Jurisdiction plays a crucial role in any legal proceeding. It determines which court has the authority to hear and decide a particular case. In India, the Civil Procedure Code (CPC) provides guidelines on objections to jurisdiction under Section 21.
Significance in the legal landscape :
- What is Section 21 of the Civil Procedure Code?: Section 21 of the CPC deals with objections to the jurisdiction of a court. It allows a defendant to challenge the court’s authority to entertain a case if they believe it falls outside the court’s territorial or pecuniary jurisdiction.
- Territorial Jurisdiction: Territorial jurisdiction refers to the geographical area within which a court has the power to adjudicate cases. If a defendant believes that the court where the case has been filed does not have territorial jurisdiction, they can raise an objection under Section 21.
- Pecuniary Jurisdiction: Pecuniary jurisdiction relates to the monetary value of the claim involved in a case. Different courts have different limits on the value of cases they can handle. If the defendant believes that the court where the case is filed does not have pecuniary jurisdiction, they can object under Section 21.
- Procedure for raising objections: To raise an objection to jurisdiction under Section 21, the defendant must submit an application before filing their written statement. The court will then decide the objection before proceeding with the case. It is essential to note that raising an objection to jurisdiction does not waive any other defenses or objections available to the defendant.
- Consequences of sustaining objections to jurisdiction: If the court upholds the objection to jurisdiction, it may transfer the case to a court with the appropriate jurisdiction. Alternatively, it may dismiss the case altogether if it lacks jurisdiction over the matter. The decision will depend on the circumstances and facts of each case.
Objections to jurisdiction under Section 21 of the Civil Procedure Code are crucial for ensuring fairness and proper administration of justice. By allowing defendants to challenge the court’s authority, this provision safeguards their rights and prevents the abuse of jurisdiction.