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Report No. 79

6. Arguments and judgment in appeals

(40) A comparison of the English, American and Canadian system of arguments is made.1 The American system of written briefs was not favoured in England by the Evershed Committee, nor has the idea of dispensing with oral arguments found favour with Commonwealth jurisdiction.2

It would not be desirable to give up the system of oral arguments in India.3 Neither the Law Commission (in its 14th Report) nor the High Courts Arrears Committee, presided over by Mr. Justice Shah, favoured the substitution of written "briefs" in place of oral arguments.4

(41) However, a concise statement of arguments filed in the High Courts before the commencement of the oral arguments would reduce the time taken by oral arguments and improve their quality,5 and is recommended. Doing away with oral arguments is not contemplated.6

(42) Imposition of a time limit on arguments is not favoured. It may result in miscarriage of justice.7

(43) The scheme recommended (as to filing a concise statement of arguments) may be tried in the High Courts in regard to regular first appeals and petitions under Article 226 of the Constitution other than those seeking habeas corpus.8 The scheme will, however, be successful only if the Bar and the Bench work it in its true spirit.9

(44) Judgment should be pronounced within a reasonable time. It should be pronounced within a week of the conclusion of arguments, and the interval should not, in any case, exceed one month. A statement of cases in which judgments have not been pronounced within two months of the arguments should be circulated.10

(45) When dismissing a regular second appeal or a civil revision, the judges should write short judgments only.11

(46) Certain points concerning judgments discussed in detail in the 77th Report may also be seen.12

1. Paras. 6.1 to 6.11.

2. Paras. 6.12 to 6.16.

3. Paras. 6.17 to 6.20.

4. Paras. 6.17 to 6.21.

5. Para. 6.22.

6. Para. 6.23.

7. Para. 6.24.

8. Para. 6.25.

9. Para. 6.26.

10. Paras. 6.27 and 6.28.

11. Para. 6.29.

12. Para. 6.30.

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