Drafting and Pleading

Mind your Language when you are drafting a pleading: MHC

It is a primary duty of Legal Practitioners to be jealous in guarding the prestige of Courts and in maintaining dignity, decorum and decency in Courts. Nothing, whatever should be done which may bring a proceeding to ridicule or to run a Court into a platform for controversy of any kind, except disputes relating to, rights, duties and liabilities arising from the Constitution or from the law and procedure established thereunder.

(1960) JabLJ 86

MADHYA PRADESH HIGH COURT (GWALIOR BENCH)

SINGLE BENCH

( Before : Shiv Dayal Shrivastava, J )

TULSIRAM Vs. RAMCHARANLAL

C. Rev. No. 172 of 1957

Decided on : 30-09-1959

Civil Procedure Code, 1908 (CPC) – Section 115
Counsel for Appearing Parties

Motilal Gupta, for the Appellant; P.L. Inamdar, for the Respondent

ORDER

Shivdayal J.

1. This revision is a type of its own. The plaintiff’s suit is for issuance of an injunction on the ground that the defendants opened two new spouts which obstructed their right of easement and also caused nuisance. When the defendants filed their written statement, exception was taken by the learned Civil Judge Second class Gohad to the language used in the written statement and directed the defendants to correct it and to pay Rs. 10/-as adjournment costs. It is against that order that this revision application was filed on November 1957 and it has now come be fore me for hearing. The progress of the suit was obstructed by this revision.

2. The written statement is in Hindi script and apart from Urdu words, English words are also used. The grievance of Shri Motilal Gupta is that no objection could be taken to the use of Urdu or English words. If it were merely that, I would have set aside the order of the trial Judge because a Court cannot insist on a particular kind of Hindi to be used. The choice of words is also to be left to the draftsman. But it is unchallengeable that language of a pleading must be chaste, sober and dignified.

3. I would like to quote here a few sentences used in the written statement:–

4. The insistence of Shri Gupta is that appropriate Hindi equivalents of English legal terms are not known and further that there is no law which accords recognition to any English Hindi Dictionary. It is also urged that Hindi should be enriched by absorption of words of other languages. I am really at a loss to understand why these things should be dragged into law Courts.

5. I am filled with uneasiness when a look at the written statement gives me the impression that is was drawn in that fashion deliberately (a) either with the object of initiating a debate on what “Hindi” as the Court language should be according to the personal notions of the draftsman or (b) with the intention to ridicule Hindi” as too poor to provide appropriate equivalents to such words of the other languages as were desired to be used. If either of these impressions is correct, oven to. some degree, the spirit behind it is not commendable. It must be remembered that a law Court does not provide a forum for each thing. It is only desirable that political controversies remain outside the Court precincts. They can be fully discussed from other platforms.

6. If the language employed in this written statement was meant to make an exhibition of the draftsman’s knowledge of several languages, it was forgotten that it also demonstrated an extreme poverty of his vocabulary. I personally do not think that this kind of attitude earned any admiration or credit for him. However, the fact remains that the type of language which is. used in the written statement, does not accord with the decorum in the Court nor with the sanctity of pleadings, Such a non-seriousness as is reflected in this written statement must be discouraged. May I put to him, who drew this written statement, what his feeling would be if in the Hindi script it were written:

meaning that ‘the defendants never discharged water from these spouts in these ten years’. Such an unwholesome mixture of several languages would, to say the least, make it a laughing stock.

7. If the draftsman so elected, it was permissible to have drawn the entire pleading in English. But the language used in this written statement is neither English nor Urdu nor Hindi; something peculiar has been produced,

8. I regard it a primary duty of Legal Practitioners to be jealous in guarding the prestige of Courts and in maintaining dignity, decorum and decency in Courts. Nothing, whatever should be done which may bring a proceeding to ridicule or to run a Court into a platform for controversy of any kind, except disputes relating to, rights, duties and liabilities arising from the Constitution or from the law and procedure established thereunder.

9. I do not see any ground for interfering in revision u/s 115 of the Code of Civil Procedure. It is in consequence dismissed with costs. The record shall be returned within three days. The parties shall appear before the trial Judge on October 14, 1959, when the defendant shall file the amended written statement in compliance with the order under revision