Bihar, India: A video of a Patna High Court judge and advocate arguing has gone viral over social media. In the video, the judge can be seen refusing to file the advocate’s petition as it is not drafted in English, claiming that he cannot understand it as it is in Hindi. However, the advocate can be seen debating that the judge cannot refuse to file without going through the petition, and informing the judge that there is a translation department in the Court which can translate the petition.
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In the video, the judge can be seen saying “Sir, again you are submitting in Hindi, I am not able to understand,” when the advocate makes a submission before him. The advocate responds, “Your lordship, this is the problem, even we do not understand English.”
The judge responds, “I have rejected your petition,” to which the advocate responds, “Your lordship, the rejection must be in light of the Full Bench, the Full Bench is in favour of Hindi.”
The judge replies, “Your case is already over, I have called the next case.” The advocate submits, “The rule is not to move forward without hearing the case, the judge must hear the case first before moving forward.”
The advocate continues, “The hearings did not start in Hindi today, all judges of the Patna High Court hear cases in Hindi. Now Lordship is asking us to make translations to English, we are requesting that the translations can be made through the translation department. The translation department in this Court exists prior to Independence. We have a share in the salaries they receive, and so does our client. Then, problem that the Lordship has in asking for translations from them. What we’re asking concerns justice, we do not know English, and still we’re being asked for the English translation.”
Thereafter, the advocate submits an order from the Division Bench, the lordship can give his order referring to the Division Bench’s order. He said, “We have already attached in the annexure, that is our prayer.”
The advocate also cites a Full Bench case wherein it was observed that when the petitioner has filed their petition in Hindi, then it cannot be mandated that the petitioner also provides the English translation. Furthermore, the Full Bench observed that there is a translation department in the Patna High Court and therefore, it is not an issue to ask for a translation from them. The Full Bench noted that there is no express prohibition for filing petitions or making arguments in Hindi. It is reported that the video is about 7 months old.