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[Order XXII Rule 3 CPC] Delay in Filing Application for Substitution of Legal Heirs Must Be Sufficiently Explained: Delhi High Court 

[14 July 2022] for substitution of legal heirs, or under Order XXII Rule 9 of the Code for setting aside abatement of proceedings must be considered liberally. However, the delay in moving such applications must be sufficiently justified.
A single bench of Justice C. Hari Shankar further stated that any such delay must meet the threshold requirement which an application seeking condonation of delay is required to meet.
The court opined that–

“In dealing with applications under Order XXII Rule 3 for substitution of legal heirs, or under Order XXII Rule 9 for setting aside abatement of proceedings, the Court has to strike a balance. The delay, any which way, has to be satisfactorily explained. In assessing the sufficiency of the explanation as cause for the delay, however, the Court has to be liberal and expansive in its approach, and to proceed ex debito justitiae. The fact that, by abatement of the proceedings, a legal right has ensured in favour of the opposite party, can be a delimiting factor only to a restricted extent, and no more.”

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