‘Not maintainable’: SC rejects plea to exclude lockdown period for calculating limitation for cheque

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Updated: June 02, 2020 8:48 PM

A bench headed by Justice R Banumathi, which heard the matter through video-conferencing, said that the issue raised in the plea relates to "policy decisions" and the court cannot issue such direction.

The apex court dismissed the plea “as not maintainable”.

The Supreme Court Tuesday dismissed a plea seeking a direction to exclude the time period of COVID-19 lockdown for calculating the limitation for presentation of cheque or demand draft as directed by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in November 2011. In its November 4, 2011 directive, the RBI had said that “with effect from April 1, 2012, banks should not make payment of cheques/drafts/pay orders/banker’s cheques bearing that date or any subsequent date, if they are presented beyond the period of three months from the date of such instrument”.

A bench headed by Justice R Banumathi, which heard the matter through video-conferencing, said that the issue raised in the plea relates to “policy decisions” and the court cannot issue such direction. “In this writ petition filed under Article 32 of the Constitution of India, the petitioner-in-person seeks relief to exclude the time period of lockdown for calculating the limitation for presentation of cheque/demand draft as directed by the Reserve Bank of India vide notification dated November 4, 2011,” the bench, also comprising Justices Indu Malhotra and Aniruddha Bose, said. “In our considered view, this is the policy decisions to be taken up by the Reserve Bank of India regarding which the court cannot issue any direction,” the bench said in its order. The apex court dismissed the plea “as not maintainable”. The nation-wide lockdown had started on March 25 amid the spread of coronavirus pandemic.

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