high courts weekly roundup june

Allahabad High Court

[Appointment of Archaka] Person of any caste can be appointed, provided he is well-versed in Agamas: Madras HC reiterates

In a writ petition filed against the advertisement issued by Assistant Commissioner and the Executive Officer of Sri Sugavaneswarar Swamy Temple, calling for applications to fill up the position of Archakas/Sthanikam at Sri Sugavaneswarar Swamy Temple, N. Anand Venkatesh, J. reiterated that in the matter of appointment of an Archaka, the rule of next-in-line of succession cannot be insisted. Thus, any person belonging to any caste or creed can be appointed as an Archaka provided he is a well-versed and an accomplished person in the Agamas and rituals necessary to be performed in a temple. Read more

[Adipurush Controversy]: Will I&B Ministry take steps in public interest by invoking revisional power under Cinematograph Act; Allahabad High Court asks Centre

In a public interest litigation against the movie ‘Adipurush’ the division bench of Rajesh Singh Chauhan and Shree Prakash Singh, JJ. has granted the Deputy Solicitor General of India (‘DSGI’) 24 hours’ time to seek complete instructions. Further, it said that while producing complete instructions, he shall also apprise the Court as to whether Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (‘Ministry’) is considering taking appropriate steps in the interest of public at large by invoking its revisional power under Section 6 of the Cinematograph Act, 1952. Read more

Whether bar contained under S. 80 of Arbitration Act in selection of forum for arbitration applicable to MSMED Act? Allahabad HC answers

In a writ petition filed against the order passed by U.P. State Micro and Small Enterprises Facilitation Council (‘Council’), whereby the Council decided that, in view of Section 18(3) of the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Act, 2006 (‘MSMED Act, 2006’), the Council itself will arbitrate the dispute in between the petitioner (Bata India) and respondent (AVS International), the division bench of Mahesh Chandra Tripathi and Manjive Shukla*, JJ. has reiterated that in the event of conciliation proceedings being carried out by the Council fails, the Council itself can proceed to arbitrate the dispute between the parties and the prohibition contained in Section 80 of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 (‘A&C Act’) will have no application in exercise of the said discretion by the Council. Read more

[Explained] Allahabad High Court verdict in Inter -Religion Live-in Couple’s Protection Plea

In a writ petition relating to a live-in relationship, the division bench of Sangeeta Chandra and Narendra Kumar Johari, JJ. has said that writ jurisdiction being extraordinary jurisdiction is not made to resolve such type of dispute between two private parties. This is a social problem which can be uprooted socially and not by the intervention of the Court in the garb of violation of Article 21 of the Constitution of India, unless harassment is established beyond doubt. Read more

Bombay High Court

[Stay on Look Out Circular] Bombay High Court reprimands party for finalizing itineraries before seeking Court’s leave

In a petition seeking stay on Look Out Circular (‘LOC’) restricting the petitioner to travel abroad, the division bench of G.S. Patel and Neela Gokhale, JJ., allowed the petitioner to travel overseas and reprimanded for finalizing itineraries before seeking leave of the Court. Read more

Delhi High Court

[Custodial Death] Delhi High Court upholds conviction of police officers for causing death of a 26-year-old boy accused of robbery

The appeals were filed by appellants challenging the judgment of conviction against accused 1 for offences under Sections 365, 34 Penal Code, 1860 (IPC), dated 14-03-2019 passed by the ASJ, Shahdara, Karkardooma Courts, against police officers (accused(s) 2, 4, 5, 6 and 7) for offences punishable under Sections 365, 304, 220, 167 and 34 IPC, acquitting the police officer (accused 3). A Division Bench of Mukta Gupta and Anish Dayal, JJ., upheld the conviction against accused 2, 4, 5, 6 and 7 and held that the Trial Court rightly acquitted the accused 4. Read more

‘Not rarest of rare case’; Delhi High Court commutes death sentence of man for kidnapping and murder of 12-year-old

In a case wherein, the Trial Court had submitted its order on sentence for confirmation of death sentence awarded to the appellant, pursuant to the judgment wherein the appellant was held guilty for offences punishable under Sections 364-A, 302, 201 and 506 of the Penal Code, 1860 (‘IPC’), and parallelly, the appellant had also challenged the said judgment of the Trial Court; the Division Bench of Mukta Gupta* and Anish Dayal, JJ., opined that the present case did not fall in the category of ‘rarest of rare cases’ and it was not a case where reformation of the appellant was not possible. This Court further opined that the sentence of imprisonment of life with no remission till 20 years would be the appropriate sentence. Thus, this Court modified the sentence of the appellant to rigorous imprisonment for life with no remission till 20 years and to pay a fine of Rs. 1 lakh. Read more

No prejudice shall be caused on account of transfer of cases to Central Circle; Delhi High Court upholds transfer of Income Tax assessment of Sanjay Gandhi Memorial Trust, Aam Aadmi Party

A petition was filed by five Charitable trusts viz. Sanjay Gandhi Memorial Trust, Jawahar Bhawan Trust, Rajiv Gandhi Foundation, Rajiv Gandhi Charitable Trust, Young India as well as three individuals viz. Mrs. Sonia Gandhi, Mr. Rahul Gandhi, Mrs. Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, and a political party – Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), (petitioners) challenging the transfer orders passed under Section 127 of Income Tax Act, 1961 whereby the jurisdiction of the petitioners have been transferred from Exemption Circle (in cases of Trusts) and ACIT Circle 52(1) (in cases of individuals) to DCIT Central Circle-27 and in the case of Aam Aadmi Party from Exemption Circle to DCIT, Central Circle -03. All the Income Tax Officers, transferors, and transferees are located within the same city, namely, Delhi. Manmohan and Dinesh Kumar Sharma, JJ., held that assessments of the petitioners have been transferred to the Central Circle in accordance with law. Read more

[Sanjay Gandhi Memorial Trust v. Commissioner of Income Tax, 2023 SCC OnLine Del 3161]

Delhi High Court suspends 10-year sentence of a Zimbabwean lady in a narcotics case due to lack of compliance of provisions

In a case wherein an application was filed seeking regular suspension of sentence of 10 years rigorous imprisonment with a fine of Rs. 1 lakhs for the offence punishable under Sections 22(c) and 23(c) of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985 (‘NDPS Act’), a Single Judge Bench of Anish Dayal, J.*, noted that there had been alleged “non-compliance” of Standing Orders of the Narcotics Control Bureau (‘NCB’) on the “manner of sampling of narcotics” and thus, suspended the 10-year sentence of a Zimbabwean lady, who had already undergone around five years in custody. Read more

[Gang Rape] Delhi High Court modifies sentence of five men involved in kidnapping, abduction, and gang rape; awards life imprisonment

The Division Bench of Mukta Gupta and Poonam A. Bamba*, JJ., opined that the accused persons had failed to demonstrate any illegality in the impugned judgment convicting them for the offences they were charged with. Thus, the Court after considering the background of the accused persons, strata of society they belong to, their age and that they (except appellant Accused 1) were the first-time offenders and had expressed remorse, opined that for the offence punishable under Section 376(D) of the Penal Code, 1860 (‘IPC’), life imprisonment should meet the ends of justice. Thus, accused persons sentence of imprisonment under Section 376(D) of the IPC was modified from “life for the remainder of convicts’ natural life” to “life imprisonment”. Read more

Gauhati High Court

Gauhati HC directs the State of Assam to expediate the process of constituting a Transgender Welfare Board

The Division Bench of Sandeep Mehta, C.J., and Devashis Barauh, J., taking note of the sanction letter dated 26-06-2023, whereby an amount of Rs. 6,00,000 has been sanctioned as grant-in-aid for setting up the Office of the Transgender Welfare Board, directed the State of Assam to expedite the process of constituting the Board as per the guidelines of Assam State Policy for Transgender Persons, Clause 7.3.3 and to complete the same within next 6 weeks. The Court further directed the senior Additional Government Advocate to take instructions regarding setting up of the Transgender Protection Cell. Read more

Gujarat High Court

Reasonable and Adequate opportunity required to file reply to Income Tax Notice; Gujarat HC quashes Assessment Order

In a petition filed under Article 226 of the Constitution of India, wherein the petitioner was seeking to quash and set aside the impugned assessment order of the Income Tax Officer (‘respondent’) and direct the respondent to pass the fresh assessment order, the Division Bench of Vipul M. Pancholi* and Devan M. Desai, JJ., allowed the petition and quashed the impugned order as adequate opportunity was not given to the petitioner for filing a complete reply and that it was difficult for the petitioner to submit a complete reply to the respondent within the period of 12 hours. Read more

[Section 498-A] Gujarat HC quashes FIR against 86 years old mother-in-law

In a criminal application filed Section 482 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (‘CrPC’), for quashing the First Information Report (‘FIR’) against the applicants for the offences punishable under Sections 498-A, 323 and 114 of the Penal Code, 1860 (‘IPC’) and Section 4 of the Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961 (‘the Act’), the Single Judge Bench of Sandeep N. Bhatt, J., allowed the application and quashed the FIR filed against the applicants. Read more

Inter-Faith Marriage by Major Daughter with her own Free Will; Gujarat HC rejects Habeas Corpus plea by Mother

In a Habeas Corpus petition filed by mother of a major daughter, the Division Bench of Umesh A. Trivedi and M.K. Thakker JJ., rejected the petition and said that the petitioner’s daughter is a major and entered into an inter-faith marriage with a person of her choice and not the choice of her parents. Read more

Gujarat High Court quashes Order cancelling firm’s GST Registration for serving cryptic and vague Show Cause Notice

In a petition filed under Article 226 of the Constitution of India for the issuance of writ of certiorari or any other appropriate writ and quashing the order of the Assistant Commissioner, Chatak 19, Ahmedabad, whereby, the GST Registration Number of the petitioner’s firm was cancelled, a division Bench of Vipul M. Pancholi* and Devan M. Desai JJ., has set aside the said order as it was vague and does not provide any sufficient information. Read more

Gujarat High Court issues Notice to State Government and Junagadh Municipal Corporation on plea Opposing Demolition of Dargahs

In a civil application filed under Article 226 of the Constitution of India, by a trustee of the Samasth Sunni Muslim Trust against the impugned notice of the Senior Town Planner, Junagadh Municipal Corporation, for removal of the illegal encroachment of the Dargah on public road which has existed for more than 100 years, the Single Judge Bench of Vaibhavi D. Nanavati, J., issued notice to the authorities concerned. Read more

Husband-Wife crossed point of ‘No Return’; Gujarat HC upholds Divorce on grounds of Desertion and Cruelty by Wife

While hearing an appeal filed by appellant-wife against the Judgment and Order of the Family Court, Gandhinagar, wherein divorce petition of the respondent-husband was allowed, the Division Bench of Ashutosh Shastri* and Divyesh A. Joshi, JJ., dismissed the appeal and upheld the Judgment of the Family Court, granting the decree of divorce. Read more

Jharkhand High Court

Land Grab attempted on former Supreme Court Judge’s land; Jharkhand High Court takes suo motu cognizance

In furtherance of a newspaper report highlighting the failed attempt of land grabbers to capture the land of former Supreme Court Judge, Justice M.Y. Eqbal, the Division Bench of Shree Chandrashekhar and Ratnaker Bhengra, JJ. took suo motu cognizance of the matter eyeing at the increasing instances of land grabbing in the State, and directed the government and police officials to come up with specific data on land grabbing regarding number and nature of complaints, government meetings, etc .Read more

4 months’ illegal detention by police; Jharkhand High Court directs State to pay compensation of Rs 5 lakhs

In a petition filed under Article 226 of Constitution of India seeking direction for State to pay compensation to petitioner for his illegal detention for 4 months for offences under Sections 376(D), 302, 201 and 34 of the Penal Code, 1860 (‘IPC’) and for institution of First Information Report (‘FIR’) against the erring police officials, Sanjay Kumar Dwivedi, J. directed the State to pay compensation of Rs 5 lakhs to the petitioner which may be recovered from the salary of the erring police officers. Read more

Karnataka High Court

“Took copyright for granted”: Karnataka HC refuses to quash copyright violation case against Congress leaders for using songs of KGF- Chapter 2 without permission

In the instant petition challenging the registration of crime under Section 63 of the Copyright Act, 1957, Section 66 of the Information Technology Act, 2008 and Sections 120-B, 403, 465 and 34 of the Penal Code, 1860 against members of Indian National Congress for using popular songs from the film KGF Chapter-2 in the backdrop of the Bharat Jodo Yatra without any agreement/permission from the assignee, thereby violating copyright; the Bench of M. Nagaprasanna, J.*, rejected the petition holding that tampering the source code without permission and freely playing the audio would undoubtedly amount to infringement of copyright of the complainant. The Court further stated that the petitioners appeared to have taken the copyright of the complainant for granted and have tinkered and meddled with it; therefore, prima facie, all these factors become a matter of evidence which have to be “thrashed out by an investigation in the least”. Read more

[Suicide] | Educational institutions must recognise the malady of harsh discipline so that lives of young souls can be saved: Karnataka HC

In the instant case where a young student had committed suicide and as result the parents of the deceased child, had held the petitioners responsible for the same, the Bench of M. Nagaprasanna, J.*, rejected the petition seeking quashment of Magistrate’s order wherein he took cognizance of the offences punishable under Sections 305, 499 r/w 34 of Penal Code, 1860 against the petitioners. The Court took a prima facie view that the impugned order does not require Court’s interference under Section 482 of CrPC, as the deceased child was in communication with the school even up to 15 minutes before his death. Thus, there is proximity with the commission of suicide. Therefore, prima facie, the ingredients of Section 107 of Penal Code, 1860 are met, which would become an offence under Section 305 of Penal Code, 1860. Read more

Kerala High Court

Kerala High Court directs sensitizing Police Officers for effective compliance of Mental Healthcare Act 2017

In a challenge against order dated 4-1-2023 for an application filed under Section 328 of Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 (‘CrPC’), K. Babu, J. set aside the said order while advocating for rights of the accused who is a person of unsound mind in accordance with the provisions under Section 328 and 329 of CrPC and Section 105 of the Mental Healthcare Act, 2017. The Court also directed the State Police Chief to ensure that Police Officials are sensitized about the said provisions for ameliorating the grievances of the mentally ill persons. Read more

Kerala High Court refuses exemption from wearing helmets on medical grounds

In a petition seeking exemption from wearing helmets while riding two wheelers on medical grounds, P.V. Kunhikrishnan, J. dismissed the same holding that there cannot be any exemption to a citizen from wearing helmet while riding a two-wheeler. Read more

[Minor impregnated by her own brother] Kerala High Court bats for ‘safe sex education’ in schools and colleges

In a writ petition filed by a father to terminate the pregnancy of his 15-year-old daughter, who was impregnated by his minor son, P.V. Kunhikrishnan, J. left it to the Child Welfare Committee (‘CWC’) to take necessary steps as per law regarding protection of newborn child, since the custody of minor was already handed over to her uncle. It further suggested constitution of a committee by the government to study the issue and think about including ‘safe sex education’ in the curriculum for schools and colleges. Read more

Madras High Court

Homemaker wife contributes equally to husband’s acquisition of family assets; Entitled to equal share in properties: Madras High Court

In a second appeal filed against the judgment and decree passed by the Additional District and Sessions Court, wherein the Court modified the judgment and decree passed by the Sub Court, Krishnan Ramasamy, J. has held that as the wife purchased immovable property from the stridhan gifted by her father that the time of her marriage, she alone is the full owner of the property and not a limited owner. Merely the husband helped her to redeem the jewels, would no way create a right in his favour over the property. Read more

Madras High Court quashes notification inviting applications for appointment as member in Consumer Redressal Commissions in Tamil Nadu

In a writ petition filed against the notification dated 17-07-2022 issued by the Government of Tamil Nadu Cooperation, Food and Consumer Protection Department, and to quash the same as illegal and consequently direct the Principal Secretary to obtain permission from the Supreme Court before issuing any such notification in the recruitment for the posts of Members and Presidents in the State and District Consumer Forums in the future, the division bench of R. Subramanian and L. Victoria Gowri held that the impugned notifications are bad in law, and thus quashed the same. Further, the subsequent selection procedure that has been undertaken was set aside. Read more

Meghalaya High Court

Meghalaya High Court grants bail to HIV Positive Female Accused under NDPS Act

In a Bail application filed under Sections 439 and 167(2) of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (‘Cr.P.C’) read with Section 37 of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985 (‘NDPS’), the single Judge Bench of W. Diengdoh J., granted bail to the accused considering the fact that she is a women, suffering from HIV positive and required specialized treatment. Read more

Orissa High Court

Orissa High Court upholds Acquittal of Accused Persons in witchcraft murder case

In an appeal by the Government of Orissa against the Judgment of the Sessions Judge wherein, the accused persons- respondents were acquitted of the offenses punishable under Sections 452, 302, 201 read with Section 34 of the Penal Code, 1860 (‘IPC’), the Division Bench of Dr. S. Muralidhar* CJ. and G. Satapathy J., dismissed the appeal and upheld the Trial Court’s Judgment of acquitting the accused persons, granted them the benefit of doubt as the evidence brought on record by the prosecution failed to meet the requisite standard. Read more

Orissa High Court quashes murder charge against Ex-Malkangiri Collector; substitutes with Abetment to Suicide

While hearing a set of two criminal applications made under Section 482 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, (‘CrPC’) challenging the Orders of the Sub-Divisional Judicial Magistrate (‘S.D.J.M.’), wherein cognizance of the offences under Sections 302, 506, 201, 204 read with Section 120-B and 34 of the Penal Code, 1860 (‘IPC’) was taken, the Single Judge Bench of Sashikanta Mishra* , J., partly allowed the criminal petition and modified the impugned order only to the extent of substitution of the offences under Sections 302, 506, 201, 204 of the IPC by the offences under Sections 306, 120-B and 34 of the IPC. Read more

Patna High Court

‘Plea of preference to females has no meaning when assessment of other candidates not done’; Patna High Court quashes appointment of librarian

In a case wherein an application was filed for quashing the appointment of Respondent 5 on the post of Librarian, pursuant to an advertisement, published by the Registrar, Lalit Narayan Mithila University, Darbhanga (‘University’) under the orders of the Vice Chancellor of the University, a Single Judge Bench of Anil Kumar Sinha, J.* opined that the selection/appointment on the post of Librarian was not done in fair manner and the contention of the petitioner was correct that the appointment of Respondent 5 had been made for extraneous consideration. The Court further opined that when assessment/marking/evaluation of the candidates had not been done by the Interview Board/Selection Committee of the respective inter se merit of the candidates, the plea of preference had no meaning. Thus, the Court held that the appointment of Respondent 5 was not sustainable in the eyes of the law and was thus quashed. Read more

Punjab and Haryana High Court

Punjab and Haryana High Court: Woman committing suicide in matrimonial home does not itself make husband and in-laws liable under Section 306 IPC

In an appeal challenging the legality of judgment dated 29-11-2006 passed by Trial Court, wherein the respondents were acquitted of charges under Section 306/34 of the Penal Code, 1860 (‘IPC’), N.S. Shekhawat J., dismissed the appeal and upheld the decision of the Trial Court saying that the prosecution witness leveled vague and general allegations against the respondents and failed to withstand the test of cross-examination. Read more

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