I was #20 in a very long cause list at the District Consumer Forum this
morning. In my
previous appearance, I was asked
to file evidence ex parte because no opposing parties appeared in
court despite repeated announcements.
Digression: filing evidence
It took me a while to understand how to file evidence. I asked in the
office at the Consumer Forum, but was told only to go to Karkardooma
District Court, where "someone would help me". I went and stopped the
first lawyer I saw (black coat, white shirt), and he was kind enough to
look over my complaint and tell me exactly what I needed to do: compose
an affidavit that restates my complaint as a deposition, and have it
attested by an Oath Commissioner (and not just a Notary Public).
I found several Oath Commissioners sitting in a hallway, and one of them
pointed me to a "computer guy" who would print out my affidavit for him
to attest. I had my complaint on a USB stick, and it took only half an
hour or so (after the many lawyers ahead of me had finished their work)
to cut-and-paste the details of my complaint into a previous filing. I
paid INR100 to the computer guy (INR15/page for not-quite-7 pages), and
INR10 to the Oath Commissioner.
I then prepared three complete sets of the affidavit with all the
evidence (which were "annexures" in the original complaint, but turned
into "exhibits" at this stage).
When I was called to appear today, someone from Exide was present. As I
had suspected might happen, it turns out that Exide's counsel did appear
in court the last time, after I had already left. They filed a response
to my complaint, of which I received a copy only today.
The response begins:
The instant Complaint is a gross abuse of the process of law and has
been filed by the alleged Complainant with the sole purpose of
harassing and pressurizing the Answering Respondent to submit to its
unreasonable and mischievous demands. The instant Complaint is based on
false, frivolous and baseless facts solely to suit the illegal designs
of the alleged Complainant.
It continues on for a long time in the same vein, alleging repeatedly
that I have "unclean hands", and making "vehement" and "categorical"
denials of everything in my complaint (including a couple of facts of
I have been asked to file a rejoinder at the beginning of March.
I shall think about how to proceed.