A division bench of Supreme Court passed this Landmark observation wrt the Sec 5 of Limitation Act 1963,
From Para 12,
Ram Nath Sao @ Ram Nath Sahu and Ors Vs Gobardhan Sao and Ors on 27 Feb 2002
12. Thus it becomes plain that the expression “sufficient cause” within the meaning of Section 5 of the Act or Order 22 Rule 9 of the Code or any other similar provision should receive a liberal construction so as to advance substantial justice when no negligence or inaction or want of bona fides is imputable to a party. In a particular case whether explanation furnished would constitute “sufficient cause” or not will be dependent upon facts of each case. There cannot be a straitjacket formula for accepting or rejecting explanation furnished for the delay caused in taking steps. But one thing is clear that the courts should not proceed with the tendency of finding fault with the cause shown and reject the petition by a slipshod order in over-jubilation of disposal drive. Acceptance of explanation furnished should be the rule and refusal, an exception, more so when no negligence or inaction or want of bona fides can be imputed to the defaulting party. On the other hand, while considering the matter the courts should not lose sight of the fact that by not taking steps within the time prescribed a valuable right has accrued to the other party which should not be lightly defeated by condoning delay in a routine-like manner. However, by taking a pedantic and hyper technical view of the matter the explanation furnished should not be rejected when stakes are high and/or arguable points of facts and law are involved in the case, causing enormous loss and irreparable injury to the party against whom the lis terminates, either by default or inaction and defeating valuable right of such a party to have the decision on merit. While considering the matter, courts have to strike a balance between resultant effect of the order it is going to pass upon the parties either way.
Citations : [2002 SCALE 2 334], [2002 SCC 3 195], [2002 AIR SC 978], [2002 ALLMR SC 2 588], [2002 SCR 2 77], [2002 AIR SC 1201], [2002 SUPREME 2 143], [2002 RD 93 556], [2006 JCR SC 1 93], [2002 LW 3 417], [2002 UC 1 718], [2002 BLJR 1 794], [2002 MLJ SC 2 85], [2002 ALR 48 101], [2002 JT SC 2 349], [2002 AIR SCW 978]
Other Sources :