Dr. Avinash Agnihotry v. Controller of Certifying Authorities & Ors
In the Cyber Appellate Tribunal
Before Justice Rajesh Tandon, Chairperson
Decided on May 28, 2020
Relevancy of the case: Maintainability of appeal under Section 57 of the Information Technology Act, 2000.
Statutes & Provisions Involved
- The Information Technology Act, 2000 (Section 17, 30, 43, 46, 57, 58(2))
- The Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (Order 11 Rule 12, Order 6 Rule 17, Section 151)
Relevant Facts of the Case
- The appellant is a member of IPAG (The Planning Group of Electronics Commission) under the Ministry of Information Technology. He affirms to have contributed to the planning of the Indian Electronics Industry.
- Presently, the appellant is working at Mascon Global Limited and has a post of Senior Vice President.
- The appellant stated that he has received various emails from the Mascon Global Limited with the email ID email@example.com.
- The appellant submitted that somebody fraudulently and dishonestly fabricated his email ID to degrade the reputation of the appellant’s employer company.
- The appellant decided to file an appeal at the Cyber Appellate Tribunal.
Opinion of the Bench
- The appellant has not referred a single judgment where the statute provides a forum for filing a complaint and ignoring the same, the appeal can be preferred.
- He has referred the judgment regarding the exercise of inherent powers under Section 151 of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908.
- A statutory appeal has been provided under Section 57 of the Information Technology Act, 2000 against the order passed by the Controller of Certified Authorities or order passed by the concerned Adjudicating Officer.
- Liberty is given to the appellant to file a complaint within 30 days of this judgment.
- The Adjudicating Officer shall not debar the appellant from filing a complaint as having been time-barred and only the privilege of the time during the period when the appeal was pending shall be condoned automatically.
- At any stage, if the Adjudicating Officer requires the record of the Appellate Authority in connection with the various orders passed from time to time or various applications filed by the appellant from time to time including the reply by the respondents, the same may be called for the disposal of the complaint.
- In my opinion, it was true and correct that the appeal lacked merit and was dismissed at the admission stage. Also, it was the right decision in giving time to the appellant to file a complaint within 30 days of this judgement and file it in front of the appropriate adjudicating officer. Since no order had been passed by the Controller, no appeal could be filed.
This case summary has been prepared by Mansi Vats, an undergraduate student at UPES School of Law, Dehradun, during her internship with The Cyber Blog India in June/July 2020.