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PASHA v. WILLIAM M. MERCER CONSULTING

United States District Court, S.D. New York


June 30, 2004.

IQBAL A. PASHA, Plaintiff,
v.
WILLIAM M. MERCER CONSULTING, INC., Defendant.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: ROBERT SWEET, Senior District Judge

OPINION

Plaintiff pro se Iqbal A. Pasha ("Pasha") has moved under Rule 59(e), Fed.R. Civ. P., to alter or amend the judgment entered March 23, 2004 (the "Judgment") upon the opinion of February 2, 2004 (the "Opinion") granting the summary judgment motion of defendants William M. Mercer Consulting Inc. and Mercer Consulting Group Inc. (collectively, "Mercer") to dismiss the complaint of Pasha. The motion is denied.

Prior Proceedings

  Pasha commenced the instant action on October 31, 2000, alleging Mercer's discriminatory refusal to hire on the basis of national origin and age. Following more than two years of document discovery, interrogatories and depositions, discovery closed on May 27, 2003. On May 30, 2003, Mercer moved for summary judgment dismissing each of Pasha's claims. Submissions were completed on or about October 6, 2003. On February 2, 2004, the Court rendered its Opinion granting Mercer's summary judgment motion, stating that (i) Pasha failed to establish a claim of national origin or age discrimination; (ii) even if Pasha had made out a prima facie case of discrimination, Mercer had articulated legitimate nondiscriminatory reasons for its refusal to hire him; and (iii) Pasha failed to show that the reasons articulated by Mercer were pretextual. Pasha v. William M. Mercer Consulting, Inc., No. 00 Civ. 8362 (RWS), 2004 WL 188077 (S.D.N.Y. Feb. 2, 2004).

  Judgment was entered on March 11, 2004, and Pasha brought the instant motion on March 23, 2004.*fn1 In addition to his notice of motion and memorandum of law, Pasha filed a "supplementary" "Statement of Material Facts with Genuine Issues to be Tried," along with copies of his memoranda of law submitted in opposition to Mercer's original motion. After further briefing, the motion was deemed fully submitted.

  Discussion

  Motions to alter or amend judgments under Rule 59(e) and for reconsideration under Local Civil Rule 6.3 are evaluated under the same standard. See Word v. Croce, No. 01 Civ. 9614 (LTS), 2004 WL 434038, at *2 (S.D.N.Y. Mar. 9, 2004); Williams v. New York City Dep't of Corr., 219 F.R.D. 78, 83 (S.D.N.Y. 2003); Griffin Indus., Inc. v. Petrojam, Ltd., 72 F. Supp.2d 365, 368 (S.D.N.Y. 1999). On a motion made pursuant to either rule, "`the moving party must demonstrate controlling law or factual matters put before the court on the underlying motion that the movant believes the court overlooked and that might reasonably be expected to alter the court's decision.'" Word, 2004 WL 434038, at *2 (quoting Parrish v. Sollecito, 253 F. Supp.2d 713, 715 (S.D.N.Y. 2003)); see also Williams, 219 F.R.D. at 83. Alternatively, "`reconsideration may be granted to correct clear error, prevent manifest injustice or review the court's decision in light of the availability of new evidence.'" Word, 2004 WL 434038, at *2 (quoting Parrish, 253 F. Supp.2d at 715).

  Neither Rule 59(e) nor Local Civil Rule 6.3, however, is an appropriate vehicle for a party dissatisfied with a court's ruling to secure a rehearing on the merits with respect to issues already decided, see USA Certified Merchants, LLC v. Koebel, 273 F. Supp.2d 501, 503 (S.D.N.Y. 2003); Parrish, 253 F. Supp.2d at 715; Griffin Indus., 72 F. Supp.2d at 368, or to advance "`new facts, issues or arguments not previously presented to the court.'" Williams, 219 F.R.D. at 83 (quoting Wechsler v. Hunt Health Systems, Ltd., 186 F. Supp.2d 402, 410 (S.D.N.Y. 2002)). It is thus well settled that such rules should be "`narrowly construed and strictly applied so as to avoid repetitive arguments on issues that have been considered fully by the Court,'" Word, 2004 WL 434038, at *2 (quoting Williams, 219 F.R.D. at 83), and "to prevent the rule from being used as a substitute for appealing a final judgment." USA Certified Merchants, 273 F. Supp.2d at 503. "Reconsideration of a court's previous order is an `extraordinary remedy to be employed sparingly in the interests of finality and conservation of scarce judicial resources.'" Montanile v. National Broad. Co., 216 F. Supp.2d 341, 342 (S.D.N.Y. 2002) (quoting In re Health Mgmt. Sys. Inc. Secs. Litig., 113 F. Supp.2d 613, 614 (S.D.N.Y. 2000)); see also USA Certified Merchants, 273 F. Supp.2d at 503.

  The issues, facts and legal arguments identified by Pasha in his memorandum of law submitted in support of his Rule 59(e) motion were considered and discussed in the Opinion.

  In particular, with respect to his national origin claim, Pasha has sought reconsideration on three arguments that also were considered by the Court on the underlying motion: (i) that Mercer does not maintain national origin information for its employees; (ii) that Mercer does not employ any Pakistanis in the United States; and (iii) that Asghar Alam, the Pakistani leader of Mercer's investment consulting practice during the pertinent period, was inherently biased against Pasha. Despite the Court's finding that Pasha failed to make out a prima facie case on either his age or national original discrimination claim, the Opinion addressed in some detail both the legitimate, nondiscriminatory reasons proffered by Mercer for its decision not to hire Pasha, and his arguments that such reasons were pretextual Pasha, 2004 WL 188077, at *7-10.

  Pasha's contentions that the Court improperly drew inferences in favor of the movants and usurped the role of the jury in reaching the conclusions expressed in the Opinion are belied by the Opinion itself and do not establish that reconsideration is warranted here. See generally USA Certified Merchants, 273 F. Supp.2d at 504 (denying a motion for reconsideration and reiterating that "a motion for reconsideration is not designed to accord an opportunity for the moving party, unhappy with the results, to take issue with the Court's resolution of matters considered in connection with the original motion"); Davidson v. Scully, 172 F. Supp.2d 458, 464 (S.D.N.Y. 2001) (denying a motion for reconsideration of a grant of summary judgment where "plaintiff's arguments amount to nothing more than a `disagreement between an understand-ably disappointed litigant and the court'") (quoting Aquilio v. Police Benevolent Ass'n of New York State Troopers, Inc., No. 91 Civ. 325, 1994 WL 494639, at *4 (N.D.N.Y. Aug. 15, 1994)).

  As Pasha has failed to point to any controlling law or factual matter overlooked in rendering the Opinion, his motion for reconsideration is denied. See Ferrand v. Credit Lyonnais, 292 F. Supp.2d 518, 521 (S.D.N.Y. 2003); USA Certified Merchants, 273 F. Supp.2d at 504. It is so ordered.


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