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Two weeks after showdown with Chief Justice Dipak Misra, Rajeev Dhawan retracts statements; to resume practice

Senior Supreme Court advocate Rajeev Dhawan has written to Chief Justice of India, Dipak Misra, retracting his statement that he would be giving up legal practice.The move comes two weeks after Dhawan said he would give up practice, following a showdown with Misra.Earlier, upset over a “humilitating” exchange in the Supreme Court between him and Misra during the hearing on Delhi Vs Centre on statehood case early this month, Dhavan, in a strong worded letter, had announced that he has given up court practice.In the letter, he said: “After the humiliating end to the Delhi (vs Centre) case, I have decided to give up court practice. You are entitled to take away the Senior Gown conferred on me, though I would like to keep it for memory and services rendered”.Two recent run-ins of Dhavan with the Chief Justice were widely reported in the media. During the Ayodhya case, Dhawan, Kapil Sibal, and Dushyant Dave pleaded that the Supreme Court defer hearing in the Babri-Ram Janambhoomi case until after the 2019 Lok Sabha election.Also read’After humiliating end to Delhi case,’ SC lawyer Rajeev Dhavan quits court practiceAccording to reports, Dhavan shouted at CJI Misra during the arguments. In another matter of Centre vs Delhi, Dhawan while representing the Arvind Kejriwal government, wanted to further a few more arguments even though Supreme Court had reserved its order in the case.After these two instances, CJI Misara said the trend of lawyers raising their voices showed their “inadequacy, incompetence and the fact that they are not even eligible to become seniors”.CJI Misra said: “If the Supreme Court Bar Association does not regulate such members, we will be forced to regulate them”.CJI further said: “When lawyers argue in a manner, not in tune with Constitutional language, we will tolerate it, but for how long? ”

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Yet to receive proposal to fill up judges’ vacancies in SC: Govt tells Parliament

There are six vacancies of judges in the Supreme Court, while nine high courts are working without regular chief justices, but the government has not received any proposal from the apex court collegium to fill up the slots, the Rajya Sabha has been informed.Union Minister of State for Law PP Chaudhary, in a written reply, has informed the Upper House of Parliament that the “government has not received any proposal for filling up of the six vacancies of judges in the Supreme Court and for appointment of chief justices in the nine high courts, which are functioning with acting chief justices”. The approved strength of the Supreme Court is 31, including the Chief Justice of India (CJI).The high courts of Andhra Pradesh/Telangana, Bombay, Calcutta, Delhi, Himachal Pradesh, Jharkhand, Kerala, Karnataka and Manipur are working without regular chief justices. As per the procedure for the appointment of judges to the Supreme Court and the 24 high courts, the apex court collegium recommends the names of candidates to the government which, in turn, either accepts the proposal or returns it for reconsideration. The collegium comprises the CJI and four seniormost judges of the apex court.

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Rajya Sabha adjourned after repeated disruptions by Congress MPs

The High Court and Supreme Court Judges (Salaries and Conditions of Service) Amendment Bill, 2017 was introduced in Lok Sabha on Thursday.The Bill seeks to revise the salaries of judges as follows: (a) Chief Justice of India – from Rs 1,00,000/pm to Rs 2,80,000/pm; (b) Judge of Supreme Court – from Rs 90,000/pm to Rs 2,50,000/pm; (c) Chief Justice of High Court – from Rs 90,000/pm to Rs 2,50,000/pm; and (d) Judges of High Court – from Rs 80,000/pm to Rs 2,25,000/pm. The revision is effective from January 1, 2016.Lok Sabha also took up discussion on the Supplementary Demand for Grants. The demands for grants include a gross additional expenditure of Rs. 66113 crores. During the discussion, members highlighted several concerns about the overall economy.Also readAfter Naidu’s intervention, Rajya Sabha stalemate over PM’s remarks against Manmohan likely to endMembers raised questions about the impact of GST, challenges in its implementation, impact of demonetisation on employment in the organised and unorganised sectors, falling growth rate, among other issues.With the government’s introduction of the supplementary demands and increased expenditure, members asked if the government will be able to meet its fiscal deficit target.Also readCongress disrupts Rajya Sabha over PM Modi’s remarkThe Rajya Sabha, on the other hand, had to be adjourned, owing to repeated disruptions by the opposition over a demand for the Prime Minister, to come to the House, to give a clarification on his remark that his predecessor, Dr. Manmohan Singh, was conspiring with Pakistan to ensure the Bharatiya Janata Party’s defeat in the recently held elections in Gujarat.Dr. Singh has rejected the charge as “innuendos and falsehoods”, and added he was deeply pained by the prime minister’s “ill thought transgression”.Addressing an election rally in Palanpur, Gujarat, earlier this month, Modi suggested that Pakistan was trying to influence the assembly polls in the state. He claimed that some Pakistani officials and Manmohan Singh met at Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar’s house over dinner on December 6. This was a day before Aiyar’s “neech” jibe against Modi.

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Rajasthan High Court notice to Centre over curbs on condom ads on TV

The Rajasthan High Court in Jaipur has issued a show cause notice to the Center for issuing an advisory to broadcasters about not telecasting and airing condom advertisements between 6 am and 10 pm. A division bench of Chief Justice Pradeep Nandrajong and Justice DC Somani issued the notices.Counsel for litigant, Prateek Kasliwal, told DNA, “Notices have been issued to two ministries, namely the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, and Ministry of Health to respond within eight weeks. They have been asked as to why the advisory should not be annulled on account of being arbitrary.”The said advisory had been issued citing exposure of children to explicit material and advertisements.The notices have been issued on a petition filed by an NGO called Global Alliance for Human Health, alleging that the action of Ministry of Information & Broadcasting is against the interest of public.It also alleges that it vindicates the hypocritical approach wherein the government, on one hand, promotes awareness about family planning, AIDS and STD; and on the other hand, it obstructs dissemination of condom advertisements which are crucial for family planning, decreasing abortion deaths, and spreading awareness about HIV-AIDS and STDs.A copy of the PIL available with DNA further reads that children and adolescents must know about safe sex and be given sex education.The petition questioned the rationale of the advisory, “There is no iota of reason as to how an advertisement for condom is an unhealthy practice,” reads the PIL. “The same has also been interpreted wrong by the respondent as it would be creating unhealthy/indecent/undignified impression over children which would promote unhealthy/indecent/undignified practices among them, whereas the respondent, with all due respect, has ignored the vulnerable and major group of adolescents who require knowledge of sex education.”

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SC extends deadline for Aadhaar linking for all services

The deadline to link one’s Aadhaar for all services including bank accounts and mobile phones has been extended till March 31, 2018, the Supreme Court ordered on Friday.Existing Aadhaar cardholders will have to furnish their details to open new bank accounts. Those who are yet to receive their unique identification number will have time until March to complete the process. Non-Aadhaar cardholders can open new accounts provided they furnish proof of application for an Aadhar card.”Those who already have Aadhaar cannot go on open a new bank account without Aadhaar. If they have Aadhaar, they will have to furnish it to the bank,” a bench led by Chief Justice Dipak Misra clarified on Friday.”You see, there is no question of producing Aadhaar enrollment application for those who already possess Aadhaar cards,” Justice D.Y. Chandrachud, who authored the interim order for the five-judge constitution Bench, said.On Thursday, a five-judge constitution bench that included Justices AK Sikri, AM Khanwilkar, DY Chandrachud and Ashok Bhushan heard several arguments against the Centre’s direction for mandatory linking of one’s Aadhaar to almost 139 welfare schemes.The top court will now hear every challenge to the constitutionality of the Aadhar in January.

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Aadhaar linking mandatory: SC reserves order for tomorrow

The Supreme Court on Thursday reserved its interim order for tomorrow on pleas seeking a stay on the government’s decision of mandatory linking of Aadhaar with various welfare schemes.A five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra said the final hearing on the petitions challenging the Aadhaar scheme itself would commence from January 17 next year.The central government had yesterday attempted to convince the court not to interfere with its deadlines, promising to extend it for another three months till 31 March 2018 for those who do not have Aadhaar.Earlier on October 25, the Supreme court had said that the deadline for compulsory linking of Aadhaar to receive benefits of government schemes has been extended till March 31, 2018 for those who do not have the 12-digit unique biometric identification number.Earlier the court had tagged 22 cases to be heard by a smaller bench.The cases challenge several aspects of Aadhaar, including the use of data collected under the unique identification programme.As of now, the 12-digit Aadhaar number is compulsory to be linked to bank accounts, PAN cards, government services and cell phone services.

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Aadhaar case: Five-judge SC Bench to hear matter tomorrow

The Supreme Court’s five-judge Constitution bench will hear a case in connection with mandatory linking of Aadhaar with bank accounts and mobile phone numbers on Thursday.Lawyer Shyam Divan, appearing for the petitioner, sought the apex court’s intervention for an urgent hearing seeking interim relief in the Aadhaar case.On Wednesday, Chief Justice of India (CJI) Justice Dipak Misra, after hearing the mentioning in the Aadhaar case, said, the apex court’s five-judge Constitution bench would hear the matter tomorrow at 2 pm.Earlier on October 30, the apex court referred all the Aadhaar related cases to a five-judge Constitution bench to be formed by the end of November.Till the time the court sets up the Constitution bench and passes orders, the government can continue to use Aadhaar for its various programmes.Earlier the court had tagged 22 cases to be heard by a smaller bench.The cases challenge several aspects of Aadhaar, including the use of data collected under the unique identification programme.

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No ban on movie ‘Muzaffarnagar the Burning Love’ in UP: SC told

The Uttar Pradesh government today told the Supreme Court that there was no ban on movie – ‘Muzaffarnagar, the Burning Love’ – in any of the districts in the state.The state government told this to a bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra, which was hearing a plea alleging that there were ‘verbal instructions’ by authorities not to release the movie in six districts of Muzzaffarnagar, Meerut, Shamli, Saharanpur, Baghpat and Ghaziabad.The movie, ‘Muzaffarnagar, the Burning Love’, is a love story of a Hindu boy and a Muslim girl set in the backdrop of the 2013 Muzaffarnagar riots in Uttar Pradesh.The bench, which also comprised Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud, disposed of the petition filed by Morna Entertainment Pvt Ltd, producer of the movie, after hearing the submissions of advocate Sanjay Kumar Tyagi, representing Uttar Pradesh.The apex court noted in its order the statement by the counsel that no order for banning the movie was passed by the authorities and the film was running in theatres even today.The bench disposed of the plea saying nothing remained to be adjudicated in the case but if the producer and distributor wanted police help in screening the film, it would be provided to them.The film producer had approached the top court seeking directions to the authorities of these districts to allow the film’s screening without any hindrance and also sought directions to provide adequate security for it.It had alleged that the authorities in these districts had “illegally and without any authorisation” warned and threatened the cinema theatres not to screen the movie, which was released on November 17 this year.The plea had said the movie was granted ‘U/A’ certificate by the Central Board of Film Certification and censor board had cleared it to be shown to the audience.The plea had alleged that the authorities had not issued any formal order to the theatres “but only on verbal instructions, the release of motion picture has been stalled thereby causing a great financial loss to the petitioner and also violating the fundamental right…”The petitioner had alleged that such ‘verbal instructions’ were patently illegal and arbitrary exercise of power.

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‘After humiliating end to Delhi case,’ SC lawyer Rajeev Dhavan quits court practice

After a showdown with the Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, senior Supreme Court lawyer Rajeev Dhavan has decided to quit court practice. In a letter addressed to CJI Misra, he said: “After the humiliating end to the Delhi (vs Centre) case, I have decided to give up court practice. You are entitled to take away the Senior Gown conferred on me, though I would like to keep it for memory and services rendered”. Two recent run-ins of Dhavan with the Chief Justice were widely reported in the media. During the Ayodhya case, Dhawan, Kapil Sibal, and Dushyant Dave pleaded that the Supreme Court defer hearing in the Babri-Ram Janambhoomi case until after the 2019 Lok Sabha election.According to reports, Dhavan shouted at CJI Misra during the arguments. In another matter of Centre vs Delhi, Dhawan while representing the Arvind Kejriwal government, wanted to further a few more arguments even though Supreme Court had reserved its order in the case. Also readPM Modi, Kapil Sibal take digs at each other over Ayodhya caseAfter these two instances, CJI Misara said the trend of lawyers raising their voices showed their “inadequacy, incompetence and the fact that they are not even eligible to become seniors”.CJI Misra said: “If the Supreme Court Bar Association does not regulate such members, we will be forced to regulate them”.CJI further said: “When lawyers argue in a manner, not in tune with Constitutional language, we will tolerate it, but for how long? ”

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Marriage does not mortgage woman to man: Supreme Court

On Thursday, Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra observed that a woman does not mortgage herself to a man by marrying him. She retains her identity, including her religious identity, even after she exercises her right to marry outside her community under the Special Marriage Act.The top court’s observation came when a five-judge bench was hearing the matter of a Parsi woman who was barred from entering the Tower of Silence to offer prayers for her dead relatives because she married outside her faith.”Special Marriage Act confers in her the right of choice. Her choice is sacred. I ask myself a question: Who can take away the religious identity of a woman? The answer is only a woman can choose to curtail her own identity,” Chief Justice Misra said on the first day of the hearing.Couples from different faiths who wish to retain their individual religious identities may opt for a marriage under the Special Marriage Act, 1954, which ensures religious protection.Nobody can presume that a woman has changed her faith or religion just because she chose to change her name after marrying outside her community, the CJI observed.The bench — also comprising Justices AK Sikri, AM Khanwilkar, DY Chandrachud and Ashok Bhushan — then asked senior advocate Gopal Subramanium who is representing the Valsad Parsi Anjuman Trust whether it would allow petitioner Goolrukh Gupta time to respond by next week.Should the trust respond in the negative, the court will then have to decide whether a Parsi woman can hold on to her religious identity if she chooses to marry someone outside her faith.Prima facie, the top court observed that it did not adhere to the principle of merger relied upon by the Gujarat High Court in denying Gupta the right to practice her faith. Gupta has challenged the high court’s order which essentially suggested that by the principle of merger, Gupta became a Hindu when she married one and thus ceased to be a Parsi.Representing Gupta, Senior Advocate Indira Jaising sought the court’s indulgence to treat this case as an endorsement of inter-faith marriages. Those who marry outside their faith should be saddled with any disabilities, she added. Government data suggests that the Special Marriages Act is not used as often as it should be, she said.Every custom, usage, customary and statutory laws must stand the test of the Fundamental Rights principle, Jaising said. Article 372 (continuance of existing laws) of the Constitution is subject to Article 13, which mandates that laws should not violate the fundamental rights of an individual, she added.Suggesting that excommunicating Parsi women for marrying outside the faith tantamount to gender discrimination, CJI Misra asked: “How can you (Parsi elders) distinguish between a man and woman singularly by a biological phenomenon… If a woman says she has not changed her religion, by what philosophy do you say that she cannot go to the Tower of Silence? No law debars a woman from retaining her religious identity.””If a woman’s identity is merged, then Special Marriage Act is not required, is it not?” Justice Sikri pointed out.”The Tower of Silence is not a mutt or a citadel of a cult. It is a place to offer prayers to the dead. Can such a right of a woman be guillotined? It is part of her Constitutional identity,” CJI Misra further observed.The court’s decision favouring the Parsi woman’s right will create a paradigm shift for women within the minority community. Earlier this year, the top court recently ruled in favour of Muslim women by striking down instant triple talaq as unconstitutional.
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Yogi Adityanath

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Rohingya refugees: Supreme Court to resume hearing against deportation today

The Supreme Court on Tuesday will resume the hearing of plea of two Rohingya refugees against the Centre’s decision to deport Rohingya Muslims back to Myanmar.Last month, the apex court deferred the matter after agreeing to the request of senior advocate Fali S Nariman, who appeared for the two refugees Mohammad Salimullah and Mohammad Shaqir.The matter was heard by a bench, comprising of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud. In its last hearing, the bench ordered to Centre not to deport the Rohingya Muslim refugees.The bench had observed that the whole issue of Rohingya Muslims has to be looked at from various angles like national security, economic interest, labour interest and also the protection of children, women, sick and innocent persons.The Rohingya immigrants, who fled to India after violence in the Western Rakhine state of Myanmar, have settled in Jammu, Hyderabad, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi-NCR and Rajasthan.More than 600,000 Rohingya are languishing in Bangladeshi refugee camps after fleeing a brutal Myanmar army campaign launched in late August.Meanwhile, the UN has said the scorched-earth operation, which has left hundreds of villages burned to ash in northern Rakhine state, amounts to ethnic cleansing.
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Yogi Adityanath

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MMRC gets HC nod for temp night shift

On a temporary basis, the Bombay High Court has allowed the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation (MMRC) to remove debris and muck lying near the Metro-3’s construction sites in south Mumbai between 10 pm and midnight for three days.A division bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice MS Sonak allowed the corporation to remove the debris, causing minimum noise and nuisance around the sites from November 30 to December 3.The corporation had asked for permission to ply 150 trucks which cannot enter the city during the day to be allowed to come in at night to remove the debris. The bench was of the view that the residents should sacrifice a bit as the work is not going to be permanent.The court relaxed the ban imposed on carrying out work during nighttime while hearing a petition filed by one Cuffe Parade resident, Robin Jaisinghani, who claimed that MMRC, which is constructing the Metro-3 line, is carrying out work during nighttime thereby violating noise pollution rules which prohibit work between 10 pm and 6 am.Earlier the court had expressed displeasure after it was pointed out that the work continued in violation of the court’s orders. The bench had then said, “Don’t compel us to stop the work. If work is carried out beyond the prescribed period, it will be viewed seriously and appropriate action would be taken.”MMRCL had filed an affidavit saying that noise pollution rules do not apply to them as the rules were framed under the Environment Protection Act and are general in nature.
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Yogi Adityanath

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Want police protection in Maharashtra ? You must foot the bill

The Maharashtra government today told the Bombay High Court that it has revised its police protection policy wherein only those private citizens would be provided security who have a real threat to their life and they would have to foot the bill for it.Appearing for the state government, Advocate General Ashutosh Kumbhakoni told a bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice MS Sonak that citizens could not make a claim to receive police protection as a matter of “right”.”They must also not think that police protection is a service provided by the state that they can avail simply by paying the service charge,” he said.As per the new policy submitted by Kumbhakoni today, all private citizens, including celebrities, would henceforth receive police protection only if a real threat to their lives was perceived.”And all those private persons, whose applications for such protection is approved by the state authorities, will have to pay fees for the same in advance, or deposit a bank guarantee in lieu of the same,” the top legal officer said.He said the revised fees for such protection would be computed on a new formula that would take into account several considerations, including the salaries of the police personnel deployed as bodyguards.”Such fees, however, will not exceed 15 per cent of the total monthly income of the person receiving police protection,” he told the High Court.Also, people, with monthly income less than Rs 50,000, need not pay any fees if their applications for police protection were approved.”Politicians who get bodyguards to accompany them while on official duty, and government and semi-government staff, who get police protection to help discharge public duties, however, will not have to pay any fees for such protection,” the advocate general said.The revisions in the policy were made in compliance with a previous order of the high court directing the state government to streamline its process of providing police protection to politicians as well as private persons.Earlier this week, the bench headed by the chief justice had directed the government to recover dues from all such private persons who enjoyed police protection for years but failed to pay for it.The bench had also directed the state to ensure a periodic review of the status of each applicant to ensure that one was not given police protection indefinitely irrespective of any threat perception to his life.The bench was hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by a lawyer seeking directions to the state police to recover dues from VIPs, including politicians and film actors, who were provided security cover, but did not pay the charges for the same.Stressing that the government would ensure that all pending dues for police protection were recovered, Kumbhakoni said a state-level committee headed by the director general of police would henceforth review the status of all such persons every six months.He said the state had also amended its decision to not grant any protection to people with a criminal record.”Such applications will be scrutinised on a case to case basis and the deserving applicants will be given protection,” he said.
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Yogi Adityanath

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Those with criminal records don’t have rights? Bombay HC slams Maha govt

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Bombay High Court today asked the Maharashtra government if it believed that people with criminal records had no right to a safe life.The government invited the high court’s ire after it submitted that it had decided not to extend police protection to persons who had a criminal record, since any threat to their lives was a consequence of their own actions.They are into criminal activities and hence, they have a threat to their lives, public prosecutor Abhinandan Vagyani said. “It is because of their own doing and hence, we have decided not to give them police protection,” Vagyani said.A bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice M S Sonak, however, asked if this meant that the state believed those with criminal records had no right to a safe life. “What nonsense is this? Are you saying that those who have a criminal record do not have any rights? Can anyone come and kill them just like that?” Chief Justice Chellur said. The bench was hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by a lawyer, seeking directions to the state police to recover dues from VIPs, including politicians, and film actors, who have been provided security cover, but have not paid the charges for the same.As per the PIL, around 1,000 personnel from the state police are deployed for providing protection to private individuals. The plea also claims that about 600 policemen in Mumbai are deployed for protection duty. On the last hearing in September this year, the bench had directed the state government to revisit its policy on providing police protection to private persons. It had also said that such protection must be provided to private persons only in the rarest of rare cases. In compliance with the order, Vagyani told the HC that the state authorities consulted the advocate general and the additional commissioner of police, Mumbai, and then came up with a proposal revising its policy on police protection.He said the above suggestions were a part of this revised policy. The bench, however, dismissed the new proposal submitted by Vagyani, saying it was apparent that the authorities had not applied their mind to it.”You have simply changed a few lines in the old policy of the year 2000. It is vague and an absolute nonsense. If this has been done after consulting with senior police and legal officers, if this is the decision of our officers, then God save the public,” Chief Justice Chellur said.”How can you expect the court to approve such a vague proposal?” she asked. The high court has now summoned the advocate general on the next date of hearing, on November 30.

SC washes hands off anti-torture bill, says cant compel Centre to make law

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>On Monday, the Supreme Court disposed off a petition which sought direction compelling the Centre to ratify the UN Convention against torture and draft a framework for anti-torture laws.The decision, which came on the heels of a petition filed by former Union Law Minister Ashwini Kumar, was dismissed after learning the top court heard the matter for almost a year.”How can we compel the government to make a law? Can we ask the government to ratify a treaty by way of a mandamus?” Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, who led the bench, asked the former law minister.Justice DY Chandrachud, who was also on the bench along with Justice AM Khanwilkar, said: “The government has to take a political decision on whether it should ratify the treaty.”However, Kumar submitted that the government was obligated to fulfil its international obligations and address the issue of torture, especially custodial torture.”The government has made a commitment to the international community. It is conscious of its obligations. We would be crossing judicial limits by issuing a mandamus to the government. We have to respect the political compulsions of the government,” Justice Chandrachud observed.Attorney General KK Venugopal submitted that the Centre is considering an anti-torture law. The Law Commission of India has already recommended them to ratify the UN convention and frame a standalone anti-torture law, where the state will be held responsible for any injury inflicted by its agents on citizens in custody. The commission suggested that states could not claim immunity from the actions of its officers.

If we think future generations will take all risks, then history will not forgive us: PM Modi on National Law Day

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>On National Law Day, which was on Sunday, PM Modi gave the valedictory address at Vigyan Bhawan in Delhi with Chief Justice Dipak Misra also present.Praising the Constitution, he said it wasn’t easy to make historical document which bound a country of a dozen sects, more than 100 languages and 1700 dialects and people living in places with various beliefs together.He said: “Baba Saheb said that Constitution is workable, flexible & has power to unite the nation in times of war & peace. He also said if a wrong is done, it will not be the fault of constitution but the institution which is making people abide by constitution.”Speaking further, he said India is a young nation and to strengthen it all constitutional bodies will have to come together and work towards it. He asked: “If we think that coming generations will take all risks and work, then history will not forgive us. We will have to start working now. We may or may not be there but the system which will be brought here will stay.”He asked: “As members of the same family are we working together to strengthen one another, in support of each other?”He added: “Unfortunately we have not been able to remove our internal weaknesses, so many years after independence. We need to think about it at all levels.”Speaking about elections he said: “There are nations where date of election is fixed. People know when will it be held. This is beneficial, the country does not always stay in election mode, policy planning process & its implementation are more efficient & nation’s resources do not face unnecessary burden.”

Election not to be nullified even if NOTA gets maximum votes: Supreme Court

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Friday refused to entertain a plea seeking a direction to the poll panel to nullify an election result and conduct fresh poll if NOTA gets the maximum votes in a constituency.A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud allowed the petitioner to withdraw the plea which had also sought a direction to the Election Commission of India (ECI) to restrict those candidates and political parties, whose election have been nullified, from taking part in fresh polls. The apex court termed the suggestions as “unworkable” and said “we cannot destroy our democracy just like that…holding an election in our country is a very serious and expensive business. Today we cannot say that unless a person gets 51 per cent of votes, he cannot be declared elected.” Sensing the mood of the court favouring dismissing the plea, petitioner advocate Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay, also a Delhi BJP spokesperson, chose to withdraw the petition.The petition had also said the right to reject and elect a new candidate will give power to the people to express their discontent. The Right to Reject was first proposed by the Law Commission in its 170th report in 1999 as part of its ‘Alternative Method of Election’. It had also suggested that the contesting candidates should be declared elected only if they have obtained 51 per cent of all valid votes. The PIL wanted the Union government to implement the Law Commission recommendations to ensure free and fair polls.

Bilkis Bano case: Gujarat gets 6 more weeks to tell SC on action taken against convicted cops

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Friday granted six weeks time to the Gujarat Government to apprise it of any disciplinary action that must have been initiated against the cops who were convicted in connection of the Bilkis Bano gang-rape case.A three-judge bench of the apex court, headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) Dipak Misra and comprising Justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud, passed the order.In October, the Supreme Court gave four weeks time to the state government to inform of the developments. But the government asked for more time to reply, following which the court extended the date today.Earlier, during the hearing, the victim also submitted to the court that she wanted enhancement of compensation. To this the apex court directed her to file a Special Leave Petition (SLP).In March 2002, Bilkis Bano was gang-raped and left for dead, alongside 14 members of her family, including her 3-year-old daughter, during the Gujarat riots. She was then five months pregnant when rioters attacked her in Vadodara.She had approached the local police station to register a case against the assailants. However, the police dismissed her case and threatened her with dire consequences if she proceeded with the matter.She then approached the National Human Rights Commission and filed a petition in the apex court.The matter was later shifted to the Bombay High Court following which charges were filed against 19 men, including six police officers and a government doctor.In January 2008, 11 of them were sentenced to life imprisonment for gang-rape and murder.

Cop moves Bombay High Court to seek leave for sex surgery

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Police constable Lalita Salve recently sought a month’s leave from the police department to undergo a sexual reassignment surgery. The leave was denied to Salve on Thursday and she has now moved the Bombay High Court.Advocate Ejaz Naqvi, appearing for Salve, mentioned the petition before the bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur, which refused to hear the plea, and asked him to approach the appropriate bench. The relief sought in the petition by Salve, is based on the medical examination conducted, which states that ‘Y’ chromosomes were found, in him and thus she wants to undergo the surgery, to live a dignified life.The plea further claims that the government should bear expenses for conducting the sex change surgery and allow her to continue the job as a male constable. Lalita who now calls herself as Lalit Salve, stated in the plea, “Sex reassigning as per her emotional inclination towards straight male, it is her natural right and in the heart of the Fundamental right of the Constitution to live with dignity instead of being a transgender.”The petition also wants the court to quash and set aside the communication issued by the Inspector General (Aurangabad range), dated November 20, denying her months leave, to carry out the reassignment surgery. Salve also claims that the state government has not promulgated adequate policy about rescuing such distressed citizens with gender identity trauma.IDENTITY CHANGEIn 2014, constable Lalita Salve underwent a medical test, which indicated she had male genes. In 2016, Salve again took a test at J J Hospital which suggested her to change her sex.

Seems like politician has taken over the doctor: Twitter slams Harsh Vardhan for saying Delhi smog isn’t an emergency

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Union science and environment Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan has been criticized on social media for claiming that the high pollution levels in the national capital are no cause for worry.Harsh Vardhan has said there is no need to spread panic among the people over the present air pollution situation in Delhi, adding it is not like the Bhopal gas tragedy which was an “emergency”. The Delhi-NCR region has been under a thick blanket of smog over the last one week. Doctors have declared the situation as a ‘public health emergency’, while the government has taken a series of measures in view of high pollution levels.“I am talking in practical terms. You see, what happened in Bhopal when there was a gas leak and hundreds of thousands of people fell acutely sick and had to be rushed to hospital. We call that an emergency situation where you have to panic and you have to see what you have to do. I am not saying we shouldn’t do anything about it (Delhi smog); everyone has to respond to what he is supposed to do. But there is no need to spread panic among the people,” the minister told News18.People took to Twitter to criticise Harsh Vardhan’s statementOn Monday, the Supreme Court said that the Delhi’s air pollution was an emergency-like situation and ordered the central government as well as Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Delhi and its municipal corporations to respond to a petition on stubble burning and dust spread for quick action.A bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud heard lawyer RK Kapoor’s submission on rising air pollution levels. It said there would not be any stay on pollution cases being heard in other courts.On Tuesday, the NGT rapped the Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government and asked what constitutes a health emergency according to them.”Don’t gift infected lungs to children. They have to wear masks to school. Measures should be applied automatically by the government after dangerous levels of PM 2.5 and PM 10 persist for more than 48 hours.””When reports have stated that two-wheelers are more polluting than four-wheelers, why do you intend to give arbitrary exemptions? Is this a joke? What does one stand to gain from this?” the tribunal said.With PTI Inputs

No FIR can be filed against a judge: Supreme Court

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>SC bench headed by Arun J Misra in their judgment have said, “There cannot be registration of any FIR against a High Court Judge or Chief Justice of the High Court or the Supreme Court Judge without the consultation of the Hon’ble Chief Justice of India and, in case there is an allegation against Hon’ble Chief Justice of India, the decision has to be taken by the Hon’ble President, in accordance with the procedure prescribed” It all started when the matter pertaining to an alleged bribery scam in which retired Orissa High Court Judge IM Quddusi was arrested, among others, and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) lodged an FIR. The FIR said, Quddusi allegedly used his influence to help Uttar Pradesh-based Prasad Education Trust in “settling” a matter involving their plea to set up medical colleges pending in the Supreme Court.The Trust owned one of the 46 medical colleges barred by the central government from admitting students. The accused were subsequently granted bail, but the same was not challenged by CBI. Following granting of the bail, two parties (advocate Kamini Jaiswal and the NGO Campaign for Judicial Accountability and Reforms represented by Bhushan) filed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the Supreme Court seeking the constitution of an SIT to investigate the allegations, with a retired judge monitoring the same.On Thursday, a Supreme Court bench, consisting of Justices J Chelameshwar and Abdul Nazeer, referred the Public Interest Litigation, in the matter, to a five-judge bench, scheduled to conduct a hearing on Monday. However, the case took an interesting turn on Friday, when another Supreme Court bench comprising the current CJI Deepak Misra, pronounced the order by Justice J Chelameswar null and void. The matter was then heard by a three judge bench comprising of Justices A K Agarwal, A M Khanwilkar and Arun Mishra, where the petitioners refused to argue on the merits of the case, citing the presence of Justice AM Khanwilkar on the Bench, since he was one of the judges who had heard the controversial medical college case. More drama unfolded as the matter was being heard by the bench and they raised questions on propriety and “forum shopping” by the petitioners. However, some key highlights of the judgment passed today cast a shadow of doubt in our minds. SC says, “There cannot be registration of any FIR against a High Court Judge or Chief Justice of the High Court or the Supreme Court Judge without the consultation of the Hon’ble Chief Justice of India and that independence of judiciary cannot be left at the mercy of the CBI or that of the police is a red herring.” Further more Justice Arun Mishra left no stone unturned while pronouncing the judgment, he said, ” The FIR is not against any judge in SC and neither is it possible to register FIR against a judge. The senior councils attempted forum shopping to seek a favourable order and it was unethical of them to do so. They did not verify the position of law and unnecessary doubt was raised on this institution. Proper verification of facts were not made before filing this petition. We expect that good shall prevail in this institution. Let us unite and work together for the welfare of this great institution. We are not initiating contempt procedure and the matter should stop at this.We have also observed that even we are not above law”. Refuting special investigation team (SIT) probe in the medical college bribery matter, SC has defended itself completely and has questioned the basis of the allegations, SC said, “No Judge can be held responsible for what may, or has happened in the corridors, or for ‘who purports to sell whom’. The alleged actions of a retired Judge of a High Court, allegedly assuring and promising, a ‘favourable’ decision in the aforesaid circumstances of the case which was then pending before this Court, in the aforesaid circumstances and has assured favourable orders, begs the question, and we wonder, as to what favourable orders have been passed. As is apparent from the aforesaid narration of facts, there was no favourable order granted by this Court in favour of the medical college for the current academic session 2017-18, rather its inspection for considering confirmation of letter of permission for the next yearn 2018-19 had been ordered”. The issue related to “Conflict of Interest ” which questioned the CJI’s involvement in the case was also lucidly clarified, SC said, “There is no conflict of interest in such a matter. In case Judge is hearing a matter and if he comes to know that any party is unscrupulously trying to influence the decision making or indulging in malpractices, it is incumbent upon the Judge to take cognizance of such a matter under Contempt of Courts Act and to deal with and punish such person in accordance with law as that is not the conflict of interest but the purpose for which the entire system exists. Such things cannot be ignored and recusal of a Judge cannot be asked on the ground of conflict of interest, it would be the saddest day for the judicial system of this country to ignore such aspects on the unfounded allegations and materials. It was highly improper for the petitioner to allege conflict of interest in the petition filed that the Hon’ble Chief Justice of India should not hear on judicial side or allocate the matter on the administrative side” Judge Vs Judge and the contest of intra-judicial authority seems to have gone back to the dark cave. This showdown in the apex court has now received its happy ending or as some may call it good riddance from high voltage drama.

CISF may take over security of Delhi courts

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The security of courts in the national Capital might soon be a mandate of the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF). Top level sources in the force told DNA that after “successfully” guarding the Madras High Court, the CISF may now find itself stationed at various Delhi courts. Nothing, however, has been finalised as of now.An undertrial was shot at and killed inside the Rohini court complex on Monday. This was not the first time that a court in Delhi witnessed such an incident. In April, a shootout had left the Rohini court complex rattled. In 2015, three men opened fire inside a court room at the Karkardooma court, killing a Delhi Police constable and critically wounding an undertrial.“Our deployment at the Madras High Court has received a positive response. The hooliganism and nuisance that was reported at times have witnessed a drastic curb. The premise has also witnessed a tighter security ring and a hawk-eye vigil. If asked to secure Delhi courts, the force will make a proposal accordingly,” a senior officer said.“If deployed, the CISF will demarcate fixed entry-exit points, install baggage scanners, and get cameras installed to get rid of dark zones. This will step up the security manifold,” the officer said.Security of the Madras High Court landed in CISF’s lap in 2015, following a suo motu PIL on two incidents that had raised serious concerns about the arrangements at the court premises. A group of lawyers had laid siege to the bench of Chief Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul, sporting black flags and placards and demanding that Tamil be declared the official language of the High Court.Former Chief Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul then insisted on getting the court building secured by the CISF, though the state government objected to it and went up to the Supreme Court. It lost the case. A series of orders extended the cover periodically, by either a year or six months.

HC directs EC to decide on the release of An Insignificant Man

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The High Court, while disposing of a public interest litigation, directed the petitioner to approach the Election Commission, who will watch the movie and decide whether the release will be in violation of the Model Code of Conduct.The first division bench of Chief Justice R Subhash Reddy and Justice Vipul Pancholi was hearing public interest litigation moved by Bhavik Samani, who challenged the release of An Insignificant Man. The petitioner’s contention was that the film featured a few leaders of the Aam Aadmi Party, it unfolds the rise of the party, its agitation and also shows its leaders in a heroic avatar. If the film is allowed to be released in Gujarat, it will be a violation of the Model Code of Conduct. So, the court should stay the release or direct the EC to take action.After hearing the petitioner, the court, while disposing of the petition, directing him to approach the EC and the Chief Electoral Officer with the same prayer. It also directed the EC and the CEO to watch the movie and decide if it should be allowed to be screened without violating the Model Code of Conduct.

Municipalities across country will exempt from liquor shops ban on highways, says Supreme Court

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Monday said its order exempting from ban the liquor shops within 500 metres of state and national highways running through municipal areas would be applicable across the country.A bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud, said it would pass a classificatory order on the plea of Tamil Nadu government, which was asked the Madras High Court to approach the top court for clarification on the issue.The apex court, which had banned the sale of liquor within 500 meters of highways across the country, had on July 11 this year, relaxed the scope of its verdict and allowed liquor shops alongside highways in municipal areas on a petition filed with regard to Union Territory of Chandigarh.The Madras High Court, taking note of the Tamil Nadu government’s recent decision to allow liquor shops on highways in municipal areas, said the apex court’s relaxation might be confined to Chandigarh alone and asked the state government to seek clarification from the top court.Senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for Tamil Nadu, said the July 11 order was clear. However, a clarification was needed.”The High Court says municipal areas in the Supreme Court order means only areas in Punjab and not in Chennai. The Chief Justice Bench of the High Court wants a clarification whether the exemption applies only to Chandigarh,” Rohatgi said.”Well, why should the High Court think that? If our order applies for municipal areas in Chandigarh, it will apply equally for municipal areas across the country,” the bench said and posted the matter after two weeks for hearing and passing a requisite classificatory order.The apex court had earlier clarified that its order banning sale of liquor within a distance of 500 metres along national and state highways would not extend to municipal areas.The top court, on December 15, 2016, had banned sale of liquor within 500 metres of state and national highways across the country.

Delhi pollution: SC issues notices to Centre, UP, Punjab, Haryana and Delhi govts over stubble burning

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Monday issued notices to the Centre, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana and Delhi Government on petition on stubble burning and dust pollution. The Supreme Court had earlier in the day agreed to hear today itself a fresh plea seeking to curb rising pollution in Delhi and the national capital region (NCR).A bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud considered the submission of lawyer R K Kapoor that rise in dust particles on roads, stubble burning in Delhi’s neighbouring states like Haryana and Punjab have led to an alarming rise in pollution levels in the NCR and its adjoining areas..Delhi Government on Monday had filed an appeal in the National Green Tribunal (NGT) seeking certain changes in NGT’s previous directions regarding the odd-even scheme. The NGT is likely to hear the plea on Tuesday.Earlier in the day, also questioned the government on Odd-Even scheme. The green court asked whether the Delhi government was only informing the media about a review petition on the Odd-Even scheme since no review petition had been filed as yet.The NGT had approved the Delhi government’s suggestion of implementing the odd-even scheme to curb the smog that has plagued the national capial since last Wednesday. However, the NGT made it clear that nobody would be exempted. This was contrary to the Delhi government’s proposal that women drivers and two-wheelers would not fall under the purview of the scheme. The Delhi government then called off implementing the scheme.

Homes only for eligible PAPs, Bombay High Court directs BMC

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Bombay High Court has restrained BMC from allotting tenements at Mahul near Chembur to any other project affected persons (PAPs) other than those eligible to be relocated for the implementation of BRIMSTOWAD project.A division bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice MS Sonaka directed the corporation to seek the court’s permission before allotting the tenements. Around 58 buildings have been constructed for housing the affected persons.The direction came during the hearing of a plea filed by Bhavna Shah who has claimed that in a decision taken by the government in 2009, the tenements are supposed to be given only to those shifted due to the project’s implementation.Last week, the state housing department issued a notification that gave the BMC full authority to survey and decide on the eligibility of slum dwellers as PAPs.The plea states that around 22,000 families are likely to be affected by the project therefore sufficient housing has to be made available at Mahul.

CJI Dipak Misra’s bench annuls order passed by Justice Chelameswar into PIL regarding judicial accountability

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In an unprecedented move, a 5-judge panel headed by Chief Justice of India Dipak Mishra annulled an order passed by Justice Jasti Chelameswar into allegations of judicial corruption.On Thursday, Justice Chelameswar had ordered setting up a 5-judge bench excluding the CJI to probe allegations of bribery to allegedly influence outcome of cases.Another petition on the same issue came up for hearing and were set to be heard on Monday.However, at 3 PM today, CJI Misra constituted a seven-judge bench to review the decision of Justice Chelameswar’s order for a probe yesterday. But, two judges recused themselves, making it a five-man panel.Around 4PM, the 5-member bench panel headed by CJI Misra took the decision to annul the order passed by Justice Chelameswar ordering a probe into allegations of judicial corruption. A five-judge bench declares CJI to be the master of the roster. Any judicial order passed by any other judge to set up a bench will be “ineffective and not binding,” rules the Constitution Bench.Order passed a day ago by Justice J Chelameswar’s bench indirectly annulled.The bench by the CJI didn’t include Justice Chelameswar who is the second senior-most judge in the Supreme Court.The CJI, meanwhile, deemed that he was the only one who can set up benches to look into cases, and no other judge, no matter how senior, could order a formation of a constitutional bench.Senior advocate Prashant Bhushan reportedly stormed out of the court of CJI after he refused to hear his plea. Bhushan claimed he had not been allowed to speak by the bench headed by CJI Misra.HOW IT ALL STARTEDIt all began on Thursday when the Supreme Court on Thursday referred to a constitution bench, comprising five senior-most judges, a plea claiming that alleged bribes were being taken using the names of apex court judges promising to secure favourable settlement of a case.Terming as “disturbing” the allegations levelled in CBI’s FIR that also made former Orissa High Court judge Ishrat Masroor Quddusi as one of the accused, the top court said the plea would come up for hearing before the constitution bench on November 13.The decision that the five senior-most judges would be part of the constitution bench assumes significance in the wake of senior advocate Dushyant Dave’s submission that the medical admission matter, the genesis of CBI FIR, was being heard by the bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra, and hence, he should not be involved with it either on the judicial or on the administrative side.A bench of Justices J Chelameswar and S Abdul Nazeer issued notices to the Centre and the CBI on the plea seeking setting up of a special investigation team (SIT), to be headed by a retired Chief Justice of India, to probe the matter.”Having regard to the totality of the circumstances, we deem it appropriate that this matter be heard by the constitution bench of the first five judges in the order of seniority of this court,” the court said in its order.Dave, appearing for petitioner lawyer Kamini Jaiswal, referred to the CBI FIR on the basis of which Justice (Retd) Quddusi was arrested and subsequently granted bail.He argued that the facts of the case as alleged by CBI were “disturbing”, as according to the probe agency, a conspiracy was hatched and huge illegal gratification demanded for procuring a favourable order in a matter relating to medical college admissions pending before the top court.Asserting that the matter relates to the “integrity” of the highest judicial fora in the country, Dave told the bench that several incriminating documents were seized by CBI during investigation in the graft case and there was apprehension that these materials could be misused.He sought the passage of an interim order to direct the CBI to hand over these documents, including the case diary, in a sealed cover to the registrar of the court.”We deem it appropriate to direct the second respondent (CBI) to produce the entire material collected by the CBI in the course of investigation of the crime and keep it in a sealed cover and produce the same before the constitution bench on Monday, the November 13,” the bench said.Dave said the medical admission matter, on which the case was lodged by the CBI, was being heard in the apex court by a bench headed by Chief Justice Misra and hence the CJI should not be a part of the constitution bench.The bench was, however, non-committal on this submission.”This matter cannot be heard by the CJI, neither in administrative side, nor in judicial side,” Dave said while urging the apex court to mention in its order that the constitution bench would not comprise the CJI.He said Quddusi, along with some other accused, was arrested in connection with the case and granted bail but the CBI has not appealed against the order enlarging him on bail.Dave also said that besides the six accused named in the FIR, CBI has also mentioned other unknown public servants and private persons alleging they had demanded huge gratification to induce public functionaries by corrupt and illegal means.He claimed that the CBI had allegedly seized Rs two crore cash from an alleged aide of the retired judge and the money was to be given to a hawala operator.”My first concern is that, has the CBI deliberately filed a false case so as to discredit and pressurise this great institution or is there something more to it? This needs a thorough and detailed investigation and truth needs to come out. I pray to the almighty that allegations levelled against this great institution are false,” the senior lawyer said.”People are arrested. They get bail in next 48 hours and then you (CBI) forget about it,” he said.Regarding the materials seized by CBI, Dave said an order should be passed for preservation and protection of these “extremely incriminating materials” and the court could direct the CBI Director to ensure its safe custody or hand it over in a sealed cover to the apex court registrar.Initially, the matter was mentioned in the morning before the bench headed by Justice Chelameswar for an urgent listing of the petition today itself.The court said the matter would come up for hearing before it at 12.45 pm after Dave said it should be heard today itself as the FIR contained serious allegations.”The FIR contained certain allegations which are disturbing. The allegations pertain to the functioning of this court. On perusal of the FIR which was placed before us in the morning, we thought it necessary and proper to take up the matter immediately,” the bench observed.During the hearing, an officer of the apex court registry was spotted in the court room by Justice Chelameswar who asked him about the purpose of his visit.The registry official handed to the bench a photocopy of a note purportedly issued by the CJI’s office which was taken on record by the bench as annexure of its order.”At the same time, we are also duty bound to place the developments that when the hearing of the matter was in progress, the officer of the Registry placed a xerox copy of the proceedings purportedly issued by the Chief Justice of India, a copy of which is annexed to this order,” it noted.Quddusi, who had also served as a judge in Chhattisgarh High Court, was arrested along with Lucknow-based Prasad Institute of Medical Sciences’ chairman B P Yadav, his son Palash Yadav and three others, for allegedly trying to settle a matter relating to a medical college barred from admitting new students.With inputs from PTI

Bombay High Court takes MMRCL to task over night-time works for Metro 3

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Bombay High Court on Thursday warned the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Limited (MMRCL) that it would stop all work on the Metro 3 line between Colaba and SEEPZ if its previous order banning any work or ancillary work during night time is flouted.A division bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice MS Sonak said: “Don’t compel us to stop the work, if work is carried out beyond prescribed period. It will be viewed seriously and appropriate action would be taken.”The court gave this warning while hearing a petition filed by south Mumbai resident Robin Jaisinghani, who has claimed that work during night time is going on in violation of noise pollution rules. The High Court had earlier banned any activity during night time. However, Jaisinghani informed the court that even when residents make complaints to police on a regular basis, the work continues even after the police have visited the spot.To this, the court said: “Do you (MMRCL) think they can do anything and get away with it? We want names of the officers in charge of carrying out the work and we will take appropriate action against them.” MMRCL assured the court that work won’t be carried out at night and its orders will be followed.

Transgender, denied job as cabin crew in Air India, moves Supreme Court

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A transgender, who had undergone sex change three years ago, today moved the Supreme Court challenging Air India’s decision to deny her a job as a cabin crew.A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justice A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud issued notice and sought responses from Air India and Civil Aviation Ministry in four weeks. She claimed that to pursue her dreams, she had worked for 13 months in Sutherland Global Services in the airline sector and even at Air India’s customer support, both domestic and international, at Chennai. Born in Tamil Nadu in 1989, she said she graduated in engineering in 2010. She underwent the gender surgery to turn into a woman in April 2014 and this information was published in the state government gazette.She said she had learnt about an advertisement on July 10 by Air India for the post of female cabin crew for its Northern Region office in Delhi on a fixed term engagement basis for an initial period of five years. She applied in the female category as she had undergone a successful sexual reassignment surgery in Bangkok. She said she got the call letter, appeared for GD and PAT tests and undertook four attempts, “but unfortunately she has not been short-listed for the post in question even though faring well in the tests conducted”.In her petition, she said she could not get shortlisted as she was a transgender and the vacancies in the cabin crew were earmarked only for women. She said that representations were made to the Prime Minister’s Office and the Ministry of Civil Aviation but there was no redressal. She had sought direction to Air India and the Ministry for consideration of her candidature. “The Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill, 2016 prohibits discrimination. It is clear that no person shall discriminate against a transgender person in relation to employment or occupation…”, her plea said.Citing the top court verdict of 2014, she said the apex court has given certain directions for protection of the rights of the transgender persons by including a third category in documents like election card, passport, driving license and ration card, and for admission in educational institutions, hospitals, amongst others. “By recognising diverse gender identities, the Court has busted the dual gender structure of ‘man’ and ‘woman’ which is recognized by the society,” she said in her plea. “The right to chose one’s gender identity is an essential part to lead a life with dignity which again falls under the ambit of Article 21. Determining the right to personal freedom and self determination, the Court observed that the gender to which a person belongs is to be determined by the person concerned. “The Court has given the people of India the right to gender identity. Further, they cannot be discriminated against on the ground of gender as it is violative of Articles 14, 15, 16 and 21,” the plea said.

‘What is the effect of Paracetamol?’: SC grills doctor-turned-law student on his knowledge of medicine

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A doctor-turned-law student who has sought audio-video recording of court proceedings of ‘cases of public importance’ and ‘legally educative cases’ was today grilled by the Supreme Court over his knowledge of medicine.The apex court which appreciated the drafting of petition by the doctor-turned-law student said several pleas were being filed regarding audio-video recording of the cases and it would entertain the matters.A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud refused to entertain the petition filed by Dr Subhash Vijayran, who is now a second year law student at the Campus Law Centre in Delhi University, and asked him to withdraw the plea.Chief Justice Dipak Misra, when he learnt that Vijayran who was appearing in-person was a doctor, asked him questions about medicine.”What is the effect of Paracetamol tablet on the body? How does it react,” the CJI asked the petitioner.Replying to the question, Vijayran said it lowered the temperature of the body by reacting to the liver and mitochondria.This prompted the CJI to ask further questions including how does the body react to kidney transplant and what are the effects of antibiotics on the body.Justice Misra said research has been conducted about neural reaction on the human body which undergoes kidney transplant and asked Vijayran to go through these research papers.In his plea, Vijayran has sought directions from the apex court to make available to law students the audio-video recordings and complete case files claiming it would be a big step in providing them with holistic and practical knowledge of law and bridging the gap between theory and practice.”It is aptly said that law colleges in India produce law graduates and not lawyers. It takes years for a law graduate to become a lawyer. To become a good lawyer, apart from hard work, it is equally important to work under the guidance of an able and learned senior. This is a real challenge for me,” Vijayran said in his plea.He also urged the court to take the aid of modern technology to perpetually preserve its proceedings and make them ‘open courts’ in word and spirit as has been the practice in western countries like USA and United Kingdom.”Drafting skills are very important for any lawyer. If the entire case file is available on the website, I shall, apart from reading the case documents and gaining knowledge therefrom, also develop good drafting skills. By granting my prayer of having entire case file in PDF format available online, this Court will help in sculpturing an excellent draftsman out of me. Therefore, my prayers should be granted,” he said.He also said that because of lack of space and other practical difficulties, hardly a hundred people at the most can be physically present in any court room at a given time.

Bombay High Court gets its own crèche

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Speaking at the inauguration of a crèche at the Bombay High Court for women court staff and lawyers, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on Saturday assured those in attendance that a bigger space for the court had been identified, and that “Mumbai will soon have a new High Court.” The crèche was inaugurated by Dipak Misra, the Chief Justice of India.Besides the inauguration of the crèche, a ceremony to mark the laying of the foundation stone for an alternate dispute resolution centre in the High Court, in order to address and solve the problems of the common man at a faster pace, was also held on Saturday afternoon.Also, present for the ceremony were Chief Justice of Bombay High Court Dr Justice Manjula Chellur and advocate Rajiv Chavan, the president of Bar Association of Western India, and other dignitaries.”No doubt the structure is a majestic one, but there are instances where the roof, the wall as well as the ceiling of the court has come down,” said Chavan, putting forth the condition of the High Court structure before the panel.Chief Minister Fadnavis informed the panel that a new location for the Bombay HC to has been finalised. “We have also given a timeline to Chief Justice Manjula Chellur for the same. Please be assured, we all love this historical place, but soon there will be a new Bombay High Court,” Fadnavis said.The crèche has been set up to aide women lawyers as well as court staffers when they appear before the court for arguments. The resolution centre is for dealing with the matters of the common man, where aggrieved parties can opt for settlement with speedy judgements.

Chennai floods: Following electrocution of two girls, HC orders Rs 10 lakh compensation each to next of kin

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Madras High Court on Saturday took a serious view of the electrocution of two minor girls after they stepped on a live wire submerged in rain water and directed the Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation (TANGEDCO) to pay Rs 10 lakh compensation each to next of kin.”Keeping live wires open smacks of criminal negligence. The respondents shall ensure that all naked wires in the city are sealed and that adequate steps are taken to ensure that such incidents do not take place in future,” the court said.The bench headed by Chief Justice Indira Banerjee and Justice M Sundar, took suo motu notice of the incident after a mention was made by Advocate George Williams yesterday.Additional Advocate General Manishankar submitted that already Rs two lakh each were paid to the bereaved families while Advocate Williams sought a compensation of Rs 25 lakh.The negligence on the part of TANGEDCO to maintain the electricity supply boxes and wires in a good condition had scattered the dreams of their parents to make them engineers or doctors, Williams told the bench.After hearing their submissions, the bench said Rs 10 lakh shall be paid to the respective families within seven days after deducting the amount of Rs 2 lakh which was already paid.The two girls were electrocuted when they stepped on a live wire submerged in water while playing at Kondungaiyur area in the city on November 1.

Delhi govt vs Centre: LG can’t scuttle executive decision by ‘sitting over a file’, says SC

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The SC on Thursday said that the LG can’t ‘scuttle an executive decision by sitting over a file’ as it heard pleas against the LG being the head of the national capital.The Delhi government had challenged a high court verdict which said that the LG had primacy over the elected government. “He (L-G) must exercise his power in reasonable time with reasons,” the court said.Senior advocate Gopal Subramaniam, appearing for the Delhi government, initiated the argument before a five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra.He told a bench, also comprising Justices A K Sikri, A M Khanwilkar, D Y Chandrachud and Ashok Bhushan that their plea challenges the Delhi High Court order of August 4, last year, by which it has said that LG is the administrative head of Delhi, which is also a union territory.He said the challenge is to Article 239 AA by virtue of which special status is accorded to Delhi.The apex court had on February 15 referred to a Constitution Bench the pleas filed by the AAP government against the high court verdict which had held that Delhi is not a state and the LG is its administrative head.The city government had on February 2 told the apex court that it has exclusive executive powers in relation to matters falling within the purview of the Legislative Assembly and neither the Centre nor the President or the LG can encroach upon these.The apex court, however, had said that it is correct that the elected government should have some powers but whether it will be as per the Delhi High Court verdict or as it is being perceived by the Delhi government needed to be looked into.The Constitution has given a face and identity to a government in Delhi after inclusion of Article 239AA and the executive decisions taken and implemented by it cannot be reversed by the LG, it had contended.The apex court had on December 14, last year, observed that the Delhi government should have some powers otherwise it cannot function while hearing the appeals of the city government.On September 9, 2016, the apex court had refused to grant an interim stay on the verdict of the Delhi High Court of August 4 last year. With inputs from PTI

DGP appointment hearing adjourned

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Gujarat HC on Wednesday adjourned the hearing of a public interest litigation (PIL) seeking regular appointment of the DGP. The matter will be heard next Wednesday. Former IPS officer Rahul Sharma had filed a PIL alleging that the state was avoiding appointment of a full-time officer and running the police department with in-charge DGPs. Rules state that a DGP can be appointed from among the top IPS officers of the state cadre with minimum two years of service in the office. Sharma alleged that the state government was intentionally not appointing a regular DGP, which can have an impact on the policing.The first division bench of Chief Justice R Subhash Reddy and Justice Vipul Pancholi, in the last hearing, had directed the government pleader to get instructions from the state regarding its stand on the appointment of a regular DGP. The government pleader had then submitted that the government was seriously thinking over it. On Wednesday, more time was sought by the state, and the Chief Justice orally observed that the government must make its stand crystal clear over the issue by the next hearing. Petitioner’s plea is that once a DGP is appointed, the state should allow him/her to complete his full term in office under the Bombay Police (Gujarat Amendment) Act 2007. Gujarat HC to govt: Reply on GP website in two weeksGujarat HC has asked the state government to file reply within two weeks by when it plans to launch the official website of the Government Pleader’s office (GP) as mandated under the RTI Act. It has kept the matter for further hearing on November 18.The first division bench of chief justice R Subhash Reddy and justice Vipul Pancholi is hearing the PIL filed by citizen Chandravadan Dhruv stating that though 12 years have passed, there is no official website of the GP office. For 2016-17, the GP office had received grant of Rs 11. 23crore from the state.

Equal pay for 4 lakh contractual teachers, rules Patna High Court

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Around four lakh contractual teachers in Bihar, who were on a warpath since 2009, sounded a cry of triumph when Patna High Court on Tuesday ruled that their demand of “equal pay for equal work” was constitutional and that they were entitled to salary on a par with their counterpart regular teachers.After Chief Minister Nitish Kumar took over the reins of the state in 2005, he appointed more than four lakh teachers at the primary, secondary and senior secondary levels to fill up the vacancies and streamline Bihar’s education sector. These teachers, referred to as “Niyojit Shikshak” or contractual teachers because they were appointed on a contract basis, were offered a consolidated pay and almost none of the perks enjoyed by the regular government school teachers.A few years into their appointment, they started staging agitations, demanding equal pay for equal work and though they were given a “pay scale” in 2015, it was still less than the regular teachers. This pay scale put an additional burden of Rs 2,900 crore on the state exchequer.A division bench comprising Chief Justice Rajendra Menon and Justice Anil Kumar Upadhyay, while hearing multiple writ petitions filed by various groups of contractual teachers, allowed the petitions and said, “The state government is directed to fix their pay scales like regular teachers of nationalised schools from the date of their entry in the service notionally and actual payment since December 2009, when the first writ petition was filed.”

5-judge Supreme Court bench will hear Aadhaar

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court said on Monday that it will set up a five-judge Constitution bench to hear all Aadhaar-related cases in the last week of November, five years after the first plea challenging the constitutional validity of the 12-digit unique identification number scheme was filed.The decision was taken by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra after Attorney General KK Venugopal sought a hearing in March. Several petitions, including those against the government’s decision to make Aadhaar mandatory for social benefits and other schemes, have been pending since the top court referred the matter to a larger bench almost two years ago.Gopal Subramanium and Shyam Divan, representing petitioners challenging Aadhaar, sought an interim stay on the linking of the identification number to bank accounts and mobile phones. Venugopal opposed the plea and submitted that the Central government was ready to argue its case.The government’s top law officer said that several falsehoods on Aadhaar were being spread. Two benches are hearing at least three Aadhaar cases.Recently, a nine-judge Constitution bench had held that the Right to Privacy was a Fundamental Right under the Constitution. Several petitioners challenging the validity of Aadhaar had raised the issue that the scheme was violative of privacy rights.On Wednesday, the Central government proposed extending the deadline for mandatory linking of Aadhaar with bank accounts, PAN cards and mobile phones from December 31, 2017, to March 31, 2018, but only to those who are “willing to enroll for the identification number.Meanwhile, the bench issued a notice on advocate Raghav Tankha’s plea seeking a direction to the Department of Telecom (DoT) and to mobile service providers to cease misinforming public that Aadhaar is the sole means for identity and address proof for mobile phone users.Aadhaar was started seven years ago to streamline payment of benefits and cut down on massive wastage and fraud. About 95.10 per cent of India’s population has registered for it. Critics say Aadhaar links enough data to create a comprehensive profile of citizens, and the data — containing fingerprints, iris scans, and demographic information — can be misused.

If Mamata Banerjee objects to Aadhaar, let her come to court personally: SC pulls up West Bengal govt

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Monday pulled-up West Bengal government for challenging the Centre’s move to make Aadhaar mandatory for availing the benefits of various social welfare schemes.Even though the petition is filed through the Chief Secretary of West Bengal, the apex court took an exception to the case and said, “If Mamta Banerjee objects to Aadhaar, let her come to court personally.The court also observed how can a state challenge a law passed by the Centre.The petition was heard by a bench comprising Justices A.K. Sikri and Ashok Bhushan.The West Bengal government had challenged the provision which said that without Aadhaar, the benefits of social welfare schemes would not be extended.The SC has issued a notice to Centre, asking it to file a response within 4 weeks.On 25 October, the Centre had told the top court that the deadline for mandatory linking of Aadhaar to avail benefits of various government schemes has been extended till 31 March next year for those who do not have the 12-digit biometric identification number.Attorney general KK. Venugopal had told a bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra that the deadline extension from December end this year till 31 March 2018, would apply only to those who do not have Aadhaar and are willing to enrol for it.However, Venugopal had told the bench that he would take instructions on certain issues on Aadhaar after which the court had asked him to mention the matter again on 30 October. Several petitions, challenging the Centre’s move to make Aadhaar mandatory for welfare schemes and notifications to link it with mobile numbers and bank accounts, are pending in the apex court.

Litigants should get translated copy of judgment in local or regional languages: Prez Kovind

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> President Ram Nath Kovind on Saturday stressed the need to make high court judgements understandable to litigants in a language they know and suggested setting up of a mechanism to issue certified translated copies of verdicts.The President also advocated for speedy disposal of cases as “the poorest and most underprivileged” in the society were the sufferers of delayed justice. “Delay in delivery of justice is a pressing concern in our country. Often those who suffer are among the poorest and most underprivileged in our society. We must find mechanisms to ensure quick disposal of cases,” he said while addressing the valedictory function of the diamond jubilee celebrations of the High Court of Kerala here.”We could all consider an approach that makes adjournments the exception in an emergency situation rather than a tactic to prolong court proceedings. We must find a way forward,” the President said at the function alsoattended by several judges including Chief Justice of India Justice Dipak Misra and Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad. Kovind said it was important to not only take justice to the people, but also to make it understandable to litigating parties in a language they knew.”High Courts deliver judgements in English, but we are a country of diverse languages. The litigant may not be conversant with English and the finer points of the judgement may escape him or her. The litigating parties will thus be dependent on the lawyer or another person to translate the judgement. This can add to time and cost,” he said. The President suggested that a system could be evolved whereby certified translated copies of judgements were made available by the high courts in local or regional languages.”This could happen in a period of say 24 or 36 hours after the judgement is pronounced. The language could be Malayalam in the Honourable Kerala High Court or Hindi in the Honourable Patna High Court, as the case may be,” Kovind said adding he was only making a suggestion in this regard. “It is for the judiciary and the legal fraternity to discuss this and decide as appropriate,” he said. The President also said the judiciary and justice delivery mechanism of the country would need to continue to keep up with technology and with changes in the society, as indeed they have been so capably doing.

Bengal govt moves SC against Centre’s move to make Aadhaar mandatory for welfare schemes

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court would hear on October 30 a plea filed by the Mamata Banerjee-led West Bengal government against the Centre’s move to make Aadhaar mandatory for availing the benefits of various social welfare schemes.The plea is listed for hearing before a bench comprising Justices A K Sikri and Ashok Bhushan.Senior advocate and member of parliament Kalyan Banerjee said the petition was filed earlier and would come up for hearing before the bench on October 30. He said that West Bengal government has challenged the provision which said that without Aadhaar, the benefits of social welfare schemes would not be extended. On October 25, the Centre had told the top court that the deadline for mandatory linking of Aadhaar to avail benefits of various government schemes has been extended till March 31 next year for those who do not have the 12-digit biometric identification number.Attorney General K K Venugopal had told a bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra that the deadline extension from December end this year till March 31, 2018, would apply only to those who do not have Aadhaar and are willing to enrol for it. However, Venugopal had told the bench that he would take instructions on certain issues on Aadhaar after which the court had asked him to mention the matter again on October 30. Several petitions, challenging the Centre’s move to make Aadhaar mandatory for welfare schemes and notifications to link it with mobile numbers and bank accounts, are pending in the apex court.

Fresh plea in SC for extending ban on firecrackers in NCR beyond October 31

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A fresh plea was moved in the Supreme Court on Friday seeking extension of the ban on the sale of firecrackers in the national capital region beyond October 31.A bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud said it would consider whether the plea seeking extension of ban on firecrackers can be heard urgently. The counsel appearing for petitioner Arjun Gopal, on whose plea the court had banned the sale of firecrackers, said the restraint order be extended beyond October 31 keeping in mind the present pollution level in the national capital and the adjoining areas.On October 13, the apex court had ruled that there would be no sale of firecrackers till October 31. It had expressed anguish that attempts were made to give a political colour to its order banning firecrackers. The court had refused to relax its October 9 order banning the sale of firecrackers while dismissing a plea by traders who had sought its permission to sell crackers for at least a day or two before Diwali on October 19. It had said its ban order for this year during Diwali was an experiment to examine its effect on the pollution level in the region.Some of the licences told the bench that licences granted to them would expire on October 21 while the ban order would be in force till October 31. The bench had said they could make a request to the authorities to extend the period of licence beyond November 1, when the September 12 order would come into effect. The top court had in September temporarily lifted the ban on sale of crackers with certain conditions. The traders had moved the top court seeking relaxation on the ban for a further period saying that a huge amount of money had been invested by them after their licences were revived and the ban order would cause a massive loss to them.The apex court, while banning the sale of firecrackers till October 31, had said its September 12 order would be made effective only from November one. It had said its November 11, 2016 order suspending the licences “should be given one chance to test itself” to see if there is a positive effect of this, particularly during Diwali.

Bombay High Court pulls up CR over Parsik tunnel repair work completion

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Observing that authorities keep passing the buck amongst themselves, and that repair works should be completed before any untoward incidents occur, the Bombay High Court asked the Central Railways to file an affidavit indicating by when repair work on the Parsik tunnel would be completed.A division bench of Chief Justice Manjulla Chellur and Justice NM Jamdar gave the direction while hearing a suo motu Public Interest Litigation (PIL) over the dangers posed due to the shanties above the tunnel through which local and outstation trains pass at high speed. In July, the judges had directed the authorities to carry out repair works in and around the tunnel after encroachers were evicted from there.The court has posted the hearing on the petition for next month, “Since the stage of repairs is relevant to consider the grievance raised in the matter, we direct railway authorities to place on record the progress made with regard to this. The authorities will also have to spell out the exact time required for completion of the repairs. They must also place on record the hurdles they are facing in completing the repair work.”Earlier, the High Court had stayed the removal of the shanties by staying the eviction notice issued by the Thane Municipal Corporation. Following this, the government and Central Railways moved the court seeking to vacate the stay, which was granted.There has been a tussle among authorities on who would rehabilitate the eligible slum dwellers. Central Railways says the land on top of the tunnel is forest land, and thus state government is responsible.However, the government says it has to be done by the corporation.The tunnel, that cuts right through Parsik Hill in Thane, is an important link for the Central Railways’ suburban and long distance line, connecting Thane to Kalyan.PASSING THE BUCKThere has been a tussle among authorities on who would rehabilitate the eligible slum dwellers. While the CR says the land above the tunnel is forest land, the government says it has to be done by the corporation.

Has action been taken against convicted cops in Bilkis Bano gangrape case: SC asks Gujarat govt

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Monday asked the Gujarat government if there has been any departmental action against cops convicted in the Bilkis Bano gangrape case.The Apex Court has asked the government to file a detailed reply within four weeks.During the hearing, a bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud also asked the victim to file a Special Leave Petition (SLP) after she submitted in the court that she wanted enhancement of compensation.In July, the Supreme Court had dismissed the appeals of two doctors and four policemen including an IPS officer challenging their conviction by the Bombay High Court in the sensational 2002 Bilkis Bano case, saying there was ‘clear-cut evidence’ against them.According to the prosecution, on March 3, 2002, Bilkis Bano’s family was attacked by a mob at Randhikpur village near Ahmedabad during the post-Godhra riots and seven members of her family were killed.Bilkis, who was five months pregnant at the time, was gang-raped while six other members of her family managed to escape from the mob. The trial in the case began in Ahmedabad.However, after Bilkis expressed apprehensions that the witnesses could be harmed and the CBI evidence tampered with, the Supreme Court transferred the case to Mumbai in August 2004.A special court had on January 21, 2008, convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment 11 men in the case.The convicted policemen and doctors are Narpat Singh, Idris Abdul Saiyed, Bikabhai Patel, Ramsingh Bhabhor, Sombhai Gori, Arun Kumar Prasad (doctor) and Sangeeta Kumar Prasad (doctor).

SC seeks Centre’s response on guidelines for abortion beyond 20 weeks

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court has sought a response from the government on framing of guidelines for setting up a permanent mechanism for termination of pregnancy beyond 20 weeks in exceptional cases.A bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra issued notices to the ministries of health, women and child development and the Medical Council Of India and sought their reply in four weeks.The apex court, however, refused to amend the 1971 Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act which prohibits termination of pregnancy beyond 20 weeks, saying that the issue fell within the legislative domain.”On a perusal of the reliefs sought, we find that as far as the prayer is concerned, that is in legislative realm, hence we are not inclined to address the said prayer.”Issue notice, fixing a returnable date within four weeks,” the bench said.The top court was hearing a plea filed by Karnataka-based Anusha Ravindra seeking amendment of the 1971 Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act for an abortion of foetuses older than 20 weeks involving rape survivors and women with abnormal foetus.The plea, filed through advocate Abhinav Ramkrishna, also sought constitution of a committee for setting up a permanent mechanism for expedient termination of pregnancies beyond 20 weeks in the exceptional cases involving rape survivors and women with abnormal foetus under safe medical facilities with adequate inputs from an association of professionals and experts.

Can’t stop construction, people should ‘compromise and sacrifice’ for ‘essential’ Metro: Bombay HC

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Bombay High Court today said it cannot put a permanent stop to the Metro III project as it is essential for decongestion of roads and hence people should “compromise and sacrifice” and put up with the problems created due to the construction work.A division bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice NM Jamdar was hearing a bunch of petitions claiming that the construction activity for the project was resulting in noise pollution in the areas concerned. Last month, the court had refused to allow the Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Limited (MMRCL) the use of heavy machinery or transportation vehicles at night for the Metro III line work. The MMRCL had sought the court’s permission to bring heavy vehicles to construction sites in South Mumbai “during the night hours to transport construction material and debris”.Advocate General Ashutosh Kumbakoni today sought that the court reconsider the issue and said, “The nature of machinery, equipment and material that needs to be brought in are heavy and large. Traffic needs to be stopped for these to be transported. It would not be proper if traffic is stopped during day time and hence it needs to be done at night.” The court then said it was aware of the authority’s anxiety and concern to complete the project and directed the MMRCL to file an affidavit giving details of what work needs to be carried out during night time and the time schedule for the same. “We are aware of your concern and anxiety. But at the same time we cannot overlook everything. You (MMRCL) cannot carry on work each night for a whole year. There are school and college children who have to prepare for exams,” Chief Justice Chellur said.”We understand that there has to be compromise and sacrifice by people too. We cannot permanently stop the project. There needs to be a balance. We cannot stop development. This project will decongest roads and will benefit everyone. Extreme sensitivity and arbitrariness is also not correct,” she said. The bench has now posted the petitions for hearing tomorrow by when the MMRCL will have to submit its affidavit.The 33-kilometre Colaba-Bandra-SEEPZ Metro line III project is part of the Metro system which will connect the Cuffe Parade business district in south Mumbai to SEEPZ in the city’s north-central suburb. In August this year, acting on the above petitions, the court had restrained MMRCL from carrying out any construction or ancillary work on the Metro III line between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m.

Kulbhushan Jadhav case: Pakistan recommends former chief justice as an ad-hoc judge to ICJ

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Pakistan recommended former chief justice Tassaduq Hussain Jillani as an ad-hoc judge to the International Court of Justice to hear the case of Indian national Kulbhushan Jadhav who has been sentenced to death by a Pakistani military court for “subversive activities”.”The government of Pakistan has communicated to the International Court of Justice its designation of Justice Tassaduq Hussain Jillani, a former Chief Justice of Pakistan, to be its Judge Ad hoc in the Jadhav Case,” the Foreign Office said in a statement.Officials had earlier said that names of Jillani and senior lawyer Makhdoom Ali Khan were sent to the office of the Prime Minister for final approval.The procedures of the ICJ allow a party to nominate an ad-hoc judge in circumstances where there is no judge of the court that has that party’s nationality.Currently, there is no judge of the court that has Pakistani nationality; whereas Justice Bhandari from India sits as a judge of the court.Justice Jillani served as a judge of the Supreme Court of Pakistan from 2004 to 2013 and subsequently as the 21st Chief Justice of Pakistan from December 2013 until July 2014.He was among the judges who refused to take oath of allegiance to former dictator Gen Pervez Musharraf after he imposed emergency on November 3, 2007. Jillani was kept in illegal confinement by Musharraf, who is currently facing a criminal case for illegally confining the judges.The decision to appoint Jillani as an ad-hoc judge came as Pakistan started the process to file its plea in response to Indian memorial submitted with the International Court of Justice on September 13 against the conviction of Jadhav.The ICJ had asked Pakistan to submit its response or memorial by December 13 before the court could start further proceedings.On Thursday, the Pakistan Army had said it is close to a decision on the mercy petition of Jadhav.Pakistan, which announced the death sentence on Jadhav on April 10, claims its security forces arrested him from restive Balochistan province on March 3 last year after he reportedly entered from Iran. However, India maintains that Jadhav was kidnapped from Iran where he had business interests after retiring from the Navy. Jadhav had filed an appeal with the army chief to seek clemency, which is still pending.After India approached the ICJ, a 10-member bench on May 18 restrained Pakistan from executing Jadhav till adjudication of the case. Jadhav’s sentencing had evoked a sharp reaction in India.India has warned Pakistan of consequences and damage to bilateral ties if the “premeditated murder” was carried out. In its application, India had also informed the ICJ that it learnt about the death sentence against Jadhav from a press release.India acknowledges that Jadhav had served with the Indian Navy but denies that he has any connection with the government. It also said that Jadhav was kidnapped from Iran.India has also handed over to Pakistan an appeal by Jadhav’s mother, initiating a process to get his conviction overturned.

Bombay High Court junks plea for cracker shops in residential areas

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Bombay High Court on Monday refused relief to two firecracker dealers seeking temporary licences to set up shop in residential areas.A division bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice N M Jamdar refused relief to Malad Fireworks Dealer’s Welfare Association and Jwell Sales Agency, Dadar. They had pleaded that temporary licenses be issued as their permanent licenses were not renewed by the concerned authorities.Advocate Abhay Parab, appearing for petitioner Chandrakant Lasure, opposed the applications. Lasure had filed a PIL highlighting the issue of illegal firecracker shops in residential areas during Diwali and sought strict vigilance.The bench reprimanded the applicants for filing a plea just ahead of Diwali before rejecting it.

From Special Marriage Act to Centre v/s Delhi govt: SC constitution bench to hear six matters

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A five-judge constitution bench of the Supreme Court would tomorrow commence hearing six key issues, including the power tussle between the Centre and Delhi government over administrative jurisdiction and a matter relating to passive euthanasia.The constitution bench would be headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra and would comprise Justices A K Sikri, A M Khanwilkar, D Y Chandrachud and Ashok Bhushan.One of the issues to be dealt with by the constitution bench is the legal question whether a Parsi woman loses her religious identity after marrying a man of different religion under the Special Marriage Act. This matter was today referred to a five-judge constitution bench by the apex court.Besides these, the bench will also deal with issues like whether a parliamentary committee report can be referred to or relied upon during judicial proceedings, how to add income for future prospects of victims in motor accident claims and whether the top court can entertain a plea for making an arbitration award a rule of the court.The court had in February 2014 referred to a constitution bench a plea favouring voluntary passive euthanasia or mercy killing in cases where a person is suffering from terminal illness and has no chance of revival and recovery as per the medical opinion.The court would consider the prayer of an NGO, Common Cause, to declare ‘right to die with dignity’ as a fundamental right within the fold of Right to Live with dignity guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution.The bench would also hear the matter relating to the tug- of-war between the Centre and the Delhi government over the administration of the National Capital Territory.The Delhi High Court had on August 4 last year declared the Lieutenant Governor as the administrative head of the national capital against which the city government has moved the apex court.The constitution bench would also hear the issue whether a parliamentary committee report could be referred to or relied upon during judicial proceedings before the top court.The matter had cropped up when a two-judge bench on April 5 this year was hearing a PIL seeking to quash licencing of two vaccines for cervical cancer treatment as the approval for their use was done without adequate research on safety. It had referred to certain reports of parliamentary panels.In a matter related to the grant of compensation by Motor Accident Claims Tribunals, a two-judge bench had in 2014 said that while calculating compensation to victims, the issue of adding income for future prospects needed an authoritative pronouncement and had referred the matter to a higher bench.The bench will hear whether the top court can entertain an application for making an arbitration award a rule of the court.

Centre versus Delhi government: SC Constitution bench to start hearing on Tuesday

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A five-judge constitution bench of the Supreme Court, headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra, would on Tuesday start hearing five key issues, including the power tussle between the Centre and Delhi government over administrative jurisdiction and a matter relating to passive euthanasia.Besides the CJI, the bench also comprises justices A K Sikri, A M Khanwilkar, D Y Chandrachud and Ashok Bhushan.The bench will also deal with issues like whether a parliamentary committee report can be referred to or relied upon during judicial proceedings, how to add income for future prospects of victims in motor accident claims and whether the top court can entertain a plea for making an arbitration award a rule of the court.The court had in February 2014 referred to a constitution bench a plea favouring voluntary passive euthanasia or mercy killing in cases where a person is suffering from terminal illness and has no chance of revival and recovery as per the medical opinion.The court would consider the prayer of an NGO, Common Cause, to declare ‘right to die with dignity’ as a fundamental right within the fold of Right to Live with dignity guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution.The bench would also hear the matter relating to the tug- of-war between the Centre and the Delhi government over the administration of the National Capital Territory.The Delhi High Court had on August 4 last year declared the Lieutenant Governor as the administrative head of the national capital against which the city government has moved the apex court.The constitution bench would also hear the issue whether a parliamentary committee report could be referred to or relied upon during judicial proceedings before the top court.The matter had cropped up when a two-judge bench on April 5 this year was hearing a PIL seeking to quash licencing of two vaccines for cervical cancer treatment as the approval for their use was done without adequate research on safety. It had referred to certain reports of parliamentary panels.In a matter related to the grant of compensation by Motor Accident Claims Tribunals, a two-judge bench had in 2014 said that while calculating compensation to victims, the issue of adding income for future prospects needed an authoritative pronouncement and had referred the matter to a higher bench.The bench will hear whether the top court can entertain an application for making an arbitration award a rule of the court.

SC constutional bench to decide if Parsi woman marrying a Hindu loses her religion

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Monday referred to a five-judge constitution bench the legal question whether a Parsi woman loses her religious identity after marrying a man of different religion under the Special Marriage Act.A bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra said the larger bench would also consider the scope and width of the ‘triple talaq’ verdict in the present case.A woman has challenged the Parsi law, upheld by the Gujarat High Court in 2010, that a Parsi female marrying a Hindu loses her religious rights in the Parsi community.”We are referring it to five-judge constitution bench,” the bench, which also comprised Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud, said.The decision came after senior lawyer Indira Jaising, appearing for Goolrokh M Gupta, said that ‘the doctrine of custom’, that a woman automatically assumes the religion of her husband, no more held good.The bench was hearing a plea filed by Gupta challenging the High Court judgement that had held that under the Special Marriage Act, a Parsi woman is deemed to be converted to Hinduism after she married a Hindu man.The woman, in her appeal filed in 2012, said she had married a Hindu under the Special Marriage Act and be allowed to retain her place in Parsi community. She had assailed the HC finding that a woman universally loses her paternal identity just because of her marriage with a man practising the Hindu religion.She had also sought the right to visit the ‘Tower of Silence’ in the event of her father’s death to perform last rites.The Tower is used for funerary purposes by the adherents of the Zoroastrian faith, in which the traditional practice for disposal of the dead involves the exposure of the corpse to the sun and vultures.The High Court had also held that she would be deemed to have acquired the religious status of her husband unless a declaration is made by a court for continuation of her Parsi status.The woman had approached the high court contending that even after her marriage with a Hindu man, she has continued to follow Zoroastrian religion and thus had the right to enjoy all privileges under the Parsi religion, including right to offer prayers at Agiari, a Parsi temple having the ‘holy fire’ and the ‘Tower of Silence’.She contended that her rights as a Parsi Zoroastrian cannot be denied on the ground that she has married a non- Parsi man.She had also argued that a male Parsi Zoroastrian continued to enjoy all rights available to a born Parsi, even if he is married to a non-Parsi Zoroastrian woman.​

Supreme Court issues notice on insolvency proceedings against Amrapali

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a partial relief to homebuyers, the Supreme Court (SC) issued a notice to the Centre on a plea seeking a stay on the insolvency proceedings against Amrapali Group’s Silicon City project in Greater Noida.A bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra also issued a notice to BoB, Reserve Bank of India, Amrapali Silicon City Pvt Ltd, Amrapali Centurian Park Pvt Ltd, and Rajesh Samson, the insolvency resolution professional in the case.The plea filed by 107 homebuyers sought a stay against the September 4 National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) Allahabad bench order, which admitted Bank of Baroda (BoB)’s insolvency petition against the real estate giant.BoB has initiated insolvency proceedings against Amrapali for defaulting on a loan of Rs 55 crore. Amrapali has liabilities worth Rs 3,000 crore to official agencies and more than Rs 1,000 crore to about 10 banks. The realtor fell short of Rs 3,000 crore to complete its ongoing projects.According to the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) passed by Parliament in 2016, if insolvency proceedings are initiated against a company, all court proceedings attached to it are stayed. In August, home buyers were left in a lurch after the NCLT admitted IDBI Bank’s plea to initiate insolvency proceedings against the debt-ridden company for defaulting on a loan worth Rs 526 crore.Homebuyers sought to quash the September order passed by NCLT on grounds that the moratorium imposed under the provisions of the IBC, violates Article 14 (equality before law) of the Constitution.

SC judicial picks’ details go online

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Over 24 years after a seven-Judge bench of the Supreme Court in the Second Judges’ Case directed that a collegiums of judges would make recommendations to the President with regard to appointment and transfer of members of the superior judiciary, the Supreme Court collegium finally decided to put in public domain collegium recommendations sent by it to the government.The move comes within days of senior Karnataka High Court Judge Jayant Patel putting in his papers after being transferred to Allahabad High Court led to an uproar, with many questioning the collegium’s decision.As per the latest decision of the collegium led by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, collegiums’ decisions will be uploaded online. The other signatories to the October 3 decision Justices J Chelameswar, Ranjan Gogoi, Madan B Lokur and Kurian Joseph.”The decisions henceforth taken by the Collegium indicating the reasons shall be put on the website of the Supreme Court, when the recommendation(s) is/are sent to the Government of India, with regard to the cases relating to initial elevation to the HC Bench, confirmation as permanent judge(s) of the HC and elevation to the post of Chief Justice of HC,” the note said.”Transfer of High Court Chief Justices / Judges and elevation to the Supreme Court, because on each occasion the material which is considered by the Collegium is different,” the note said.A separate tab on the Supreme Court’s website — dedicated to news from the collegium will also have reasons that influenced their decisions. To begin with, the apex court uploaded documents citing reasons for the recent posting and transfer of judicial officers at the Kerela High Court and Madras High Court.The collegium— comprising the top five senior most judges of the top court, has often been criticised for its closed door decisions and the opaqueness behind its decision. Justice J Chelameswar, who was part of the Constitution Bench that struck down the National Judicial Appointments Commission (NJAC) Act, was the sole dissenter and wrote a strongly-worded judgment criticising the collegium system for its opacity. Standing by his point, Justice Chelameswar refused to participate in the collegium meetings unless minutes of the meeting were recorded.

Now, judge appointments and transfers by Supreme Court will be made open to public

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court of India on Friday announced that for the sake of transparency, judges the process of appointing or transferring judges will now be open to public.Last week, a Collegium headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra reported resolved to frame norms for appointment and transfer of judges.The earlier collegium system of judges appointing judges was strongly criticised by the government, which has often called for transparency and accountability in judicial transfers and appointments.A new tab on the Supreme Court website links to ‘Collegium Resolutions’.A resolution passed by the five senior most judges of the Court states: “THAT the decisions henceforth taken by the Collegium indicating the reasons shall be put on the website of the Supreme Court, when the recommendation(s) is/are sent to the Government of India, with regard to the cases relating to initial elevation to the High Court Bench, confirmation as permanent Judge(s) of the High Court, elevation to the post of Chief Justice of High Court, transfer of High Court Chief Justices / Judges and elevation to the Supreme Court, because on each occasion the material which is considered by the Collegium is different. The Resolution is passed to ensure transparency and yet maintain confidentiality in the Collegium system.”

Find replacement for death by hanging: Supreme Court to Centre

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Friday issued notice to the central government in connection with a plea seeking replacement of death sentence.The top court has asked the Centre to give a detailed reply on the same within three months.A bench of three judges headed by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, while hearing the plea filed by Advocate Rishi Malhotra, said the Indian Constitution is a compassionate one which recognises principle of sanctity of life.It observed that with the invention of various modes of execution in modern time, legislature can think of other mode for death convicts, keeping in view the dynamic progress in science.The petitioner in his plea stated the execution as contemplated under Section 354(5) of CrPC (hung by the neck till the person is dead) is not only barbaric and cruel but it is also against the resolutions adopted by the United Nations Economic & Social Council (ECOSOC) which has clarified that “where the capital punishment occurs it should be carried out so as to inflict minimum suffering.” ​

Here’s why Supreme Court advocates Harish Salve and Fali Nariman have deleted theit Twitter accounts

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Supreme Court on Thursday voiced its concerns over social media, with senior advocates Harish Salve and Fali Nariman even saying that they had deleted their Twitter accounts.The bench was hearing arguments on whether a public servant or a minister can claim freedom of speech to air his or her views on a sensitive matter under investigation on public forums such as Facebook and Twitter.PTI reported the bench, comprising Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, AM Khanwilkar, and DY Chandrachud, as saying people disseminated incorrect information on social media — even about court proceedings.While Nariman said he had stopped looking at social media, Salve said he had deleted his Twitter account.PTI reported Salve as saying that he had once appeared in a case related to a medical college and that what subsequently appeared on his Twitter feed had forced him to delete his account.The report further added Salve as adding that “now private players were more into infringing the privacy rights and such things are no more restricted to the state only.”

Apex court expresses its dismay over bar association’s body submission on pellet guns

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Jammu and Kashmir High Court Bar Association suggested that accession of the state, rigged elections and the security personnel’s capture and kill policy were the “historical reasons” why the Valley erupted in violence.The Supreme Court on Wednesday said they were “slightly shocked” by the disclosure presented by the lawyers’ body. The Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, along with Justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud were hearing a plea seeking a ban on the use of pellet guns in the Valley.The public interest petition filed by the lawyers’ body accused security personnel of using excessive force to control the crowd in the aftermath of Burhan Wani’s death in July 2016. In an affidavit, filed at the behest of the court which sought to understand why the citizens in the Valley were protesting, the lawyer’s association pointed out the “historical reasons” for the continued violence over the years.The Centre, however, contested the submissions made and urged the top court to dismiss them. Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar, representing the Centre, said the lawyer’s body had crossed the boundaries of their petition and hence it was not maintainable.”They say every poll since 1947 was rigged, that accession should not have happened, they say that instead of taking peaceful means, a catch-and-kill policy is adopted,” Kumar said.

Investigate whether grazing land has been encroached on, says HC

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Gujarat High Court’s first division bench of Chief Justice R Subhash Reddy and justice Vipul Pancholi has instructed the assistant government pleader on Wednesday to take instructions from the Surendranagar district collector on whether the allegations of the encroachment of grazing land for last 10 years has any substance.It was hearing a petition of agriculturists from Surendranagar district who approached the high court with a prayer to get around 200 acre of Gauchar (grazing) land free from encroachment by politically and financially powerful persons.After hearing the primary submission over the PIL moved by Zala Digvijaysinh and others from Raisangpur village through advocate SM Chudasama and Bhunesh Rupera, the court also noted that if the collector finds the allegation of encroachment to be true, whether the administration has any plan to get the land evacuated. Further hearing on the matter has been kept for October 11.The petition alleged that around 30 politically and financially powerful persons of the village have encroached 200-acre gauchar land, earmarked by the government for 3,120 livestock in the village, for last 10 years. Though the petitioner and other villagers had raised the issue with Taluka Development Officer (TDO) and the district collector to remove the encroachment, no concrete action has been taken to free the land from encroachment.It was further alleged that though the TDO and the district collector had issued notices to the village talati and sarpanch in 2015 to remove encroachment, no action has been taken till date. The pleaThe petition alleged that around 30 politically and financially powerful people in the village have encroached the 200-acre gauchar land, earmarked by the government for 3,120 livestock in the village for the last 10 years.

Kerala ‘love jihad’ case: Father can’t dictate personal life of a 24-year-old daughter, says Supreme Court

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Can a father dictate personal life his 24-year-old daughter? No, said the Supreme Court while hearing the Kerala ‘love jihad case’ on Tuesday.The top court, in fact, questioned how the Kerala High Court annulled the marriage of Hadiya and Shafeen Jahan under Article 226.According to The Hindu, Chief Justice of India Deepal Misra said that father can’t insist on his daughter’s custodyDefence Counsel Dushyant Dave argued that the probe by the National Investigation Agency in the case ‘strikes at the very foundation of multi-religious society’.The next hearing has been scheduled for October 9.Shafeen Jahan married Akhila Ashokan in December last year after she converted to Islam and rechristened herself as Hadiya.Her father moved the Kerala High Court and claimed his daughter was indoctrinated and forcibly converted. He, in fact, said that his daughter would be be sent to Afghanistan or Syria.The High Court annulled the marriage. But Jahan approached the Supreme Court against the annulment.Earlier in August, the NIA began investigation into the case following the top court’s orders.In compliance with the orders of the apex court, the case was re-registered by the NIA and an investigation was taken up.The Kerala Government has said that if the apex court wants an NIA probe, it has no objections.The Supreme Court said that after getting inputs from the NIA and Kerala Police probe, it would interview Akhila to ascertain her views.

Wheelchair-bound man abused, called ‘Pakistani’ for not standing up during National Anthem

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A disabled man was allegedly abused for not standing up during National Anthem in Assam capital Guwahati on Monday.Arman Ali, director of an NGO, was allegedly assaulted in a Guwahati multiplex, news agency ANI reported.“I was singing along while sitting. I heard someone commenting and calling me a Pakistani. 2 men sat behind me, smirking,” Ali was quoted as saying by ANI.“I don’t think the Supreme Court would have thought of situation like this. I’ll write to the Chief Justice about this incident and plight of people like me,” he added.A Times of India report said that the 36-year-old sat ‘upright’ during National Anthem as ‘mark of respect’.But some people didn’t like that Ali was not standing like others without knowing his condition and said, “Saamne ek Pakistani baitha hai (A Pakistani is sitting in front),” TOI report said.Ali is director of Shishu Sarothi, an NGO that works for differently-abled people.It was in November last year when the Supreme Court said national anthem must be played in all cinema halls before screening of a film and everyone must stand up.

Metro-3: Ban on work from 10 pm to 6 am extended by two weeks

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Bombay High court on Tuesday extended the ban on any work being carried out between 10 pm to 6 am on the Metro-3 line between Colaba and SEEPZ by two weeks.A division bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice NM Jamdar also refused permission to Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Limited (MMRCL) for allowing it to use heavy vehicles for transportation of construction material during the night. It said, “We cannot pass a blanket order granting you permission. If we do, others will also come to court seeking the same relief.”MMRCL, through its advocate Kiran Bhagalia, had sought permission for use of transport vehicles in the night claiming that its work was being affected as the traffic police had banned entry of heavy vehicles in the city until midnight.The permission was sought while hearing a petition filed by a south Mumbai resident Robin Jaisinghani, who has sought the stay of work during night time as it violates noise pollution norms.In response to the petition, MMRCL has filed an affidavit saying that noise pollution rules do not apply to them as rules framed under the Environment Protection Act are general in nature, while the Metro Act is a special statute and will prevail over a general enactment.The bench, after hearing the opposition raised by Jaisinghani to the MMRCL request said, “Early in the morning the people employed by you (MMRCL) begin screaming, shouting to each other, playing loud music on their phones. Why don’t you ask your contractors to employ someone to supervise the labourers and control their noise?” The court has adjourned the hearing by two weeks.

Bombay HC directs government to review cases where police protection was granted

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Maharashtra Police cannot become private guards, the Bombay High Court on Tuesday said and directed the state government to review each and every case in which police protection has been given.A division bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice N M Jamdar said the department concerned should revisit each and every case and see if protection is still required.”Protection given 10 to 15 years ago when there must have been a threat, should be reviewed. Is security required? After so many years, circumstances would have changed,” the court said, adding that the state police cannot become private guards.”Maharashtra Police is not meant for all this. Protection must be given in rarest of rare cases. Not as a matter of giving it for the sake of it. For normal cases, there are private firms. You (police) cannot become private guards,” Justice Chellur said.”Why should the public exchequer’s money be wasted on people who do not deserve protection? And people who can afford must pay,” she said.The court added that in many cases protection is given without proper application of mind.”There has to be some methodology. There cannot be madness in the method,” the court said.The bench was hearing a public interest litigation filed by city resident Sunny Punamiya seeking direction to the state police to recover dues from the VIPs, including politicians, who have been provided security cover, but have not paid till date.

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