Supreme Court Monthly Roundup – February 2021

“In order to enable persons with disabilities to lead a life of equal dignity and worth, it is not enough to mandate that discrimination against them is impermissible. That is necessary, but not sufficient. We must equally ensure, as a society, that we provide them the additional support and facilities that are necessary for them to offset the impact of their disability.”

-Justice Dr. DY Chandrachud

Vikash Kumar v. Union Public Service Commission, 

2021 SCC OnLine SC 84


TOP STORIES


Parties agreeing to out-of-court settlement without judicial intervention under Section 89 CPC can’t be denied benefit of refund of court fees; they are “even more deserving”: Supreme Court

“No justifiable reason why Section 69-A of Tamil Nadu Court Fees and Suit Valuation Act, 1955 should only incentivize the methods of out-of-court settlement stated in Section 89, CPC and afford step brotherly treatment to other methods availed of by the parties.”

Read more…


“In their blooming and blossoming, we all bloom and blossom”; Read how denial of scribe to a person suffering from writer’s cramp led to SC issuing directions for formulation of new policies

RPwD Act 2016 is based on the simple idea with profound implications that each of us has: “unique powers to share with the world and make it interesting and richer.”

Read more…


Supreme Court directs compensation of Rs. 5 Lakhs after a bank breaks customer’s locker without just cause. RBI to frame rules for Locker management [Read obligations of bank]

“Banks cannot wash off their hands and claim that they bear no liability towards their customers for the operation of the locker.”

Read more…


COVID 19 a “lame excuse”: Here’s why SC refused to allow extra attempt for UPSC CSE to last attemptees

“What is being claimed and prayed for under the guise of Covid 19 pandemic is nothing but a lame excuse in taking additional attempt to participate in the Civil Service Examination 2021 to be held in future.”

Read more…


Bar under Section 10A IBC on initiation of CIRP applies retrospectively; ‘March 25, 2020’ consciously added as it coincides with the imposition of National Lockdown: SC

“The onset of the Covid-19 pandemic is a cataclysmic event which has serious repercussions on the financial health of corporate enterprises.”

Read more…


Aggrieved by an order refusing condonation of delay in filing application under section 34 of the Arbitration Act, 1996? Appeal lies, holds Supreme Court

“Undoubtedly, a limited right of appeal is given under section 37 of the Arbitration Act, 1996. But it is not the province or duty of this Court to further limit such right by excluding appeals which are in fact provided for, given the language of the provision.”

Read more…


Can foreigners transfer/dispose of immovable property situated in India by sale or mortgage without RBI’s prior permission? SC explains the true import of Section 31 of FERA, 1973

“Merely because no provision in the Act makes the transaction void or says that no title in the property passes to the purchaser in case there is contravention of the provisions of Section 31, will be of no avail. That does not validate the transfer referred to in Section 31, which is not backed by “previous” permission of the RBI.”

Read more…


‘No interviews, UP Police to escort’; Supreme Court allows journalist Sidhique Kappan to visit his ailing mother for 5 days

The Kerala journalist was arrested under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act on his way to Hathras, Uttar Pradesh to report on the alleged gang-rape of a Dalit woman, who later died in the Hospital.

Read more…


Farmer Protests| Shashi Tharoor and 6 journalists not to be arrested for now over tweets on protester’s death during Republic Day Tractor Rally

The 3-judge bench of SA Bobde, CJI and AS Bopanna and V. Ramasubramanian, JJ has stayed the arrest of congress MP Shashi Tharoor and Journalists Rajdeep Sardesai, Mrinal Pande, Zafar Agha, Paresh Nath, Anant Nath and Vinod Jose, in multiple FIRs filed against them over tweets on the death of a protester n during the January 26 tractor rally in the Capital.

Read more…


Supreme Court grants interim bail to comic Munawar Faruqui; stays Madhya Pradesh High Court’s judgment

The order of the Court came after it was pointed out to it that the allegations made in the FIR against the comic are vague and also the procedure contained in Section 41 Cr.P.C. as adumbrated by the Supreme Court in Arnesh Kumar v. State of Bihar, (2014) 8 SCC 273, has not been followed before making the arrest.

Read more…


Educated adults choosing their life partners is the way forward to reduce caste and community tensions’; SC comes to the aid of a young couple facing “threats from the elders”

“Educated younger boys and girls are choosing their life partners which, in turn is a departure from the earlier norms of society where caste and community play a major role.”

Read more…


E-voting for winding up of Franklin Templeton’s 6 units valid; Consent of unitholders is consent by majority of unitholders who participated in the poll: Supreme Court

In the case relating to winding up of six schemes of the Franklin Templeton Mutual Fund, the bench of SA Nazeer and Sanjiv Khanna*, JJ has, rejecting the objections to poll results, held that the unitholders of the six schemes have given their consent by majority to windup the six schemes.

It held that for the purpose of clause (c) to Regulation 18(15) of the Mutual Fund Regulations, consent of the unitholders would mean consent by majority of the unitholders who have participated in the poll, and not consent of majority of all the unitholders of the scheme.

Read more…


As Supreme Court allows Rajasthan Schools to collect fees for the academic years 2019-2020 and 2020-2021, read what’s in it for the students and parents

In a major win for Private Schools in the State of Rajasthan, the bench of AM Khanwilkar and Dinesh Maheshwari, JJ has directed the School Managements to collect fees for the academic year 2019-2020 as well as 2020-2021 from the students, equivalent to fees amount notified for the academic year 2019- 2020, in six monthly installments commencing from 5th March, 2021 and ending on 5th August, 2021.

Read more…


MORE STORIES


Collusive transactions with the Corporate Debtor would not constitute a ‘financial debt’ under Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code: Supreme Court

A transaction which is sham or collusive would only create an illusion that money has been disbursed to a borrower with the object of receiving consideration in the form of time value of money, when in fact the parties have entered into the transaction with a different or an ulterior motive.”

Read more…


[MV Act] Does Claims Tribunal possess any authority to award costs? Supreme Court to decide

“Whether in the matter of awarding costs, the procedure and rules framed under the Constitution, CPC and the Rules made thereunder, for `Courts’, could be resorted to by the Claims Tribunal which is apparently, not a `Court.”

Read more…


Najeeb KA, accused of chopping off Kerala professor’s palm over “objectionable” question, gets bail. Read why Supreme Court upheld bail despite finding charges against him “a serious threat to societal harmony”

Najeeb, who along with some other members of Popular Front of India (PFI) had chopped¬off the professor’s right palm, has been in jail for much more than five years and there are 276 witnesses left to be examined.

Read more…


Bank manager disburses loans without following the due procedure. Is compulsory retirement in such case a disproportionate punishment? Read what SC says

“If an officer/employee of the bank is allowed to act beyond his authority, the discipline of the bank will disappear.”

Read more…


CAA Protests| No bail to activist Akhil Gogoi “at this stage”: Supreme Court

“Having heard learned senior counsel for the petitioner and carefully perusing the material placed on record, we are not inclined to grant bail to the petitioner at this stage.”

Read more…

Consent decree recognising pre-existing rights created by oral family settlement does not require registration under section 17 of Registration Act, 1908: Supreme Court

In the case at hand, in view of the fact that the consent decree dated 19.08.1991 relate to the subject matter of the suit, it was not required to be registered under Section 17(2) (vi) and was covered by exclusionary clause.

Read more…


Married woman’s heirs on paternal side are not strangers; she can enter in family settlement with such heirs: Supreme Court

The bench of Ashok Bhushan* and R. Subhash Reddy, JJ has held that when heirs of father of a female are included as person who can possibly succeed, it cannot be held that they are strangers and not the members of the family qua the female.

Read more…


Sale confirmed; objections of judgment debtor overruled. Can consent decree be set aside in such case? Supreme Court answers

“When the mortgaged property was sold in the auction in the execution proceedings, sale was confirmed in favour of the auction purchaser after overruling the objections raised by the judgment debtors and the sale certificate was issued, the High Court was not justified in quashing and setting aside the consent decree.”

Read more…


Do consent decrees put an end to further litigation between parties in all cases? Not a blanket rule, holds Supreme Court

The bench of MM Shantanagoudar* and Vineet Saran, JJ has lucidly explained the law governing consent decree and has held that the well settled law that consent decrees are intended to create estoppels by judgment against the parties, thereby putting an end to further litigation between the parties, does not apply as a blanket rule in all cases.

Read more…


Can Courts issue mandamus to frame policy? Read this short explainer by the Supreme Court

“Judicial review of a policy decision and to issue mandamus to frame policy in a particular manner are absolutely different.”

Read more…


‘Reasoned Judgment must be passed alongwith the operative order’; SC asks NCDRC President to discontinue the upsetting trend of delayed reasoned orders

“The rights of the aggrieved parties are being prejudiced if the reasons are not available to them to avail of the legal remedy of approaching the Court where the reasons can be scrutinized.”

Read more…


Does the presence of arbitration clause in a contract with State oust the jurisdiction under Article 226? Supreme Court answers

“The State and its instrumentalities are not exempt from the duty to act fairly merely because in their business dealings they have entered into the realm of contract.”

Read more…


“Reduce Qualifying cut off percentile by 10% for NEET candidates”, SC directs Center; Asks private Dental Colleges to consider reducing exorbitantly high fees

“If reducing minimum marks amounts to lowering standards, the State would not do so for super speciality courses.”

Read more…


Govt deprives owner of possession and enjoyment of land for 45 years. SC decides if State can oust land owner from possession prior to enactment of enabling Act

“Right on the land lost by the respondents under Act, 2003 shall in no manner wipe out their right to enjoy possession and yield of the land during the period prior to 2003 enactment.”

Read more…


Malicious allegations against spouse costing him his job and reputation not an attempt to preserve the relationship but a definite case of mental cruelty: Supreme Court

“When the reputation of the spouse is sullied amongst his colleagues, his superiors and the society at large, it would be difficult to expect condonation of such conduct by the affected party.”

Read more…


Police Officers beat a man to death 20 years before offence under S. 324 IPC became non-compoundable. SC refuses to compound such “offence against humanity”

“When the protector of people and society himself instead of protecting the people adopts brutality and inhumanly beat the person who comes to the police station, it is a matter of great public concern.”

Read more…


“Technical members of IPAB are legally trained and qualified”; Supreme Court says the Board can function without a judicial member

“These members had practical legal experience of ten to fifteen years. The fact that they were appointed as technical members cannot obfuscate the fact that they are legally trained and qualified.”

Read more…


Is issuance of blank cheque and signed blank stamp paper sufficient to attract presumption under S. 139 of NI Act? Supreme Court answers

The 3-Judge Bench comprising of N.V. Ramana, Surya Kant* and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., upheld the judgement of High Court of Judicature at Madras, whereby the order of acquittal of the Judicial Magistrate was reversed and the appellants had been convicted under Section 138 of the NIA, 1881.

Read more…


Supreme Court spells out if consumer fora can apply the New India Assurance company Ltd judgment prospectively and accept the written statement beyond 45 days

The bench of Dr. DY Chandrachud and MR Shah, JJ has held that consumer fora has no jurisdiction and/or power to accept the written statement beyond the period of 45 days.

Read more…  


Will a partition deed effected subsequent to commencement of the Urban Land (Ceiling and Regulation) Act prevent vesting of land with the State? SC decides

“Section 8 and Section 9 of the Act make it incumbent on the Competent Authority to issue notice to or provide an opportunity to be heard only to the ‘person concerned’, i.e., the person who has filed the statement under Section 6 of the Principal Act.”

Read more…


SC confirms life imprisonment in brutal murder of children aged 4 years and 2 years by administering celphos

“He was living in a relationship with the complainant Anju who had two children from the previous marriage, and had taken away the life of two minor innocent children at the very threshold of their life and murdered in a brutal manner by administering celphos to them has been established.”

Read more…


Authority cannot fill up more than advertised number of vacancies; such recruitment violative of Arts. 14 & 16(1): Supreme Court

“It is well-settled in service jurisprudence that the authority cannot fill up more than the notified number of vacancies advertised, as the recruitment of candidates in excess of the notified vacancies, would be violative of Articles 14 and 16 (1) of the Constitution of India.”

Read more…


Illegally occupying Government/Panchayat Land? Supreme Court says you cannot claim regularization as a matter of right

“Regularization of the illegal occupation of the Government Land/Panchayat Land can only be as per the policy of the State Government and the conditions stipulated in the Rules.”

Read more…


Once an order is found to be passed without jurisdiction, all subsequent proceedings automatically come to an end: Supreme Court

“Subsequent proceedings, in no manner could be a ground to not consider the correctness and validity of order dated 17-08-2019 and when it is found that order dated 17-08-2019 could not have been passed in exercise of jurisdiction under S. 319 CrPC, all subsequent proceedings thereto shall automatically come to an end.”

Read more…


Unfavorable earlier order by a judge not a ground for recusal’; SC rejects plea for Justice Chandrachud’s recusal in an application seeking recall of an unfavorable order

“A litigant cannot be permitted to browbeat the Court by seeking a Bench of its choice.”

Read more…


“Government cannot acquire its own land”. Proceedings under LA Act, 1894 cannot be reopened once the possession has been transferred: SC

“Once the land stood vested in the State, it could not have been acquired again. Therefore, any issuance of fresh notification under Section 4 and 6 or even preparing of a fresh award by the State Government in respect of the first respondent’s land would be infructuous.”

Read more…  


Explained: Scope of ED’s power to freeze bank accounts under Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002

“It certainly is not the requirement that the communication addressed to the Bank itself should contain all the details. But what is necessary is an order in the file recording the belief as provided under Section 17(1) of PMLA before the communication is issued and thereafter the requirement of Section 17(2) of PMLA after the freezing is made is complied.”

Read more…


High Court convicts a man for corruption without cogent reasons after Trial Court acquits him. Supreme Court reminds courts to take utmost care in scanning evidence before recording conviction

“Initial presumption of innocence in the criminal jurisprudence gets doubled by acquittal recorded by the trial court.”

Read more…


Observing “gross deficiencies” SC denies Chintpurni Medical College permission for admission for the academic year 2021-2022

“There is no merit in the contention of the Appellants that admissions for the academic year 2019-2020 should be considered without any further inspection as the debarment by the notification dated 26-09-2016 was only for a period of two years.”

Read more…


High Court, being First Appellate Court, cannot acquit an accused without re-appreciation of evidence: Supreme Court

“Non-re-appreciation of the evidence on record may affect the case of either the prosecution or even the accused.”

Read more…


‘Belated challenge to appointment cannot be entertained’; Supreme Court restores appointment of Assistant Professor of KGMU, Lucknow

The Act which governs the appointment of Assistant Professors and Lecturers in the University itself provides a mechanism for questioning an appointment, i.e., by representation to the Chancellor that too within a period of three months.

Read more…


IN OTHER NEWS


SCBA Elections 2020-21 results announced; Senior Advocate Vikas Singh to be the next President

Advocate’s clerk, guilty of sexual harassment, banned from entering Supreme Court precincts for 3 months

Farmers’ Protest|“History will not pardon us if we remain mute spectators to this violation of human rights”: An open letter by 141 lawyers to the CJI on internet shutdowns at protest sites; mob attacks on protesting farmers

Join the discussion

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.