Ori HC | Application for additional evidence can be considered at the time of hearing of appeal

Orissa High Court: The Bench of Dr A.K. Rath, J. allowed the application filed for challenging the order of the District Court whereunder the appellate court rejected the application of the petitioner-appellant under Order 41 Rule 27 CPC to admit five documents as additional evidence.

The facts of the case are that plaintiff-petitioner instituted a Civil Suit praying for damages. The suit was dismissed. The application under Order 41 Rule 27 CPC to admit five documents as additional evidence was filed during pendency of the appeal. The respondents-opposite parties objected to the same. The appellate court rejected the application. Mr. Prasanna Kumar Parhi, counsel for the petitioner submitted that the appellate court was not justified in rejecting the said application before hearing of the appeal.

The Court relying on the case of Sankar Pradhan v. Premananda Pradhan, 2015 (II) CLR 583 held that the legitimate occasion for the exercise of this discretion is not whenever before the appeal is heard a party applies to adduce fresh evidence, but “when on examining the evidence as it stands some inherent lacuna or defect becomes apparent.” The petition was thus allowed. [Gopal Krushna Panda v. Utkal Grameen Bank, 2019 SCC OnLine Ori 34, Order dated 28-01-2019]

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    It is absolutely right to allow at appeal stage any evidence or witness or documents in support under Order 41 rule 27 CPC either to seek fresh evidence or to bring new evidence which supports the case. The question hereby to be seen how long the complainant has to wait for the filing of additional evidence or documents under Order 41 rule 27 CPC since in most of the cases before the Consumer forum the aggrieved party on rejection/dismissal of appeal by the opposite party come out with a plea that their applications should be allowed under Order 41 rule 27 CPC . However, if the opposite party do not file his additional evidence or supporting documents for years together where does the complainant go and who will take care of him? Is there any time limit to produce additional documents under order 41 rule 27 of CPC?

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