Yuva Sai Sagar

An online news channel

Tag: justices

SC rejects plea challenging Justice JS Khehar’s elevation as CJI

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A plea by a group of lawyers challenging the elevation of Justice J S Khehar as the next Chief Justice of India (CJI) was dismissed today by the Supreme Court which asserted that there was “no question” of him being considered ineligible for the post.The apex court rejected the arguments that Justice Khehar, while heading a five-judge constitution bench that had struck down the National Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC), had benefitted himself as the judgement had revived the collegium system for appointment of judges in the higher judiciary.While disapproving the grounds for entertaining the PIL, a bench of Justices R K Agrawal and D Y Chandrachud noted that there were averments in the petition praising the “quality” of the judge who is to be sworn as CJI on January 4.”Since the petitioners have praised the quality of Justice J S Khehar, there is no question of him being considered ineligible for being appointed as the Chief Justice of India,” the bench said.”So far as this allegation is concerned, it is sufficient to mention that collegium not only consist of the CJI but also four other senior-most judges of the Supreme Court,” the bench said.The apex court also said that as far as correctness of the NJAC case judgement is concerned, “we are of the opinion that petitioner has the right to apply for review or file curative petition”.”We do not find any merit in the petition and the same is dismissed,” the bench said while rejecting the plea filed by National Lawyers’ Campaign for Judicial Transparency and Reforms.Advocate Mathews J Nedumpara, appearing for the lawyers’ body, argued that the issue of judiciary’s independence and appointment of judges was important and it was “painful” for them to approach the apex court with such a petition.He claimed that judges in the higher judiciary were coming from “a few families only” and “it cannot be the exclusive domain of some persons”.”This court has to listen to the critics. Democracy is all about criticism,” he said, adding that Justice Khehar should refuse to become the next CJI.

D-day for politicians? SC to hear plea seeking cancellation of exemption to political parties under IT Act

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court said it would next month hear a plea seeking quashing of a provision of the Income Tax (IT) Act on tax exemption to political parties on receiving voluntary contributions. A bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan and L Nageswara Rao said there was no urgency in hearing the plea as the law has been in force for over 50 years and added that it would take it up on January 11. “You are challenging a provision of the IT Act which is there since 1960s. What is the urgency? Let the matter come up before the court after vacations. This Act is going on for over 50 years,” the bench told petitioner advocate M L Sharma.Sharma urged the court to hear the matter today itself and claimed that on December 16, the government had declared that no investigation will be carried out against political parties’ accounts on deposit of old demonetised notes as per the tax exemption given under section 13A of the IT Act.He said old currency notes were being deposited in the accounts of political parties and “the problem is that they would withdraw the money”.The bench then said “what is going to happen in the next one week? Let the matter come up for hearing on January 11”.In his plea, the petitioner has claimed that political parties registered with Election Commission of India are 100 per cent exempt from paying income tax under section 13A of the IT Act, 1961, so long as they file their tax returns every assessment year along with their audited accounts, income or expenditure details and balance sheet.He has sought a direction to the CBI to register a case and investigate fundings and deposits in the accounts of political parties in demonetised currency notes.Besides, the petitioner has also sought quashing of a provision of the Representation of the People Act 1951 which relates to “special provisions in the case of certain elections”.

J&K residents are ‘first and foremost’ citizens of India, state’s sovereignty within Indian Constitution: SC

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Jammu and Kashmir has “no vestige” of sovereignty outside the Indian Constitution and its own, while the citizens of the state are “first and foremost” citizens of India, the Supreme Court has held.The apex court observed this while terming as “wholly incorrect” the conclusion arrived at by Jammu and Kashmir High Court which had held that the state has “absolute sovereign power” to legislate laws touching the rights of its permanent residents regarding their immovable properties.”The State of Jammu & Kashmir has no vestige of sovereignty outside the Constitution of India and its own Constitution, which is subordinate to the Constitution of India,” a bench of Justices Kurian Joseph and R F Nariman said.”It is therefore wholly incorrect to describe it as being sovereign in the sense of its residents constituting a separate and distinct class in themselves. The residents of Jammu & Kashmir, we need to remind the High Court, are first and foremost citizens of India,” it said.The apex court said this while holding that provisions of the Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest Act, 2002 (SARFAESI Act) are within the legislative competence of Parliament and can be enforced in Jammu and Kashmir.The bench set aside the verdict of Jammu and Kashmir High Court that had held that any law made by Parliament, which affects the laws made by state legislature, cannot be extended to Jammu and Kashmir.”The High Court judgment begins from the wrong end and therefore reaches the wrong conclusion. It states that in terms of Section 5 of the Constitution of Jammu & Kashmir, the State has absolute sovereign power to legislate in respect of laws touching the rights of its permanent residents qua their immovable properties,” the apex court said.It further said, “We may also add that permanent residents of Jammu & Kashmir are citizens of India, and there is no dual citizenship as is contemplated by some other federal Constitutions in other parts of the world”.The apex court judgement came on the appeal by State Bank of India (SBI) against the high court verdict which had held that the SARFAESI Act would collide with the Transfer of Property Act of Jammu & Kashmir, 1920.SARFAESI is an enactment which entitles banks to enforce their security interest outside the court process to take possession of secured assets of the borrower and sell them outside the court process.The apex court, in its 61-page verdict, also said it was “disturbing to note that various parts of High Court judgment speak of the absolute sovereign power of Jammu & Kashmir.” “It is necessary to reiterate that Section 3 of the Constitution of Jammu & Kashmir, which was framed by a Constituent Assembly elected on the basis of universal adult franchise, makes a ringing declaration that the State of Jammu & Kashmir is and shall be an integral part of the Union of India. And this provision is beyond the pale of amendment,” it said.The apex court, while setting aside the high court order, held that provisions of the SARFAESI Act can be applied to Jammu and Kashmir.”We therefore set aside the judgment of the High Court.As a result, notices issued by banks in terms of Section 13 (Enforcement of security interest) and other coercive methods taken under the said Section are valid and can be proceeded with further,” the bench said.The high court had held the Act was inapplicable for banks like the SBI which are Indian banks.

Narendra Dabholkar murder case: Bombay HC reprimands CBI for slow probe

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Coming down heavily on CBI, the Bombay High Court on Friday said it was “bungling up” probe in the murder case of rationalist Narendra Dabholkar by causing inordinate delay in obtaining forensic reports from the Scotland Yard.A division bench of Justices SC Dharmadhikari and BP Colabawalla, which was hearing petitions filed by the family of Dabholkar and murdered activist Govind Pansare seeking HC supervision in the probe, was irked when CBI sought further adjournment in the case as it was still awaiting report from the forensic lab in UK. “The more you postpone and delay the more benefit the accused will get. It also gives an impression in the society that you (CBI) are not serious about the case and are not pursuing the probe sincerely. “You are just bungling it up. It is your credibility at stake. You should remember that this delay is impacting two trials which are ready to commence,” the court said.The agency had earlier claimed before the HC that it had sent bullets and empty shells recovered from Pansare’s body and the crime scene to the Scotland Yard to ascertain if there was any link between the Dabholkar and Pansare murders. The agency wanted to seek a third opinion as the forensic labs in Mumbai and Bangalore had submitted conflicting reports.Additional Solicitor General Anil Singh, appearing for CBI, today told the court that the agency is still awaiting reports from UK and that several letters have been sent pursuing the case. “Alternately we could seek opinion from the forensic lab in Delhi,” Singh said.Irked by this, the court said if there was alternative of seeking opinion locally then why did the agency not do it before. “You (CBI) were aware of the difficulties and obstacles when you sought report from UK. What prevented you from seeking opinion from a local third party expert before? The point is efforts taken should be sincere. Especially in cases like this where the offence is of a serious nature and impacts the society,” Justice Dharmadhikari said. The court noted that the delay caused by the probe agency would not only benefit the accused but would also give a bad impression to the society at large.On Pansare murder case which is being probed by the state CID, the court called for better coordination between CBI and CID. “When the accused are common in both the cases then the agencies should coordinate and take joint efforts to nab the accused,” the court said.Special public prosecutor Ashok Mundargi, appearing for state CID, told the court today that a supplementary charge sheet has been filed in the case against two accused – Sameer Gaikwad and Virendra Tawde and two absconding accused. Mundargi said all efforts are being taken to nab the absconding accused.The court while posting the petitions for hearing after six weeks said this was the last chance it was giving to CBI to procure reports from UK and also sought a progress report from CID on its probe against the absconding accused.While Dabholkar was murdered in Pune on August 20, 2013, Pansare was shot on February 16, 2015 in Kolhapur. He died on February 20.

No intention to discriminate but must ensure uniformity: SC on barring IAF personnel from sporting beards

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> IAF personnel cannot sport a beard on religious grounds, the Supreme Court said making it clear that policies on personal appearance are “not intended to discriminate against religious beliefs” but to “ensure uniformity and discipline” which are indispensable to every armed force.The apex court observed that for the effective functioning of a large combat force, the members must bond together by a sense of espirit-de-corps, “without distinctions of caste, creed, colour or religion” and while on duty, every member of the Indian Air Force is required to wear uniform and not display any sign distinguishing one from another.”Regulations and policies in regard to personal appearance are not intended to discriminate against religious beliefs nor do they have the effect of doing so. Their object and purpose is to ensure uniformity, cohesiveness, discipline and order which are indispensable to the air force, as indeed to every armed force of the Union,” a bench headed by Chief Justice T S Thakur said while dismissing appeals of two Muslim personnel of IAF.Airmen Mohammed Zubair and Ansari Aaftab Ahmed had challenged dismissal of their plea by the Punjab and Haryana High Court in which they had sought setting aside of the air force order directing them to shave off their beard. By an August 26, 2005 communication, the personnel were informed that under the current policy of the air force dated February 24, 2003 and July 9, 2003 an airman was not permitted to have a beard on religious grounds.The bench, also comprising Justices D Y Chandrachud and L Nageswara Rao, said there was no merit in the appeals as they were unable to show that their case falls within the ambit of Regulation 425(b) which says “personnel whose religion prohibits the cutting of the hair or shaving of the face of its members will be permitted to grow hair or retain beard”.”In the circumstances, the commanding officer was acting within his jurisdiction in the interest of maintaining discipline of the air force. The appellant having been enrolled as a member of the air force was necessarily required to abide by the discipline of the force,” the court said.

IAF officers can’t grow beard on religious grounds: SC dismisses two Muslim men’s pleas

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Thursday held that personnel working in the Indian Air Force cannot sport a beard based on religious grounds.

A bench headed by Chief Justice TS Thakur said that the Centre’s decision to prohibit personnel of a particular community from sporting beard does not infringe upon the fundamental rights.

Representational image. AFP

Representational image. AFP

The bench also comprising Justices DY Chandrachud and L Nageswara Rao dismissed the pleas filed by two Muslim personnel of IAF who had challenged the dismissal of their pleas by the Delhi High Court.

The apex court verdict came on two petitions filed separately by two personnel, Mohammed Zubair and Ansari Aaftab Ahmed, challenging the IAF authorities’ “confidential” order dated 24 February, 2003, prohibiting Muslim personnel from sporting a beard.

Zubair in his petition had contended that the order was in contravention of fundamental fights of the citizen and also a government letter issued through the Ministry of Home Affairs on 18 July,1990.

The said letter of the home minister permitted the uniformed Muslim/Sikh personnel to sport beard on religious grounds, provided prior permission was sought from the authorities, he said.

The Centre had said that the IAF order was in the interest of cohesiveness in a combat force and it also has security implications.

It had said that these policies are secular in character and have not been framed to govern the conduct of air force personnel of any particular religion.

The Centre has earlier told the court that IAF is undoubtedly a secular force having due regard for all religions and it is imperative that its personnel are guided by a sense of brotherhood without any distinction of caste, creed, colour or religion.

The petitioners had challenged the IAF order by way of a writ petition before the Delhi High Court and a single judge, citing certain Muslim religious texts, took the view that sporting beard was not compulsory and hence dismissed the plea.

They then approached a division bench which had also concurred with the order of the single judge and dismissed the plea following which the appeals were filed in the apex court.

First Published On : Dec 15, 2016 15:31 IST

Delhi HC rules compensation to be given to children born out of rape

New Delhi: A child born out of rape is entitled to compensation, independent of any such relief granted to the mother, the Delhi High Court has ruled.

The verdict to this effect, in which a man has been sent to jail for his entire “natural life” for raping his minor step-daughter, was delivered after the court noted that there was no such provision under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act or under the Delhi government’s victim compensation scheme.

Ironically, the high court, which had earlier laid down a law in this regard, reduced the amount of compensation to the rape victim from Rs 15 lakh awarded by the trial court to Rs 7.5 lakh, saying the higher amount went against the 2011 compensation scheme formulated by the Delhi government.

It also faulted the trial court by giving a go-by to the guidelines for maintaining confidentiality of the rape victim.

Representational image. Reuters

Representational image. Reuters

However, a bench of Justices Gita Mittal and RK Gauba said a child born out of rape, either of a minor or a woman who is an adult, “is clearly a victim of the act of the offender and entitled to compensation independent of the amount of compensation paid to his/her mother.”

This “vacuum” in the law came to the court’s attention when it was hearing the appeal of a man convicted and awarded life term for raping his minor step-daughter who, as a result of the crime, gave birth at the tender age of 14 years.

Noting the “sordid scenario” in the instant case, where “the trust and confidence reposed in the man by his wife and step-daughter, was abused by him to bring about, out of sheer lust, untold miseries on the body, mind and psyche of the prosecutrix child leaving scars which would not ever heal”, the court upheld his conviction and sentence.

It also clarified that the man shall remain behind bars for the remainder of his natural life, saying “we see no scope for any ruth (pity) in the matter of punishment.”

While upholding the sentence, the bench also expressed displeasure over the manner in which the trial court “gave a go-by” to the precaution mandated under POCSO to keep the minor victim’s identity confidential.

The high court also reiterated its earlier direction to all trial courts not to disclose the identity of minor victims in POCSO cases.

Apart from the lack of provisions under the POCSO Rules and the Delhi Victims Compensation Scheme 2011 for children born out of rape, the court noted the absence of any provision in the scheme for child victims of sexual offences.

It also observed that no victim compensation fund has been set up under the 2011 scheme despite directions in this regard by the high court in a PIL.

The high court noted this while examining how the trial court awarded a compensation of Rs 15 lakh to the victim.

The bench said under the existing scheme, the maximum compensation that can be paid was Rs three lakh and under the proposed new scheme of 2015, it would be enhanced to Rs 7.5 lakh.

Setting aside the compensation awarded by the trial court, the bench awarded a total amount of Rs 7.5 lakh to the victim, saying “given the nature of loss, pain and suffering which she undoubtedly would have undergone, we find this to be a fit case where the state must pay compensation for the minimum sum of Rs 7.5 lakh (which would be the compensation awardable under the proposed scheme of 2015, as and when brought in force).”

First Published On : Dec 14, 2016 11:13 IST

Child born out of rape entitled to compensation: Delhi HC

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> A child born out of rape is entitled to compensation, independent of any such relief granted to the mother, the Delhi High Court has ruled.The verdict to this effect, in which a man has been sent to jail for his entire “natural life” for raping his minor step-daughter, was delivered after the court noted that there was no such provision under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act or under the Delhi government’s victim compensation scheme. Ironically, the high court, which had earlier laid down a law in this regard, reduced the amount of compensation to the rape victim from Rs 15 lakh awarded by the trial court to Rs 7.5 lakh, saying the higher amount went against the 2011 compensation scheme formulated by the Delhi government.It also faulted the trial court by giving a go-by to the guidelines for maintaining confidentiality of the rape victim. However, a bench of Justices Gita Mittal and R K Gauba said a child born out of rape, either of a minor or a woman who is an adult, “is clearly a victim of the act of the offender and entitled to compensation independent of the amount of compensation paid to his/her mother”. This “vacuum” in the law came to the court’s attention when it was hearing the appeal of a man convicted and awarded life term for raping his minor step-daughter who, as a result of the crime, gave birth at the tender age of 14 years.Noting the “sordid scenario” in the instant case, where “the trust and confidence reposed in the man by his wife and step-daughter, was abused by him to bring about, out of sheer lust, untold miseries on the body, mind and psyche of the prosecutrix child leaving scars which would not ever heal”, the court upheld his conviction and sentence. It also clarified that the man shall remain behind bars for the remainder of his natural life, saying “we see no scope for any ruth (pity) in the matter of punishment”.While upholding the sentence, the bench also expressed displeasure over the manner in which the trial court “gave a go-by” to the precaution mandated under POCSO to keep the minor victim’s identity confidential. The high court also reiterated its earlier direction to all trial courts not to disclose the identity of minor victims in POCSO cases. Apart from the lack of provisions under the POCSO Rules and the Delhi Victims Compensation Scheme 2011 for children born out of rape, the court noted the absence of any provision in the scheme for child victims of sexual offences.It also observed that no victim compensation fund has been set up under the 2011 scheme despite directions in this regard by the high court in a PIL. The high court noted this while examining how the trial court awarded a compensation of Rs 15 lakh to the victim. The bench said under the existing scheme, the maximum compensation that can be paid was Rs three lakh and under the proposed new scheme of 2015, it would be enhanced to Rs 7.5 lakh.Setting aside the compensation awarded by the trial court, the bench awarded a total amount of Rs 7.5 lakh to the victim, saying “given the nature of loss, pain and suffering which she undoubtedly would have undergone, we find this to be a fit case where the state must pay compensation for the minimum sum of Rs 7.5 lakh (which would be the compensation awardable under the proposed scheme of 2015, as and when brought in force)”.

Why was senior-most officer RK Dutta shifted out of CBI: SC asks Centre

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Supreme Court on Friday sought the Centre’s response on a plea challenging the appointment of Rakesh Asthana as the interim director of CBI after allegedly shifting out a senior officer who was supervising high profile cases of 2G spectrum and coal scams, by curtailing his tenure.”Why was senior-most officer R K Dutta, supervising high profile 2G and coal scam cases, shifted out of agency without the nod of this court,” a bench of Justices Kurian Joseph and RF Nariman said while issuing notice to the government. “You have to reply on two questions, as to why Dutta was shifted out of CBI by curtailing his tenure and how the CBI’s interim director was appointed,” the bench said.Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said a meeting of the selection committee to appoint CBI director will be convened soon and letters have been issued to Chief Justice of India and leader of largest opposition party in Parliament. The three-member selection committee to appoint CBI director comprises the Prime Minister, the leader of the largest opposition party and the Chief Justice of India.Advocate Prashant Bhushan, appearing for petitioner NGO Common Cause, claimed that Dutta was shifted out of CBI by curtailing his tenure to ensure that Asthana, a senior Gujarat cadre offier, was made the interim chief of the probe agency. “They are trying to destroy CBI,” Bhushan alleged after Mehta sought some time to file the reply, and urged the court not to give so much time to the government.Mehta argued that Asthana has been serving the agency for long and also handled several high profile cases.The court, however, asked Mehta to file reply to the petition within a week and posted the matter for hearing on December 16. The petition, filed by the NGO, alleged that the Centre took a series of steps in a “completely mala fide, arbitrary and illegal manner to ensure that Asthana was given the charge of CBI director”. Asthana, an IPS officer of 1984-batch, was elevated as CBI’s Additional Director on December 2 when its Special Director R K Dutta, who was reportedly among the frontrunners for the top post, was shifted to the Ministry of Home Affairs as a Special Secretary.The plea has claimed that the government did not convene a meeting of the selection committee, even though it was fully aware that Anil Sinha was going to demit the office of CBI director on December 2.It alleged that the government had “prematurely curtailed” Dutta’s tenure and transferred him to MHA on November 30 just two days before Sinha was slated to demit office.

SC advocates harsher laws for rash and negligent driving

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> People should fear the law whether they “like it or not”, the Supreme Court on Tuesday said while favouring harsher punishment for rash and negligent driving.A bench of Justices Dipak Misra and Amitava Roy said that the provisions under the Motor Vehicles Act and section 304A (causing death by rash and negligent act) of IPC, which provides for a maximum two years jail term, seem to be inadequate to deter errant drivers.”Whether people like it or not, there should be fear of law among them,” the bench said while voicing concern over lives lost due to “drunken, rash, reckless, high-speed and adventurist” driving.It said that “the driver not only becomes a threat to himself but also to others and no amount of compensation can be a substitute for life loss”.Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi told the bench that he is in communication with the competent authorities on the issue stricter punishment for such kind of driving.The bench had sought the assistance of Rohatgi to know the fate of apex court’s suggestions, given in two earlier verdicts, to Parliament to re-visit the law dealing with mishaps causing death and injury to innocents on roads due to rash and negligent driving.He said that the law needs to be amended for enhancing the punishment for negligent driving and sought eight weeks time to come back with a reply from the competent authorities.Rohatgi shared the concern of the bench on inadequacy of penal provisions to deal with the menace and said that he agrees that the manner in which vehicular accidents due to reckless driving take place requires “stern handling”.The bench posted the matter for further hearing on March 8. Earlier, Rohatgi had told the apex court that rash and negligent driving by “adventurist” motorists needs to be curbed with an “iron hand”.The top law officer had told the apex court that existing provisions of the Motor Vehicles Act and section 304A (causing death by rash and negligent act) of IPC, were inadequate to deal with the menace.The court had termed as “absolutely inadequate” the maximum punishment and asked Rohtagi to apprise “competent authorities to have a re-visit of the relevant provisions”.

Bombay HC seeks reply from Finance Ministry, RBI on deadline for exchanging old notes

Nagpur: The Bombay High Court has sought response from the Finance Ministry and Reserve Bank of India on a PIL seeking extension of deadline for exchanging the demonetised notes.

Representational image. Reuters

Representational image. Reuters

A division bench of Justices Bhushan Gavai and Vinay Deshpande issued the notices yesterday while hearing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL), and posted the matter for further hearing after three weeks.

The petitioner, Urmila Wasudeo Kowe, said in her PIL that there should be more time to exchange old high denomination notes. The earlier deadline of November 24 to change the now defunct Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes has expired and many in rural areas and those from working class, could not change their hard earned money. For such segment, the time limit should be extended.

The Central government demonetised the old high currency notes with effect from 8 November midnight and granted time till 24 November to exchange old notes.

The labour, working class and migrant workers also have old notes and they are unable to deposit the same as many of them do not have bank accounts. It is not possible for them to reach to RBI and such persons should be allowed to exchange old notes from nationalised banks, the PIL said, while seeking such a direction to the RBI and the Centre.

Advocate Ashwin Ingole appeared for the petitioner.

First Published On : Dec 2, 2016 14:26 IST

Play National Anthem before movie: Supreme Court to cinema halls

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court (SC) on Wednesday ordered cinema halls across the country to play the National Anthem before a movie, and said that the audience must stand up while it is being played.The Apex Court said that “love and respect for the motherland is reflected when one shows respect to the National Anthem as well as to the National Flag. A time has come when citizens must realise that they live in a nation and are duty-bound to respect the National Anthem, which is a symbol of constitutional patriotism and inherent national quality,” a Bench of Justices Dipak Misra and Amitava Roy said.In 2003, then Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) youth wing president Narendra Verma had made a representation to the Maharashtra government in this regard. Verma had approached then Deputy Chief Minister and Home Minister Chhagan Bhujbal, who liked the idea and gave orders to this effect. Accordingly, 150 theatres in Maharashtra started playing the National Anthem, said Verma.Speaking to DNA, Verma said he had actually approached then President Pratibha Patil and then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to make it compulsory in all cinema halls in the country but nothing happened. Verma said that it should now be made mandatory in all colleges and theatres where plays are staged.The SC Bench also said that “prior to the National Anthem being played or sung in cinema halls, the entry and exit doors shall remain closed, so that no one can create any disturbance, which will amount to disrespect to the National Anthem.””The Apex Court said that there shall not be any “dramatisation of the National Anthem” and it should not be included as a part of any variety show. The court barred the printing of the anthem or a part of it on any object and displaying it in such a manner at places which may be “disgraceful to its status”. The court also barred playing or displaying an “abridged version” of the National Anthem and directed that its order be given effect in 10 days.Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for the Centre, said that the anthem has to be respected and assured the Bench that the order of the court will be circulated to the chief secretaries of all states and Union territories.The Bench posted the matter for further hearing on February 14. Its directions came on a PIL filed by one Shyam Narayan Chouksey. The Apex Court had last month issued a notice to the Centre, asking it to specify what would constitute disrespect to the National Anthem.(With inputs from agencies)

‘This is zero material, only insinuation’: SC refuses to go into plea seeking SIT probe on 2013-14 raids

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Friday refused to go into a plea seeking probe by an SIT into alleged recovery of documents by the IT department in connection with raids on two business houses here in 2013-14 which purportedly showed computerised inventories containing designations of top people having received money.”You take this back. You come when you have some better material. This is zero material. It is only an insinuation,” a bench comprising Justices J S Khehar and Arun Mishra said. As the bench was not inclined to order any investigation, Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi said the allegations are “scandalous, malafide” and NGO Common Cause, which has filed the plea, was indulging in “kite flying”. The bench said it can only hear the matter if the NGO can come out with “better material” on December 14.”We can’t order investigation only because you name a big person,” it said. “Give us some better material, good material. What is this material? Just because it is a computer entry would you rope in the entire world. We are very clear if the suspicion arouses the conscience of any person, it is a good material. “So far as this material is concerned, it does not arouse suspicion. We are not satisfied at all. These are high public functionaries. If you are bringing this material before us, it is nothing. It is a serious issue. You must give us something on which we can determine,” the bench said. The court did not accept the arguments of senior advocates Shanti Bhushan and Ram Jethmalani that the investigation can be ordered based on the material provided by the NGO.”All these are non-genuine documents. They are all fictitious documents. You are relying on that. We already had held it was all fictitious. Give us something authentic,” the bench said, referring to the material about one of the business groups. When Bhushan referred to another business group, the bench said anyone, anywhere today can make entry of a hundred persons.”There are thousands of unscrupulous persons in the country and can be making entries. Presuming we accept what you say then see how far-reaching impact it can have. We are not shying away from taking any action, but on which material we can order investigation,” the apex court said. “There should be some good material, there should be some supporting material and for investigation, there should be some prima facie material. At present, there is nothing. We can’t order investigation. You can’t have investigation only because you name a big person,” it said.

Panama papers PIL: SC seeks Centre’s response on SEBI being made party

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Thursday sought a response on the plea of market regulator SEBI that it has been dragged as a party in a PIL seeking a court-monitored CBI probe against Indians whose names have figured in Panama papers for allegedly holding bank accounts in foreign countries.

“We will require the petitioner to file an affidavit within four weeks showing as to how SEBI is connected with the present PIL,” a bench of Justices Dipak Misra and Amitava Roy said.

Representational image. Getty Images.

Representational image. Getty Images.

The direction came when senior advocate Arvind Datar, appearing for SEBI, alleged that the market regulator has no role whatsoever in the the Panama paper leak case and it has been dragged in the list without any reason.

Meanwhile, Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Centre, sought dismissal of the PIL, filed by lawyer M L Sharma in his personal capacity, saying a Multi-Agency Group (MAG), comprising officials of CBDT, RBI, Financial Intelligence Unit and ED, has already been set up to ensure “speedy and coordinated” probe against Indians whose names have figured in Panama papers.

Moreover, as many as five reports have been submitted by MAG to the apex court-appointed Special Investigation Team on black money which is led by Justice (retd) M B Shah, he said, adding that MAG, in turn, has submitted those reports in sealed cover to a Supreme Court bench hearing black money case.

The Centre had on 3 October informed the court that a whopping Rs 8,186 crore, illegally kept in offshore banks by Indians, has been brought under the tax ambit despite constraints like non-sharing of information by Swiss authorities.

The Department of Economic Affairs of the Finance Ministry, in an affidavit, had said “an undisclosed income of Rs 8,186 crore (including protective assessment of Rs 1,485 crore) has been brought to tax, on account of deposits made in unreported foreign bank accounts”.

The ASG today told the apex court that the Centre is “bent upon to find out the truth and take appropriate action” in the Panama paper leak case and hence the plea be dismissed.

First Published On : Nov 24, 2016 21:21 IST

Rape accused RJD MLA Raj Ballabh Yadav to remain in jail after SC cancels bail plea

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Thursday cancelled the bail of Rashtriya Janata Dal MLA Raj Ballabh Yadav, who was accused of raping a minor girl.

A bench of Justices AK Sikri and Abhay Manohar Sapre asked whether Yadav was already “released” following the bail granted by Patna High Court earlier. When the apex court was informed that he was not released, the bench said: “Let him remain in jail.”

Raj Ballabh Yadav. Pradesh18.comRaj Ballabh Yadav. Pradesh18.com

Raj Ballabh Yadav. Pradesh18.com

The court order came as it allowed the Bihar government’s plea challenging the bail.

The girl, a resident of Rahui in Nalanda, was allegedly raped by Raj Ballabh on 6 February at his Bihar Sharif residence, around 70 km from Patna. The Times of India reported that the Nalanda police had filed an FIR only in April and Raj Ballabh was named as the key accused. The police chargesheet also names a woman and her relatives for allegedly supplying girls to the RJD lawmaker. RJD then suspended the accused from party membership a day after his arrest.

Ahead of the hearing against his bail plea in the Supreme Court, Raj Ballabh called upon Lalu Prasad Yadav in October, saying that he had no grudge against the state government. He also maintained that there was no serious charge against him and “no FIR or statement of the victim under 164 CRPC against me”.

The third term RJD MLA was suspended from the party in the wake of the rape allegation against him.

The minor girl, however, expressed concern for her and her family’s safety, as the Bihar government in October appealed against the bail order in the Supreme Court. “He [Yadav] is out of jail… I am scared and afraid for my family. What will happen to them? I am already dead after what happened to me. I have nothing more to lose,” said the Nalanda schoolgirl in a WhatsApp message to reporters.

The Supreme Court on 24 October rejected a plea by Raj Ballabh to remain outside Bihar, favouring that the RJD legislator should remain in jail till the victim records her statement “fairly and without any fear”.

With inputs from agencies

First Published On : Nov 24, 2016 12:50 IST

Rape videos on Whatsapp: SC raps govt for not filing reply in 11 months

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Supreme Court on Monday pulled up the government for failing to file its response in a case relating to the posting of rape videos on social networking sites like WhatsApp for 11 months.”What have you done in past eleven months? You have done nothing. Don’t you think it is a public interest and something needs to be done,” a bench of Justices M B Lokur and U U Lalit asked after it was informed that the concerned officers of the Ministry of Home Affairs were busy in Parliament. Advocate Bala Subramanium, appearing for Centre, sought a weeks time to file the reply and said he needed to seek instructions from the officials who were busy in Parliament.”If the concerned officials are busy in Parliament, then what are we doing here? Do you think that we are sitting here for nothing. It can’t go like this,” the bench said while refraining from imposing cost.It also pulled up the government for not framing schemes to conduct probe in cyber crime cases and directed the government to file an affidavit within a week. The bench posted the matter for further hearing on Friday.The court was hearing a letter sent to then Chief Justice of India H L Dattu by Hyderabad-based NGO Prajwala along with two rape videos in a pen drive. It had taken suo motu note of the letter on posting of these videos on ‘WhatsApp’ and had asked CBI to launch a probe forthwith to nab the culprits.Earlier, the apex court had asked the Information Technology Ministry to respond on how to block videos of rape cases, circulating on social network websites, under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act. The ministry’s reply was sought after social activist Sunitha Krishnan had submitted that there should be a particular place where one could report the circulation of such rape videos and seek their blocking.Krishnan, the co-founder of NGO Prajwala which is engaged in rescue and rehabilitation of victims of sex trafficking, said apart from the nine complaints which CBI was probing, she had another 90 cases but there was no single authority before whom she could lodge a complaint for blocking of such videos. The apex court had earlier sought responses of the Centre and the governments of Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Odisha, Delhi and Telangana.The NGO had said that one video, which was 4.5 minutes long, showed a man raping a girl while another person was filming the heinous act. The other video, spanning 8.5 minutes, related to the gangrape of a girl by five culprits who have been shown smiling, cracking jokes, making a video and taking photos while they went about sexually assaulting the victim, it had said.The court had issued notices to the union ministries of Home Affairs and Information Technology and asked the MHA Secretary to “forward the pen drive/DVD” to the CBI Director “forthwith” for the investigation. It had taken cognisance of the letter referred to it by the CJI and ordered that a proper petition be filed later. The NGO’s letter had also suggested that a task force be set up to look into sexual offences and a mechanism be evolved to ensure that citizens’ report such crimes in a “fearless” manner and their identity be protected.It had mooted the idea of maintaining a National Sex Offenders’ Register which should contain details of persons convicted for offences like eve-teasing, stalking, molestation and other sexual assaults. The NGO had also suggested that the MHA should have a tie-up with ‘YouTube’ and ‘WhatsApp’ to ensure that such offensive videos are not uploaded and the culprits are punished as well.

Demonetisation: Delhi HC to hear plea against ‘unconstitutional’ currency ban

New Delhi: Delhi High Court on Monday agreed to hear a plea against demonetisation, saying once the currency was invalidated then how could the government direct certain public utilities including hospitals and petrol pumps to accept old notes.

A bench of Justices BD Ahmed and Jayant Nath are listed for hearing the plea on Tuesday, which also sought discontinuation of the new Rs 2,000 currency note, terming the move as “unconstitutional and bad in law”.

Petitioner Pooja Mahajan, running a designer showroom, mentioned the matter pleading urgency on the ground that she is being deprived of earning her livelihood and her fundamental rights are being infringed.

She also blamed the government for taking a dual stand saying on one hand it was encouraging people to deposit old notes in bank accounts and on the other hand threatening them of prosecution for depositing over Rs 2.50 lakh.

Advocates, A Maitri and Radhika Chandrashekhar, counsel for the petitioner, urged the court to quash various notifications with regard to demonetisation issued on and after 8 November, saying they are in contravention of the Constitution of India and Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Act.

Representational image. PTI

Representational image. PTI

Section 24 of RBI Act deals with denomination of notes which empowers the RBI and Centre to issue bank notes for various denominations as mentioned in section 24 (1) and (2) of the Act, the plea said.

“Till date, government has not issued any notification under section 24 (2) of the RBI Act for discontinuing currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000.

It further said that Rs 2,000 notes are being circulated by the government against mandate of section 24(1) of the Act.

Seeking direction to Ministry of Finance, the petitioner said the government’s decision is “arbitrary and unconstitutional” as on one hand it has cancelled the currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 but simultaneously circulated high denomination notes of Rs 2,000 without the mandate of RBI Act.

The petitioner also alleged that “on the pretext of exchange of notes, government cannot prosecute and misuse the provisions of Income Tax Act by treating the cash deposit for exchange as unaccounted money”.

As per Section 24 (1) of the RBI Act, bank notes shall be of denominational value to Rs 2, Rs 5, Rs 10, Rs 20, Rs 50, Rs 100, Rs 500, Rs 1,000, Rs 5,000 and Rs 10,000 or of such other denominational values, not exceeding Rs 10,000 as the Central Government may, on the recommendation of the Central Board, specify in this behalf.

Section 24 (2) of the Act says the Centre may, on the recommendation of the Central Board, direct the non-issue or the discontinuance of issue of bank notes of such denominational values as it may specify in this behalf.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had on 8 November announced the demonetisation of Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 notes with effect from midnight, making these notes invalid in a major assault on black money, fake currency and corruption.

First Published On : Nov 21, 2016 15:50 IST

Presumption in dowry death to be backed by cruelty proof: Supreme Court

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The presumption of culpability against an accused in a dowry death case under the Evidence Act would be “activated” only when there is a proof that a deceased woman had been subjected to cruelty for demand of dowry, the Supreme Court has ruled. The provision to secure convictions in dowry death cases was inserted in the Evidence Act, which provides that instead of presumption of innocence, the accused would be presumed prima facie guilty in such homicides if a woman dies within seven years of marriage and there is proof of cruelty.In a major verdict, a bench of Justices Dipak Misra and Amitava Roy has said if prosecution fails to prove by coherent evidence that an accused charged in a dowry death case has harassed the woman to demand dowry, the person cannot be held guilty by taking refuge of presumption under the Act. “The presumption (under section 113B of the Evidence Act) as to dowry death thus would get activated only upon the proof of the fact that the deceased lady had been subjected to cruelty or harassment for or in connection with any demand for dowry by the accused and that too in the reasonable contiguity of death,” the bench said.”Such a proof is thus the legislatively mandated prerequisite to invoke the otherwise statutorily ordained presumption of commission of the offence of dowry death by the person charged therewith,” it said, while acquitting some in- laws of a woman who was found hanging in her matrimonial house in 1996.The petitioners, who were initially acquitted by the trial court, had approached the apex court against their conviction by the Madhya Pradesh High Court under sections 498-A (husband or relative of husband of a woman subjecting her to cruelty) and 304-B (dowry death) of the IPC. The husband of the deceased woman had committed suicide in June 1998 when the case was pending before the trial court. The prosecution had claimed that the husband and in-laws of the deceased woman were demanding dowry and had subjected her to harassment and torture.In its judgement, the apex court also said that proof of cruelty or harassment by the husband, his relatives or persons charged in dowry death cases was a ‘sine qua non’ (indispensable condition) to inspirit the statutory presumption. “If the prosecution fails to demonstrate by cogent, coherent and persuasive evidence to prove such fact, the person accused of either of the above referred offences cannot be held guilty by taking refuge only of the presumption to cover up the shortfall in proof,” it said.In the present case, the bench said the prosecution had failed to prove the crucial ingredient of cruelty and harassment by direct and cogent evidence and conviction of these persons on the basis of materials on record “would not be out of risk”

Asaram cases: SC seeks Centre’s response on plea for CBI probe

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> The Supreme Court on Friday sought the response of the Centre and five states on a plea seeking a CBI probe into the alleged murder of children through black magic and attacks on ten witnesses in Asaram Bapu rape cases.A bench of Justices A K Sikri and A M Sapre while issuing notice to the Centre, Haryana, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh governments, said that it is the high time that issue of witness protection needs to be dealt with. The four petitioners are — Mahinder Chawla, a witness in a rape case involving Asaram, Naresh Gupta, the father of a murdered witness, Karamvir Singh, the father of a child rape victim and Narender Yadav, a journalist who allegedly escaped a murder attempt. They have filed the plea seeking CBI probe into the matters.”A very dangerous scenario has emerged which attacks the heart of our constitutional rights and freedoms, where the rich and powerful accused openly subvert the rule of law and pollute the streams of justice by murdering, attacking and threatening witnesses with impunity. “Recently several witnesses in the Asaram Bapu and Narayan Sai rape cases were killed, attacked or went missing under mysterious circumstances,” the plea said.The petitioners also sought directions from the court to the Centre and states for central forces’ protection to the witnesses who have been attacked.The petition filed through advocate Utsav Singh Bains said that a CBI probe is needed on the attacks on the witnesses and into “the murder of a child by black magic by Narayan Sai and Asaram in Jhabua, Madhya Pradesh, into the mysterious deaths of two children at the Motera Ashram of Gujarat and two more children at Chhindwara, Madhya Pradesh”.

SC restrains Kerala vigilante groups from killing stray dogs

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Thursday restrained vigilante groups in Kerala from imparting training to children and distributing airguns to the people at a subsidised rate to kill stray dogs and publicly propagate that there was a “war” against canines in the state.A bench of Justices Dipak Misra and Amitava Roy said it failed to understand as to how such groups could be formed to eliminate stray dogs when there is a law to deal with the issue. “In view of the aforesaid submission of the counsel for the state, we restrain such organisations to impart training to the children or to distribute subsidised airguns for people to kill stray dogs or to publicly propagate that there is war against the stray dogs or strangulate the stray dogs or for that matter offer prizes or incentives to those who kill the stray dogs. Needless to say, our directions are not exhaustive but illustrative,” the bench said.The bench also took note of the submissions advanced by Kerala’s counsel who said that the state government was making “immense efforts” to curtail spread of stray dogs and it was trying to ensure that no canines attack human beings. “However, we really fail to fathom that when there is a law in place to deal with the stray dogs, how the associations and groups can be formed to train the children to kill the stray dogs or an association which can distribute subsidised airguns for people to kill stray dogs or publicly propagate that there must be war against stray dogs,” it said.When the court was told that stray dogs were continuously attacking and killing human beings in Kerala, the bench remarked, “An impression should not go that human lives have a lesser value than the dog’s life. Human life is divine.” The bench also referred to its earlier order which had said that the Kerala government and other authorities in the state can go for culling of stray dogs as per the provisions of the relevant Act and Central rules.Kerala’s counsel told the bench that citizens cannot form such associations and take the law into their hands. The court had earlier set up a panel headed by former Kerala High Court judge Sri Jagan to inquire into the incidents of common people and children killing stray dogs and the support rendered to this by several vigilante groups in the state.The court, in its order, today noted various steps taken by the Centre on the issue. The Centre, in its affidavit, has said, “Involvement of various agencies/departments at the central and state level, more particularly at the state level, was required in the proper and effective control and management of stray dogs as per ABC Rules implemented by the Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI).”As the task had to be performed through the municipal authorities and other state government departments at the state level, the state governments should be advised to set up and strengthen institutional mechanisms and the AWBI should be part of such mechanism. “State governments have already been advised by the central government to set up state-level Animal Welfare Boards which should be the nodal mechanism to perform this task.” It also said that the Health Ministry may be asked to identify a scheme/source of funding for the control and management of stray dogs through relevant agency at the state level.The bench has fixed the matter for further hearing on March 1. The apex court had earlier asked the Kerala government to file its response along with the details of action taken against the offenders. The bench had also granted time to the Centre to file its response on the module dealing with aspects of ‘implementation framework for street dog population management, rabies eradication and reducing man-dog conflict’ filed by AWBI.The bench was hearing a batch of petitions filed by various NGOs and individual petitioners in the matter. An apex court-appointed panel headed by former Kerala High Court judge S S Jagan, in its interim report, had said that more than one lakh people in Kerala have been bitten by dogs in 2015-16 and warned that frequent stray dog attacks on children there have created a dangerous situation.Some NGOs and individual petitioners have moved the apex court against the decisions of some high courts, including the Bombay High Court and the Kerala High Court, to allow municipal authorities to deal with the stray dogs menace as per the rules.

SC terms jallikattu unconstitutional, rejects Tamil Nadu govt’s plea to review ban

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday dismissed the plea of the Tamil Nadu government seeking review of the 2014 judgement banning use of bulls for jallikattu events in the state and bullock-cart races across the country.

A bench comprising Justices Dipak Misra and RF Nariman rejected the state government’s review petition, filed in 2014 through its Chief Secretary, saying that it was illegal and unconstitutional as the taming of bulls for such an event amounted to “cruelty”.

Representational image. AFPRepresentational image. AFP

Representational image. AFP

Senior advocate Shekhar Naphade, appearing for the state, submitted during the hearing that the jallikattu is not cruel as a whole, and instances of animal torture are isolated cases.

The apex court had on 21 January dismissed similar pleas for re-examination of the 2014 judgement.

A bench of Justices Gopala Gowda and PC Ghose, during in-chamber proceedings, had dismissed the review petitions filed by some residents of Tamil Nadu seeking reconsideration of the ban order on the controversial bull-taming sport.

On 8 January, the Centre had issued a notification lifting the ban on jallikattu in Tamil Nadu with certain restrictions, which was challenged in the apex court by Animal Welfare Board of India, People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India, a Bangalore-based NGO and others.

The apex court had stayed the notification. Jallikattu, also known Eruthazhuvuthal, is a bull-taming sport played in Tamil Nadu as a part of the Pongal harvest festival.

The court in its 2014 judgement had said that bulls cannot be used as performing animals, either for Jallikattu events or bullock-cart races in the states of Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra or elsewhere in the country and banned their use across the country.

The apex court had declared Tamil Nadu Regulation of Jallikattu Act, 2009 as constitutionally void, being violative or Article 254(1) of the Constitution.

First Published On : Nov 16, 2016 18:19 IST

Ansal brothers move SC for desealing of Uphaar theatre

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Real estate barons Sushil Ansal and Gopal Ansal moved Supreme Court on Monday seeking de-sealing of the Uphaar cinema hall where 59 cine-goers had lost their lives in 1997 in a blaze when a Bollywood movie was being screened. A bench comprising Chief Justice T S Thakur and Justices D Y Chandrachud and L Nageswara Rao said it will discuss the matter with Justice A R Dave, who had heard the petition in the case.Senior advocate Salman Khurshid, appearing for Ansals, mentioned the matter for urgent hearing and said the fresh plea of Ansals could be heard together with other petitions including those filed by CBI and the Association of Victims of Uphaar Tragedy (AVUT) in the case. Justice Dave, who headed the three-judge bench which had heard the matters in the Uphaar case, is set to demit office on November 18. Earlier this year, a three-judge bench comprising justices Dave, Kurian Joseph and A K Goel had decided to hear in an open court the petitions filed by CBI and the AVUT seeking review of its 2015 verdict by which Sushil and Gopal Ansal were required to serve two-year jail term if they failed to pay Rs 30 crore each. The Ansals have deposited the amount.Fifty-nine people had died of asphyxia when a fire broke out during the screening of Bollywood movie ‘Border’ in Uphaar theatre in Green Park area of South Delhi on June 13, 1997.Over 100 were also injured in the subsequent stampede. The review plea filed by AVUT had said the apex court judgements “bestow an unwarranted leniency on convicts whose conviction in the most heinous of offences has been upheld by all courts including this court and sentences imposed on them have been substituted with fine without assigning any reason or basis.””The sentences of the convicts have been reduced to the period undergone without taking into account the gravity of their offence,” it had said. The CBI, in its review plea, had said the apex court did not give it time to put its views forth which has resulted in “miscarriage of justice”.”Due to the paucity of time on the day on which this case was heard, the prosecution could not adequately put across the reasons why this court should not substitute a monetary fine in place of a jail sentence. “This petition also seeks to raise issue of an apparent error of law in the judgement and order of this court which has occasioned a grave miscarriage of justice,” the agency had said in its plea. The agency had also said that the “callousness” of the Ansal brothers led to 59 people being trapped and suffocated to death in the theatre. The apex court had, on August 19, 2015 sent Ansal brothers to two-year rigorous jail term if they failed to pay Rs 30 crore each within three months.In a judgement on September 23, 2015, the bench had said the “magnitude” of the case “calls for a higher sentence” but the court has to limit itself to the choice available under the law. A two-judge bench of justices T S Thakur and Gyan Sudha Misra (since retired) had in a March 5, 2014 order differed on the quantum of sentence for Ansal brothers — Sushil, 76, and Gopal, 67.While Justice Thakur had retained the one-year jail term awarded by Delhi High Court in 2008, Justice Misra had awarded the maximum punishment of two years with a rider that it can be reduced to the period already undergone behind bars on payment of Rs 100 crore as fine collectively by them. After this, the matter was referred to the bench of Justices A R Dave, Kurian Joseph and Adarsh Kumar Goel, which enhanced the sentence to the maximum period of two years under Section 304-A (causing death by negligence) of IPC if they failed to pay the fine amount.While Sushil has spent over five months in prison, Gopal was in jail for over four months soon after the accident. The three-judge bench had also said that on the principle of parity, the case of Gopal will stand on the same footing as that of Sushil

SC not to restrain govt from using surgical strikes for political gains

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Friday dismissed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) seeking to restrain the government from using the issue of surgical strikes and other actions of armed forces for political gains.In the PIL, filed by Manohar Lal Sharma, a Delhi-based lawyer, sought the apex court’s direction to the government in this regard.A three-judge bench of the apex court headed by Chief Justice of India Tirath Singh Thakur and comprising Justices D.Y. Chandrachud and L. Nageshwar Rao dismissed Sharma’s PIL on the ground that the petition lacked merit, and thus, was baseless.The India Army conducted surgical strikes along the Line of Control (LoC) on seven Pakistan terror launch pads on the intervening night of September 28-29.India’s Director General Military Operations (DGMO) Lt. Gen. Ranbir Singh announced that Indian Army had carried out multiple surgical strikes in the wake of the infiltration bids by terrorists along the Line of Control (LoC), including at Uri and Poonch earlier this month.Although almost all political parties hailed the surgical strike, they asked the government not to thump its chest on the issue to manipulate voters in the wake of assemblies elections in four states, including Uttar Pradesh and Punjab.

Asaram Bapu moves SC, seeks to undergo treatment at AIIMS, Delhi

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Self-styled religious figure Asaram Bapu, facing trial in rape cases, on Thursday moved Supreme Court seeking modification of its order directing him to undergo treatment at AIIMS in Jodhpur. A bench of Justices A R Dave, R K Agarwal and A M Khanwilkar agreed to hear the plea tomorrow after it was mentioned before it for urgent hearing on the ground that Asaram’s health was deteriorating.Counsel for Asaram sought modification of the October 24 order of the apex court saying that AIIMS, Jodhpur does not have in-patient facility and direction be issued to bring him to All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS), Delhi for further treatment.The lawyer said that the court had directed Asaram to undergo treatment at AIIMS, Jodhpur or the Ayurvedic hospital there, while being in judicial custody. The bench agreed to hear the matter tomorrow.The apex court had on October 24 rejected his interim bail plea sought on health grounds. The apex court’s direction had come after controversial religious figure said he wanted to undergo ayurvedic treatment in Delhi for which he needed a month’s interim bail.A seven-member medical board of AIIMS Delhi had told the apex court that Asaram’s health condition was stable and that he had refused to undergo several tests. On August 11, the apex court had denied interim bail to Asaram in a rape case and directed AIIMS Delhi to set up the medical board to ascertain his health condition before taking up his regular bail plea.Asaram was arrested by Jodhpur Police on August 31, 2013 and has been in jail since then. On August 9, the High Court had rejected his bail application in the rape case. A teenage girl had accused him of sexual assault at his ashram in Manai village near Jodhpur. The girl, who belonged to Shahjahanpur in Uttar Pradesh, was a student living in the ashram.

No satisfactory material to declare Sanatan Sanstha a terror outfit: Centre tells Bombay HC

Mumbai: The central government on Wednesday informed the Bombay High Court that till date it has not found any satisfactory material to declare right-wing organisation Sanatan Sanstha as a “terror outfit” under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) and ban it.

A division bench of Justices NH Patil and PD Naik was hearing a petition filed by one Vijay Rokade seeking a ban on the organisation, members of which are alleged to have carried out terror activities in Panvel and Thane.

Three cases regarding bomb blasts have been registered against Sanatan Sanstha. Reuters.

Three cases regarding bomb blasts have been registered against Sanatan Sanstha. Reuters.

The petitioner informed the court that the Maharashtra government, based on a report and material submitted by the Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS), had forwarded a proposal to the Union government in 2012 recommending ban on the group.

The Union government, however, has till date not taken any decision on the proposal.

The Union government’s lawyer told the high court that it had verified the state government’s proposal but was not satisfied with the material submitted by it, and had hence, asked the state government to submit further material in support of its proposal.

“Show us the communication between the Union and state governments. All this cannot be orally stated. Submit before us all the letters sent and received by the Union and state governments within four weeks,” the bench directed.

The court also sought to know under which law or provision can the Union government ban an organisation or trust that is governed by a state government Act. The petitioner’s advocate said under the provisions of

The petitioner’s advocate said under the provisions of the UAPA, the Union government can recommend the ban on any organisation or group.

In April 2012, the state government had filed an affidavit in the case claiming that the Additional Chief Secretary (Home) had addressed a letter to the Director of Union Home Ministry informing it that three cases regarding bomb blasts have been registered against Sanatan Sanstha.

“The government of Maharashtra has reached the conclusion that Sanatan Sanstha organisation is liable to be banned under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act,” the affidavit had said.

SC to continue its hearing on 1995 Hindutva verdict

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court will continue its hearing on the Hindutva case on Wednesday which deals with electoral malpractices arising out of its 1995 judgment. During the hearing by the seven judges’ Constitutional bench, the apex court on Tuesday said it won’t reconsider 1995 judgment which defined Hindutva as “a way of life and not a religion.” The observations came after an on interlocutory application filed by social activist Teesta Setalvad requested the bench to reconsider the 95 judgment. A seven-judge constitution bench, headed by Chief Justice TS Thakur, said the court will not go into the larger debate as to what is Hindutva or what its meaning is and will not reconsider the 1995 judgment. The remarks were made by the bench when some advocates sought to intervene in the ongoing hearing which commenced last Tuesday. Last week, Setalvad had sought the Supreme Court’s intervention in the matter with an application stating that religion and politics should not be mixed and a direction be passed to delink religion from politics.The apex court bench also comprised Justices M B Lokur, S A Bobde, A K Goel, U U Lalit, DY Chandrachud and L Nageshwar Rao. The apex court instead took up a separate plea filed in 1990 whether seeking of votes in the name of religion will amount to a corrupt practice under the Representation of the People Act warranting disqualification.It may be recalled that the Bombay High Court had set aside the election of Shiv Sena leader Manohar Joshi in the mid-1990s. The matter was then moved to Supreme Court, which in 1995 overturned the high court order saying Hindutva is a way of life.Since then, the issue was raised in the top court many times, including in 2002 when the court referred the matter to a seven-judge bench for clarity.

Supreme Court not to re-examine 1995 verdict stating Hindutva as ‘way of life’

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Tuesday said it will not re-examine its 1995 verdict on Hindutva at this stage as it is not the reference for hearing electoral malpractice issues. The 1995 judgment defined Hindutva ‘as a way of life and not a religion’. SC said it is isn’t keen to revisit the debate about philosophy of Hinduism but made it clear religion shouldn’t be used in elections. A seven-judge constitution bench, headed by Chief Justice T S Thakur, said the court will not go into the larger debate as to what is Hindutva or what is its meaning and will not re-consider the 1995 judgement. The apex court is hearing a matter related to electoral malpractices arising out of its 1995 judgement, popularly known as the ‘Hindutva’ verdict. The remarks were made by the bench when some advocates sought to intervene in the ongoing hearing which commenced last Tuesday.”In a secular country, any appeal to voters should be in tune with secular philosophy. Political agitation advancing the cause of religion with an intent to garner votes is not permissible,” said Chief Justice TS Thakur. Last week, social activist Teesta Setalvad had sought to intervene in the matter with an application stating that religion and politics should not be mixed and a direction be passed tode-link religion from politics. Her plea called for SC to revisit the judgment which gave definition of Hindutva. In the reference, there is no mention of the word ‘Hindutva’. If anybody will show that there is a reference to the word ‘Hindutva’, we will hear him. We will not go into Hindutva at this stage,” the bench, which also comprised Justices MB Lokur, S A Bobde, A K Goel, UU Lalit, DY Chandrachud and L Nageshwar Rao, said. The remarks were made by the bench when, at the outset of the hearing, some advocates sought to intervene in the ongoing hearing which commenced last Tuesday. The apex court instead took up a separate plea filed in 1990 whether seeking of votes in the name of religion will amount to a corrupt practice under the Representation of the People Act warranting disqualification.It maybe recalled that the Bombay High Court had set aside the election of Shiv Sena leader Manohar Joshi in the mid-1990s. The matter was then moved to Supreme Court, which in 1995 overturned the high court order saying Hindutva is a way of life. Since then, the issue was raised in the top court many times, including in 2002 when the court referred the matter to a seven-judge bench for clarity.

Supreme Court rejects interim bail plea of Asaram Bapu in rape case

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Supreme Court rejected the interim bail plea of self-styled religious figure Asaram Bapu on Monday, who is facing trial in rape cases, on health grounds and asked him to get his treatment done in Rajasthan in judicial custody itself. A bench of Justices AK Sikri and NV Ramana said if Asaram wanted to undergo treatment, he could get the diagnosis done at AIIMS, Jodhpur or at Rajasthan Ayurvedic hospital while staying in judicial custody.The apex court’s direction came after Asaram said he wanted to undergo ayurvedic treatment in Delhi for which he needed one month’s interim bail. “If you (Asaram) want ayurvedic treatment, you can get that it in Rajasthan itself. There is no need for interim bail as AIIMS medical board has also said that the health condition is stable,” the bench said.Counsel appearing for Rajasthan government said they were ready to provide all possible treatment to Asaram at the hospitals in the state. The bench, however, clarified that Asaram’s supporters should not be allowed in the hospital and none of his followers should meet him.The court said it will hear the plea for regular bail of Asaram in November. On October 18, the apex court had sought Rajasthan government’s response to Asaram’s bail pleas and said it will first deal with the interim bail and then regular bail. Earlier, a medical board of All India Institute of Medical Sciences had told the apex Court that the health condition of Asaram was stable. Asaram had refused to undergo several tests, the seven-member board had also said in its report filed before the bench of Justices AK Sikri and NV Ramana.On August 11, the apex court had denied interim bail to Asaram in a rape case and directed AIIMS to set up a medical board to ascertain his health condition before taking up his regular bail plea. Asaram was arrested by Jodhpur Police on August 31, 2013 and has been in jail since then. On August 9, the High Court had rejected his bail application in the rape case. A teenage girl had accused him of sexual assault at his ashram in Manai village near Jodhpur. The girl, who belonged to Shahjahanpur in Uttar Pradesh, was a student living in the ashram.

Supreme Court to hear Asaram’s bail plea today

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Monday will hear the bail plea of self-styled religious figure Asaram Bapu, an accused in a rape case of a minor girl. A medical board of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) had on October 3 told the apex court that the health of Asaram Bapu was stable. Asaram had earlier refused to undergo several tests, the seven-member board said in its report filed before the bench of Justices AK Sikri and NV Ramana. On August 11, the top court had denied interim bail to Asaram in a rape case and directed the AIIMS to set up a medical board to ascertain his health before taking up his regular plea for bail. The Rajasthan High Court had earlier rejected Asaram’s bail plea citing that the case had reached its “fag end” and thus it was not “appropriate” to grant him bail. This was his ninth regular bail application to be rejected. In 2013, a minor girl had alleged that Asaram had sexually assaulted her at his ashram in Jodhpur. The self-styled godman was subsequently arrested on August 31, 2013, and has been in jail since. Asaram’s counsel had sought bail citing that the accused has been suffering several ailments.

Soon, all-India entrance test for judges’ appointments

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The four-decade old plan of setting up an all-India service for appointment of judicial officers in the lower judiciary is finally taking shape. Sources in the law ministry said the issue of creation of an All India Judicial Service (AIJS) was discussed recently as part of the Centre’s plan to bring judicial reforms. Chief Justice of India TS Thakur is likely to meet chief justices in all states to discuss the modalities of AIJS.The plan of holding an all India entrance test for judges, as is done in case of Indian Administrative Services, is ostensibly being pushed by the law ministry in a bid to ensure regular appointment of judges in the lower judiciary, which is currently reeling under staff shortage.According to latest statistics, as of June 30, there was a shortage of 5,111 judicial officers in the country’s district courts, which have only 16,192 judges against the sanctioned strength of 21,303. Nearly three crore cases are pending in district courts across India. At present, judges for lower courts are mostly selected by High Courts or the State Public Service Commission of respective states.Sources said the creation of AIJS will make the government instrumental in appointment of judges at the entry level. This is significant because every year, 60 per cent of vacancies in the High Courts are filled through promotion of lower court judges to High Courts, where the main recruitment happens through the Collegium system, in which the government has no say.The government narrative is that since the case of appointments in higher judiciary is stuck, it is working towards strengthening the lower judiciary. The higher judiciary case is stuck because the government and judiciary have not been able to come on a common ground regarding finalising of a Memorandum of Procedure (MoP) for the Collegium.Meanwhile, sources said Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad and senior officials from the ministry tried to build a strong case for AIJS in a meeting held with some judges a few weeks ago.That things are moving forward for AIJS is also evident from a note prepared by the law ministry’s justice department. The note, dated September 20, 2016, states: “The matter has been discussed at the highest level in the government and the judiciary. It has been decided that the Honourable Chief Justice of India would convene a meeting of the Chief Justices of the High Courts to arrive at a consensus on formation of AIJS.”Relations between the government and the judiciary strained after the Supreme Court struck down the government proposal to replace the Collegium system with the National Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC) for appointments in higher judiciary.Though the Apex Court had questioned the objectivity of its own Collegium system, it chose the Collegium over NJAC. The Supreme Court, however, asked the Centre to devise in consultation with the Chief Justice of India, an MoP for the Collegium, a task that remains pending.It is pertinent to mention that various law commissions (1st, 8th, and 11th) had also suggested the creation of AIJS. Even the Supreme Court, in two of its judgments in 1991 and 1993, had recommended setting up of AIJS. In addition, Article 312 of the Constitution also talks about the creation of AIJS, which was also a part of the All India Conference of Chief Justices of High Courts and Chief Ministers meet in 2013 and 2015.In November, 2012, a Committee of Secretaries chaired by the Cabinet Secretary had approved a “comprehensive proposal” for creation of the service. At the time, 18 high courts out of 24 had responded to the proposal, and most of them had opposed it. It will be interesting to see how the High Courts react to the present proposal which, according to sources, has been significantly tweaked to convince the judiciary that it would remain free of government control.

Global conference to strengthen arbitration, enforcement begins in New Delhi today

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Prime Minister Narendra Modi will deliver the valedictory address of the first ever global conference to strengthen Arbitration and Enforcement in India at New Delhi today. Today is the third and last day of the ongoing Global Conference.The conference which began on Friday, titled ‘National Initiative on Strengthening Arbitration and Enforcement’ is being held to change the face of dispute resolution in India.For the first time, six leading international arbitral institutions and all major industry associations have come together to drive this initiative.The conference aims to provide impetus to commercial arbitration in the country, which is fast gaining pace across the world.During the inauguration of the conference on Friday, President Pranab Mukherjee had called for institutional reforms to strengthen arbitration framework in India saying that courts need to devise a mechanism to handle such matters separately and avoid delays arising from judicial intervention.In his address at the inaugural session, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had pitched for making India an important commercial arbitral centre, saying that efforts are being made to revive the arbitration centres in Mumbai and the national capital with a view to expedite contractual dispute resolution at a lesser cost.On Saturday, the conference’s second day , discussions were held Indian Arbitration Act, Case Management of Arbitration, setting up an world class autonomous arbitration institution and court support for arbitration during different sessions.On Sunday, an interactive session will also be held on the future of international arbitration where Chief Justices from six countries across the world will participate.

Cauvery dispute: Karnataka says it will comply with SC order to release 2,000 cu water to TN

Bengaluru: Karnataka government on Wednesday said it would stick to the Supreme Court direction to the state to release 2,000 cusecs of water per day to Tamil Nadu till further orders.

Representational image. CNN-News18Representational image. CNN-News18

Representational image. CNN-News18

“We will stick to the Supreme Court order. I want to say no more than that,” Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister TB Jayachandra told reporters on the sidelines of a media briefing on cabinet meeting.

The Supreme Court had on Tuesday retained its direction to Karnataka to release 2,000 cusecs till further orders and asked the two states to ensure peace and harmony, saying citizens should not become law unto themselves.

A three-judge bench headed by Justice Dipak Misra, which commenced the crucial hearing on various issues arising out of the dispute between Tamil Nadu and Karnataka over sharing of Cauvery waters, had said it first intended to adjudicate the issue of maintainability of appeals filed by both the states and Kerala against the Cauvery water dispute tribunal’s 2013 award.

“The interim order dated 4 October directing Karnataka to release 2,000 cusecs of water per day to Tamil Nadu will continue till further orders,” the bench also comprising Justices Amitava Roy and AM Khanwilkar had said.

A court-appointed Supervisory Committee has submitted its report on the ground situation in the basin region in both the states, which have locked horns over water release in recent months, escalating tension over the more than century-old dispute.

The bench had also said on Tuesday it would first go into the issue of maintainability of appeals filed by Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry against the award of tribunal and then hear the arguments on the report filed by the committee.

Supreme Court to hear Asaram Bapu’s bail plea today

Mon, 17 Oct 2016-09:20am , New Delhi , ANI
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court will hear the bail petition of self-styled godman Asaram Bapu on Monday. A medical board of All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) had on October 3 told the apex court that the health condition of Asaram Bapu was stable. Asaram, accused of rape, had refused to undergo several tests, the seven-member board also said in its report filed before the bench of Justices AK Sikri and NV Ramana. On August 11, the top court had denied interim bail to Asaram in a rape case and directed AIIMS to set up a medical board to ascertain his health condition before taking up his regular bail plea. The Rajasthan High Court had earlier rejected Asaram’s bail plea citing that the case had reached its “fag end” and thus it was not “appropriate” to grant him bail. This was his ninth regular bail application to be rejected. In 2013, a minor girl had alleged that Asaram had sexually assaulted her at his ashram in Jodhpur. The self-styled godman was subsequently arrested on August 31, 2013, and has been in jail since then. Asaram’s counsel had sought bail citing that the accused has been suffering several ailments.

Wife’s demand for privacy not cruelty towards husband: Bombay HC

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Demand for privacy by a married woman after she enters her matrimonial home cannot be dubbed as cruelty towards the husband to grant him divorce, the Delhi High Court has held. “Privacy is a fundamental human right. Oxford dictionary defines privacy as ‘a state in which one is not observed or disturbed by other people.’ So when a woman enters into matrimony, it is the duty of family members of her matrimonial home to provide her with some privacy,” a bench of Justices S Ravindra Bhat and Deepa Sharma said. The observation came as the bench dismissed a plea by the husband who had challenged a 2010 trial court order dismissing his petition seeking dissolution of his marriage. Besides cruelty, the husband had also raised the ground of “irretrievable breakdown” of marriage by narrating that their wedlock has virtually lost its meaning as they were living separately for the last 12 years and had reached a point of no return. However, the bench said though the Supreme Court had recommended to the Centre in 2006 the amending of the Hindu Marriage Act to “incorporate irretrievable breakdown of marriage as a ground for divorce. Yet till date this ground of divorce has not been added to the Act”. “This Court thus lacks jurisdiction to dissolve a marriage on the doctrine of ‘irretrievable breakdown’,” the bench said. While holding that the demand for privacy by the wife cannot be termed as cruelty, the high court noted in its judgement that the trial court had rightly observed that her demand to set up a separate home was “not unreasonable”. The bench said, “There is no evidential backing by the appellant (husband) or his family members showing that they had provided requisite privacy to the respondent (wife).The family court was therefore correct in holding that such demand was not unreasonable and as such did not constitute cruelty.” The man, who had married in September 2003, had filed the divorce plea before the trial court alleging that his wife had treated him cruelly and pressurised him to set up a separate home as she did not want to live in a joint family.

Denying sex to husband for long period is ground for divorce: Delhi High Court

New Delhi: Denying sex to husband for a long time without any justification amounts to mental cruelty and is a ground for divorce, Delhi High Court has said. The verdict came on a petition by a husband seeking divorce, complaining that his wife had subjected him to mental cruelty by not allowing him to have physical relations for four-and-a-half-years though she was not suffering from any physical disability.

AFPAFP

Delhi High Court. AFP

While allowing the husband’s appeal, the high court granted a decree of divorce to him noting that the wife in a trial court had not specifically denied the allegation. “In view the foregoing discussion, we are of the considered view that the husband has fully established that he was subjected to mental cruelty by the wife by denying sex to him for a long period despite living under the same roof, without any justification and though she was not suffering from any physical disability,” a bench of Justices Pradeep Nandrajog and Pratibha Rani said.

The husband had challenged a trial court order of March dismissing his divorce petition on the ground that the instances of cruelty pleaded and proved by him did not satisfy the standard of cruelty as per the provisions of the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955. The high court noted in its verdict that the wife had initially appeared before the trial court which subsequently proceeded against her ex-parte as she stopped appearing thereafter, even though she was served with the notice.

The husband had told the high court that their marriage was solemnised on 26 November, 2001 in Haryana and they had two sons aged 10 and 9 years, at the time of filing of the plea in trial court in 2013. The man claimed that he and his family members were subjected to mental cruelty by his wife as she was not doing household work. When her conduct became unbearable, his parents asked them to live in a separate accommodation in another portion of the same house, he said.

He also claimed his wife had not permitted him to have physical relations for last four-and-a-half-year. In her written statement filed before the trial court, the wife had initially contested the divorce plea filed by the husband while denying all allegations. In its judgement, the bench referred to the settled legal position that “denial of sex to a spouse itself amounts to causing mental cruelty”. “The appeal being well founded deserves to be allowed,” it said, adding “we grant a decree of divorce in favour of the husband on the ground of cruelty by dissolving his marriage with the wife that had been solemnised”.

SC strikes ‘adult male’ from Domestic Violence Act, says any person can be tried under law

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a landmark verdict, the Supreme Court has widened the scope of the Domestic Violence Act by ordering deletion of the words “adult male” from it, paving the way for prosecution of women and even non-adults for subjecting a woman relative to violence and harassment.The apex court has ordered striking down of the two words from section 2(q) of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005, which deals with respondents who can be sued and prosecuted under the Act for harassing a married woman in her matrimonial home.Referring to earlier verdicts, the apex court said “the microscopic difference between male and female, adult and non adult, regard being had to the object sought to be achieved by the 2005 Act, is neither real or substantial, nor does it have any rational relation to the object of the legislation.” Section 2(q) of the Act reads: “‘respondent’ means any adult male person who is, or has been, in a domestic relationship with the aggrieved person and against whom the aggrieved person has sought any relief under DV Act.” A bench of Justices Kurian Joseph and R F Nariman paved way for prosecution of any person irrespective of gender or age under the DV Act, ordered deletion of the words “adult male” from the statute book saying it violated right to equality under the Constitution.The bench said that the words “adult male person” were contrary to the object of affording protection to women who have suffered from domestic violence “of any kind”. “We, therefore, strike down the words ‘adult male’ before the word ‘person’ in Section 2(q), as these words discriminate between persons similarly situated, and far from being in tune with, are contrary to the object sought to be achieved by the 2005 Act,” it said.The major verdict came on an appeal against the Bombay High Court judgement, which had resorted to the literal construction of the term ‘adult male’ and discharged four persons, including two girls, a woman and a minor boy, of a family from a domestic violence case on the ground that they were not “adult male” and hence cannot be prosecuted under the DV Act.The bench in its 56-page judgement, said the remaining part of the legislation has been kept untouched and would be operative. “We, therefore, set aside the impugned judgment of the Bombay High Court and declare that the words ‘adult male’ in Section 2(q) of the 2005 Act will stand deleted since these words do not square with Article 14 of the Constitution of India. Consequently, the proviso to Section 2(q), being rendered otiose (superfluous), also stands deleted. We may only add that the impugned judgment has ultimately held, in paragraph 27, that the two complaints of 2010, in which the three female respondents were discharged finally, were purported to be revived, despite there being no prayer in Writ Petition…for the same,” the court said.Dealing with the term ‘adult’, the bench said “it is not difficult to conceive of a non-adult 16 or 17-year-old member of a household who can aid or abet the commission of acts of domestic violence, or who can evict or help in evicting or excluding from a shared household an aggrieved person. “Also, a residence order which may be passed under Section 19(1)(c) can get stultified if a 16 or 17-year-old relative enters the portion of the shared household in which the aggrieved person resides after a restraint order is passed against the respondent and any of his adult relatives…”.The bench said that the term “adult male” contained in the Act was “discriminatory”.

Women, non-adults can now be tried under Domestic Violence Act, rules Supreme Court

New Delhi: In a landmark verdict, the Supreme Court has widened the scope of the Domestic Violence Act by ordering the deletion of the words “adult male” from it, paving the way for prosecution of women and even non-adults for subjecting a woman relative to violence and harassment.

The apex court has ordered striking down of the two words from section 2(q) of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005, which deals with respondents who can be sued and prosecuted under the Act for harassing a married woman in her matrimonial home.

A bench of Justices Kurian Joseph and RF Nariman ordered the deletion of the words

A bench of Justices Kurian Joseph and RF Nariman ordered the deletion of the words “adult male” from the statute book saying it violated right to equality under the Constitution. AFP

Referring to earlier verdicts, the apex court said, “The microscopic difference between male and female, adult and non-adult, regard being had to the object sought to be achieved by the 2005 Act, is neither real or substantial nor does it have any rational relation to the object of the legislation.”

Section 2(q) of the Act reads: “‘respondent’ means any adult male person who is, or has been, in a domestic relationship with the aggrieved person and against whom the aggrieved person has sought any relief under DV Act.”

A bench of Justices Kurian Joseph and RF Nariman paved way for prosecution of any person irrespective of gender or age under the DV Act, ordered the deletion of the words “adult male” from the statute book saying it violated right to equality under the Constitution.

The bench said that the words “adult male person” were contrary to the object of affording protection to women who have suffered from domestic violence “of any kind”.

“We, therefore, strike down the words ‘adult male’ before the word ‘person’ in Section 2(q), as these words discriminate between persons similarly situated, and far from being in tune with, are contrary to the object sought to be achieved by the 2005 Act,” it said.

The major verdict came on an appeal against the Bombay High Court judgement, which had resorted to the literal construction of the term ‘adult male’ and discharged four persons, including two girls, a woman and a minor boy, of a family from a domestic violence case on the ground that they were not “adult male” and hence cannot be prosecuted under the DV Act.

The bench, in its 56-page judgement, said the remaining part of the legislation has been kept untouched and would be operative.

“We, therefore, set aside the impugned judgment of the Bombay High Court and declare that the words ‘adult male’ in Section 2(q) of the 2005 Act will stand deleted since these words do not square with Article 14 of the Constitution of India.

“Consequently, the proviso to Section 2(q), being rendered otiose (superfluous), also stands deleted. We may only add that the impugned judgment has ultimately held, in paragraph 27, that the two complaints of 2010, in which the three female respondents were discharged finally, were purported to be revived, despite there being no prayer in Writ Petition…for the same,” the court said.

Dealing with the term ‘adult’, the bench said “it is not difficult to conceive of a non-adult 16 or 17-year-old member of a household who can aid or abet the commission of acts of domestic violence, or who can evict or help in evicting or excluding from a shared household an aggrieved person.

“Also, a residence order which may be passed under Section 19(1)(c) can get stultified if a 16 or 17-year-old relative enters the portion of the shared household in which the aggrieved person resides after a restraint order is passed against the respondent and any of his adult relatives…”.

The bench said that the term “adult male” contained in the Act was “discriminatory”.

Delhi HC says ‘spoilt honeymoon’ and cruelty to in-laws a ground for divorce

New Delhi: A spoilt honeymoon and subjecting the husband and his family to “worst kind of mental cruelty” by levelling false accusations, have been held as grounds for divorce in a case by the Delhi High Court.

The High Court has dubbed the case as an “exception” in which “the marriage could not take off right from inception” between the couple who were in the age group of 30 plus at the time of marriage and were “quite mature”.

While allowing dissolution of their 12-year-old wedlock, it noted that the husband and wife returned with “bitter memories and a spoiled honeymoon” in which she had resisted consummation of marriage and later subjected him and his family to mental cruelty by levelling false accusations.

Representational image. AFPRepresentational image. AFP

Representational image. AFP

The remarks were made in the judgement by a bench of Justices Pradeep Nandrajog and Pratibha Rani, which dismissed the plea of a woman who had challenged the verdict of a trial court allowing the man’s petition seeking dissolution of their marriage on grounds of cruelty.

“The respondent/husband was able to establish that during their honeymoon not only consummation of marriage was resisted by her, even thereafter causing embarrassment and humiliation accusations have been made against him and his entire family,” the bench noted in its judgement.

The bench said the conduct of the woman was such that it was not possible for the man to bear such kind of cruelty.

“It is a marriage which could not take off right from inception as the worst kind of mental cruelty was faced by the husband during his honeymoon and thereafter. All his efforts to save the marriage by arranging various meetings, visiting the parental home of the wife…could not save this marriage,” the bench said.

The high court noted that the marriage was solemnised in January 2004 and the woman had left matrimonial home in April 2004 and thereafter a case was lodged by her against the man and his family members.

It noted that the man tried to reconcile the marriage but as she was not agreeable, he filed a divorce petition before a trial court which was contested by the woman.

“Before applying for dissolution of marriage on the ground of cruelty, the husband has shown exceptional patience in dealing with the problem in spite of facing humiliation and scandalous allegations being made against him and his family members,” the bench said.

It also observed that accusations levelled by the woman against her husband and in-laws were not substantiated by any oral or documentary evidence.

“In the case of arranged marriages where both the spouses are in the age group of 30 plus, honeymoon period is the best time to know, understand and come close to each other. This case is an exception in the sense that just a day after the marriage the parties left for their honeymoon to Shimla and returned with bitter memories and a spoiled honeymoon,” the court observed.

We are adamant about taking liquor ban forward: JD (U)

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>After the Supreme Court stayed a Patna High Court order quashing the Bihar government’s ban on liquor, the Janata Dal (United) has said that the liquor ban cannot only be looked through a legal spectrum; it is also fundamentally wrong to consume alcohol.The JD-U said it is adamant about defending and taking their antiliquor campaign forward.JD (U) general secretary and spokesperson of Ajay Alok told ANI, “The Supreme Court has asked all stakeholders to present their cases after ten weeks. We do not comment on any orders given by the Supreme Court, but the liquor ban should not just be looked through the lens of legal procedures. It is wrong fundamentally to consume alcohol, it is wrong to store alcohol and that is why we have imposed a liquor ban and we are adamant to take this decision forward.”Yesterday, an apex court bench comprising of Justices Dipak Misra and Uday Umesh Lalit gave the respondents six weeks time to respond, and four weeks to the state government to file its rejoinder.The stay on the high court order came on a petition by the government.The bench directed that hearing of the matter would take place after ten weeks.

Nitish Katara Murder case: Vikas and Vishal Yadav sentenced to 25 years in prison

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Monday sentenced Vikas and Vishal Yadav to 25 years in prison in connection with the February 17, 2002 Nitish Katara murder case.The court also sentenced Vikas’s cousin Sukhdev Pehalwan to 20 years in prison.A bench comprising of Justices Dipak Misra and C Nagappan pronounced the verdict on appeals filed by Vikas and Vishal against the Delhi High Court order which had enhanced their respective life terms to 25 years in jail without remission and an additional five years for destruction of evidence.Yadav had made the plea for leniency on September 21 and senior Supreme Court advocate UR Lalit appearing for the convict who is the son of former parliamentarian, DP Yadav, had told a division bench of the apex court headed by Justice Dipak Misra and Justice C. Nagappan, that his client had already served over 14 years of his jail sentence.The Delhi High Court had on February 6 rejected the plea for giving a death sentence or enhancing life imprisonment to Vikas and his cousin Vishal to 25 years in jail without any remission.The high court had then held that the murder of Katara, who was in love with Vikas’s sister Bharati, was an “honour killing”, which was done in a very “carefully planned and premeditated” manner with “extreme vengeance”.The high court had decided to enhance the sentence awarded by the trial court, saying “amplitude of the gravity of the offence”, “cries for the need” that they (the convicts) be “adequately punished”.

Cauvery dispute: Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah to chair all-party meet on Saturday

Amid heightened tensions between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, over the former’s reluctance to comply with the Supreme Court order, Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah has called an all-party meeting at 5 pm on Saturday to discuss future course of action.

The chief minister has convened an all-party meeting of floor Leaders of both Houses, MPs, including central ministers representing the state, and ministers concerned of Cauvery basin and district in-charge Ministers, CMO officials said. Taking Karnataka to task for its repeated “defiance” by flouting its orders over release of, the apex court on Friday had asked it to release 6,000 cusecs water from Saturday till 6 October to Tamil Nadu, warning “no one would know when the wrath of the law” would fall on it.

Former Karnataka prime minister HD Deve Gowda has also go on an indefinite hunger strike in Bengaluru against the Supreme Court’s order, reports ANI.

Representational image. CNN-News18

Representational image. CNN-News18

Karnataka is hoping that the BJP and the Centre would intervene in the matter to find a political solution to the apex court’s order directing Karnataka to release 6,000 cusecs of Cauvery water per day till 6 October to Tamil Nadu, reported The Economic Times.

A bench of Justices Dipak Misra and UU Lalit had also directed the Centre to constitute the Cauvery Water Management Board by 4 October. After the apex court verdict, sporadic protests were reported from Mandya and Mysuru districts where police have made elaborate security arrangements.

Speaking in New Delhi, Karnataka Water Resources Minister MB Patil had said the government will decide further course of action after going through the judgment and discussing with the legal team headed by advocate Fali Nariman. Nariman told the bench he has unequivocally said he would not argue for Karnataka till the orders of Supreme Court are complied with.

Karnataka has maintained its inability to release water to Tamil Nadu citing low storage in its reservoirs and drinking water needs of Bengaluru and neighbouring districts. Both the Legislative Assembly and the Council on 23 September had also adopted a resolution not to provide water for any other purpose except to meet drinking needs, citing “acute distress” and “alarmingly low levels” in dams.

The opposition BJP and JD(S) had expressed disappointment over the Supreme Court’s order and the stand taken by Nariman, representing the state in the case. Terming court order as “shocking”, BJP state president BS Yeddyurappa had said the order to release 6,000 cusecs till 6 October, does not note of the ground realities.

With inputs from PTI

Cauvery dispute: Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah convenes all-party meeting on Saturday

Bengaluru: Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah has convened an all-party meeting on Saturday to discuss future course of action in the wake of fresh Supreme Court order for release of 6,000 cusecs of Cauvery water per day till 6 October to Tamil Nadu.

Representational image. CNN-News18

Representational image. CNN-News18

The Chief Minister has convened an all-party meeting of floor Leaders of both Houses, MPs, including central ministers representing the state, and Ministers concerned of Cauvery basin and district in-charge Ministers, CMO officials said. Taking Karnataka to task for its repeated “defiance” by flouting its orders over release of, the apex court today asked it to release 6,000 cusecs water from Saturday till 6 October to Tamil Nadu, warning “no one would know when the wrath of the law” would fall on it.

A bench of Justices Dipak Misra and UU Lalit also directed the Centre to constitute the Cauvery Water Management Board by 4 October. After the apex court verdict, sporadic protests were reported from Mandya and Mysuru districts where police have
made elaborate security arrangements.

Speaking in New Delhi, Karnataka Water Resources Minister MB Patil said the government will decide further course of action after going through the judgment and discussing with the legal team headed by advocate Fali Nariman. Nariman told the bench he has unequivocally said he would not argue for Karnataka till the orders of Supreme Court are complied with.

Karnataka has maintained its inability to release water to Tamil Nadu citing low storage in its reservoirs and drinking water needs of Bengaluru and neighbouring districts. Both the Legislative Assembly and the Council on 23 September had also adopted a resolution not to provide water for any other purpose except to meet drinking needs, citing “acute distress” and “alarmingly low levels” in dams.

The opposition BJP and JD(S) have expressed disappointment over the Supreme Court’s order and the stand taken by Nariman, representing the state in the case. Terming court order as “shocking”, BJP state president BS Yeddyurappa said the order to release 6,000 cusecs till 6 October, does not note of the ground realities.

Chikungunya outbreak: SC asks AAP govt to give names of non-cooperating officials

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Supreme Court on Friday took strong exception of Delhi Health Minister’s allegation that officials were not cooperating and taking responsibility to check vector- borne disease like dengue and chikungunya in the national capital and asked him to give names and evidence of those officials by October 3.”You have made a serious allegation in your affidavit. Who are the officials disobeying you? People in Delhi are suffering from dengue and chikungunya. You cannot treat them like this,” a bench headed by Justices M B Lokur said.An affidavit filed by Delhi health minister Satyendra Jain in response to notices issued to Delhi government on a PIL which was taken suo motu cognisance of by the apex court said officials have not been cooperating to curb the diseases. Jain, in the affidavit, has said that officials were not taking responsibility and all files pertaining to diseases like dengue and chikungunya were being sent to LG for clearance.On September 26, the apex court had sought response from Delhi government on steps being taken to check vector-borne diseases dengue and chikungunya in the national capital.”Give the names and evidences of the officials who have been disobeying by Monday. It is a serious matter,” the bench told the counsel appearing for Delhi government.The counsel sought some time to file the names and evidences and said he would file the names of officials who were not cooperating in a sealed cover. To this, the bench said “since you have made the allegation on affidavit, the names and evidences of officials should not be filed in sealed cover”.Senior advocate Ajit Sinha appearing for Lieutenant Governor refuted the charge that officials were not cooperating to fight the diseases as alleged by the Delhi Health Minister. On September 26, Centre told the apex court that it was the duty of Delhi government to ensure that the national capital remained clean and free from diseases like chikungunya and dengue.The apex court had sought response from Delhi government on a suo motu plea relating to the death of a 7-year-old boy in the city due to dengue after allegedly being denied treatment by five private hospitals and subsequent suicide by his parents.

SC directs CBI to probe Shahabuddin and Bihar police to protect Rajdev Ranjan’s kin

New Delhi: CBI was on Friday directed to proceed with its probe into the murder of journalist Rajdev Ranjan by the Supreme Court which asked the Bihar police to provide protection to his family that has claimed threat to life from controversial RJD leader Shahabuddin.

File photo of Mohammed Shahabuddin. PTIFile photo of Mohammed Shahabuddin. PTI

File photo of Mohammed Shahabuddin. PTI

A bench of Justices Dipak Misra and C Nagappan also sought the response of Shahabuddin, Bihar’s health minister and RJD supremo Lalu Prasad’s son Tej Pratap Yadav and Bihar government on a petition by Ranjan’s wife who has also sought transfer of the case from Siwan in Bihar to Delhi.

The RJD chief’s son was seen in a photograph published in newspapers with one of the two sharp shooters of alleged gangster Shahabuddin.

“In view of that, we direct that the CBI may proceed with the investigation but not finalise it and shall file the status report before this Court on 17 October,” the bench said, adding “Superintendent of Police, Siwan district, shall provide police protection to the petitioner and her family.”

The counsel for Ranjan’s wife Asha Ranjan claimed before the bench that CBI has not even started its probe into the case due to “political influence” and “fear of Shahabuddin” as the state machinery was protecting the history sheeter, against whom there were 58 criminal cases according to Bihar government’s 2014 affidavit in the apex court.

When the counsel said the case should be transferred to Delhi, the bench said “CBI shall continue the investigation there. Eventually, after hearing them, we may consider whether to transfer the case. There is no trial as of now. Let them investigate.”

The counsel told the court that five persons were arrested by Bihar Police in connection with the case, but the two alleged sharp shooters of Shahabuddin were not.

“CBI did not dare to take up the investigation in the case due to fear of Shahabuddin. Two sharp shooters, Mohammad Kaif and Mohammad Javed, were seen with Shahabuddin and Health Minister
of Bihar Tej Pratap Yadav. Entire state machinery is protecting Shahabuddin,” he alleged. Kaif surrendered before a Siwan court two days ago.

He said that Rajdev, a journalist, had written various stories about the “criminal deeds” of Shahabuddin and after RJD-JD(U) alliance came to power in Bihar, he was shot dead.

“Terror of Shahabuddin was so high that even the trial judge, who had convicted him in one of the case, has requested for transfer from Siwan to Patna,” he alleged while seeking transfer of the case from Siwan to Delhi.

Reacting to the apex court’s notice, Tej Pratap on Friday said in Patna that similar notices should have been issued against BJP leaders also whose photographs had appeared with a suspect in the case and other criminals.

Asha’s counsel Kislay Panday also said an FIR should be registered against Shahabuddin and Tej Pratap for allegedly “harbouring and sheltering” Kaif and Javed, who were declared as proclaimed offenders in the case in which “hapless and helpless widow” ran from pillar to post for justice.

He said Kaif has surrendered before the police but Javed has not been arrested so far.

Panday said that Asha and two children of the slain journalist have been compelled to live in constant fear after Shahabuddin was released from Jail.

If the probe and trial of the case was conducted in Bihar, Shahabuddin and others would “terrorise the witnesses” due to which they would not get any justice, he contended.

In its order, the bench referred to submissions advanced by the counsel which said, “criminalisation of politics have been heavily commented upon and deprecated by this court in many a decision…and case at hand depicts a disturbing affair in that regard, for Shahabuddin and Tej Pratap, though (they) hold party position and position in the political executive, yet do not even think for a moment before associating themselves with such kind of anti-social elements and, in fact, sometimes render assistance.”

The bench said “on perusal of the petition, it is prima facie discernible that the petitioner who lives with two small children, after losing her husband and the developments that have taken place in District Siwan, is in a state of continuous fear.”

“It has been said that courage is the mother of all virtues and a man with courage can always sustain his or her dignity. But, sometimes, situations are created by certain powerful protagonists which instill fear in the mind of a citizen and that fear has the potentiality to usher in atrophy to the sense of dignity.

“It is also asserted in the petition that in the obtaining fact situation, this Court may direct for giving her protection by the competent authority failing which it is difficult to fathom, what kind of danger shall visit her,” the bench noted.

Sebi-Sahara case: Subrata Roy back in jail as senior counsel infuriates Supreme Court

New Delhi – The Supreme Court on Friday cancelled all interim relief including bail granted to Sahara chief Subrata Roy and two others and directed them to be taken into custody.

A bench headed by Chief Justice T S Thakur got infuriated when senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan, appearing for Sahara, said they have not been involved in the process of selling of properties by Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi).

Subrata RoySubrata Roy

Subrata Roy

“If you want to be heard, you go to jail. Don’t tell us what to do. All interim arrangements stand cancelled. Condemners are directed to be taken into custody,” the bench, also comprising Justices A R Dave and A K Sikri, said.

Dhavan said it was not a fair statement that they should be sent back to jail. “We have deposited Rs 352 crore already as per the last direction which is Rs 52 crore more. It is not a fair statement,” he said.

Counsel appearing for SEBI said that 58 properties were put on auction and they had sold eight of them raising Rs 137 crore. He also said that five of the properties were provisionally attached.

The Sebi counsel said the list of properties given by Sahara to them were those which were already attached.

To this, the bench told the Sahara counsel “You gave a list of properties which are already attached and you are not cooperating. It’s better you if you go to jail.”

The bench asked Sahara chief to deposit Rs 300 crore to be allowed to remain on bail.

Dhavan then suggested that the matter be posted for hearing on September 30 when they would argue on it.

Soon after the bench passed the order directing that Roy and the others — Sahara directors Ashok Roy Choudhary and Ravi Shankar Dubey, be taken into custody, Sahara withdrew its counsel and apologised before the bench.

The Chief Justice said that some people play with the dignity of the court and there are some lawyers who are disrespectful towards the court.

Supreme Court had on 16 September extended the parole of the Sahara chief until 23 September. The parole was granted to him in May after his mother passed away.

The parole continued later to enable him arrange money to refund his investors. It had extended Roy’s parole on 3 August until 16 September with a condition that he has to deposit Rs 300 crore with SEBI.

The apex court on 2 September had asked the Sahara Group to come clean by disclosing its sources from where it had raised Rs 25,000 crore and paid its investors in cash, observing that it is “difficult to digest” as such a huge
amount “cannot fall from the heavens.”

The apex court had granted parole to Roy on May 6 for four weeks on humanitarian ground following the death of his mother Chhabi Roy in Lucknow after prolonged illness.

Besides Roy, the court had also granted parole to the jailed Sahara directors Roy Choudhary and Dubey.

It had said they were free to meet prospective buyers of properties and move within the country under police escort.

Roy has been lodged in Tihar jail since 4 March 2014 on the orders of the apex court in relation with a long running dispute with market regulator Sebi.

DA case against Mulayam Singh Yadav: SC refuses to entertain fresh plea

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Supreme Court on Monday refused to entertain a fresh plea seeking a further probe by CBI into allegations that Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav had amassed disproportionate assets worth over Rs 100 crore during his tenure as UP Chief Minister between 1999 and 2005. A bench of Justices Ranjan Gogoi and P C Pant said the apex court in 2013 had already dealt with these aspects. It however said if there was any grievance regarding non -filing of FIRs or registration of Preliminary Enquiry (PE) a fresh plea can be filed.”We are of the view that the prayers made in the Interim Applications (IA) stands answered in December 13, 2012 judgement…accordingly the prayer for delivering judgement in the aforesaid IA of 2009 is not maintainable. The application is dismissed,” the bench said.Senior advocate KTS Tulsi, appearing for Vishwanath Chaturvedi who had filed the PIL against Yadav in 2005, submitted that the apex court did not pronounce any order on interim pleas filed in 2008 in which it was alleged that CBI cannot close its investigation against Mulayam Singh Yadav and his Chief Minister son Akhilesh Yadav without intimating the Supreme Court.Tulsi said in 2013, CBI had said it was closing the case against Mulayam Singh due to insufficient evidence of disproportionate assets and added that a case can be closed only when the CBI files a formal closure report in the court. The fresh plea alleged that the court had ordered CBI inquiry into the disproportionate assets case in 2007 and subsequently it was said that the probe agency did not sufficient evidence against the SP chief.”We don’t know what happened whether any RC or PE has been registered or not,” Tulsi said.To this, the bench said it gives rise to a fresh cause of action and this issue cannot be dealt in a decided case. Sensing the mood of the bench, Tulsi sought to withdraw the petition with a liberty to file a fresh writ petition. The plea was rejected as court chose to dismiss the petition.In December 2012, the court had directed CBI to go ahead with the probe against the SP Chief and his Chief Minister son while dropping investigation against Dimple Yadav, wife of Akhilesh.

Madras HC quashes order directing CBI probe into IIT-M appointments

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Madras High Court set aside a single judge’s order on Monday directing a CBI probe into faculty appointments made by Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, from 1995 while pulling up the institute for ‘gross irregularities’ in the recruitment process in the past. Partly allowing an appeal by IIT-M challenging the July 25, 2013 order of the single judge, the court ordered payout to an aggrieved faculty member in the matter. Citing Supreme Court rulings, a division bench comprising Justices A Selvam and P Kalaiyarasan said it was not inclined to venture upon and decide about appointment to the posts and held, “This case does not warrant any enquiry by the CBI for the lapses committed by the institute.”It said, “No doubt, selection for the posts of associate professor and professor were made contrary to the terms of the advertisement and gross irregularity has been committed by the institute in the selection process.” However, it noted that Associate Professor WB Vasantha, on whose plea the single judge had directed a CBI inquiry into lapses over appointments of professors since 1995, had not made any allegation of malafide. “It is suffice to observe and direct that the institute as an institute of national importance should be a role model to others in adopting the procedures and laws not only in selection process but in all aspects,” the bench said.Vasantha had applied for the post of Associate Professor in the mathematics department in 1995 but was not selected. In 1996, she applied for the post of Professor, but was appointed as Associate Professor. She had notified the IIT in her joining report in 1997 that she was accepting the post without prejudice to her right to challenge her non-selection for the post of Professor. The IIT, however, rejected the “conditional joining report” following which she had moved the court and got an interim injunction restraining the institute from terminating her service.Contending that lapses were made by the IIT over appointments, she had submitted that two candidates were selected though they did not have requisite qualification and sought a CBI probe. The bench while upholding the single judge’s view that irregularities were made vis-a-vis appointments, directed the IIT to consider Vasantha for the post of Associate Professor and Professor from the relevant dates. It asked the institute to pay within two months her the salary and allowances for the post of Associate Professor from her joining date of June 1, 1997.

Question paper of UP Higher Judicial Service exams should be in Hindi too: HC

The Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court said on Thursday that the question papers in UP Higher Judicial Service (HJS) examination should also be available in Hindi. “We find no reason as to why the question paper cannot also be in Hindi Devnagri Script”, the court observed.At the same time, this being the matter of expert advise and expertise for framing questions in Hindi, the court left it open to the respondent High Court to deal with this issue on the administrative side for an appropriate decision that deserves to be taken for examinations in future, it said.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>However, the court clarified that the High Court will not be required to take any decision for the HJS recruitment examinations, 2016, either preliminary or final.A vacation division bench of Justices Amreshwar Pratap Sahi and Raghvendra Kumar delivered the judgement on a writ petition filed by a practising lawyer intending to appear as a candidate in coming UPHJS examinations 2016. He prayed that the question papers for the examination should be prepared in Hindi and English languages both or else this would violate the constitutional provisions. The court disposed of the petition.

Untold miseries faced by young women in matrimonial homes: Supreme Court

The Supreme Court has refused to take a lenient view towards a man sent to jail for five years for cruelty towards his pregnant wife forcing her to commit suicide, saying her story resembled the tale of young women who ended their life due to “untold miseries” faced in their matrimonial homes.”The story of the deceased young lady, aged about 25 years who was forced to commit suicide by the unfortunate situation and circumstances surrounding her life, resembles the tale of so many similar young ladies who end their life due to untold miseries and hardships faced by them within the confines of the four walls of their matrimonial home,” a bench comprising Justices Dipak Misra and Shiva Kirti Singh said.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The court observed this while dismissing the appeal filed by a Karnataka man challenging his conviction and the five year jail term awarded by the high court which had held him guilty for offences under sections 498 A (subjecting a married woman to cruelty) and 306 (abetting suicide) of the IPC.The apex court said such women enter matrimonial homes with a “hope of leading a long and blissful married life, but this hope, invariably, does not last long, nor their life”. The petitioner and his parents were acquitted by the trial court in the case, but Karnataka High Court had later convicted the husband.The victim was married to the man in 1991 and was living in her matrimonial home. In November 1993, the man had informed police that his wife had died after consuming poison.In its verdict, the apex court noted that the high court had rightly rejected the explanation given by the man that his wife had committed suicide as she was not permitted to go to her mother’s place.”Only for such a trivial matter, a hale and hearty young woman having a ten-month old son and a pregnancy of 20 weeks is not at all expected to take her life. The appellant not only gave absolutely no explanation for the injuries on the person of the deceased, rather he chose to conceal them by keeping mum,” the bench said.

Centre asks states to release funds to their respective high courts

New Delhi: The Centre has taken a grim view of “some” states not releasing funds to their respective high courts to buy new hardware for the prestigious e-courts project, with Law Minister DV Sadananda Gowda asking them to to do so “immediately”.

DV Sadananda Gowda. PTI.

DV Sadananda Gowda. PTI.

In a letter to all chief ministers, Gowda has said Rs 202.23 crore has been allocated to states to make it available to high courts to procure hardware for the e-courts project.

“It seems some of the state governments have not made the funds available to high courts…the funds may be released immediately and adequate technical manpower may also be provided for smooth functioning of the project,” Gowda said in his letter sent this month.

India has 24 high courts.

He has also urged the chief ministers to take early action and intimate to him “periodical progress in this regard.”

Gowda, however, did not name the states which have not released the funds.

The issue of failure on part of the states to provide funds to the high courts was flagged during the Joint Conference of Chief Ministers of states and Chief Justices of High Courts held here on 24 April.

The eCourts Integrated Mission Mode Project is one of the national eGovernance projects being implemented in High Courts and district/subordinate courts across India.

The objective of the eCourts project is to provide designated services to litigants, lawyers and the judiciary through information communication technology enablement of district and subordinate courts in the country.

According to a note prepared by the Department of Justice in the Law Ministry, as on 1 March, 2016, more than 95 percent of the mandated activities have been completed.

As part of the project, laptops have been provided to 14,309 judicial officers.

A unified national core application software — Case Information System (CIS) software — has been developed and made available for deployment in all computerised courts. Entry of data regarding past cases has been initiated and data in respect of over 5.5 crore cases are available online.

Use of force legitimate if children see parents being assaulted: Supreme Court

Use of force can be legitimate if children see their parents being assaulted, the Supreme Court has said while acquitting two brothers accused of hitting their neighbours who had beaten up their parents, causing the death of their father later.”The appellants can legitimately claim right to use force once they saw their parents being assaulted and when actually it has been shown that due to such assault and injury, their father subsequently died,” a bench of Justices Dipak Misra and Shiva Kirti Singh said. The apex court said when the prosecution has suppressed the genesis and origin of the occurrence of the incident, the only possible course left open was to grant benefit of doubt to the accused persons.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The court also set aside the conviction and two-year sentence of the brothers, residents of Rajasthan who were held guilty of attempt to commit culpable homicide. The two men were convicted by the trial court for the offence of attempt to murder, but the Rajasthan High Court had held them guilty of attempt to commit culpable homicide.Challenging their conviction, the two men had claimed that the prosecution’s case was false and brought witnesses in their defence to show that members of the prosecution party had beaten their father, leading to his death.Their mother and others had also received injuries in the incident which was proved by a doctor. The apex court said the high court drew correct inferences from a Supreme Court judgment but proceeded to convict the appellants on the “misconceived ground” that since both parties had withheld the origin and genesis of the occurrence and since it cannot be determined as to who was the aggressor, the case had to be decided against the accused, treating it as one of free fight between the parties.”The aforesaid view of the high court is devoid of legal merits. Once the court came to a finding that the prosecution has suppressed the genesis and origin of the occurrence and also failed to explain the injuries on the person of the accused including death of father of the appellants, the only possible and probable course left open was to grant benefit of doubt to the appellants,” it said. The court further said that adverse inference must bedrawn against the prosecution for not offering any explanation, much less a plausible one, on injuries caused to the accused, as also their father. “Drawing of such adverse inference is given a go-bye in the case of free fight mainly because the occurrence in that case may take place at different spots and in such a manner that a witness may not reasonably be expected to see and therefore explain the injuries sustained by the defence party.This is not the factual situation in the present case. “Therefore, we have no hesitation in allowing the appeal and acquitting the appellants of all the charges. We order accordingly. “They shall be released from jail custody forthwith, if not required in any other case. The appeal is allowed,” the bench ordered.

Word censor not there in Cinematography Act: Bombay High Court

The Bombay High Court (HC) will pronounce on June 13 its order on the petition filed by Phantom Films, the makers of the Hindi film, Udta Punjab, challenging the Central Board for Film Certification (CBFC), suggesting 13 cuts for the film before its release on June 17.The court came down heavily on the CBFC for suggesting 13 cuts, saying that the Cinematography Act doesn’t have the word ‘censor’, and that CBFC has only to certify the film. “Let the people, who are the best censors, do the censoring,” it said.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A division bench of Justices SC Dharmadhikari and Dr Shalini Phansalkar Joshi told the producers to follow one cut suggested by the Board – a public urination scene.The producer agreed to it and counsel Ravi Kadam said: “Yes, we will amend this scene, but we don’t agree to the cuts suggesting deletion of cuss words. Many things are an integral part of the film and cannot be removed.”The producer also agreed to add a disclaimer stating that the makers or the cast of the film do not support the use of expletives.During the hearing, the court questioned the CBFC why it was suggesting 13 cuts that take away the essence of the film. It said, “Sometimes, to open the eyes of the public to all the menace, you have to be direct. Unless the film does not have (that) content, it will not go forward, the creative minds will learn from their mistakes, why are you worried about this? Being critical will not help, don’t we want creative people to survive and grow?”The court also refuted the claim of the CBFC that the use of the word Punjab in the film was defaming the state and glorifying the problem of drug abuse there. “It is sometimes required to provoke the audience to convey a message like this, it’s not only that people are abusing drugs; the film will also help NGOs and doctors who are helping there.”With respect to the language, the court was in agreement with the producer that the words were used to portray the characters. “If two truck drivers are talking to each other, they will surely not use polished language… Even the producer is aware of better language but is conveying a certain character.”

Mathura violence: PIL filed in Allahabad HC for CBI probe

Lucknow: A PIL was on Thursday filed in the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court, seeking a CBI inquiry into the Mathura violence.

File image of the clashes in Mathura. PTI

File image of the clashes in Mathura. PTI

It is likely to come up for hearing on 13 June.

The Public Interest Litigation, filed by IP Singh of Azamgarh district, seeks a direction to dismiss the judicial commission constituted by the Uttar Pradesh government to probe the incident where clashes between the police and encroachers left 29 people dead last week.

Petitioner’s counsel Ashok Pandey said his client has also prayed for a probe by CBI or a Special Investigation Team (SIT).

On 7 June, the Supreme Court had refused to order a CBI probe into the incident.

A vacation bench of Justices PC Ghose and Amitava Roy had said it was not inclined to pass any order in the matter and asked the petitioner to approach the High Court.

Rajya Sabha polls: SC declines relief to BJP MLA Rajendra Meshram from Madhya Pradesh

The Supreme Court on Thursday refused to entertain a plea of a BJP MLA from Madhya Pradesh seeking modification of an earlier order to enable him to cast his vote in the Rajya Sabha polls on June 11.Rajendra Kumar Meshram, a BJP lawmaker from Devsar (SC) seat in Singrauli district of the state, had earlier moved the apex court against the High Court order nullifying his nomination on the ground of resorting to unfair means to win the assembly polls in May 2015.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The apex court, while accepting his appeal for hearing, had allowed him to participate in the assembly proceedings without the right to vote. The MLA has moved for modification of the May 5, 2015 order to exercise his franchise in biennial Rajya Sabha polls.A vacation bench comprising Justices P C Ghose and Amitava Roy today asked Meshram to approach the regular bench hearing for modification of the order. Counsel appearing for Meshram said his application would become infructuous if it is heard after the summer vacation, as Rajya Sabha poll is scheduled for June 11.To this, the bench asked “did you not know about the Rajya Sabha polls earlier? It’s a 2015 order. Why did you not approach the regular bench then.”Meshram’s election was challenged by Congress leader Vansh Mani Prasad Verma by way of an election petition in the Madhya Pradesh High Court which had ruled against the BJP legislator.For the June 11 Rajya Sabha election, the ruling BJP has fielded Anil Dave and M J Akbar as official candidates, while the Congress has put up senior advocate Vivek Tankha as its candidate for the three vacancies from the state.In the state assembly, the ruling BJP has 166 MLAs, the Congress has 57, the BSP has 4 and there are three independents in the 230-member MP assembly. With BJP MLA Rajendra Meshram being debarred from voting, the BJP now has only 165 votes.

SC directs Spicejet to pay Rs 10 lakh damages for offloading woman with cerebral palsy

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Thursday directed budget airline Spicejet to pay Rs 10 lakh as damages to a flyer, suffering from cerebral palsy, who was forcibly offloaded in 2012, saying the manner in which she was deboarded depicts “total lack of sensitivity”.

The apex court noted that the disabled flier Jeeja Ghosh was not given “appropriate, fair and caring treatment” which she required with “due sensitivity” and the decision to de-board her was “uncalled for”.

Spicejet airplanes. AFPSpicejet airplanes. AFP

Spicejet airplanes. Representational image. AFP

“On our finding that SpiceJet acted in a callous manner, and in the process violated Rules, 1937 and Civil Aviation Requirements (CAR), 2008 guidelines resulting in mental and physical suffering experienced by Ghosh and also unreasonable discrimination against her, we award a sum of Rs 10,00,000 as damages to be payable to her,” a bench comprising Justices A K Sikri and R K Agrawal said.

Ghosh was offloaded from a SpiceJet flight on 19 February, 2012 from Kolkata when she was going to attend a conference in Goa hosted by NGO ADAPT (Able Disable All People Together), the second petitioner in the case.

The apex court said the decision to offload Ghosh was taken by the airlines without any medical advise or consideration and her condition was not such which required any assistive devices or aids.

“Even if we assume that there was some blood or froth that was noticed to be oozing out from the sides of her mouth when she was seated in the aircraft (though vehemently denied by her), nobody even cared to interact with her and asked her the reason for the same.

“No doctor was summoned to examine her condition. Abruptly and without any justification, a decision was taken to de-board her without ascertaining as to whether her condition was such which prevented her from flying. This clearly amounts to violation of Rule 133-A of Rules, 1937 and the CAR, 2008 guidelines,” the bench said.

Supreme Court to pass order on medical entrance tests conducted by states today

The Supreme Court will today clear the uncertainty over the fate of medical entrance examinations conducted by states after implementation of National Eligibility Entrance Test, NEET.A bench of Justices A R Dave, Shiva Kirti Singh and A K Goel on Friday had said that it would pass an order today to put to rest all confusion in this regard.The bench had also ruled that those students who had appeared for NEET-I held on May 1 would not be allowed in phase II of the test to be held on July 24.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The bench hinted that it may consider allowing states conducting their own tests to continue with the admission process for current academic year alone.The Court had said that the issue with regard to those students who had appeared or who are due to appear in examinations conducted by the States in accordance with their State laws, shall be decided after hearing Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar.The Solicitor General will today apprise the court about the stand of the Centre.

Subrata Roy released from Tihar jail; on one-month parole following mother’s death

Lucknow: The Supreme Court on Friday released beleaguered businessman Subrata Roy on parole for four weeks after Roy’s mother Chhabi Roy passed away early in the day following prolonged illness.

File photo of Subrata Roy. PTIFile photo of Subrata Roy. PTI

File photo of Subrata Roy. PTI

She was 95 and has been critically ill for over two years.

Subrata Roy has been in Tihar Jail for more than two years in relation with a long running dispute with markets regulator Sebi.

A bench comprising Chief Justice T S Thakur, Justices A R Dave and A K Sikri allowed the plea of Roy seeking permission to attend cremation rites of his mother.

“An application has been filed by Subrata Roy seeking provisional release as his mother passed away early this morning at Lucknow… We direct that Roy shall be released on parole for four weeks,” the bench said.

The court, however, said that Roy would be under the protective custody of the police with an assurance from his counsel Kapil Sibal that his client would not try to escape or run away.

A Sahara group spokesperson said in a statement that Chhabi Roy has been the “guiding light of Sahara India Pariwar and departed for her heavenly abode at 1.34 am today”. “She has been critically ailing for last two years and was at a makeshift hospital at Sahara Shaher, Lucknow,” the statement said.

She was born in Araria district of Bihar.

With inputs from PTI

Students who appeared in NEET-I can’t re-appear in NEET-II: Supreme Court

The Supreme Court on made clear that students, who appeared in National Eligibility Entrance Test-I (NEET) on May 1 for admissions in MBBS and BDS courses, cannot be permitted to re-appear in NEET-II on July 24.”Those students who had appeared in NEET Phase-I shall not be permitted to appear at NEET Phase-II but the students who could not appear in NEET Phase-I may appear in NEET Phase-II,” a bench of Justices A R Dave, Shiva Kirti Singh and Adarsh Kumar Goel said.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The bench, which hinted that it may consider allowing states conducting their own tests to continue with the admission process for current academic year alone, deferred the decision on this aspect till May 9 when Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar would apprise it about the stand of the Centre. “The issue with regard to those students who had appeared or who are due to appear in examinations conducted by the States in accordance with their State laws, shall be decided after hearing the Solicitor General,” the court said.”In view of the request made by the Solicitor General, hearing is adjourned to May 9, 2016,” the bench said.In the interim order, the court reiterated its earlier view on private colleges holding their separate entrance tests saying “it is clarified that no examination shall be permitted to be held for admission to MBBS or BDS studies by any private college or association or any private/deemed university.” During the brief hearing, the Medical Council of India, which had earlier opposed the plea of some states that they be allowed to continue with their entrance tests, however, told the court that they can be permitted “only for this year”.The Solicitor General said that the Centre would be convening a meeting of all the stakeholders in a day or two on issues related to NEET and would apprise the court about the outcome on May 9.Earlier, the apex court had said that unaided private medical colleges across the country cannot be permitted to go ahead with their pre-scheduled tests for admissions to MBBS and BDS courses. The apex court had earlier commenced the crucial hearing on the pleas of state governments, private medical colleges and minority institutions like CMC Vellore and Ludhiana seeking nod to hold pre-scheduled separate entrance exams for MBBS and BDS courses.The states, opposing NEET, alleged that there are marked differences in syllabus for the state entrance tests and the NEET.During the hearing, Additional Solicitor General Pinky Anand, appearing for the CBSE, had said the first phase of NEET was conducted without any glitch and around 6.5 lakh students took up the test.The apex court had on April 29, said the entrance test for admission to MBBS and BDS courses for the academic year 2016-17 will be held as per the schedule through the two- phased common entrance test NEET on May 1 and July 24.On April 28, the court had rejected opposition for holding NEET by states, including Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh and Association of Karnataka Medical Colleges, besides minority institutions like CMC, Vellore.The apex court order had implied that all government colleges, deemed universities and private medical colleges would be covered under NEET and those examinations which have already taken place or slated to be conducted separately stand scrapped.It had also revived the government’s December 21, 2010 notification for holding a single common entrance test through NEET with a clarification that any challenge on the issue would directly come before it and no high court can interfere.

Kerala Dalit rape and murder: No interference warranted at this stage in SIT probe, says HC

The Kerala High Court on observed that no interference is warranted at this stage in the probe by state police’s Special Investigation Team into the brutal rape and murder of a Dalit woman, and adjourned till May 30 a PIL seeking CBI investigation.Considering a PIL filed by Advocate TB Mini, a vacation bench, comprising Justices A M Shaffique and K Ramakrishnan, also observed that the investigators cannot be guided by media reports. Appearing for the state government, Director General of Prosecutions informed the court that the investigation into the rape and murder of the law student is in progress and is at a crucial stage.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>He also said details about the progress made in the SIT investigation can be submitted before the court in a sealed cover. Following this, the court adjourned the PIL to May 30. Earlier, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, while addressing a BJP election meeting in Kollam district, said the Centre is ready to conduct a CBI probe into the incident. “CBI probe should be held into the murder. As the country’s Home Minister, I assure you that as soon as we get a recommendation (in this regard) from the state government, we are prepared to conduct a CBI probe,” said Singh, who began electioneering for the May 16 Assembly polls in Kerala.
ALSO READ Kerala: Centre ready for CBI probe in brutal rape and murder of law student, says Rajnath SinghThe Home Minister said the guilty will be brought to book. The 30-year-old woman, who hailed from a poor family, was raped and brutally assaulted using sharp-edged weapons before being murdered at her house at nearby Perumbavoor in Ernakulam district on April 28.

Uttarakhand crisis: Centre agrees for floor test under Supreme Court’s supervision

The Attorney General (AG) on Friday informed the Supreme Court that the Centre is ready to conduct floor test in Uttarakhand under the court’s supervision.A bench comprising Justices Dipak Misra and Shiva Kirti Singh had on Tuesday repeated its suggestion that the Centre should consider holding a floor test in the assembly under its supervision.According to ANI, AG Mukul Rohatgi asked the court to appoint an observer. “There should be one agenda and observer should be retired Chief Election Commissioner,” said Rohatgi.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Earlier this week, the Court suggested that it may order a ‘composite floor test’ for Uttarakhand Assembly as was directed by the apex court in 2005 in Jharkhand when BJP leader Arjun Munda had challenged the government formation by JMM supremo Shibu Soren.”The floor test (in Uttarakhand Assembly) can be on Jharkhand Model,” a bench comprising Justices Dipak Misra and Shiva Kirti Singh.An apex court bench headed by Justice Dipak Misra, had on April 27, directed to continue the President’s rule for the while.The two-judge division bench, comprising of Justice Dipak Mishra and Justice Shiva Kirti Singh, had also asked several questions to the Centre asking it to justify imposition of President’s rule in the state.Hearing the Centre’s plea against the Uttarakhand High Court order, the apex court sought to know whether the Governor could have sent a message in the present manner under Article175 (2) to conduct a floor test and if delay in the floor test can be a ground for the proclamation of President’s rule in the state.The apex court has also sought to know whether disqualification of MLAs by the Uttarakhand Speaker is a relevant issue for the purpose of imposing President’s rule under Article 356 and proceedings in the Uttarakhand assembly can be taken note of by the President for imposing his rule.The apex court further asked the Centre as to what the stage is of the Appropriation Bill and when President’s rule comes into the picture with regards to the Appropriation Bill.The Centre had introduced President’s rule on March 27.

© 2018 Yuva Sai Sagar. Theme by Anders Norén.