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Inherent Powers of Courts and Avoidance of Delay in Civil Litigation

Chapter-I: Introduction

According to Black’s Law dictionary Inherent power means “a power which necessarily derives
from an office, position or status.” It means it can’t be separated from office. It is also a concept
of the management that one should give some free scope to employee’s so that they can deal in
better way with the problems according to circumstances. Same concept is applied in judiciary;
where legislator draft the rules but also leaves the scope for the courts in the form of inherent

Chapter-II: Sections relating to Inherent power of courts

There are five sections of the C.P.C that are related to the concept of Inherent power of the court.
Section 148 relates to enlargement of time. Section 149 deals with power to make up deficiency
of court fees. Section 151 talks about saving of inherent powers of court. Section 152 and 153
are similar in nature and based on same principle that an act of the court shall not prejudice to the
parties and the court have a duty to see that their records are true and represent correct state of

Chapter-III: Exercise of Inherent power by the court

In the cases where C.P.C. does not deal with, the court will exercise its inherent power to do
justice. If there are specific provision of the C.P.C. dealing with the specific issue whether
expressly or by basic implication, then the inherent powers of the court cannot be invoked, as
inherent powers itself means those which are not specified in C.P.C.

Chapter-IV: Avoidance of delay in civil litigation

The justice delivery system must bear in mind two important aspects, namely quality justice and
speedy justice. Delay in justice system results in loss of public confidence on the concept of
justice. Some methods which can be adopted to reduce delay in litigation are Alternative Dispute
Resolution method and Lok Adalats. Settlement of dispute can also be outside the court by way
of arbitration, conciliation or mediation.


Inherent power of the court is in addition to and complimentary to the powers expressly
conferred under the code. Two points are important in regard of nature of inherent power; this
power cannot override the general principal of law and the express provision of law.