5 examples of what is and what is not “sufficient cause within the meaning of section 5 of the Limitation Act , 1963
The following are some of the examples of what is and what is not “sufficient cause”:
A mere plea of appellant’s illness is not a sufficient cause for filing an appeal beyond time unless it is shown that the appellate was utterly disabled to attend any duty. High fever, attended with delirium by reason of which the applicant was absolutely confined to bed in consequence of which the application for review was delayed by four days, was a sufficient cause for excusing the delay of those days. (Gouri Shankar vs. Kashi Nath, A. L. J. 1934 All. 367).
2. Mistaken Legal adviser:
A mistaken advice given by a legal practitioner may, in the circumstances of a particular case, give rise to sufficient cause within the meaning of section 5, though there is certainly no general doctrine which saves from the result of wrong advice (Rajendra Bahadur vs. Rajeshwar Bali, A. I. R. 1937 P. C. 276).
A mistake on the part of the counsel if made bona fide is sufficient cause. The mistake must be such as may be made by a pleader of experience. If the mistake is not bona fide, or if the council has not acted carefully, the delay will not be excused.
In cases where a suitor has consulted a legal adviser and such advice is either negligently given or as a result of gross ignorance or want of legal skill, he cannot come to court and ask for indulgence on that ground. (Raj Malik vs. Susanto Sen., A. I. R. 1951 Simla 209). See also Badri Narain vs. Chandammal, A. I. R. Rajasthan 2.
3. Mistaken View of Law:
Ignorance of law is no excuse and so not a sufficient cause for condonation. (Hadi Ali vs. Amir Bux 1950 R. D. 142). If however, the mistake is honest and induced by erroneous advice of competent lawyer it will be sufficient cause. (Narsingha Charan Nandy vs. Trigunanand Jhakhoware (1938) I. L. R. 17 Pat. 507).
4. Poverty, Minority and Purda:
Neither the poverty of the appellant nor the fact that she is a pardanashin lady would constitute a sufficient cause. The infants also do not stand on any higher footing if their guardians are negligent or careless; and any delay caused by their guardians will not be excused as such.
Imprisonment in a criminal jail may be a sufficient cause and the time spent in jail may be deducted.
6. Defective Vakalatnama:
Where a party intending to engage a pleader executes a vakalatnama but by a pure mistake omits to mention his name in the said vakalatnama and the pleader in his turn fails to endorse his acceptance and the mistake are due to pure inadvertence or accident and do not proceed from any dishonest intention there is sufficient cause for accepting a tresh vakalatnama complete in every respect after the expiry of the period of limitation for the appeal. (Mohd. Qamar Shah Khan v. Mohd. Salamat AM Khan, 1938 A.L.J. 394).