Govt loses cases for failure to submit ‘affidavit’Shakhawat Hossain
The government loses court cases because the ministries and divisions fail to submit ‘affidavits in opposition’ in 90 per cent of the legal battles, officials said.
They said that the government lost legal battles though there were enough evidences and logic in its favour to win the cases, said the officials, quoting a recent observation by the High Court.
The defeats cause massive losses to the nation, the government and the taxpayers.
The court officials said most of the defeated cases are linked to civil matters, mostly land related disputes.
The number of civil and criminal cases pending with the Supreme Court is around 300,000, they said, quoting a recent report of the ministry of law.
The High Court observation on the ‘affidavit in opposition’ and the statement of facts—the two most important documents for the government lawyers to defend the cases—has alerted the key ministries including the cabinet division.
The cabinet division has already scrutinised the matter, said the officials.
It found out that civil servants at divisional and district levels were also responsible for such unexpected loss in court cases.
It also found that the courts delivered ‘ex parte decree’ often because of absence of the government lawyers.
Attorney general Mahbubey Alam, whose office is
responsible for conducting the government cases in the Supreme Court, told New Age that his office could not respond within the stipulated time because of the ‘burden of cases’.
‘In cases which are really urgent, we do however respond to them within the stipulated time,’ he added.
The cabinet division observed that the ministries and divisions did not follow up the cases properly even during the appeals in the High Court challenging the verdicts of the lower court.
Officials said the cabinet division last week issued an order directing the ministries and the divisions for taking immediate measures in this connection in order to prevent such happenings in future.
The order, a copy of which has been obtained by New Age, directed all the ministries and divisions to maintain communication with the office of the attorney general.
They have also been asked to provide the attorney general’s office with necessary documents and information.
The cabinet division suggested the ministries and division for appointing an officer to monitor the issues relating to the court proceedings.
It wanted the ministries and the divisions to prepare statements of facts with details including information, scrutiny and evidences before appealing against the verdicts given by the lower court.
The cabinet division asked secretaries of the ministries to take the directives seriously.
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