A private firm engaged by the Delhi government in 2012 to manufacture high security numberplates for city vehicles has been fined by the Delhi high court for "forum hunting."
HC on Thursday slapped a cost of Rs 50,000 on Rosemerta HSRP Ventures for trying to secure a favourable order from a different bench since the earlier judge had ruled against it.
"This court is also of the prima facie view that the present petition lacks bonafides; any clarification as to the order passed by this court on October 7, 2016 ought to have been obtained by filing an application in the disposed of appeal. However, it appears that the endeavour of Rosmerta was to avoid approaching the bench concerned by way of a clarification and it does appear that this is a case of forum hunting," Justice Vibhu Bakhru observed while imposing punitive costs.
Last year, a bench of Justice S Muralidhar had lifted a stay on Delhi government's transport department to go ahead with its termination of agreement with Rosmerta, even as it had clarified that the firm should be granted a hearing first by an authority higher than the transport commissioner who first took the decision to terminate its services.
However, Rosmerta came to court again claiming that Delhi government has asked it to appear before the chief secretary though it is the lieutenant governor who should hear its appeal, a contention rejected not just by the LG but also by Justice Bakhru.
Last year, SC had also paved the way for AAP government to end its contract with the controversial private firm that manufactures high security numberplates in Delhi.
Delhi government and Rosmerta have been locked in arbitration since 2014 after the government issued a show-cause notice to the firm, accusing it of several violations and irregularities in the execution of the high security numberplate project. This led the company to invoke an in-built arbitration clause in the agreement.
HC held that even as per the NCT Act and Rules, the chief secretary would be the secretary to the council of ministers and principal secretary, general administration department will be the joint secretary to the council.
How close a series of letters or numbers are to a real name of word: if the match quality is high (and the numbers and letters are very convincing in making a popular word), the value of the registration plate will be higher. This means that a match like 5IMON, for the name Simon, will be worth a lot more than a more obscure set of letters and numbers that are not as convincing a match, such as S17 MMM for the name Sam.
The style of the plate: this means establishing if it is a new-style plate, an older-style format or if it is dateless or Irish, for instance. Other options are that it is a prefix-style plate or a suffix-style plate. New-style number plates, which have been produced since 2001, tend to be the least valuable because they are a bit less appealing to some collectors, plus the rule about not having plates that are newer than your car can also come into play, putting people off from buying a newer-style plate for their older car. Prefix-style number plates, which were in production between 1983 and 2001 can be more popular as more vehicles are entitled to have those licence numbers, and they may have fewer characters in total. Suffix-style plates, issued from 1963 to 1983 are relatively rare, which means they can attract higher prices than prefix-style plates and newer designs. Dateless number plates, also known as cherished number plates, were produced between 1903 and 1963 and are nearly always the most valuable number plate configurations; they have fewer digits and their dateless nature means that people can hide the age of their car. Irish number plates are similar to dateless number plates, especially because they don’t have a year identifier. They also tend to be cheaper than other types of vehicle registration plates.
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