In the First Schedule, in Order XXXIII,-
(i) for the heading, the following shall be substituted, namely:-
"SUITS BY INDIGENT PERSONS";
(ii) in the Order, for the word "pauper", wherever it occurs, the words "indigent person", shall, with such grammatical variations or cognate expressions as may be necessary, be substituted;
(iii) in rule 1, for the Explanation, the following Explanations shall be substituted, namely:-
"Explanation I.- A person is an indigent person,-
(a) if he is not possessed of sufficient means (other than property exempt from attachment in execution of a decree and the subject-matter of the suit) to enable him to pay the fee prescribed by law for the plaint in such suit, or
(b) where no such fee is prescribed, if he is not entitled to property worth one thousand rupees other than the property exempt from attachment in execution of a decree, and the subject-matter of the suit.
Explanation II.- Any property which is acquired by a person after the presentation of his application for permission to sue as an indigent person, and before the decision of the application, shall be taken into account in considering the question whether or not the applicant is an indigent person.
Explanation III.- Where the plaintiff sues in a representative capacity, the question whether he is an indigent person shall be determined with reference to the means possessed by him in such capacity.";
(iv) after rule 1, the following rule shall be inserted, namely:-
"1A.Inquiry into the means of an indigent person.- Every inquiry into the question whether or not a person is an indigent person shall be made, in the first instance, by the chief ministerial officer of the Court, unless the Court otherwise directs, and the Court may adopt the report of such officer as its own finding or may itself make an inquiry into the question.";
(v) to rule 3, the following proviso shall be added, namely:-
"Provided that, where there are more plaintiffs than one, it shall be sufficient if the application is presented by one of the plaintiffs.";
(vi) in rule 5,-
(a)to clause (c), the following proviso shall be added, namely:-
"Provided that no application shall be rejected if, even after the value of the property disposed of by the applicant is taken into account, the applicant would be entitled to sue as an indigent person.";
(b)in clause (e), the word "or" shall be inserted at the end;
(c)after clause (e), the following clauses shall be inserted, namely:-
"(f) where the allegations made by the applicant in the application show that the suit would be barred by any law for the time being in force, or
(g) where any other person has entered into an agreement with him to finance the litigation.";
(vii) in rule 7,-
(a)in sub-rule (1), for the words "a memorandum of the substance of their evidence", the words "a full record of their evidence" shall be substituted;
(b)after sub-rule (1), the following sub-rule shall be inserted, namely:-
"(1A) The examination of the witnesses under sub-rule (1) shall be confined to the matters specified in clause (b), clause (c) and clause (e) of rule 5 but the examination of the applicant or his agent may relate to any of the matters specified in rule 5.";
(c)in sub-rule (2), for the words "as herein provided", the words and figure "under rule 6 or under this rule" shall be substituted;
(viii) in rule 8, for the brackets and words "(other than fees payable for service of process)", the words "or fees payable for service of process" shall be substituted;
(ix) after rule 9, the following rule shall be inserted, namely:-
"9A.Court to assign a pleader to an unrepresented indigent person.- (1) Where a person, who is permitted to sue as an indigent person, is not represented by a pleader, the Court may, if the circumstances of the case so require, assign a pleader to him.
(2)The High Court may, with the previous approval of the State Government, make rules providing for-
(a) the mode of selecting pleaders to be assigned under sub-rule (1);
(b) the facilities to be provided to such pleaders by the Court;
(c) any other matter which is required to be or may be provided by the rules for giving effect to the provisions of sub-rule (1).";
(x) in rule 11, in clause (a), after the words "such service", the words "or to present copies of the plaint or concise statement" shall be inserted;
(xi) in rule 15, for the words "provided that he first pays", the words "provided that the plaint shall be rejected if he does not pay, either at the time of the institution of the suit or within such time thereafter as the Court may allow," shall be substituted;
(xii) after rule 15, the following rule shall be inserted, namely:-
"15A.Grant of time for payment of court-fee.- Nothing contained in rule 5, rule 7 or rule 15 shall prevent a Court, while rejecting an application under rule 5 or refusing an application under rule 7, from granting time to the applicant to pay the requisite court-fee within such time as may be fixed by the Court or extended by it from time to time; and upon such payment and on payment of the costs referred to in sub-rule (2) of rule 15 within that time, the suit shall be deemed to have been instituted on the date on which the application for permission to sue as an indigent person was presented.";
(xiii) after rule 16, the following rules shall be inserted, namely:-
"17.Defence by an indigent person.- Any defendant, who desires to plead a set-off or counter-claim, may be allowed to set up such claim as an indigent person, and the rules contained in this Order shall so far as may be, apply to him as if he were a plaintiff and his written statement were a plaint.
18 .Power of Government to provide for free legal services to indigent persons
(1) Subject to the provisions of this Order, the Central or State Government may make such supplementary provisions as it thinks fit for providing free legal services to those who have been permitted to sue as indigent persons.
(2)The High Court may, with the previous approval of the State Government, make rules for carrying out the supplementary provisions made by the Central or State Government for providing free legal services indigent persons referred to in sub-rule (1), and such rules may include the nature and extent of such legal services, the conditions under which they may be made available, the matters in respect of which, and the agencies through which, such services may be rendered.".
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