Central Electricity Regulatory Commission v. National Hydroelectric Power Corporation Limited

Sonal SurbhiCase Summary

Serving court notices through emails

Central Electricity Regulatory Commission v. National Hydroelectric Power Corporation Limited
(2010) 10 SCC 280
In the Supreme Court of India
Civil Appeals No. 21216/2010 and 21576/2010
Before Chief Justice S.H. Kapadia, Justice K.S.P. Radhakrishnan and Justice Swatanter Kumar
Decided on July 26, 2010

Relevancy of the case: Serving court notices through emails

Statutes & Provisions Involved

  • The Information Technology Act, 2000 (Section 6, 12, 13)
  • The Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (Order 5 Rule 10, Section 148A)
  • The Constitution of India, 1950 (Article 136)

Relevant Facts of the Case

  • Due to a case pendency and urgency problem in the Courts, it was necessary to avoid delay in process-serving (such as serving court notices) and consequent piling up of arrears.
  • Thus, this case sought directions to ease the process-serving problems in Courts.

Opinion of the Bench

  • The bench noted the importance of expediting process-serving. Therefore, they allowed for the service of notices through e-mail in addition to the normal modes of service. The advocate-on-record will furnish a soft copy of the appeal/petition in PDF format to the filing counter at the time of filing the appeal/petition.
  • The bench also directed that AOR submit the respondent’s email addresses to the filing counter simultaneously. This will be in addition to the hard copy submission.
    Furthermore, if the court issues notice, then the Registry would send the same to the e-mail address of the respondents.
  • The notice mentioned above would also be sent to the advocate on behalf of the respondents. An advocate-on-record has to provide his/her e-mail address for enabling such service while filing a caveat.
  • Furthermore, the Supreme Court bench declared that within two weeks from the order, the Cabinet Secretariat must list the centralised e-mail addresses of various Ministries/Departments/Regulatory Authorities along with the names of the Nodal Officers, if already appointed to expedite their service.

Final Decision

  • The bench first extended the facility to commercial litigation and those cases requiring urgent interim reliefs.
  • The bench admitted the appeals while directing that a copy of the order be sent to all the High Courts for necessary action.