Kerala High Court
Case BriefsHigh Courts

Kerala High Court: N. Nagaresh, J., directed the Geologist of Department of mining & geology, Manjeri to release wrongfully seized vehicles of the petitioners which were seized alleging illegal trafficking of granite stones.

The petitioners, a father, and a son, are owners of the vehicles which were seized by the Station House Officer, alleging that the vehicles were illegally transporting granite stones from a granite crusher without having valid passes.

On the contrary, the petitioners contended that they were holding valid Electronic Mineral Transit Passes issued by the Geologist on the date of seizure which made the continued seizure of the vehicles illegal and unwarranted.

The petitioners alleged that though they had submitted representations before the Geologist, Department of mining & geology, Manjeri, no steps had been taken to release the vehicles, and the continued detention would damage the vehicles and put the petitioners in untold difficulties.

Contesting the petition, the State contended that when the vehicles were seized, the drivers did not show any Mineral Transit Passes and it was in such circumstances that the vehicles were seized.

The Court noted that the vehicles were seized on 28-07-2022 at 11.00 a.m while the Mineral Transit Passes issued by the Geologist indicated that the Passes were generated at 10.19 a.m and 10.23 a.m respectively on 28-07-2022. Therefore, the Court held that the vehicles had valid Mineral Transit Passes at the time of seizure and the detention of the vehicles was unwarranted.

Accordingly, the writ petition is disposed of directing the Geologist was directed to release the vehicles of the petitioners forthwith, after obtaining an undertaking from the petitioner that the vehicles will not be alienated pending the proceedings and will be produced as and when required.

[Stephen Rodrigues v. Geologist, 2022 SCC OnLine Ker 4001, decided on 08-08-2022]

Advocates who appeared in this case :

K. Aboobacker Sidheeque, Advocate, for the Petitioner;

G.P. Syamanthak B S, Advocate, for the Respondents.

*Kamini Sharma, Editorial Assistant has put this report together.

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Bombay High Court: While partly allowing the appeal wherein a passenger sustained injuries in an untoward incident, Sandeep K. Shinde, J., expressed that, Railway Claim Tribunal, shall proceed to grant compensation to the appellants in terms of Rule 3 of the Rules, 1990, after verifying the medical evidence produced by the appellant in support of his claim.

Appellant’s application under Section 16 of the Railway Claims Tribunal Act, 1987, wherein compensation was claimed for injuries sustained due to an accidental fall from the train carrying passengers, but the same was rejected by the Railways Claims Tribunal. Hence the present appeal was filed.

Respondents had opposed the claim contending that, the appellant had sustained injuries due to his own act and negligence and therefore claim was not admissible in absence of “untoward incident” within the meaning of Section 123(c) of the Act of 1989.

Tribunal had observed that the appellant was not the bonafide passenger as he was carrying and possessing the valid ‘Pass’ and journey extension tickets, for want of an identity card, the season ticket could not have been held valid and therefore applicant was a passenger travelling without a ticket.

Analysis and Decision

High Court expressed that the appellant was travelling in the passenger train with a valid and proper season ticket with journey extension tickets and the said fact was not in dispute.

Whether, for want of identity card, season ticket, carried and possessed by applicant-passenger, was invalid, and as such, was not “Bonafide Passenger”?

In Court’s opinion, for more than one reason, non-production of the Identity Card alongwith the season ticket by a passenger, who had sustained injury due to accidental fall, itself would not render valid season ticket, invalid.

“Passenger producing proper season ticket without, identity card, ipso-facto, would not render season ticket, improper and/or invalid, unless, it is proved that passenger was using season ticket, that was issued in the name of another person.”

Therefore, in the opinion of the Bench, the appellant was a “bonafide passenger”.

Whether appellant had sustained injuries in “untoward incident” within the meaning of Section 123C (2) of the Railways Act, 1989?

High Court held that the finding recorded by the Tribunal that the appellant had not sustained injuries in “untoward incident”, but suffered “self-inflicted injuries”, was erroneous and therefore the same was quashed and set aside.

High Court held that the compensation sought was in respect of the injuries sustained by the appellant in an “untoward incident” and the Railway Claim Tribunal shall proceed to grant compensation to the appellants in terms of Rule 3 of the Rules, 1990, after verifying the medical evidence produced by the appellant in support of his claim. [Harish Chandra Damodar Gaikwad v. Union of India, 2022 SCC OnLine Bom 1072, decided on 24-5-2022]

Advocates before the Court:

Mr. Mohd. Hasain, Advocate for the appellant.

Mr. T.J. Pandian a/w. Mr. Dheer Sampat, Advocate for the respondent.

Case BriefsHigh Courts

Madhya Pradesh High Court: The Division Bench of Mohammad Rafiq, CJ., and Atul Sreedharan, J., decided over a writ petition which was filed by the petitioner contending that the respondents/State authorities may be required to consider the applications of the advocates who were practicing lawyers at Bhopal, their associate advocates and their clerks to issue them passes to visit their office as they are required to appear not only before the High Court but also before different Courts and Tribunals located at Bhopal city, by virtual mode.

Counsel for the petitioner Mr Ajay Gupta placed reliance on the order of Sunil Gupta v. State of M.P., W.P. No.9185 of 2021, order dated 03-05-2021. Mr Swapnil Ganguly, Advocate General submitted that this Court in the case of Sunil Gupta had required the advocate(s) to apply through the respective Bar Associations at Jabalpur, Indore and Gwalior because the said petition was filed for the benefit of the advocates practicing in the High Court at these places. As regards the other advocates, liberty may be given to them to directly make an application to the District Magistrate concerned or any other authorised officer, along with ID proof for the purpose.

This Court in the Sunil Gupta case had ordered that,

“Having regard to the statement made by the learnedGovernment Advocate, instead of keeping this writ petition pending, we dispose of the same with liberty to the advocate(s) concerned to apply to the District Magistrate of Jabalpur, Indore and Gwalior, through the respective Bar Associations, for passes of the advocates, their juniors and advocate’s clerks, to enable them to attend their offices during the ongoing lockdown/Corona curfew, for the specified routes, from their residence to office and vice versa, who shall do the needful in that regard as warranted in law.”

The Court directed that any practicing advocate located anywhere in any district headquarters of the State may apply for passes for himself or his associate/junior advocates or his clerks, for visiting office from the residence and vice versa, during the ongoing lockdown/Corona curfew, which shall be considered by the competent Authority in accordance with law, for doing needful in that regard as warranted in law.

[Siddharth Singh v. State of Madhya Pradesh, 2021 SCC OnLine MP 901, decided on 07-05-2021]

Suchita Shukla, Editorial Assistant has put this report together