Asia & Australia

March 10, 2017

Justice Gautam Patel Expresses Regret Over Sarcastic Remarks Made In Gillette India vs. Reckitt Benckiser (India)


Justice Gautam Patel of the Bombay High Court expressed his regret at his remarks on the order dated February 22 in Gillette India vs. Reckitt Benckiser (India).

In this case, Justice Patel had delivered a witty remark saying, “Far be it for me to come between Mr Dave and his filings. Since Mr Dave says that there is a substantial reply and his rejoinder is likely to be equally substantial, the rejoinder is to be filed and served in the Registry on or before April 15, 2017. I have no doubt that a sur-rejoinder will also then be necessary. Rather than wasting time in an application for adjournment, affidavit in Sur-Rejoinder to be filed and served on or before June 15, 2017, and this will be followed by a month’s time until July 20, 2017 for an affidavit in sur-sur-rejoinder. At this point, all filings will stop. By then, the record should have crossed at least 2000 pages. It will take any court some time to read all material. Hence, list the matter for direction very low on board on November 3, 2020.”

However, the order was widely covered by the media. An order in the same case dated March 6 states, “I am aware that the order dated 22nd February 2017 has gained some currency outside court. It is a matter of personal regret if this has caused Mr Dave any embarrassment.”

Thereafter, Justice Patel also clarified that nothing in the order was intended to be a reflection upon the counsel present before him and that the comments made were not directed at Mr Dave personally but at those whose instructions he was briefed to convey.

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