High Courts Weekly Round-Up
Bombay High Court
The Bombay High Court held that it is the duty of the state to provide free medical assistance to any inmate or prisoner. A division bench of Acting Chief Justice VK Tahilramani and Justice MS Sonak disposed off the petition for parole filed by one Ajaysingh Dahiya and held that the prison authorities and the state will continue to provide necessary medicines, injection and treatment to the petitioner free of cost and if found necessary, the petitioner will be admitted in the hospital.
The High Court recently upheld a provision denying furlough to rape convicts, asserting that “kindness to the convicts does not result in cruelty to the society”
The High Court on Wednesday dismissed Islamic Research Foundation (IRF) founder Zakir Naik’s petition challenging revocation of his passport and also seeking a ‘stay on arrest of the petitioner’
The High Court held that certificate of purchase cannot be conclusive proof of title vis-à-vis joint tenants of a land.
The High Court held that installing CCTV cameras outside somebody’s flat or residence without their consent in order to monitor their daily movement is an invasion of privacy.
Calcutta High Court
The Calcutta High Court held that supervisory jurisdiction is not vested with the Wakf Tribunal, and it cannot assume jurisdiction to pass any direction upon the Board of Wakf to dispose of any pending application before it.
The High Court observed that communication by an advocate about a court order is as good as production of certified copy of the order in question, unless strongly rebutted.
The High Court observed that wrong advice of advocate can be considered as sufficient ground to condone the delay in filing the written statement.
Karnataka High Court
The Karnataka High Court acquitted a murder-case-accused autorickshaw driver who was sentenced to death penalty by the trial court.
The High Court observed that it is not necessary that the offending vehicle must have always exceeded its speed limit or over speeded to constitute ‘rash and negligent’ driving.
Kerala High Court
Ordering a girl to be released from Mahila Mandiram, the Kerala High Court held that a victim/juvenile cannot be stationed in a Children’s Home or in any other such shelter on the ground that there is the possibility of access of the accused to the victim.
In Canara Bank v. Stephen John, the High Court held that the Chief Judicial Magistrate exercising power under Section 14 of the Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest Act, 2002 has no jurisdiction to grant time for payment of the debt due to the secured creditor.
In a case involving a prominent scam in Kerala, wherein case files have gone missing, the High Court of Kerala ordered an inquiry to be conducted by the Registrar (Vigilance) of the court.
Dismissing the plea of a 77-year-old husband, the Kerala High Court observed that DNA test cannot be used as a shortcut to establish infidelity that might have occurred decades ago.
The High Court, in Dr. Abdul Rasheed v. State of Kerala, held that a registering authority cannot impound insufficiently-stamped instruments/documents presented only for registration....
The High Court struck down Section 3(1A) of the Kerala Surcharge on Taxes Act, 1957 (“Act”) for being discriminatory and violative of Articles 301 and 14 of the Constitution. The section levied surcharge of 10 percent on retail chains importing more than 50 percent of the stock from other states and fulfilling other conditions as prescribed under Section 3(1A). The judgment was delivered by Justice PB Suresh Kumar in a batch of writ petitions.
The High Court recently refused to categorize a magazine cover with a woman breastfeeding her baby as obscene, noting that “shocking one’s morals” is an “elusive concept”, and that “one man’s vulgarity is another man’s lyric”
The High Court lamented the disregard of parents’ wishes by children once they attain majority, especially when it comes to marriage, observing that “we as a society err in confusing maturity with majority”
Madhya Pradesh High Court
While dismissing an election petition against a BJP MLA, the Madhya Pradesh High Court observed that mere criticism of a judgment of the high court in public speech will not tantamount to corrupt practice as defined under Section 123 of the Representation of People Act.
The High Court held that criminal proceedings for abetment of suicide cannot be initiated against a teacher if a student committed suicide on feeling humiliated by punishment.
Madras High Court
The Madras High Court held that the Employees Provident Fund Act is a welfare statute and courts have to be cautious that the quasi-judicial functions of the authorities concerned are not hampered or else it will cause undue delay in implementing such welfare schemes in favour of the employees....
The High Court set aside the appointment of Dr PP Chellathurai as Vice-Chancellor of Madurai Kamaraj University. A division bench of Chief Justice Indira Banerjee and Justice M Sundar, while allowing PILs filed by filed by Lionel ntony Raj and Traffic Dr Ramaswamy, on the ground that the proceedings of the search committee are flawed without expressing any opinion on eligibility and noticing that the appointee been dropped/deleted from the criminal case/charge sheet after further investigation.
“For the present, let peace be upon them,” said the High Court bench to those who sent them letters regarding the case of succession to the office of wakf trusts, which was being heard by it. The bench of Justice M Sathyanarayanan and Justice N Seshasayee made this ‘revelation’ of getting letters, while pronouncing the order disposing of various writ petitions pertaining to dispute about succession to office of wakf trusts. The bench, in these cases, held that the civil court has jurisdiction to decide on the successor to the office of the trustee.
The High Court held that any act on the part of the nominee of a religious head of a mutt which undermines his position as a religious head can be a ‘good cause’ of his removal.
The Court recently rejected a plea challenging the appointment of Justice Subramonium Prasad as Additional Judge of the High Court.
Punjab and Haryana High Court
The Punjab and Haryana High Court recently rapped the Haryana Government for its “casual approach” while pursuing an Appeal filed before the Court. The Bench comprising Acting Chief Justice A.K. Mittal and Justice Tejinder Singh Dhindsa noted that the State had filed an application for condonation of 17 days delay in re-filing of the appeal. While the State had submitted that it was rectifying certain objections raised by the Registry, the Court opined that the excuse wasn’t valid enough.
Rajasthan High Court
The Rajasthan High Court recently acquitted a man accused of killing an ox, which is an offence in the state attracting imprisonment up to 10 years..
Sikkim High Court
The Sikkim High Court read down Rule 6 of Sikkim Legislative Assembly (Disqualification on ground of Defection) Rules, 1985, holding that not only a member of the Legislative Assembly but any other person interested is competent to make a reference (petition) to the Speaker for initiating a process of disqualification of a member.
Uttarakhand High Court
The Uttarakhand High Court directed the State Government to ensure that no mining is being undertaken within 10 km from boundaries of national wildlife parks in the State without the approval of the National Wildlife Board.
The High Court on Monday issued a slew of directions to check drug peddling and abuse in the State. The Bench comprising Justice Rajiv Sharma and Justice Lok Pal Singh specifically took note of drug abuse in educational institutions, and directed the State to ensure that a policeman in plain clothes is stationed around each educational institute from 8am to 6pm.
In a slew of directions issued to ensure road safety, the High Court on Monday directed the State to issue directions authorising cancellation of licences of drivers found using cellphones while driving.
On Tuesday, the High court ordered the State to establish a National Law University (NLU) in Uttarakhand within three months, directing it to run the NLU from government buildings or a hired private accommodation until the construction of the campus is complete.
The High Court recently directed the Centre to establish a Regional Bench of Armed Forces Tribunal in the State of Uttarakhand within four months. Till then, the Circuit Bench has been directed to hold proceedings at Nainital every month.
The High Court on Thursday directed the State to ensure that all stray dogs are shifted from the streets to shelter homes within a period of six months.
The Court quashed Master Plan for Mussoorrie & Dehradun which was notified by the state without seeking approval from the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India.
The High Court directed the State to register FIRs against those responsible for the alleged misappropriation of funds allocated for toilet construction for BPL families in Dehradun district under the Swachh Bharat Mission.
The High Court recently allowed a wife’s plea for divorce on the ground of cruelty, noting that the husband had repeatedly taken loans on the wife’s name knowing well that she had no source of income, and had failed to repay them, putting her in trouble.