Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, Order 17 Rule 2,  Order 17 Rule 3 – Plaintiff's evidence was recorded and his case was also closed and defendants were placed ex parte on the date when the case was fixed for recording defendants' evidence but the same was not recorded due to the defendants' absence – Preliminary decree passed  - Case would not fall under Explanation to Order 17 Rule 2 of the Code be-cause in order to attract the Explanation, "such party" which has led evidence or has led substantial part of the evidence, if fails to appear on any day to which the hearing of the case is adjourned, the Court may treat "such party" as "present" on that day and is accordingly empowered to proceed in the suit - The party, who was absent and was proceeded ex parte was the "defendants" and they had not led any evidence whereas it was the plaintiff, who was present and had led his evidence - If the plaintiff had remained absent and was found to have led evidence, the Court could have invoked its powers under Explanation to Order 17 Rule 2 of the Code treating the plaintiff as "present" for passing appropriate orders,  such is, however, not the case here - If the defendants had remained absent on that date and if it would have noticed that they had adduced the evidence either fully or substantially prior to the date on which they were proceeded ex parte, the Court could have invoked its powers under Explanation to Order 17 Rule 2 of the Code treating the defendants as "present" on that day for passing appropriate orders in the suit, which again was not the case here  - Since the defendants were proceeded ex parte and were found not to have led any evidence in the suit, the Court could only proceed under Order 17 Rule 3 (b) read with Order 17 Rule 2 of the Code for disposal of the suit by taking recourse to one of the modes directed in that behalf by Order 9 of the Code or could have made any other order as it thinks fit  - Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, Order 17 Rule 2 explanation. 2019 SCeJournal 398 


  1. Civil Procedure Code, 1908 (V of 1908) Order 17, Rule 1, Proviso - Adjournments not beyond three times is salutary so long as the parties would stick to the schedule - It is not a mandate that will take away the power of the court to grant more than three adjournments and if he does, no person can assume that the court was acting beyond jurisdiction - The provision is purely directory and an exhortation that unnecessary adjournments shall not be taken in court - The only way that any discipline can be enforced is by imposition of costs to cause reparation for the inconvenience caused to the party who comes to the court being ready but the other side takes times indefinitely - The court cannot merely close the evidence because three opportunities have been exhausted. (179) P.L.R.
  2. Civil Procedure Code, 1908 (V of 1908) Order 17, Rule 3 - Suit dismissed on merits either after the production of evidence or in terms of Order XVII Rule 3 CPC, is a binding decision between the parties particularly the petitioner. (179) P.L.R.
  3. Civil Procedure Code, 1908 (V of 1908) Order 17 Rule 1(2)(c) - Adjournment of case - That counsel for the appellant is busy in two regular DBs - Is hardly a ground for adjournment - It was for the appellant to make arrangements for arguments of the appeal, as it was made clear on the last date that the case will be shown in the Urgent List - Prayer declined - It is not for the Court itself to find out what the points for determination can be and then proceed to give a decision on those points - Counsel for the party is not able to render any assistance, the Court may decline to entertain the petition. (173) P.L.R. 
  4. Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, Order 17 Rule 2,  Order 17 Rule 3 – Plaintiff's evidence was recorded and his case was also closed and defendants were placed ex parte on the date when the case was fixed for recording defendants' evidence but the same was not recorded due to the defendants' absence – Preliminary decree passed  - Case would not fall under Explanation to Order 17 Rule 2 of the Code be-cause in order to attract the Explanation, "such party" which has led evidence or has led substantial part of the evidence, if fails to appear on any day to which the hearing of the case is adjourned, the Court may treat "such party" as "present" on that day and is accordingly empowered to proceed in the suit - The party, who was absent and was proceeded ex parte was the "defendants" and they had not led any evidence whereas it was the plaintiff, who was present and had led his evidence - If the plaintiff had remained absent and was found to have led evidence, the Court could have invoked its powers under Explanation to Order 17 Rule 2 of the Code treating the plaintiff as "present" for passing appropriate orders,  such is, however, not the case here - If the defendants had remained absent on that date and if it would have noticed that they had adduced the evidence either fully or substantially prior to the date on which they were proceeded ex parte, the Court could have invoked its powers under Explanation to Order 17 Rule 2 of the Code treating the defendants as "present" on that day for passing appropriate orders in the suit, which again was not the case here  - Since the defendants were proceeded ex parte and were found not to have led any evidence in the suit, the Court could only proceed under Order 17 Rule 3 (b) read with Order 17 Rule 2 of the Code for disposal of the suit by taking recourse to one of the modes directed in that behalf by Order 9 of the Code or could have made any other order as it thinks fit  - Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, Order 17 Rule 2 explanation. 2019 SCeJournal 398