Read Judgment: Vedanta Ltd. vs. Goa Foundation
New Delhi, July 23, 2021: The Supreme Court came down heavily on the State of Goa and mining giant Vedanta for filing delayed review petitions after the judges, who decided the mining lease case and delivered the judgment way back in 2018, retired from office.
The Apex Court noted that while the Goa government preferred its review petitions after the retirement of Justice Madan Lokur who authored the judgement, Vedanta filed its review after the retirement of Justice Deepak Gupta, the second judge on the Bench.
Four years ago in February 2018, a Division Bench of Justice Madan Lokur and Justice Deepak Gupta cancelled mining leases renewed in favour of 88 leaseholders by the Goa Government, after finding that the licences had been renewed in contravention of Supreme Court directions passed in 2014.
“In accordance with Rule 2 of Order XLVII of the Supreme Court Rules, 2013, an application for review of a judgement has to be filed within thirty days of the date of the judgement or order that is sought to be reviewed. No cogent grounds have been furnished for the delay between 20 and 26 months by the two parties in filing their applications for review,” the Supreme Court noted.
Therefore, clearly expressing that such practice must be firmly disapproved to preserve the institutional sanctity of the decision making, the Top Court dismissed the review petitions on the ground of limitation alone, and held that as per the Supreme Court Rules, 2013, the limitation for filing a review petition is 30 days from the date of the judgment.
The Apex Court, therefore, proceeded to dismiss the review petitions on grounds of both limitation and merits.