Legal RoundUp

Here’s a run-through of all the significant decisions covered in the month of July, 2021 under the Section of Tribunals/Commission/Regulatory Bodies.


Appellate Tribunal for Electricity

 

Solar Project

Whether there was bona fide delay in commissioning the solar power project?

“…allowed an appeal which was filed against the Order of Karnataka Electricity Regulatory Commission (Commission) whereby, the Commission has held that the Applicant/Appellant was not entitled to extension of time for commissioning of solar power project in terms of the Power Purchase Agreement and Supplementary power Purchase Agreement.”

Read more: https://bit.ly/3jbKtvP


Armed Forces Tribunal

War Injury Pension

Tribunal grants war injury pension to WW-2 soldier who suffered splinter wound injury in Italy

“…war injury pension to World War-2 veteran who suffered splinter wound injury in his right leg”

Read more: https://bit.ly/37cxXXi


Customs Excise & Service Tax Appellate Tribunal

Input Services

Whether distribution of credits on input services attributable to final product on a pro-rata basis proportionate to turnover of each unit between manufacturing plants? Tribunal answers

“…issue involved was that the appeals was whether Parle Biscuits was justified in distributing credits on input services attributable to the final product on a pro-rata basis proportionate to the turnover of each unit between the manufacturing plants of Parle Biscuits and its contract manufacturing units, including Krishna Foods, under Rule 7(d) of the CENVAT Rules.”

Read more: https://bit.ly/2V5CYhG

Convenience Fee

“Convenience fee” charged by PVR for online booking of movie tickets under OIDAR category under S. 65(105) (zh) of Finance Act taxable or not? Tribunal explains

“Issue involved was related to to taxability of “convenience fee” charged by PVR Limited on its customers for online booking of movie tickets under the category of “online information and database access retrieval system” defined under section 65 (75) of the Finance Act and taxable under section 65 (105)(zh) of the Finance Act.” 

Read more: https://bit.ly/3rKRvvg

Principles of Natural Justice

Revenue has miserably failed to discharge its onus; Tribunal finds impugned order opposed to principles of natural justice

https://bit.ly/37a5uB8

CENVAT Credit

Admissibility of the Cenvat Credit in respect of outward GTA; Tribunal allows appeal

https://bit.ly/3xcJKzf


Central Information Commission

Right to Information Act

Can S. 8(1)(d), RTI Act be invoked to deny copy of thesis in view of commercial viability and to protect interests of scholar and his guide?

“…thesis publication of the research scholars cannot be reasonably even brought under any of the suo motu components of disclosure envisaged under Section 4 of the RTI Act, thereby reinforcing the proposition that the protection of Section 8 and 9 exemptions is very much available to the CPIO in the instant case.”

Read more: https://bit.ly/3fbpI23


Delhi State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission

 

Deficiency of Service

Will Camera Manufacturer — Nikon be liable for deficiency of service caused to a consumer who lost all his photographs due to memory card getting corrupted?

“…Nikon was neither the manufacturer, dealer, importer, wholesaler of the Memory Card which got corrupted leading to the loss of the photos.”

Read more: https://bit.ly/3fbqg87

Builder-Buyer Dispute

Builder handing over possession of plot with incomplete development beyond agreed time. Is buyer entitled to refund of deposit with interest? Commission decides

“Possession of the plot land booked by the complainant was not handed over within the time agreed to despite the complainant has made the payment to the extent sought from time to time.”

Read more: https://bit.ly/2WJUV6d


National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission

Medical Negligence

  • Can Wheelchair injuries be covered under the ambit of medical negligence?

“Wheelchairs are usually thought of a medical device that is meant to help those who are injured or have physical challenges; they can also be a source of injury when not properly used. Most wheelchair injuries that happen in a medical setting due to the negligence of medical staff and such could be easily prevented by a hospital or nursing home.”

Read more: https://bit.ly/3fimrOy

  • In case a medical practitioner chooses to follow one procedure instead of another, which turned out to be a failure, Can the said act be negligent?

“…The medical professional is often called upon to adopt a procedure that involves a higher element of risk, but which he honestly believes as providing greater chances of success for the patient rather than a procedure involving lesser risk but higher chances of failure.”

Read more: https://bit.ly/3idk4hG


National Company Law Appellate Tribunal

 

Insolvency Proceedings

An Arroyo for OYO | While allowing it to work independently, closed insolvency proceedings; Disallowed external parties to impinge

“We are of the considered view that before Constitution of Committee of Creditors (CoC) mere filing of a ‘Claim’ does not constitute a default per se. It is only on the basis of the ‘Claims’ that the CoC is constituted. In a catena of Judgments, the Supreme Court has reiterated that the prime objective of the Court is not recovery, but revival”.

Read more: https://bit.ly/3rO12BU


National Company Law Tribunal

Personal Guarantor

Personal Guarantor not liable to be prosecuted under S. 95 IBC where corporate debtor concerned is not under corporate insolvency resolution process

https://bit.ly/2Vmxnn0


National Green Tribunal

No Odour control system required to prevent odour from Sewage Treatment Plant. Why? NGT imposes costs on Delhi Jal Board: Why DJB is shirking its responsibility?

Mere spraying of chemical solution and other superficial steps is not effective in installing an effective odour control unit.”

Read more: https://bit.ly/3rMxOTD


National Human Rights Commission

Fr. Stan Swamy | Medical Treatment

  • Ensure every possible medical treatment to imprisoned FR. Stan Swamy as part of life saving measure and protection of his basic human rights: NHRC

https://bit.ly/3yk7ov5

Manual Scavenging

  • Manual scavenging and hazardous cleaning still remain a stinking truth of our nation: NHRC

https://bit.ly/3yi3seb

Post-Poll Violence in West Bengal

  • NHRC refutes allegations in a section of media regarding leakage of report relating to post poll violence in West Bengal

https://bit.ly/3BZMT9h


Securities Exchange Board of India

Fraudulent Scheme

 Manipulation in prices, fraudulent scheme results in debarment-Global Infratech, Directors and 12 other entities ousted from the market

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/23/manipulation-in-prices/

Insider Trading

Financial Racket: Kundra, Shetty into murky waters again | Imposes fine for insider trading on Viaan Industries

https://bit.ly/2V0zFZq


 Securities Appellate Tribunal

 

Collective Investment Scheme

Unregistered Collective Investment Scheme violative of S. 12(1)(b) of SEBI Act and Regulations, order to pay 10% p.a. interest on refundable amount not vitiated

https://bit.ly/3j728EJ


Tribunals/Regulatory Bodies/Commissions Monthly Roundup | June 2021

Legal RoundUpWeekly Rewind

SCC Online Weekly Rewind Episode 20 ft. Devika Sharma, Senior Editorial Assistant is out now. The written episode along with the video episode can be watched and read below.


Supreme Court

Part IX-B of Constitution relating to cooperative societies unconstitutional for want of ratification by half of the States; Provisions relating to multi-State cooperative societies severable and valid: SC

In a major ruling this week, a 3-Judge Bench of the Supreme Court held that the Constitution (97th Amendment) Act, 2011 which inter alia inserted Part IX-B, is ultra vires the Constitution insofar it is concerned with the subject of Cooperative Societies, for want of the requisite ratification under Article 368(2) proviso. At the same time, the Court by a majority of 2:1, followed doctrine of severability in declaring that Part IX-B is operative insofar as it concerns Multi-State Cooperative Societies both within various States and in Union Territories. Justice R.F. Nariman and Justice B.R. Gavai formed the majority. Whereas Justice K.M. Joseph penned a separate opinion dissenting partly with the majority. He expressed inability to concur with the view on the application of doctrine of severability.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/21/constitution-97th-amendment-act-2011/

Can Courts modify Arbitral Awards under S. 34 of Arbitration Act or is power limited? SC decides

Whether the power of a Court under Section 34 of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 to ‘set aside’ an award of an arbitrator would include the power to modify such an award? Answering this interesting and important question in the negative, the Supreme Court said that:

“If one were to include the power to modify an award in Section 34, one would be crossing the Lakshman Rekha.”

While laying down this law, the Supreme Court reversed a Madras High Court judgment which had ruled that at least insofar as arbitral awards made under the National Highways Act, 1956 are concerned, Section 34 of the Arbitration Act must be so read as to permit modification of an arbitral award made under the National Highways Act so as to enhance compensation awarded by an Arbitrator.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/22/arbitral-award-3/

Supreme Court closes suo motu case as U.P. Government expresses decision to postpone Kanwar Yatra to next year

In another case, while closing the suo motu case regarding “Kanwar Yatra during pandemic”; the Division Bench comprising of Justice R.F. Nariman and Justice B.R. Gavai directed the authorities to be cautious towards public health and safety. The Bench stated,

“We may only remind the authorities at all levels to have regard to Article 144 of the Constitution, and ensure that untoward incidents which directly affect the lives of the public will be looked upon sternly and prompt action taken immediately.” 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/19/kanwar-yatra-2/

Will a subsequent purchaser stepping into shoes of original allottee in housing project have same rights as that of original allottee? SC explains

Giving a major relief to homebuyers, the Supreme Court held that rights of a subsequent purchaser are the same as that of an original allottee in a housing project. The Court said that in the event the subsequent purchaser claims refund, on an assessment that he too can (like the original allottee) no longer wait, and face intolerable burdens, the equities would have to be moulded.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/23/will-a-subsequent-purchaser-who-steps-into-the-shoes-of-an-original-allottee-have-the-same-rights-as-that-of-the-original-allottee-sc-explains/


High Court

Delhi High Court

Whether a Chief Minister’s promise to its citizens is enforceable?

Whether a promise made by a Chief Minister to its citizens is enforceable?

Well, the Delhi High Court says yes it is! Justice Prathiba M. Singh pronounced a one of its kind ruling. The Court said that the Law has evolved the doctrines of  legitimate expectation and promissory estoppel to ensure that promises made by the Government, its officials and other authorities are not broken and are, in fact, judicially enforceable, subject to certain conditions.

The High Court expressed that,

A statement given in a consciously held press conference, in the background of the lockdown announced due to the pandemic and the mass exodus of migrant labourers, cannot be simply overlooked. Proper governance requires the Government to take a decision on the assurance given by the CM, and inaction on the same cannot be the answer.

In the backdrop of this decision, was a press conference held by the Chief Minister of Delhi during the ongoing Covid pandemic where he gave a solemn assurance that the Government would take care of the tenants who are unable to pay the rent due to poverty.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/23/promise-by-chief-minister-in-press-conference-enforceable/


Andhra Pradesh High Court

AP HC | Is girlfriend or concubine a “relative” of husband, liable to be prosecuted for cruelty under S. 498-A IPC? Court decides

 Can a Girlfriend or concubine of husband be prosecuted for cruelty under the Penal Code, 1860?

Andhra Pradesh High Court held that a Girlfriend or concubine, being not connected by blood or marriage, is not a relative of the husband for the purpose of Section 498-A IPC.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/20/cruelty-5/


Allahabad High Court

Man murdered wife and 4 minor daughters and burned them. Will this case fall under rarest of rare category? Allahabad HC decides

 The Allahabad High Court dealt with a case of an accused who committed murder in most brutal and barbaric manner of his wife and four minor daughter to pave way to marry another lady. Not only this, but he also chopped off various parts of their bodies and inflicted severe incised wounds. In such above background of the case, the High Court upheld the trial court’s decision of awarding death penalty to the accused. Court expressed that

The accused is a menace to the Society and, therefore, imposition of lesser sentence than that of death sentence, would not be adequate and appropriate.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/19/rarest-of-rare-category/


Punjab and Haryana High Court

Maintaining elderly parents is not only a value based principle but a bounden duty under Maintenance and Welfare of Parents Act 

Recently, the Punjab and Haryana High Court addressed plight of a 72-year-old widowed mother who had been ousted from her house by her son and was given beatings. The Court observed that,

“It is often seen that after receiving property from their parents, children abandon them. In such situation, the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007 is an enabling lifeline for such old, aged parents and senior citizens who are not looked after by their children and become neglected lots.”

Further, the Court held that the children are expected to look after their elderly parents properly which is not only a value based principle but a bounden duty as enshrined within the mandate of the Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/18/ph-hc-maintaining-elderly-parents-is-not-only-a-value-based-principle-but-a-bounden-duty-under-maintenance-and-welfare-of-parents-act/

“Nightmarish and traumatic”; HC denies bail in a case of sodomy committed to an 8-year-old child

 In a case with very disturbing accusations, the Punjab & Haryana High Court rejected the bail application of the applicant accused of committing an act of sodomy to an 8 year old child. The Bench stated that,

“Accused has spoiled the life of a young child by his hateful acts. The petitioner comes out to be a sex maniac, himself a teenager, indulging in perverse sexual acts. His conduct cannot be taken lightly, since if released on bail, he may victimize several other innocent children and is a grave threat to the society.”

It was alleged that accused had attempted to commit unnatural sex with a child of young age of 8 years, making him undergo nightmarish and traumatic experience, which may haunt him for the rest of his life.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/21/sodomy/


Kerala High Court

Kerala High Court

Harassment, abuse and torture of wife within seven months of marriage; HC denies anticipatory bail to doctor

Expressing concern over violence against married women, the Kerala High Court rejected the bail application of a doctor and his family accused of dowry demand and cruelty against his wife within seven months of marriage. Calling ‘matrimonial homes the most dangerous place to live’ due to harassment, abuse and torture, the Bench remarked that the number of cases of attack towards married women in our country is alarming, though stringent laws are there and the same has to be stopped forever. The Court observed that:

“Harassment, abuse and torture both mental and physical towards married ladies are increasing day by day in our country to pressurize them to bring more wealth to the family of the bridegroom to improve their financial situation. Though so many cases are being registered against husbands and in laws there is no change in the attitude of the society towards married women and family members.”

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/21/anticipatory-bail-6/


 Gauhati High Court

“Not based on intelligible differentia”; HC stays Arunachal Pradesh Govt.’s order discriminating between vaccinated and non-vaccinated persons

 The Gauhati High Court stayed the order of the State Executive Committee of Arunachal Pradesh whereby non-vaccinated persons for Covid-19 were being discriminated for the purpose of permit to enter the State for developmental works in both public and private sector.

Additionally, the Court stated that,

“if the sole object of issuing the impugned order was for containment of the Covid-19 pandemic and its further spread in the State of Arunachal Pradesh, the classification sought to be made between vaccinated and unvaccinated persons was, prima facie, a classification not founded on intelligible differentia nor it was found to have a rational relation/nexus to the object sought to be achieved by such classification, namely, containment and further spread of Covid-19 pandemic.”

 https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/22/covid-19-vaccination-4/


District Court

“Utterly shocked”; “No one allowed to ignite religious riots, blow hatred towards particular group or community”: Court rejects bail plea of accused booked over hate speech

Expressing shock over an incident of hate speech in a public gathering, the Court of Judicial Magistrate, Patuadi, Gurugram dismissed bail plea of Rambhagat Gopal who had allegedly delivered hate speech instigating abduction and killing of girls of a particular community. The Court observed that,

“If right of freedom of speech is allowed to be used to spread hatred amongst the people based on religion, caste, etc. then the very basic nature of the constitution and Indian Society will be shattered and the country will lose its true spirit and soul.”

Further, the Court stated that,

“Conscience of the Court is utterly shocked while seeing the actual incidents which took place at that time, in video recording. It seems that now a normal parent would tell stories to their children that there used to be a time when talks of hatred or the religious intolerance in our society used to be seen as a sign of diminishing social values.”

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/19/hate-speech/


International Court

European Court of Justice

Prohibiting Islamic headscarf and other religious signs at workplace isn’t discriminatory

In a significant ruling, the European Court of Justice held that prohibiting Islamic headscarf and any visible sign of political, ideological or religious beliefs does not constitute discrimination on the grounds of religion.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/20/religious-neutrality-policy/

 


 Legislation updates 

Issuance and listing of securities by Start-ups, SMEs and SPAC notified via International Financial Services Centres Authority (Issuance and Listing of Securities) Regulations, 2021 

The International Financial Services Centres Authority has notified the International Financial Services Centres Authority (Issuance and Listing of Securities) Regulations, 2021 to ensure that capital markets in IFSCs support the financing of innovative business models and also, for the Issuance and listing of securities by Start-ups, Small Medium Enterprises and Special Purpose Acquisition Company.  

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/23/issuance-and-listing-of-securities-by-start-ups-smes-and-spac-notified-via-international-financial-services-centres-authority-issuance-and-listing-of-securities-regulations-2021/  

 

Rates of Dearness Allowance to Central Government employees revised 

The Ministry of Finance has issued a memorandum on the revision of Dearness Allowance to the Central Government employees. The dearness allowance has been enhanced from 17% to straight 28% of the basic pay for the employees with effect from July 01, 2021. 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/23/rates-of-dearness-allowance-to-central-government-employees-revised/  

 

IBBI issues circular for filing of Form CIRP 8 under the IBBI (Insolvency Resolution Process for Corporate Persons) Regulations, 2016 

 IBBI has released Form CIRP 8 which as per Regulation 40B of CIRP Regulation, every resolution professional is required to file intimating details of his opinion and determination under regulation 35A, by 140th day of the insolvency  commencement date. The Form CIRP 8 is required to be filed for all corporate insolvency resolution processes ongoing or commencing on or after 14th July 2021. 

For the Format of FORM CIRP 8, read our story on SCC Online Blog 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/22/ibbi-issues-circular-for-filing-of-form-cirp-8-under-the-ibbi-insolvency-resolution-process-for-corporate-persons-regulations-2016/  

SEBI issues Circular on “Block Mechanism in demat account of clients undertaking sale transactions” 

SEBI issues Circular on “Block Mechanism in demat account of clients undertaking sale transactions” after extensive consultations with Depositories, Clearing Corporations and Stock Exchanges to provide a mechanism of block in the demat account of clients undertaking sale transactions. 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/19/sebi-issues-circular-on-block-mechanism-in-demat-account-of-clients-undertaking-sale-transactions/  

Legal RoundUpWeekly Rewind

Watch the latest episode of SCC Online Weekly Rewind Episode 17 featuring Devika Sharma, Senior Editorial Assistant (Legal).


Highlight of the Week

Allegations of cheating in Bitcoin transactions: Magistrate, Tis Hazari Courts directs Delhi Police to register FIR and investigate

The Magistrate, Tis Hazari Courts in Delhi, has directed the Delhi Police to register an FIR and investigate the allegations of the complainant who has alleged that he was cheated by the accused while making Bitcoin transactions. The Court found that offences under Sections 403, 411 and 420 of IPC are prima facie committed and the real culprits need to be identified.

 

 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/02/crypto-currency/


Supreme Court 

  • No conviction under Section 364A IPC if kidnapper treats victim in “a good manner  

In an interesting ruling, the Supreme Court has laid down the essential ingredients required to be proved by prosecution to convict an accused under Section 364A IPC i.e. kidnapping for ransom. The Court has held that an accused cannot be convicted under Section 364A IPC if he or she treats the victim in “a good manner”NDMA to come up with uniform guidelines for ex gratia assistance on account of lives lost due to Covid-19  

The order came in a case where a 13-year-old boy who was kidnapped, recorded in his statement that the kidnapper had treated him in a good manner and that no threat to cause death or hurt was made.

  • NDMA to come up with uniform guidelines for ex gratia assistance on account of lives lost due to Covid-19  

After the Court was approached seeking direction to the Government to provide notified ex-gratia monitory compensation of Rs.4,00,000/- to the families of deceased who succumbed to COVID-19,the Court has issued directions asking the National Disaster Management Authority to make uniform guidelines for ex gratia assistance on account of loss of life to the family members of the persons who died due to Covid-19 within 6 weeks.

According to the official figure, the pandemic has caused more than 3,85,000 deaths, the same is likely to increase further. 

In such circumstances, the Court said that by not recommending any Guidelines so far, the National Authority has failed to perform its statutory duty cast under Section 12 of the Disaster Management Act.

  • ‘One Nation One Ration Card’ Scheme to be a reality in all States by July 31st! 

Issuing extensive directions to ensure the welfare of the migrant labourers who have been severely affected due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Supreme Court has asked all the States to implement “One nation, One Ration card” Scheme by July 31st.

The Central Government has also been directed to develop the Portal in consultation with National Informatics Centre (NIC) for registration of the unorganized labourers/migrant workers. The registration process by all means has to commence by July 31st.

  • Persons with Disabilities have right to promotion under the 1995 PwD Act 

In an important development concerning the rights of the persons with disabilities, the Supreme Court has held that the Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995 protects the right of promotion and enjoins the government to identify posts in promotional cadre that can be filled up with persons with disability.

Although the 2016 Act has now taken care of how to deal with the aspect of reservation in promotion, the law laid down, in this case, is important as a large number of cases may still arise in the context of the 1995 Act.


High Courts

Delhi High Court

Del HC | Stray Dogs have right to food and citizens have right to feed | Indispensable 22 Guidelines on Feeding of Stray Dogs

Animals breathe like us and have emotions.

In a significant ruling, Delhi High Court issued guidelines with regard to the feeding of stray dogs and observed that stray dogs have the right to feed and citizens have the right to feed community dogs but in exercising this right, care and caution should be taken to ensure that it does not impinge upon the rights of others or cause any harm, hinderance, harassment and nuisance to other individuals or members of the society.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/02/stray-dogs/

Calcutta High Court

Is mere demand of money, property, etc. sufficient to penalise for demanding dowry? Court answers; says gifts exchanged out of love are not dowry

If a bride or bridegroom is presented gifts in a voluntary nature at or before a wedding, would that be covered under the ambit of ‘dowry’ under the Dowry Prohibition Act?

Calcutta High Court addressing this connected question while deciding a case, elaborated on the concept of dowry and observed that dowry as per Section 2 Of the Dowry Prohibition Act cannot be applied merely to the demand of money, property or valuable security made at or after the performance of marriage.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/06/25/dowry-demand/

Bombay High Court

Whether adoption can be restricted only to children in conflict with law, or in need of care and protection, or who are orphaned, abandoned or surrendered under provisions of JJ Act and Adoption Regulations? Elaborate report 

Faced with the question of child welfare, the Bombay High Court held that on appreciation of the Juvenile Justice Act, 2015 read with Regulations of 2017, adoption of children cannot be restricted only to children in conflict with law or those in need of care and protection or only those children who are orphaned, abandoned or surrendered children.

The High Court opined against a restrictive interpretation of the JJ Act.

https://bit.ly/3yn 5XLT

Madhya Pradesh High Court

Bail denied to juvenile in Rape Case; Court questions lawmakers conscience, How many more Nirbhayas’ sacrifice would be required?

Anguished over lackadaisical approach of the State, Madhya Pradesh HC while denying bail to a Juvenile for committing rape of a minor girl observed that,

“The Legislature has still not learnt any lesson from the case of Nirbhaya, as the age of a child is still kept below 16 years in heinous offences under s.15 of the Act of 2015 giving a free hand to the delinquents under the age of 16 years to commit heinous offences. Thus, apparently, despite committing a heinous offence, the petitioner would be tried as a juvenile only, because he is less than 16 years old as provided under Section 15 Act of 2015. Apparently, the present law to deal with such cases is totally inadequate and ill equipped and this Court really wonders as to how many more Nirbhayas’ sacrifice would be required to shake the conscious of the lawmakers of this Country.”

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/06/29/rape-case/

Bombay High Court

Bom HC on Cruelty & Desertion | Wife wishing to stay abroad. Is that an act of selfishness? Can it be ground of divorce? Court answers

Can a wife wishing to stay abroad with her child in order to maintain her lifestyle be covered under the umbrella of cruelty and desertion?

Answering this question, the Bombay High Court expressed that such an act of the wife cannot be branded as an act of selfishness or unjustified. Hence, the Court held that wife did not treat the husband with cruelty nor did she desire to desert him.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/06/29/cruelty-and-desertion/

Madras High Court

Ban Online Games or not? Read HC’s opinion on not entering into such matters. Is it a policy matter?

Mad HC while addressed concerns over menace of online gambling. It noted that children and young adults these days are addicted to their phones and their worlds appear to revolve around their mobile phones.

The Court also expressed it’s opinion on  whether online games can be banned and expressed that:

There is no doubt that when there is some illegal action or something which is detrimental to larger public interest, constitutional courts intervene; but in the matters of the present kind, especially when elected governments are in place, such matters of policy should be left to the wisdom of those representing the people and having their mandate instead of the Court issuing a diktat.

Uttaranchal High Court

Re-opening Char Dham Yatra would lead to inviting a calamity, Kumbh 2021 example of poor implementation of SOP; HC directs live streaming of ceremonies carried out at Shrines

Utt HC dealt with a very pivotal question of Whether Char dham Yatra should be re-opened or not?

High Court expressed that the

“…second wave struck the country like a tsunami. It not only killed about three lakh people in the country, but in its wake it has also left devastated families, and orphaned children.”

“The health care system began to crumble. It is common knowledge that as people began to die, there were insufficient spaces in our crematorium and burial grounds. People could not perform a decent cremation, or decent burial to our lost brethren.” 

The Court finally held that Char Dham Yatra should not be permitted even for a limited period and Government should make sure that the live streaming is done throughout the country, so that the devotees may not only witness the deity, but may also pray to the same.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/06/30/char-dham-yatra/

Madras High Court

A person can be a silent carrier of COVID-19 on not taking vaccine: Can Right to Refuse Vaccine in such circumstances be exercised?

 Whether Right to Refuse Vaccine can be exercised in circumstances wherein a person can be as a silent carrier of COVID-19 on not being vaccinated?

Discussing this issue, the High Court expressed that

when a larger interest of public health comes into play, it is possible that a person who has not taken the vaccine may not reveal the symptoms but still be a silent carrier, it is doubtful whether in such circumstances the right to refuse vaccine can be exercised.

The Court then asked the State to try and persuade persons with awareness campaigns and scientific data to indicate the efficacy of the vaccines and the indispensable nature in dealing with the present pandemic

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/01/right-to-refuse-vaccine/

Competition Commission of India

Co-location facility of the National Stock Exchange is anti-competitive? Is the service an autocratic move against traders? Comprehensive Report

A complaint was filed with the Competition Commission of India CCI alleging that the National Stock Exchange contravened provisions of the Competition Act. Questions were raised over the co-locations facility which was launched by NSE in 2009.

The CCI rejected the allegations and stated that stopping the Co-location facility will be retrogade. It said that

A robust exchange acts as a backbone of the financial system and the provision of co-location facility by exchanges help increase volumes of trades manifold and provides liquidity to investors. This augurs well for the market, the companies and the economy.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/06/30/national-stock-exchange/

Legislation Updates  

Tripura Government revises Variable Dearness Allowance (VDA) 

On June 21, 2021, the Labour Department of Tripura issued a notification on revision of Variable Dearness Allowance on the basis of 6-monthly average Consumer Price Index Numbers for the period of twelve months for different categories of workers engaged in the employment of shops and establishments in Tripura and shall be payable with effect from April 01, 2021.

Show this in table form in the video:

  • Skilled: Rs.7,618 Per Month
  • Semi-Skilled: Rs.6,812 Per Month
  • Unskilled: Rs.6,209 Per Month

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/06/29/tripura-government-revises-variable-dearness-allowance-vda/

Some of the important amendment which have taken place recently are  

Tribunal, Appellate Tribunal and other Authorities (Qualifications, Experience and other Conditions of Service of Members) (Amendment) Rules, 2021 in order to amend The Tribunal, Appellate Tribunal and other Authorities (Qualifications, Experience and other Conditions of Service of Members) Rules, 2020

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/07/01/tribunal-appellate-tribunal-and-other-authorities-qualifications-experience-and-other-conditions-of-service-of-members-amendment-rules-2021/

Merchant Shipping (Maritime Labour) Amendment Rules, 2021 to amend the Merchant Shipping (Maritime Labour) Rules, 2016. They shall be deemed to have come into force on December 26, 2020.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/06/30/merchant-shipping-maritime-labour-amendment-rules2021/


Books Released 

B.S. Murthy’s International Relations and Organisation

by V. Rajyalakshmi

The book deals with the fundamentals of International Relations and Organisation in a simple language and descriptive style. The book starts with an introduction by Prof. N.R. Madhava Menon. The book examines topics such as-the history of the evolution of world community, methods employed to study international relations in the past, participants involved in international decision-making, the settlement of disputes through different methods, etc.

This book is indispensable for students of five-year law courses and for anyone interested in reading about International Relations and Organisation.

https://www.ebcwebstore.com/product_info.php?products_id=441

EBC’s Master Guide To All India Bar Examination This 2021 Edition of the Guide for All India Bar Examination is a comprehensive book to study for the exam conducted by the Bar Council of India. This Guide has been updated and prepared based on the examination patterns over a period of time.

This Guide is indispensable for law graduates appearing for All India Bar Examination.

https://www.ebcwebstore.com/product_info.php?products_id=99096318


Features on SCC Online Web Edition

Let me also tell you about very handy features introduced on SCC Online. Now you can find all the important news about any reported case or legal developments along with the judgment text and authoritative digest notes, all at one place. You just need to select the Legal and Business News section on your dashboard.

Also, now you will save a lot of time and effort while citing cases. You can cite cases accurately with our new feature where you can directly copy citation and party names to your clipboard by a single click and then use it for your research or preparing drafts and other purposes.

Do try out these new features on SCC Online web edition.

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Delhi High Court: J.R. Midha, J., in a very significant ruling issued guidelines with regard to the feeding of stray dogs and directions for their welfare.

In the present matter, plaintiff approached the Court to restrain defendant 1 from feeding the stray dogs near the entrance/exit of the suit property.

The above dispute was amicably settled between the parties.

Pragyan Sharma, Amicus Curiae, Manisha T. Karia, Counsel for Animal Welfare Board of India, Nandita Rao, Additional Standing Counsel for GNCTD and Counsels for both the parties urged before this Court to lay down the guidelines with respect to feeding of stray dogs.

Guidelines with respect to feeding of stray dogs

  • Animals have a right under law to be treated with compassion, respect and dignity. Animals are sentient creatures with an intrinsic value. Therefore, protection of such beings is the moral responsibility of each and every citizen including the governmental and non-governmental organisations.
  • Animals may be mute but we as a society have to speak on their behalf. No pain or agony should be caused to the animals. Cruelty to animals causes psychological pain to them. Animals breathe like us and have emotions. The animals require food, water, shelter, normal behaviour, medical care, self-determination.
  • Community dogs (stray/street dogs) have the right to food and citizens have the right to feed community dogs but in exercising this right, care and caution should be taken to ensure that it does not impinge upon the rights of others or cause any harm, hinderance, harassment and nuisance to other individuals or members of the society.
  • Feeding of the community dogs have to be done at areas designated by the AWBI in consultation with Resident Welfare Associations or Municipal Corporation. It is the duty of the AWBI and the RWAs to ensure and keep in mind the fact that community dogs live in „packs‘ and care should be taken by the AWBI and RWAs to see that each „pack‟ ideally has different designated areas for feeding even if that means designating multiple areas in a locality.
  • All Law enforcement authorities shall ensure that no harassment or hindrance is caused to the person feeding street dog at the designated feeding spot and to properly implement the AWBI Revised Guidelines on Pet dogs and street dogs dated 26th February, 2015.
  • It shall be the duty and obligation of every Resident Welfare Associations or Municipal Corporation (in case RWA is not available) to ensure that every community dog in every area has access to food and water in the absence of caregivers or community dog feeders in the said area.
  • Street dogs have to be fed and tended to at places within their territory which are not frequented, or less frequented, and sparingly used by the general public and residents.
  • Any person having compassion for stray dogs can feed the dogs at their private entrance/porch/driveway of their house or any other place not shared with other residents.
  • No person can restrict the other from feeding of dogs, until and unless it is causing harm or harassment to that other person.
  • Residents and the members of the RWA as well as the dog feeders have to act in harmony with each other and not in a manner which shall lead to unpleasant circumstances in the colony.
  • AWBI shall ensure that every Resident Welfare Association or Municipal Corporation (in case RWA is not available), shall have an Animal Welfare Committee, which shall be responsible for ensuring compliance of the provisions of the PCA Act and ensure harmony and ease of communication between caregivers, feeders or animal lovers and other residents.
  • Municipal Corporations at the request of the RWA and/or local authority or persons volunteering to take such responsibility shall be responsible for having the stray dogs registered/vaccinated/sterilised.
  • Vaccinated and sterilized dogs cannot be removed by the Municipality.
  • It shall be the duty of the SHO concerned to ensure peace and harmony is maintained amongst the residents of the area.
  • If any of the street/community dogs is injured or unwell, it shall be the duty of the RWA to secure treatment for such dog by the vets made available by the Municipal Corporation and / or privately from the funds of the RWA.
  • Street dogs perform the role of community scavengers and also control rodent population in the area thus preventing spread of diseases like Leptospirosis.
  • Street dogs provide companionship to those residents who feed them an act as their stress relievers
  • It is the responsibility of the community residents to get their dogs vaccinated against rabies every year to prevent the spread of rabies.
  • Every RWA should form Guard and Dog partnerships and in consultation with the Delhi Police Dog Squad, the dogs can be trained to make them effective as guard dogs and yet friendly to those who live in the colony.
  • The importance of street dogs‟ in our community is of great significance. Being territorial animals, they live in certain areas and play the role of guards by protecting the community from the entry of outsiders or unknown people. If these are removed from a certain area, the new stray dogs will take their place
  • If any of the street/community dog is injured or unwell, it shall be the duty of the RWA to secure treatment for such dog by the vets made available by the Municipal Corporation and/or privately from the funds of the RWA.
  • In order to check the overpopulation of street dogs in the community, it is also the responsibility of community to get their street dog population sterilized through an NGO engaged in Dog sterilization programme.

Succinct Conclusion

Duty and Responsibility 

  • RWA or Municipal Corporation and all Government authorities including enforcement authorities to provide all assistance and ensure that no hindrance is caused to the caregivers or feeders of community dogs. Jurisdictional SHO to ensure that peace and harmony is maintained amongst the residents, care-givers and community dog feeders and there is no harassment to any care-giver or community dog feeder from feeding community dogs in the manner specified.
  • RWA to ensure that every community dog in every area has access to food and water in the absence of caregivers or community dog feeders.
  • AWBI shall ensure that every RWA or Municipal Corporation, shall have an Animal Welfare Committee, which shall be responsible for ensuring compliance of the provisions of the PCA Act and ensure harmony and ease of communication between caregivers, feeders or animal lovers and other residents.
  • In case, any resident(s) or the RWA has any grievance with regard to any act of caregivers and feeders, in relation to feeding of community dogs, the said resident(s), shall, at the first instance seek redressal of their grievance through a process of dialogue and discussion through the Animal Welfare Committee failing which the said issue may be brought to the notice of the AWBI through the RWA.
  • Government of India (Ministry of Personal, Public Grievances and Pensions, Department of Personal and Training) by Office Memorandum dated 26th May, 2006 had notified that the Government servant who indulges in act of cruelty to animals will be making himself liable for action under Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act. Besides, punishment under the Act, he would also make himself liable for action under CCS(Conduct) Rules for conduct unbecoming of a Government servant. The said Office Memorandum also added that while residents and Associations are free to address institutional agencies for redressal of their grievances, no resident/association will interfere with the freedom of other residents in tending animals etc.
  • Despite the clear position of law prohibiting cruelty to the animal including stray dogs, there is increasing tendency of the citizens to defy the same. Many times, the Government employees take up a position in complete violation of well settled law which has been dealt with in the Office Memorandum dated 26th May, 2006. Such act of defiance be noted down in the ACR file of Government employee. If any such complaint is received by AWBI, the same be sent to the concerned office for being placed in the ACR file of the Government employee for necessary action as per CCS Rules.
  • Need to spread awareness that even animals have a right to live with respect and dignity.
  • It would be appropriate to constitute a Committee to implement these Guidelines. Committee shall comprise of the following:

(i)  The Director, Animal Husbandry Department or his nominee.

(ii)  One Senior Officer to be nominated by all the Municipal Corporations.

(iii)  One Senior Officer to be nominated by Delhi Cantonment Board.

(iv)  One Senior Officer to be nominated by Animal Welfare Board of India.

(v)  Ms. Nandita Rao, Additional Standing Counsel, Govt. of NCT of Delhi as Convenor.

(vi)  Ms. Manisha T. Karia, Advocate for Animal Welfare Board of India.

(vii)  Mr. Pragyan Sharma, Advocate

The committee shall hold its first meeting within 4 weeks.

High Court directed that the above decision be sent to Delhi Judicial Academy to sensitize the judges about the directions laid down by this Court.[Dr Maya D. Chablani v. Radha Mittal, 2021 SCC OnLine Del 3599, decided on 24-06-2021]


Advocates before the Court:

For the Plaintiff: Abhishek Gusain and Sam C. Mathew, Advocates

For the Defendants: D.K. Pandey and Deepak Kumar, Advocates for defendants 1 and 3

Pragyan Sharma, Advocate as Amicus Curiae

Nandita Rao, ASC for GNCTD

Manisha T. Karia, Sukhda Kalra, Adarsh Kumar and Nidhi Nagpal, Advocates for Animal Welfare Board of India

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Madras High Court: P. Velmurugan, J., addressed a matter revolving around the offence under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act.

A complaint was filed for an alleged offence under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881. Judicial Magistrate found the respondent guilty of offence under Section 138 NI Act.

The appellate Judge while allowing the respondent’s appeal set aside the conviction and acquitted the respondent for the offence punishable under Section 138 NI Act, for which he was prosecuted before the trial court.

Appellant’s case was that the respondent had borrowed a sum of Rs 90,000 from the appellant and in order to discharge the debt issued a cheque which returned when presented to the bank with endorsement “drawers signatures differs”.

Analysis, Law and Decision

Bench noted that on statutory notice sent by appellant, respondent responded stating that he had denied the execution of the cheque.

Another significant fact was that the appellant did not prove that there was a transaction between the appellant and the respondent.

High Court remarked that,

When the cheque was returned for the reason that the signature differs, and the respondent/accused has taken a stand that the complainant is a stranger to the accused, it is for the appellant/complainant to establish the case and the appellant has not proved the same, and if once, execution of cheque is proved, the presumption under Sections 118 and 139 of the Negotiable Instruments Act can be drawn and the accused has to rebut the presumption that there is no legally enforceable debt and cheque has not been issued for legally enforceable debt.

 Hence, in the present matter, complainant could not establish the execution of the cheque and borrowal of money by the respondent.

Therefore, in Court’s opinion the appellate Court’s decision had no perversity and Bench found no compelled circumstances or reason to interfere with the Judgment of acquittal.

In view of the above-stated facts and circumstances, criminal appeal was dismissed. [S. Ashok Kumar v. S. Boopal,  2021 SCC OnLine Mad 2325, decided on 22-04-2021]


Advocates before the Court:

For Appellant : Mr. M. Marudhachalam

For Respondent: Mr. L.Mouli

Case BriefsTribunals/Commissions/Regulatory Bodies

Competition Commission of India (CCI): Coram of Ashok Kumar Gupta (Chairperson) and Sangeeta Verma and Bhagwant Singh Bishnoi (Members) addressed the allegations against the National Stock Exchange for alleged contravention of provisions of the Competition Act.

Present matter was filed against National Stock Exchange of India Limited for alleged contravention of Section 4, particularly Sections 4(2)(b)(ii) and 4(2)(c) of the Competition Act.

What were the allegations against NSE?

  • Indulged in practices of granting preferential market access to select brokers
  • Creating artificial information asymmetry
  • Market Manipulation in relation to co-location facilities
  • Uniform fee charged from all members towards co-location services, but allegedly uniform benefits have not been accorded to all trading members who had paid for the service.

Analysis, Law and Decision

While analysing the matter, Coram noted that the co-location facility was in vogue since 2009. Further, it was added that the choice of technology, which had been alleged to have created distortions, ceased to exist as far back as in 2016 and there seems to be confidence instilled in the system, with 188 members of the exchange availing the facility and the sectoral regulator specifying guidelines for adherence by the exchange for provision of such facility. As submitted by the Informant, even the charges payable for availing such facility have been considerably reduced.

Commission observed that

Mere pendency of matters in alternate forums does not axiomatically place any embargo on the Commission to halt its mandate in discharging its statutory obligations, in the face of any alleged anti-competitive conduct which is brought or comes to its notice.

Co-location facility creates a divide between two classes of trading members

NSE stated that the said facility was made available on a first come first serve basis and essentially there is no pick and choose. Further, it added that it is not the only exchange in India providing co-location facility, even other exchange like BSE is providing the same.

Coram stated that in the present case,  the consumers are the trading members who were looking for the co-locational facility for algorithmic trading.

Abuse of dominant position by NSE in provision of co-location facility?

Commission noted the submission of NSE that at the time of introducing co-location services, SEBI had not prescribed any specific technology to be used and that it had a choice between two technologies:

  • TCP/IP technology, and
  • MTBT

NSE, after studying practices of some leading international stock exchanges providing co-location services, came to a decision to have TCP technology as it provided market safety, reliability, integrity and accessibility.

Commission agreeing with the above submission that if there had been a bonafide choice of a particular technology, coupled with the fact that the sector regulator did not observe any instance of fraudulent conduct in violation of SEBI (PFUTP) Regulations, 2003 in the provision of the co-location facility which had been the mainstay of the allegations against NSE, then it ought not to be found in contravention of Section 4 of the Act.

Should the co-location facility be stalled as it is in itself anti-competitive?

A robust exchange acts as a backbone of the financial system and the provision of co-location facility by exchanges help increase volumes of trades manifold and provides liquidity to investors. This augurs well for the market, the companies and the economy.

Commission stated that to stop the co-location facility will be retrograde. Further noting that the Sectoral Regulator, SEBI did not stop the co-location facility in any manner since its introduction and had recognised the said service.

Hence, in view of the Commission, no prima facie case exists. [Manoj K Sheth v. National Stock Exchange, Case No. 35 of 2019, decided on 28-06-2021]


Advocates before the Commission:

For the Informant: Mr. Nithyaesh Natraj, Advocate Mr. Animesh Kumar, Advocate Mr. Anirudh, Advocate

For OP: Mr. Neeraj Kishan Kaul, Sr. Advocate, Mr. Somasekhar Sundaresan, Advocate, Mr. Naval Chopra, Advocate
Mr. Aman Singh Sethi, Advocate, Ms. Manika Brar, Advocate and Mr. M. Vasudev Rao, General Counsel 


Additional Information:

What are co-location facilities?

Co-location is the practice of renting space for servers and other computing hardware at a third-party provider’s data centre facility. Co-location helps in the faster movement of data. In the context of co-location services, NSE had on 31.08.2009, announced the launch of co-location services along with the guidelines/ procedure to be followed by members interested in availing co-location facility. Members availing co-location facility are allowed to take one or more leased lines to the co-location facility from different telecom service providers for the purpose of setting up or modifying parameters, trading related activities and hardware, software, network-related access, software download/upload and monitoring and data downloads.

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Madras High Court: M. Dhandapani, J., stated that the Court has noticed where the legal fraternity has indulged in some high-handed activity against the law enforcing agency.

It has been stated that amidst pandemic, health workers and uniformed services have been performing arduous duty with due diligence and with scant care for their health and well-being. Each and every common man throughout the country had recognized and applauded their efforts, yet a few miscreants, who, with scant respect to the work done by law enforcing agency, indulge in a tussle with police personnel.

Additionally, it was stated that some miscreants of the legal fraternity also do fall in the above-stated league.

Society has witnessed very many instances of the legal fraternity indulging in war of words as also scuffle with the police personnel, but most of the times, the members of the legal fraternity do keep themselves within the bounds of law.

No Mechanism for unruly behaviour of members of the legal fraternity?

For unruly and indiscipline behaviour, other persons, who work for one or other arm of the Government, mechanism of disciplinary action is contemplated under the relevant Acts and Rules governing the service, yet, when it comes to the legal fraternity, the initiative and control vests on the Bar Council of Tamil Nadu, to take appropriate action against such of those unruly advocates who involve themselves in these kinds of acts, which demeans the profession.

However, the mechanism that is in place to take action against such individuals, who involve themselves in indisciplined acts and misbehave with the officials on duty, are not clearly spelt out by the Bar Council of Tamil Nadu.

High Court directed the authorized officer of Bar Council of Tamil Nadu to file an appropriate status report before this Court as to the mechanism that is in place for taking action against the members of the legal fraternity as also the action that has been taken against such of those advocates, who have misbehaved in the public place with officials on duty.[Tanuja Rajan v. State,    2021 SCC OnLine Mad 2203, decided on 15-06-2021]


Advocates before the Court:

For Petitioner: Mr. Louisal Ramesh

For Respondent: Mr. A. Gopinath Government Advocate (Crl. side)

Hot Off The PressNews

Bar Council of India has notified the extension of date for registration of All India Bar Examination — XVI

Notification states as follows:

“The date for registration for AIBE-16 is extended till 15th July 2021, the rescheduled date for the AIBE 16 will be intimated soon. ” 


All India Bar Examination

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Delhi High Court: Sanjeev Narula, J., granted an injunction to the Law Firm ‘Singh & Singh’ in a case of trademark infringement.

I.A. 7143/2021 (under Order 39 Rule 1 and 2)

Plaintiffs filed the present application under Order 39 and Rule 1 and 2 CPC seeking protection of their mark/name ‘Singh & Singh’. The plaintiffs were aggrieved by the use of identical marks ‘Singh + Singh’; ‘Singh + Singh Lawyers LLP’ and other derivatives by defendant 1 to 5.

Founders of Law Firm ‘Singh & Singh’ coined the said term and the same has been in use since 1997.

Rajiv Nayar, Chander Lall and Sandeep Sethi, Senior Counsel for the plaintiffs submitted that in May, 2021, plaintiffs were surprised to find a post on social media using the name ‘Singh + Singh LLP’ and ‘Singh + Singh Lawyers LLP’.

With further research it was noted that the said name was being used by the husband of Defendant 3, Defendant 2 along with another partner Defendant 4 Defendant 3 used to work as an associate in plaintiff 1 firm.

Further adding to the submissions, Counsel stated that the name ‘Singh & Singh’ has been registered since 2005 in respect of legal services and has been in use since 1997. The name ‘Singh & Singh’ and ‘Singh + Singh’ are identical to each other and there is a clear case of infringement under Section 29(2)(c) of the Trademarks Act, 1999.

Analysis, Law and Decision

Bench prima facie opined that the facts conspicuously demonstrated that the infringing marks were identical and were being used for identical services and an identical class of customers/clients.

Plaintiff 1 has a global reputation and goodwill and is servicing clients across the globe. Court found merit in the plaintiff’s contention that nowadays legal services are being rendered across the globe through internet and electronic means and law firms such as plaintiff 1 would have a reputation not limited by geographical boundaries.

Hence, there could be a strong possibility of confusion amongst the foreign clients/law firms relating to the two marks which are predominantly identical.

“…strong likelihood that they would be led to believe that ‘Singh + Singh’ is another branch or an associate office of ‘Singh & Singh’

 Adding to its analysis, Court stated that the adoption of identical mark/name by the defendant in deceptively similar colour combination on online platforms for providing legal services was fraught with mischief and did not appear to be bonafide.

In Court’s opinion, plaintiffs established a prima facie case and a balance of convenience was established in favour of the plaintiffs and they were likely to suffer an irreparable loss in case the injunction was not granted.

Therefore, till the next date of hearing, defendants, their partners/promoters, associates, family members, employees and anyone acting for and on their behalf were restrained from using the impugned marks including the name/mark “Singh + Singh”, “Singh + Singh LLP”, “Singh + Singh Lawyers LLP”, singhllp.com, singhllp, @singhsinghllp, Singh-Singh-LLP, the Singh + Singh impugned logo, or any other trademark/trade name/service name/trading style or domain name or Twitter handle, LinkedIN profile, Facebook profile, logo, device, etc., which was either identical to or deceptively similar to the Plaintiffs’ mark(s) ‘Singh & Singh’, ‘Singh & Singh Law Firm LLP’, ‘Singh & Singh.com’, ‘Singh & Singh Advocates’ or any other derivatives thereof so as to result in infringement of trade mark(s), passing off, acts of unfair competition, dilution etc. for rendering legal services, consultancy services related to law, or any other cognate/allied services, at any place or in any form including in print or electronic media, online platforms etc.

Defendant 6 was also directed to suspend the domain name of ‘www.singhllp.com’ till the next date of hearing.

Matter to be listed before the Court on 23-09-2021. [Singh & Singh Law Firm LLP v. Singh + Singh Lawyers LLP, 2021 SCC OnLine Del 3059, decided on 02-06-2021]


Advocates before the Court:

For the Plaintiffs: Rajiv Nayar, Sandeep Sethi and Chander M Lall, Senior Advocates with Saurabh Seth and Tanmaya Mehta, Advocates.

For the Defendants: Divjyot Singh, Avsi Malik and Nipun Dwivedi, Advocates for D-1, 2 & 4.

Nimish Chib, Advocate for D-3 & 5.

Alipak Banerjee, Advocate for D-6 & 7.

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Delhi High Court: C. Hari Shankar, J., addressed a matter regarding passing off and granted interim relief.

Plaint alleged that defendant 1 was passing off its products as those of the plaintiffs by using the label which was confusingly and deceptively similar to that of the plaintiffs.

The product sold and manufactured by the plaintiff is “KESRI MARHAM” and the plaintiff claimed to have adopted the same in 1998.

Plaint asserted that the label of the plaintiffs reflected a unique trade dress with individual components being placed at specific locations.

Defendant is engaged in manufacturing and marketing of ayurvedic product including pain relief balms, dant manjan, creams etc. The said balm was sold under the name “Paharhi Garhwali Balm”.

Identical 

Prima facie on a bare glance of the labels of the defendant and plaintiffs, it was indicated that there had been a conscious effort to copy the plaintiff’s labels, to the extent that the colours used by the defendant, placing of various features on the label and the photographs representing the ailments which the balm was expected to alleviate are also identically placed.

Therefore, in view of the above discussion and finding, prima facie it appeared that defendant was passing off its products as those of the plaintiffs.

High Court opined that plaintiffs made out a good prima facie case for grant of ex-parte ad interim relief.

Bench also added that in case the relief was not granted and the market was permitted to be flooded with defendant’s product, prejudice to the plaintiffs would be irreparable.

Plaintiffs are directed to comply with the provision of Order XXXIX Rule 3 CPC within the time stipulated in that regard. [B C Hasaram and Sons Ayurvedic Pharmacy v. Pahari Garhwali Ayurvedic Pharmacy, 2021 SCC OnLine Del 3057, decided on 17-05-2021]


Advocates before the Court:

For the Plaintiffs: Ms. Tusha Malhotra & Ms. Yamini Jaiswal, Advs

Legal RoundUpWeekly Rewind

The 12th Episode of SCC Online Weekly Rewind featuring Devika Sharma, Senior Legal Editor bringing you the most important and interesting stories from the field of law is out now! Check out the written episode below.

TARUN TEJPAL CASE

22-pointer comprehensive analysis of Tarun Tejpal’s acquittal order

The most highlighted development of the week was the judgment of the Additional Sessions Court at Mapusa, Goa, which acquitted Tarun Tejpal, former Editor-in-Chief of Tehelka, who was accused of committing rape on a journalist. The court gave benefit of doubt to Tejpal, noting crucial lapses in investigation and major contradictions and improvements in testimony of the prosecutirx. The incident is of 2013 which allegedly happened during THiNK Fest, organised by Tehelka in Goa that year. Now, the State of Goa has appealed against this order before the Bombay High Court. We have studied the entire 527-pages judgment of the Sessions Court and prepared a 22-pointer comprehensive analysis.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/05/28/rape-accused-tarun-tejpal/


SUPREME COURT

Courts need to be extra careful while dealing with Dowry Death cases; Guidelines issued

Now moving to the Supreme Court, In an important ruling, the Supreme Court has held that Courts need to be extra careful while conducting criminal trials relating to Section 304­B, IPC that deals with Dowry death.

The Court expressed grave concern on the fact that, often, Trial Courts record the statement of an accused under Section 313, CrPC in a very casual and cursory manner, without specifically questioning the accused as to his defense. The Court said that the examination of an accused under Section 313, CrPC cannot be treated as a mere procedural formality, as it is based on the fundamental principle of fairness.

The Court hence issued elaborate guidelines on trial of dowry death cases.

https://bit.ly/3fwnpHj

Apprehension of COVID-19 a ground for anticipatory bail: Supreme Court stays Allahabad High Court’s order

In another matter, A vacation bench of the Supreme Court stayed the Allahabad High Court’s order wherein it was held that apprehension of being infected with COVID-19 after coming into contact with authorities was a valid ground for anticipatory bail.

The High Court had granted anticipatory bail to one Prateek Jain “on account of special conditions and on special ground” and had also issued direction on grant of anticipatory bail on such special grounds.

The Supreme Court staying the said order, directed that the Courts shall not consider the said directions while considering applications for anticipatory bail and must decide each case on its merits.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/05/25/apprehension-of-covid-19-a-ground-for-anticipatory-bail-supreme-court-stays-allahabad-high-courts-order-heres-all-you-need-to-know-about-the-case/ 


HIGH COURTS

Delhi High Court

Seizure by police of oxygen concentrators and Covid-related equipment sold at high-profit margins. Is it illegal?

In another matter, the Delhi High Court has confirmed that it is legal for the police to seize oxygen concentrators and other Covid-related equipment being sold at high profit margins in contravention of laws, rules and executive orders.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/05/27/oxygen-concentrators/

 

Madras High Court

Malicious prosecution: What, how and who, discussed

Down south, The madras High Court has held that to succeed in a suit for malicious prosecution, the acquittal of the plaintiff alone is not sufficient. Rather, the plaintiff is obliged to prove (i) that the prosecution was without any reasonable and probable cause, and (ii) that it was instituted with a malicious intention, and (iii) that he suffered damage.

Apart from this, the Court also discussed, in detail, the duty of civil court in cases relating to malicious prosecution and also the burden of proof.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/05/25/malicious-prosecution/

 Gujarat High Court

Compounding of offence under S. 138 NI Act after conviction can be allowed in exceptional circumstances 

In a ruling on Negotiable Instruments Act, the Gujarat High Court compounded an offence under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act and set aside the conviction and sentence of the accused, while observing at the same time that generally powers under Section 482 CrPC are not to be exercised when a statutory remedy is available under law but considering the fact that the parties have settled the dispute amicably, the compounding of the offence was permitted.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/05/26/section-138-ni-act-4/

 Madhya Pradesh High Court

Directions issued to Police, Judicial Magistrates on arrests and bail

On bail jurisprudence, The Madhya Pradesh High Court has issued elaborate directions to Police and Judicial Magistrates in relation to arrests and bail after it noticed that District Judiciary is extremely tight-fisted when it comes to granting bail. 

The Court noticed that applications are being routinely dismissed on cyclostyled grounds that the offence alleged is serious or that the investigation is still in progress or that the accused may influence the witnesses. In such circumstances, huge burden of bail matters has been shifted to the High Court. Hence, the issuance of certain directions was necessary

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/05/28/mp-hc-district-judiciary-is-extremely-tight-fisted-when-it-comes-to-granting-bail-leads-to-burden-on-the-high-court-directions-on-arrest-and-bail-issued-to-police-judicial-magistrates/ 

 Jammu and Kashmir High Court

Bail cannot be granted on the ground of delay unless the matter was pending for 5 years or more

In another bail matter, the Jammu and Kashmir High Court held that bail cannot be granted on grounds of delay unless the matter was pending for 5 years or more.

In the case before the Court, though the applicant had been behind the bars for over 13 years, but the appeal against the order of conviction and sentence dated 23rd July 2020 was filed only in August 2020.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/05/28/jk-hc-bail-cannot-be-granted-on-the-ground-of-delay-unless-the-matter-was-pending-for-5-years-or-more/

 Punjab and Haryana High Court

All-men SIT to investigate a rape case: Insensitive and deplorable 

In an important matter, a case where an all-men SIT was deployed to investigate a rape case, the Punjab and Haryana High Court said that it was rather intriguing that no lady police official was involved, which is even otherwise the requirement of law in cases of this kind.

The case pertains to 38-year-old widow giving into the sexual demands of CIA officials, after her 19-year-old son was picked up by them in broad day light while he was recovering from Covid-19 infection at his residence. The woman had also alleged that an FIR, allegedly a fake one, was registered against her son under NDPS Act by planting contraband on him so as to arm twist the petitioner.

Reacting to the allegations, the Court said that the same are so grisly and frightful, one can only hope, that the same are fictitious. 

https://bit.ly/2R7STKD


 LEGISLATION UPDATES 

Union Ministry of Health approves guidelines for ‘Near to Home COVID Vaccination Centres (NHCVC) for elderly & differently-abled citizens 

The Union Ministry of Health has accepted the recommendations by the National Expert Group on Vaccine Administration for Covid-19 on the proposed guidelines for Near to Home COVID Vaccination Centres for Elderly & Differently Abled Citizens.

The Technical Expert Committee’s recommendations are aimed to ensure vaccination of Senior Citizens and Differently Abled population having limited mobility due to their physical condition.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/05/27/union-ministry-of-health-approves-guidelines-for-near-to-home-covid-vaccination-centres-nhcvc-for-elderly-differently-abled-citizens/

Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021 

The Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021 were notified by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology in February, 2021. The Rules provided three-month timeline to social media intermediaries in order to comply with the New IT Rules by May 26, 2021.

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/05/26/information-technology-intermediary-guidelines-and-digital-media-ethics-code-rules-2021-2/

Legal RoundUpWeekly Rewind

7th Episode of SCC Online Weekly Rewind featuring Bhumika Indulia, Associate Editor bringing you the most important and interesting stories from the field of law is out now! Check out the written episode below.


Supreme Court 

♦ Chief Justice SA Bobde retires; Justice NV Ramana takes oath as the 48th Chief Justice of India

Faced with the unprecedented situation of COVID-19 pandemic forcing the Courts to function virtually, Justice SA Bobde retired on April 23rd after a stint of 17 months as the Chief Justice of India and a total of 8 years as a Supreme Court Judge.  

ON April 24th, Justice NV Ramana took oath as the 48th Chief Justice of India.  

Chief Justice SA Bobde retires: A look at his legacy and justice in the time of COVID-19: https://bit.ly/3ve0DsR

3 Important rulings on pendency of cases and vacancies in High Courts

Right before his retirement, CJI Bobde, aling with Justice L. Nageswara Rao and Justice S. Ravindra Bhat, gave 3 important rulings to deal with the pendency of cases and vacancies in the High Courts. 

  1. All High Courts to take expeditious steps to incorporate the Draft Rules of Criminal Practice, 2021 as part of the rules governing criminal trials. This will help in removing the common deficiencies in criminal trials thereby leading to faster disposal of cases. 
  2. Taking note of the existing 220 vacancies in the High Court, the Supreme Court has stressed upon the importance of the Chief Justices of the High Courts making recommendations in time. 
  3. General guidelines for the appointment of ad hoc Judges to deal with the unprecedented situation arising from the backlog of cases pending in the High Courts, which has now crossed the figure of 57 lakh coupled with the consistent ratio of vacancies of almost 40 per cent. In the extensive guidelines, the Court has also laid down 5 “trigger points” for activation of dormant Article 224A. 

♦ Allahabad High Court’s “lockdown” judgment stayed https://bit.ly/3aDX3QL


High Courts

♦  Bom HC | “Elderly citizens being asked to choose between devil and the deep sea”: HC not impressed with Centre’s reply on petition for door-to-door vaccination for elderly and disabled citizens

Bombay High Court while addressing a concern regarding the door-to-door vaccination for elderly and disabled citizens said that it is for the government and its appropriate department to explore ways and means to prevent contamination as well as exposure of vaccine beyond recommended temperature so that vaccination programme can be taken to doorsteps of elderly and disabled citizens. 

https://bit.ly/3erNlSR

2. Bom HC | “Serum Institute coined the term ‘Covishield’, took substantial steps towards development and manufacture”: Court finds no merit in Cutis Biotech’s passing off action

In an appeal with respect to passing of an injunction against the use of name COVISHIELD by Serum Institute of India for its COVID-19 Vaccine, Bombay High Court observed that 

A temporary injunction directing Serum Institute to discontinue the use of mark ‘Covishield’ for its vaccine will cause confusion and disruption in the Vaccine administration programme of the State

https://bit.ly/3tQ9D7c

COVID-19 Surge | Bom HC | Reports of RT-PCR Tests to be made available on Whatsapp; COVID positive patients reports to be uploaded within 24 hours on ICMR portal

While addressing the issue with regard to difficulties being faced by the patients in obtaining RT-PCR reports, Bombay High Court directed the laboratories that the said reports be made available on WhatsApp and to be uploaded on ICMR portal within 24 hours for the patients testing positive, whereas for the patients who test negative to be uploaded on the portal within 7 days. 

https://bit.ly/3nqjGgP

Del HC | “Wastage of a single dose of vaccine is a criminal waste”

While addressing the concerns arising out of the COVID-19 pandemic, High Court noted that 44 lakhs vaccines were wasted out of the 10 crores vaccines allocated to different State due to the restriction of age or category of people who were entitled to take the vaccine and hence remarked that: 

Wastage of even a single dose of vaccine, when the same is proving to be life–saving, would be a criminal waste. 

https://bit.ly/2Qy6V7M

 

Ori HC | Suo Moto matter taken regarding death of sanitation workers in two incidents; Directions laid down regarding abolition of manual scavenging

Division Bench of Orissa High Court directed compensation to the grieving families of the sanitation workers who were engaged in manually cleaning a sewer line and died of asphyxiation, made noteworthy observations regarding the sorry plight of manual scavengers 

https://bit.ly/3tRnquj

 

 


Legislation Updates

Commission for Air Quality Management in National Capital Region and Adjoining Areas Ordinance, 2021

https://bit.ly/32NQOWe

 

 

​♦ Union Health Ministry issues Regulatory Pathways for foreign produced COVID-19 Vaccines

https://bit.ly/3tPqbMD

Legal RoundUpWeekly Rewind

6th Episode of SCC Online Weekly Rewind featuring Prachi Bhardwaj, Associate Editor bringing you the most important and interesting stories from the field of law is out now! Check out the link below.


Supreme Court 

♦ Enquiry by retired Supreme Court judge into Justice V. Eswaraiah Phone Call controversy uncalled for 

In the case relating to an alleged phone conversation between Justice V. Eswaraiah, former Acting CHief Justice of Andhra Pradesh High Court and S. Ramakrishna, a suspended District Munsif Magistrate, over the conspiracy to malign the reputation of the Andhra Pradesh High Court, the Supreme Court has found no reason to allow the enquiry by former Supreme Court judge Justice R.V. Raveendran to find out the genuineness/authenticity of the conversation as directed by the Andhra Pradesh High Court. 

The Court said that 

“High Court ought not to have embarked on any other enquiry in the matter except to the maintainability of the PIL.” 

 https://bit.ly/2Rxnukp  

♦ No blood or breath analyser test proving drunk driving? Insurer may still establish a case for exclusion from liability 

In an interesting case, the Supreme Court has held that while in case where there is a blood or breath analyser test indicating no consumption of alcohol by the driver at all, it would not be open to set up the case of exclusion, the absence of such test may not disable the insurer from establishing a case for exclusion from liability on ground of drunk driving. 

https://bit.ly/2PYwA9I  

♦ Any creditor including Central/State Government or any local authority bound by Resolution Plan approved by adjudicating authority under Section 31(1) IBC 

Adding to the series of significant rulings on Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016, the Supreme Court has held that once a resolution plan is duly approved by the Adjudicating Authority under Section 31 Clause 1 , the claims as provided in the resolution plan shall stand frozen and will be binding on the Corporate Debtor and its employees, members, creditors, including the Central Government, any State Government or any local authority. 

 https://bit.ly/32ir3x2  

Magistrates must record reasons before converting  summary trial of complaints under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881 to summons trial 

Closing the week with another important ruling, the Supreme Court has directed the High Courts to issue practice directions to the Magistrates to record reasons before converting summary trial of complaints under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act to summons trial. The decision came after it was brought to the Court’s notice that summary trials were being routinely converted to summons trials in “a mechanical manner”. 

 https://bit.ly/3glzslh


High Courts 

Bombay High Court

♦Bombay HC | Religious places of worship closed; Prayer offering in mosque during Ramzaan not allowed in wake of COVID-19: Court discusses scope of Art. 25

Considering the ground reality prevailing in the State of Maharashtra in the wake of the second wave of COVID-19, the Bombay High Court has held the performance of prayers in the Mosque during the period of Ramzaan cannot be allowed. 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/04/15/prayers-at-mosque/ 

Delhi High Court

Allegations against rioter Shahrukh not confined to participation, but leading large crowd releasing open fire shots: Bail denied to Delhi Riots accused

Delhi High Court denied bail application to a person named Shahrukh that headed the large crowd, holding a pistol in hand and releasing open fire shots during the riots that occurred in the area between Jaffrabad Metro Station and Maujpur Chowk. 

While ordering so, the Court remarked, 

“The video clipping and pictures played before this Court have shaken the conscience of this Court. 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/04/15/riots/ 

Himachal Pradesh High Court

♦If conduct of an editor of a newspaper is under scanner, suspension of accreditation till charges are cleared would not amount to violation of freedom of press

In a case where certain FIRs were pending against the petitioner working in the field of journalism for over 13 years, leading to the suspension of his accreditation till final outcome of case, the Himachal Pradesh High Court held that If conduct of an editor of a newspaper is under scanner, suspension of accreditation till charges are cleared would not amount to violation of freedom of press. 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/04/15/editor-of-newspaper/ 

  

Calcutta High Court

♦ Cal HC | Resurgence of COVID-19 | Candidates, aides and associates engaged in election campaigning to encourage and unfailingly observe COVID rules to avert deadly disaster staring at our faces

Taking note of the fact that the people participating in ongoing election campaigns were not adhering to COVID protocols which could result in spike in the COVID-19 cases, the Calcutta High court expressed that 

“We are dealing with an extraordinary situation, and this calls for extraordinary measures. It is in public interest that the Administration must ensure that all the COVID protocols are strictly adhered to by all concerned including those engaged in election campaigning activities.” 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/04/15/resurgence-of-covid-19/ 

Punjab and Haryana High Court

♦P&H HC | No police action against Prince Harry for breaking promise to marry

In a bizarre case, Punjab and Haryana High Court dismissed a petition wherein the petitioner sought legal action against Prince Harry and to direct the United Kingdom Police Cell to take action against him, for not fulfilling the promise to marry her. 

High Court remarked: 

It is well-known fact that fake IDs are created on various social media sites land that there is every possibility that so-called Prince Harry may be sitting in a Cyber Café of a village in Punjab, looking for greener pastures for himself. 

https://bit.ly/3ghqb3V


District Court 

♦ Delhi Riots | Lofty case of criminal conspiracy could not be inferred; Chargesheeting on basis of insignificant material unwarranted: Court while granting bail to Umar Khalid 

Karkardooma Court has granted bail to former JNU Student Umar Khalid in the Delhi Riots Case. 

Khalid was arrested in October in connection with the violence near Delhi’s Khajuri Khas area. 

While granting the bail, Court made an observation that Chargesheeting the applicant on the basis of insignificant material was unwarranted. 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/04/16/umar-khalid/ 


Legislation Updates 

♦ Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (Insurance Advertisements and Disclosure) Regulations, 2021 

On April 07, 2021, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India published the IRDAI (Insurance Advertisements and Disclosure) Regulations, 2021 with the objective to 

  • to ensure that the insurers, intermediaries or insurance intermediaries adopt fair, honest and transparent practices while issuing advertisements and avoid practices that tend to impair the confidence of the public; and   
  • to ensure that the advertisement is relevant, fair and in simple language enabling informed decision making. 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/04/15/insurance-regulatory-and-development-authority-of-india-insurance-advertisements-and-disclosure-regulations-2021/  

♦ Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (Pre-packaged Insolvency Resolution Process) Regulations, 2021 (PPIRP Regulations) comes into force 

The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board has notified the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (Pre-packaged Insolvency Resolution Process) Regulations, 2021 on April 9, 2021. The regulation provides the operationalisation of the pre-pack process, its initiation, cost and termination for MSMEs. It also provides various operational aspects, ranging from the eligibility of resolution professionals to the invitation and submission of resolution plans for stressed MSMEs. 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/04/12/insolvency-and-bankruptcy-board-of-india-pre-packaged-insolvency-resolution-process-regulations-2021-ppirp-regulations-comes-into-force/  


 COVID UPDATES

♦ Union Health Ministry issues Regulatory Pathways for foreign produced COVID-19 Vaccines 

On April 13, 2021, the Union Government approved a significant streamlining and fast tracking of regulatory system for COVID-19 vaccines approved for restricted use by US FDA, EMA, UK MHRA, PMDA Japan or which are listed in WHO Emergency Use Listing (EUL). 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/04/15/union-health-ministry-issues-regulatory-pathways-for-foreign-produced-covid-19-vaccines/  

♦ States impose night and weekend curfews  

As the nation witnesses the second wave of COVID-19, States have started taking measures to tackle the horrifying and sudden surge in the cases 

Delhi, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Chandigarh, etc. have imposed restrictions like night and weekend curfews. You can read the detailed guidelines issued by the State Governments on the SCC Online Blog [www.scconline.com/blog] 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/04/15/covid-19-delhi-imposes-weekend-curfews-in-the-state/  

COVID 19Hot Off The PressNews

Virtual Hearing

Jammu and Kashmir High Court extend its Order dated 5-04-2021 with regard to the virtual mode of hearing due to the sudden surge of COVID-19 Cases in the Country in general and UTs of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh in particular.

Link to the NOTIFICATION.


Jammu and Kashmir High Court

[Notification dt. 16-04-2021]

NewsWeekly Rewind

We are back with the 5th Episode of SCC Online Weekly Rewind featuring Devika Sharma, Senior Editorial Assistant bringing you the most important and interesting stories from the field of law. Go check out the link below!


  

Supreme Court 

♦ President appoints Justice NV Ramana as the next Chief Justice of India  

After the final stamp of approval from the President, Justice Ramana is set to take oath as the 48th Chief Justice of India on April 24, 2021. Justice Ramana who is due to retire on August 26, 2022, will serve as the CJI for 16 months.   

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/04/06/president-appoints-justice-nv-ramana-as-the-next-chief-justice-of-india/   

 Rohingya Refugees not to be deported without following prescribed procedure  

 In a significant ruling relating to the rights of the Rohingya Refugees, the Supreme Court has directed that no refugee will be deported unless the procedure prescribed for such deportation is followed.   

The order came in the interim application filed in the Rohingya matter seeking  

(a) the release of the detained Rohingya refugees; and  

(b) a direction to the Union of India not to deport the Rohingya refugees who have been detained in the sub¬jail in Jammu.  

The Court, however, refused to grant the interim relief and said that,    

“Right not to be deported, is ancillary or concomitant to the right to reside or settle in any part of the territory of India.”  

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/04/08/rohingya-refugees-not-to-be-deported-unless-the-procedure-prescribed-for-such-deportation-is-followed-supreme-court/   

 No automatic vacation of stay under Section 254(2A) Proviso 3 of the Income Tax Act, 1961 if the assessee is not responsible for the delay  

 Dealing with an important question as to the constitutional validity of the third proviso to Section 254(2A) of the Income Tax Act, 1961, the Supreme Court has held that any order of stay shall stand vacated after the expiry of the period or periods mentioned in the Section only if the delay in disposing of the appeal is attributable to the assessee 

Upholding the 2015 Delhi High Court verdict, the Court said,    

Unequals have been treated equally so far as assessees who are responsible for delaying appellate proceedings and those who are not so responsible, resulting in a violation of Article 14 of the Constitution of India.”  

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/04/09/cant-treat-unequals-equally-no-automatic-vacation-of-stay-under-section-2542a-proviso-3-of-the-income-tax-act-1961-if-the-assessee-is-not-responsible-for-the-delay-supreme-court/   


High Courts 

Delhi High Court

♦ Vehicle even if occupied by only one person would constitute a ‘public place’ and wearing of mask therein would be compulsory 

Did you know that wearing face masks even while travelling alone in your car is compulsory? Well, Delhi High Court in a recent decision held that a vehicle even if occupied by only one person would constitute a ‘public place’ and wearing of a mask therein, would be compulsory. The decision came when petitioners challenged imposition of fine for non-wearing of masks while travelling alone in a private car. 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/04/08/covid-19/ 

Madras High Court

♦ Political parties should restrain from making serious allegations or criticism against constitutional functionaries 

Madras High Court while addressing a criminal petition held that “Political parties should restrain from making serious allegations against constitutional functionaries. 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/04/05/defamation-3/ 

  

♦ PCOS v. Impotency? Divorce on ground of no cohabitation. Is it a legitimate expectation of husband? HC explains while discussing concept of marriage and S. 12(1)(a), HMA 

While addressing a significant issue with respect to divorce being sought on ground of PCOS in wife, Madras High Court observed that PCOS cannot be termed as impotency and further remarked that  concept of marriage in the present generation has been taken very lightly and even for trivial issues, divorce is filed, and marriage is broken. https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/04/05/divorce-3/ 

Bombay High Court

♦ Anil Deshmukh ‘prima facie’ committed cognizable offence, but No immediate FIR by CBI. Credibility of State machinery at stake: HC directs CBI to conclude preliminary investigation preferably within 15 days 

 In a significant development, Bombay High Court directed CBI to conduct a preliminary enquiry into the complaints against the Home Minister of the State of Maharashtra, Anil Deshmukh. The said order came after Former Commissioner of Mumbai Police Param Bir Singh moved the High Court seeking investigation into the allegation of illegal money collection ordered by the Home Minister. 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/04/06/anil-deshmukh/ 


Tribunals 

Reliance ménage in trouble; Irregular shareholding, default in trading regulations 

SEBI imposed penalty of Rs 25 cores on Mukesh Ambani, Anil Ambani, Nita Ambani and Tina Ambani along with others for violation of the provisions of Regulation 11(1) of Takeover Regulations due to some irregularities. 

https://www.scconline.com/blog/post/2021/04/08/reliance/ 

  


Foreign Courts 

  SCOTUS decides in favour of Google in a copyright dispute between Google and Oracle. 

In a major decision in the copyright space, in a dispute between Google and Oracle; the Supreme Court of the United States, held that Google’s copying of Oracle’s Java SE API code, which included only those lines of code that were needed to allow programmers to put their accrued talents to work in a new and transformative program, was a fair use of that material as a matter of law. 

 https://bit.ly/3wKNOb1


Legislation Updates  

♦ Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (Amendment) Ordinance, 2021: https://bit.ly/3wKnH3P  and Tribunals Reforms (Rationalisation and Conditions of Service) Ordinance, 2021: https://bit.ly/3uHfDiM

On April 04, 2021, the President promulgated the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (Amendment) Ordinance, 2021 and Tribunals Reforms (Rationalisation and Conditions of Service) Ordinance, 2021.  

♦ Central Motor Vehicles (Sixth Amendment) Rules, 2021 

Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has notified Central Motor Vehicles (Sixth Amendment) Rules, 2021, effective from April 1, 2021. The Rules amend the Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989:https://bit.ly/3dVfFMT

Key changes by the amendment  

  1. Minimum training required for driving E-rickshaw or E-cart  
  2. Conditions to be satisfied for learner’s license  
  3. Form of learner‘s licence  
  4. Permanently surrendering a class or classes of vehicles from the driving licence  
  5. Issuance of duplicate driving licence  

 ♦ Gujarat Assembly Passes Freedom of Religion Amendment Bill, 2021 

The Freedom of Religion Amendment Bill, 2021 has been passed by Gujarat Assembly which will modify Gujarat Freedom of Religion Act, 2003. The Bill provides that:  

Any marriage which is done for the purpose of unlawful conversion by the person of one religion with the person of another religion, either by converting himself/herself before or after marriage shall be declared void by the Family Court or where the Family Court is not established by the Court having jurisdiction to try such cases.   https://bit.ly/39WwVQX


 Fact Check 

Does Section 354D say that you can go to jail for staring at a woman for 14 seconds? 

Recently an instagram reel went viral which stated that a person could go to jail for staring at a woman for 14 seconds. The reel gave section 354D of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 as the source of this information. Our fact-check team found out that this is not true. Section 354D defines stalking but does not mention any 14 seconds anywhere in the definition. The origin of the ‘14 seconds rule’ can be traced back to Kerala Excise Officer Rishi Raj Singh’s statement in an event in Kochi back in 2016. If a woman feels that she is being harassed she can file a complaint with the police, however, there is no criteria of ‘staring for 14 seconds’ mentioned anywhere in the law books.  


SCC Online Weekly Rewind  

NewsWeekly Rewind

The 4th Episode of our SCC OnLine Weekly Rewind was released on 4-04-2021. If you haven’t yet checked out the latest updates of that week, featuring Bhumika Indulia, Associate Editor, just click on the link below.

Supreme Court

♦ Mukhtar Ansari’s custody transferred to Uttar Pradesh: https://bit.ly/2PnnbIv

♦ Supreme Court refused to interfere with the scheme of sale of electoral bonds by the Political Parties which was challenged on the ground that it allows the donors of political parties to maintain anonymity which is not healthy for a democracy: https://bit.ly/3mhJQ4S

♦ Rapid Rail Case: HSVP to deposit 80% of debt due in Escrow Account: https://bit.ly/3wIparl


High Courts

♦ Madras HC | Quality of education being compromised in course of more law colleges being born in guise of creating opportunities : https://bit.ly/3sRahAI

♦ Madras HC | “Trying to develop the case brick by brick and construct something purposeful”: HC while arranging counselling for same-sex couple and parents: https://bit.ly/31Wpwgd

♦ Ker HC | ‘Ensure ‘no double voting by any voter’; HC directs Election Commission of India to be on war footing to ensure fair and democratic election: https://bit.ly/3rOcH1E

Tribunal

♦ CCI | No ‘opt-out’ option for WhatsApp users in the 2021 Update. Why? Data Sharing with Facebook, Unilateral terms and more. Read CCI’s take on WhatsApp’s conduct in the garb of the policy update: https://bit.ly/39DeG2N


Legislation Updates

♦ Extension of Last Date for Linking Aadhaar number with PAN from March 31, 2021 to June 30, 2021 : https://bit.ly/31GsfKf

♦ Finance Act, 2021 : https://bit.ly/3sSjcC4

Copyright (Amendment) Rules, 2021: https://bit.ly/2Px5oOP

♦ Insurance (Amendment) Act, 2021: https://bit.ly/2R4tiSo


Did you check out the 3rd Episode yet? If not, here’s the link:

SCC Online Weekly Rewind Volume 1 Episode 3

 

NewsWeekly Rewind

The third episode, featuring our Associate Editor Nilufer Bhateja, has brought significant judgments delivered by the Supreme Court and High Courts last week, along with legislation updates and fact check.

Supreme Court

♦ Justice NV Ramana to be the 48th Chief Justice of India https://bit.ly/3tQ9bp7

♦ Andhra CM Jagan Mohan Reddy’s complaint against Justice Ramana dismissed https://bit.ly/3tLUhAf

♦ Indian Army’s evaluation criteria for Women SSC Officers arbitrary https://bit.ly/2P2Kc3f

♦ FIR against Shillong Times Editor Patricia Mukhim quashed https://bit.ly/31nrVjs

♦ Loan Moratorium Case| Supreme Court says no to total waiver of interest and extension of moratorium period but directs full waiver of compound interest – https://bit.ly/3tT9cJ3

♦ Tata-Mistry Row| Cyrus Mistry’s removal as Chairman upheld https://bit.ly/2Pe88AH


High Courts

♦ Mad HC | Constitutional Validity of S. 60(c) of Representation of the People Act 1951 https://bit.ly/3fcJqep

♦ Madras HC | Wear masks; maintain social distancing norms at all political gatherings: HC to candidates and political parties in election-bound State of Tamil Nadu https://bit.ly/3vZEfo5

♦ Madras HC | Society still grappling to come to terms with same-sex orientation: HC orders protection and in-chamber hearing https://bit.ly/39fLpLh

♦ P&H HC | Contractual live-in relationship has no recognition in law https://bit.ly/3cmMgMl  


Legislation Updates

♦ Mines and Minerals (Development and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2021 passed by Rajya Sabha https://bit.ly/3cpMvWH

♦ Insurance (Amendment) Act 2021 receives President’s assent https://bit.ly/39j9Nf7

♦ National Capital Territory of Delhi Laws (Special Provisions) Second (Amendment) Bill, 2021 Passed https://bit.ly/3crMOQO

♦ Parliament passes Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (Amendment) Bill, 2021 https://bit.ly/39mJUuZ 

♦  Medical Termination of Pregnancy (Amendment) Act, 2021 receives President’s assent https://bit.ly/39kxjZ9


Read More:​

SCC Online Weekly Rewind Volume 1 Episode 2

Legislation UpdatesStatutes/Bills/Ordinances

Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation (Amendment) Ordinance, 2021

President promulgates Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation (Amendment) Ordinance, 2021.

Amendment of Section 13

In Section 13 of the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019, after the words “in article 239A”, the words “or any other article containing reference to elected members of the Legislative Assembly of the State” shall be inserted.

Amendment of Section 88

Section 88 (2) to (6), the following sub-sections shall be substituted:

“(2) The members of the Indian Service, Indian Police Service and Indian Forest Service for the existing cadre of Jammu and Kashmir, shall be borne and become part of the Arunachal Pradesh, Goa, Mizoram and Union territories cadre, and all future allocations of All India Services Officers for the Union territory of Jammu and Kashmir and UT of Ladakh shall be made to Arunachal Pradesh, Goa, Mizoram and Union territories cadre for which necessary modifications may be made in corresponding cadre allocation rules by the Central Government.

(3) The officers so borne or allocated on Arunachal, Goa, Mizoram and Union territories cadre shall function in accordance with rules framed by the Central Government.


Ministry of Law and Justice

[Ordinance dt. 07-01-2020]

Legislation UpdatesRules & Regulations

Central Consumer Protection Authority (Allocation and Transaction of Business) Regulations, 2020

In exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (1) and clause (b) of sub-section (2) of Section 104 read with sub-section (1) of Section 14 of the Consumer Protection Act, 2019 (35 of 2019), the Central Consumer Protection Authority, with the previous approval of the Central Government, hereby makes the following regulations, namely:– Central Consumer Protection Authority (Allocation and Transaction of Business) Regulations, 2020.

The said regulations shall lay down the regulations under the following heads:

  • Definitions
  • Procedure for transaction and allocation of business
  • Manner and form in which contracts may be executed
  • Affixation of Common Seal
  • Reimbursement
  • Effect of any irregularity of procedure

Read the detailed notification here: NOTIFICATION


Central Consumer Protection Authority

[Notification dt. 13-08-2020]

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Delhi High Court: Prathiba M. Singh, J., noted that Delhi University has now launched an online portal through which the students can obtain their digital degree certificates.

The above information came after a series of hearings in the matter.

Petitioners’ grievance was that they wished to pursue their post graduate medical education in USA and for the said purpose they required their degree certificates, however the same were not issued by Delhi University on the ground that the contract with printer had expired.

Court on 23-07-2020 had directed DU to come up with a protocol for issuance of digital degree certificates. On 4th August, Court appointed a committee for the said purpose.

The committee submitted a sample digital degree certificate and on perusal of the Court is satisfied.

Further, the Court added that the digital degree certificates are duly verified by two officials of the DU and digitally signed by the Authorised Officer of the DU, hence the same would satisfy the petitioners’ purpose.

Bench directed that the digital degree certificates for all the petitioners shall be issued by e-mail on or before 13-08-2020.

Adding to the above, Court noted that DU has now activated the online portal for issuance of digital degree certificates being www.digicerti.du.ac.in, wherein the students have to register themselves and give their details including their academic qualification, name of their college, etc. Upon the same being completed by the students, the digital degree certificates for the students shall be issued within a maximum period of one week, after completing the verification, etc.

Court also directed MEITY/Digilocker and DU to file an affidavit regarding what steps have been taken to ensure that the data is made available to students through DigiLocker.

Another aspect to be looked into by DU is whether mark sheets and transcripts of students can also be issued digitally.

Matter to be listed on 07-09-2020. [Dhritiman Ray v. University of Delhi, 2020 SCC OnLine Del 977, decided on 07-08-2020]


Also Read:

Del HC | “No reason why DU should not adopt technically advanced methods”; Court suggests DU to issue degree certificates online through email

Del HC | Obtaining a degree should have been a cause of celebration, but turned into a nightmare; Court constitutes committee to finalise the process of issuing digital degree certificates to DU students