As per Section 13(2)(a) of The Consumer Protection Act, 1986 the period of limitation for filing a written statement before a District Forum is 45 days. In J.J. Merchant, (2002) 6 SCC 635 the question arose whether the Forum can grant time beyond 45 days to the Opposite Party for filing its version. The Three Judge Bench answered in negative.
In New India Assurance Company Ltd. v. Multipurpose Cold Storage Pvt. Ltd., [Civil Appeal Nos. 10941-10942 of 2013] it has been held that J.J. Merchant still “holds the field“.
An uncomfortable decision.