Defaulting party needs to satisfy the Court on grounds of default on his part; appeal against ex-parte order dismissed

Court of Appeal of the Democratic Socialist Republic of SriLanka: A Single Judge Bench comprising of M.M.A. Gafoor, J. dismissed an appeal against the order of the district court filed under Section 754 of the Civil Procedure Code.

Appellant filed a petition to set aside the ex-parte judgment entered against him followed with evidence regarding his absence from the court which were not only inconsistent but he also failed to prove the same consequently questioning their credibility.

The High Court was of the view that a party who relies on Section 86 (2) of the Civil Procedure Code to vacate an ex-parte decree should establish a reasonable ground for default. Considering the decision in Sanicoch Group of Company v. Kala Traders (P) Ltd., 2015 SCC OnLine SL SC 52, which held that inquiry on application to set aside an ex-parte decree is not regulated by any specific provision of the CPC but such inquiries must be conducted consistent with rules of natural justice and the requirement of fairness, the court stated that the appellant cannot be relied upon as he failed to satisfy the court on the reasons for his default. [Howpe Liyanage Edmund Edirisinghe v. Ahangama Vithanage Sumanadasa, C.A. No. 1394/99(F), order dated 01-08-2018]

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