action is taken by all
courts here and now our society will breed a legal culture based on evasion instead
of abidance. It is the duty of every court to firmly deal with such situations. The
imposition of exemplary costs is a necessary instrument which has to be deployed to
weed out, as well as to prevent the filing of frivolous cases. It is only then that the
courts can set apart time to resolve genuine causes and answer the concerns of
those who are in need of justice. Imposition of real time costs is also necessary to
ensure that access to courts is available to citizens with genuine grievances.
Otherwise, the doors would be shut to legitimate causes simply by the weight of
undeserving cases which flood the system.”[On 1st March, 2017]