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High Courts Weekly Roundup [October 18, 2021 To October 24, 2021]

25 Oct 2021 4:15 AM GMT
High Courts Weekly Roundup [October 18, 2021 To October 24, 2021]

Allahabad High Court 1. Hathras Gang Rape Case- Allahabad HC To Conclude Hearing On Quantum Of Damages To Victim's Family On Nov 25, 26 [Suo-Moto Inre: Right To Decent & Dignified Last Rites/Cremation] The High Court fixed November 25 as the date on which it would conclude hearing on the question of quantum of compensation to be given to the family of the Hathras gangrape...

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Allahabad High Court

1. Hathras Gang Rape Case- Allahabad HC To Conclude Hearing On Quantum Of Damages To Victim's Family On Nov 25, 26 [Suo-Moto Inre: Right To Decent & Dignified Last Rites/Cremation]

The High Court fixed November 25 as the date on which it would conclude hearing on the question of quantum of compensation to be given to the family of the Hathras gangrape and murder victim. This order by the Bench of Justice Rajan Roy and Justice Jaspreet Singh came after the Assistant Solicitor General, in pursuance of the Court's September 24 order, submitted certain Government Orders and Notifications before the bench pertaining to various schemes/benefits to the victim's family under the SC/ST Act.

2. Mainpuri Girl's Death Case- Allahabad HC Orders Personal Presence Of State DGP If DNA Test Reports Aren't Received By Oct 25 [Mahendra Pratap Singh v. State of U.P. through Secretary (Home) and 2 others]

The High Court expressed its dissatisfaction with the Uttar Pradesh Police ongoing probe into the death of a 16-year-old girl from Mainpuri who was found hanged in her school in the year 2019. Essentially, in terms of the order passed by the Court on September 16, 2021, the State's counsel produced two copies of the status report regarding the investigation being carried out in the case in hand.

3. Whether UP Govt Wants To Establish Forensic Lab At All Commissionary HQ In State For Speedy Criminal Probe?: Asks Allahabad HC [Ambesh Kumar And Another v. State Of U.P. And 4 Others]

The High Court asked the Uttar Pradesh Government as to whether it wants to establish a forensic lab at all Commissionary headquarters in the State of Uttar Pradesh in order to facilitate fair, proper, and speedy investigation and fair and speedy trial. The Court has called for a reply from the UP Government in view of the fact that several persons are approaching the Court seeking direction for testing of samples and submission of the forensic reports which were collected one or two years ago.

4. Stop 'Fraudulent' Practice Of Recovering Late Fee Imposed On Colleges By Universities From Students: Allahabad HC Directs UP Govt [Ram Avatar Kalyani Devi Kanya Mahavidyalay Thru Manager &Ors]

The High Court directed the Uttar Pradesh Government to take appropriate steps to stop the fraudulent practice being adopted by the colleges of recovering, late fees, penalties imposed upon them by the universities, from their students. The Bench of Justice Vivek Chaudhary pointed towards the fraud being played by a large number of colleges by recovering late fees and penalties from their students even though the same is imposed by the Universities upon the colleges, and not on the students.

5. "Victim Was Mercilessly Butchered; Lady Folk Not A Commodity To Be Used In Such Fashion": Allahabad HC Denies Bail To Gang-Rape Accused [Vashu v. State Of Up And 2 Others]

The High Court denied bail to a Gang-Rape accused while noting that the accused was involved in the September 2020 incident, wherein the rape victim's body was "mercilessly butchered and mashed by primitive homo sapiens" (sic). Importantly, stressing that the lady folk is not a commodity to be used in such a fashion, the Bench of Justice Rahul Chaturvedi rejected the bail application noting that the offence allegedly committed by the accused deserved no sympathy in a civilized society.

Bombay High Court

1. NCB Case Entirely Based On Inadmissible 'Voluntary' Statements & WhatsApp Chats : Aryan Khan's Bail Plea Before Bombay HC

In the application seeking bail in the cruise ship drugs case, Aryan Shahrukh Khan has told the Bombay High Court that the entire case of the Narcotics Control Bureau is based on "voluntary" statements given under Section 67 of the NDPS Act, which are inadmissible in evidence as per last year's Supreme Court judgment in the Tofan Singh case.

2. Bhima Koregaon Violence: Bombay High Court Grants NIA Time To Respond In Anand Teltumbde's Bail Appeal

The High Court granted the National Investigation Agency (NIA) two weeks to respond to Dalit scholar Anand Teltumbde's bail appeal. A division bench of Justice NJ Jamdar and Justice Sarang Kotwal granted NIA time and adjourned the case after two weeks. Teltumbde has filed two petitions; the first is an appeal against the special court's order rejecting his bail application and the second is a petition challenging the constitutional validity of certain provisions of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.

3. Merely Abusing Complainant Does Not Constitute Offence U/s 504 IPC; Intention To Provoke Him To Break Public Peace Necessary: Bombay HC [Subhash Mishrilal Jain v. Laxman Kondiba Aswar]

The Nagpur Bench of the High Court in a judgment has held that a mere allegation that the accused abused the complainant does not itself satisfy the ingredients of offence under section 504 of IPC. Section 504 speaks of 'Intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of the peace'.

The Bench of Justice Rohit B. Deo observed that in the present case, the material on record does not disclose the ingredients of section 504 IPC and therefore quashed the order of issuance of process under this provision.

4. Arbitral Tribunal Can't Pass Ex-Parte Ad-Interim Order; Arbitration Act Mandates Advance Notice : Bombay High Court [Godrej Properties Ltd V/s. Goldbricks Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd.]

An arbitration tribunal cannot pass an ex-parte order on the mere filing of an interim application as the Arbitration and Conciliation Act of 1996 mandates sufficient advance notice for any hearing, the High Court has held. Justice GS Kulkarni observed that a combined reading of Sections 18,19 and 24 (2) of the Act requires all parties to be treated fairly at all stages. Also, the tribunal should give them adequate/ sufficient opportunity to present their case, including a chance to be heard at the time of ad-interim orders.

5. PMC Bank Fraud Case: Bombay High Court Rejects Rakesh Wadhwan's Medical Bail Plea; Says He's Receiving Best Possible Treatment In Govt Hospital

The High Court rejected Housing Development Infrastructure Ltd (HDIL) promoter Rakesh Wadhwan's medical bail plea. He is accused of money laundering in the multi-crore Punjab and Maharashtra Co-operative (PMC) Bank Ltd fraud case. Wadhwan claimed that he should be released for further treatment, possibly a bypass if required, as medical facilities in the government hospital were not up to the mark.

Calcutta High Court

1. No Immediate Possibility Of Appeal Being Heard': Calcutta HC Suspends Sentence Of Two Convicts Who Had Been In Custody For Over 10 Years [Chand Swadagar & Anr v. State of West Bengal]

The High Court suspended the sentence of imprisonment imposed on two convicts on the ground that there lies no possibility of their appeals being heard within a reasonable time. The Court also took into consideration that the convicts had already been in custody for over 10 years and had also shown satisfactory conduct during custody.

Delhi High Court

1. "Traceability Clause Of IT Rules Reasonable, Govt Expects Platforms To Use Mechanism That Guards Encryption, Protects User Privacy": Centre Tells Delhi HC [Whatsapp LLC v. Union of India]

While defending the validity of traceability provision under Rule 4(2) of the Information Technology Rules, 2021, the Centre informed the High Court that the Government expects platforms to use a mechanism that guards encryption and protects user's privacy. It stated that it is the duty of the platforms to evolve a mechanism and modify their existing architecture to ensure compliance to the Indian laws.

Additionally, it stated that WhatsApp collects users' person information and shares it with Facebook and other third parties for commercial purposes and hence, they are not legally entitled to claim that it protects privacy.

2. World Bank Not A Govt Agency Within Article 12 Of Constitution: Delhi High Court [A2Z Infraservices Ltd & Anr. v. NDMC]

The High Court has held that the World Bank is not a 'Government agency' for the purposes of Article 12 of the Constitution, which defines "State" and "other authorities". A Division Bench of Justices Vipin Sanghi and Jasmeet Singh observed that to be a government agency, a body must be under "pervasive and actual control" of the Government of India. It also observed that the principle of Principal and Agent would be attracted in such a case.

3. "Rape Has Ability To Destroy Whole Personality Of Survivor": Delhi High Court Denies Bail To Man Accused Of Raping His Daughter In Law [Ahsan Ali v. State]

Observing that the act of rape has the ability to scar the mental psyche and destroy the entire personality of the survivor, the Delhi High Court has denied bail to a 65 years old man accused of raping his own daughter in law. Justice Subramonium Prasad denied bail and observed thus: "Rape is not merely a physical assault; it is often destructive of the whole personality of the survivor. The act of rape has the ability to scar the mental psyche of the survivor and this trauma can persist for years."

4. Herbal Hukkahs: Delhi High Court Directs Police Not To Harass Restaurant Owners Unnecessarily; Allows Random Checks [Breathe Fine Lounge And Bar v. GNCTD; MS Tos Through Its Director v. GNCTD & ANR.]

The High Court has directed the city police not to harass owners of restaurants and bars that serve herbal hukkahs. The Court has however permitted the police to conduct random checks as and when necessary, in case of complaints or other circumstances.

The development comes following the stand taken by petitioners that they are willing to serve herbal hukkahs only in open spaces by using disposable pipes.

5. "Govt Cannot Show Lackadaisical Approach To Court Orders": Delhi High Court
Seeks Personal Appearance Of Secy. To Ministry Of Culture
[Harvir Singh v. Central Bureau of Investigation and Ors]

Anguished by constant non-compliance of its orders, the Delhi High Court has recently sought personal appearance of Secretary of the Ministry of Culture in a case raising 'serious allegations' against the Government Officers. Justice Subramonium Prasad observed, "This Court is aware of that it is not proper to summons Senior Officers to the Court. But at the same time the Government cannot show a lackadaisical approach to the orders of the Court and disobey orders of this Court."

Also Read: Delhi HC Cautions Labour Courts Over Unwarranted Summoning Of Senior Officials, Especially In Cases Where Determination Is Yet To Be Made

6. ICC Men's T20 World Cup: Delhi High Court Restrains 'Rogue Websites' From Infringing Star India's Broadcasting Rights [Star India Pvt. Ltd. And Anr. V. Filmyclub.Wapkiz.Com And Ors.]

The High Court has granted interim injunction in favour of Star India Pvt. Ltd., restraining certain 'rogue websites' from streaming, broadcasting or sharing through the internet the ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2021. Star India claims to have acquired exclusive global media rights for various ICC events from the International Cricket Council for a duration of eight years i.e., from 2015–2023.

7. "Camps Illegal, Encroached On Defence Land": Centre Tells Delhi High Court In Pakistani Hindu Migrants' Plea For Electricity Connection [Hariom v. State (NCT of Delhi)]

The Central Government informed the High Court that Pakistani Hindu Migrants, seeking electricity connection at their camps in North Delhi, are living on the land belonging to the Defence Ministry. Stating that the migrants have encroached the Ministry's land and that their plea is misconceived, the Government seeks dismissal in-limine.

It has submitted thus: "…not only the answering respondent not the competent authority to provide electric connections or provide any assistance of any sort to migrants, but also in view of the illegal encroachment the petition is not misconceived and frivolous and deserves to be dismissed in-limine."

8. Delhi High Court Issues Directions To Ensure That Custody Of An Undertrial Prisoner Is Not Extended Mechanically

The High Court issued slew of directions to ensure that the custody of an undertrial is not extended mechanically in view of sec. 167(2) of Cr.P.C. and also to ensure that the rights of undertrial prisoners to seek default bail are not defeated despite legislative mandate and the principles of law. Justice Manoj Kumar Ohri also observed that the order of remanding an undertrial or its extension is held to be a judicial function requiring due application of mind.

The Court directed that while extending the custody of an undertrial prisoner, the Magistrate/concerned Court shall not mechanically extend the period of custody for the maximum period of 15 days as prescribed under sec. 167(2) of CrPC.

Access full report to read directions.

9. Citizens Can't Be Made To Travel Through Difficult Areas To Get Subsidized Food Grains: Delhi HC Orders Opening Of Fair Price Shop In Vicinity [Beena Devi & Ors. V. Shri Vijay Kumar Dev & Ors.]

"It is in the interest of the State to ensure that citizen do not have to chart their ways through difficult areas simply to get food-grains at subsidised prices," the Delhi High Court observed last week. Justice Najmi Waziri was dealing with a contempt case regarding non-compliance of an earlier order passed by the Court wherein the Delhi Government and others were directed to re-examine the feasibility of opening of a Fair Price Shop for convenience in a residential area in Delhi's Baprola.

Other developments:

Gujarat High Court

1. We Are Getting A Lot Of Sick Notes Everyday From Advocates, Need To Evolve A Mechanism For It: Gujarat High Court [Pragteshwar Seva Trust v. State Of Gujarat]

The High Court's Chief Justice-led bench today observed that a lot of sick notes were being received from the advocates by the Court every day and that there was a need to evolve a mechanism for the same. The Bench of Chief Justice Aravind Kumar and Justice Mauna M. Bhatt observed thus when it was informed to the Court that an advocate had filed a sick note with the consent of the other side and therefore, it was prayed that the matter be listed for some other day.

2. Ready To Sit Even On Sunday To Hear Matters: Gujarat High Court's Chief Justice Aravind Kumar

The newly appointed Chief Justice of the Gujarat High Court, Justice Aravind Kumar today said that he is ready to come to Court even on a Sunday to hear the matters. "We are ready to come even on Sunday," said the Chief Justice when a lawyer sought accommodation before his court and he directed the re-listing of the matter on 20th November and he was told that 20th is a Saturday.

Essentially, when the lawyer prayed for the accommodation, the bench first listed the matter for hearing on 19th November, however, when the bench was told that 19th is a holiday, CJ directed to list the matter on 20th November, a Saturday.

Gauhati High Court

1. Magazine's Editor, Photographer Accused Of Publishing Goddess Durga's 'Distorted' Image Granted Interim Protection By Gauhati High Court [Maini Mahanta And Anr v. State of Assam]

The High Court last week granted interim Anticipatory Bail to 'Nandini' magazine's editor, Maini Mahanta and its photographer, Unique Borah who have been accused of publishing a symbolic image of Goddess Durga in a distorted form. The FIR in the instant case had been filed by M. Kailash, President, and Apan Choudhury, General Secretary of Pragjyotishpur Aikya Sangha Hojai District Youth Committee accusing Mahanta and Borah of hurting the sentiments of the Hindus.

Also Read: Gauhati High Court Grants Bail To Man Accused Of Creating 'Communal Atmosphere' Through FB Post On 'Assam Agitation'

Jammu& Kashmir and Ladakh High Court

1. J&K&L HC Denies Bail To POCSO Accused On Alleged Crime Of Abetment To Suicide & Sexual Assault On Promise To Marry [Ranjit Singh v. Union Territory of J&K ]

The High Court dismissed the bail application of an accused charged with abetment of suicide and sexual assault on a minor girl. Justice Javed Iqbal Wani refused to consider the general contention made by the accused-petitioner that there is no direct evidence connecting him with the commission of the alleged offence. In rejecting the said contention, it relied on the Supreme Court judgment in the case of Neeru Yadav vs. State of Uttar Pradesh and Another (2014).

Jharkhand High Court

1. Jharkhand High Court Extends 'No Coercive Action' Order Till December 7 In Defamation Case Against Rahul Gandhi [Rahul Gandhi v. State of Jharkhand and Anr.]

The Court extended the order of 'no coercive steps' against Congress leader Rahul Gandhi till December 7, in connection with a defamation case filed against him for his alleged statement, "why all thieves share the Modi surname".

The Bench of Justice Sanjay Kumar Dwivedi extended the life of the High Court's order passed on February 27, 2020, directing that no coercive steps be taken against Gandhi in connection with the defamation case filed against him before a Ranchi Court.

Karnataka High Court

1. Yogesh Gowda Murder: Karnataka High Court Upholds Transfer Of Case To CBI [Basavaraj Shivappa Muttagi v. State of Karnataka]

The Court dismissed a batch of petitions including that filed by former State Minister Vinay Kulkarni, challenging entrustment of the 2016 Yogesh Gowda Murder Case to CBI for further investigation. Yogesh Gowda was a member of the Dharwad Zilla Panchayat. He was allegedly killed in Dharwad by unidentified bike riders on June 15, 2016. Kulkarni is one of the accused in the case. In September 2019, the BJP-led Karnataka Government had issued an order, permitting CBI to carry out further investigation in the case.

Upholding the same, a division bench of Justice B. Veerappa and Justice N S Sanjay Gowda said, "By careful perusal of the provisions of Section 173(8) of the Code of Criminal Procedure, it is clear that it does not prohibit the Police from conducting further investigation nor does it impinge on the power of the State Government to entrust the matter to CBI for further investigation under Section 6 of Delhi Special Police Establishment Act (DSPE), 1946."

2. Un-Remarried Ex-Wife Incapable Of Maintaining Herself Has Right To Maintenance Beyond Iddat Period: Karnataka High Court [Ezazur Rehman v. Saira Banu]

The Court has held that a Muslim man is duty-bound to make provision for his ex-wife's maintenance beyond iddat period, despite paying Mehr, if she remains un-remarried and is incapable of maintaining herself.

Justice Krishna S Dixit said, "Marriage amongst Muslims begins with the contract and graduates to the status as it ordinarily does in any other community; this very status gives rise to certain justiciable obligations...such a marriage dissolved by divorce, per se does not annihilate all the duties & obligations of parties by lock, stock & barrel; in law, new obligations too may arise, one of them being the circumstantial duty of a person to provide sustenance to his ex-wife who is destituted by divorce."

3. Karnataka High Court Directs State To Comply With SC Directions Barring Installation Of Statues On Public Roads, Pavements [Akhila Bharata Kshatriya Mahasabha v. State Of Karnataka]

The Court has directed the State Government to ensure compliance with the directions of the Supreme Court barring installation of statues or construction of any structure in public roads, pavements, sideways and other public utility places. A division bench of then Acting Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Sachin Shankar Magadum in their order dated September 7 said,

"The Hon'ble Supreme Court has categorically directed the State Governments not to grant any permission for installation of any statue or construction of any structure in public roads, pavements, sideways and other public utility places and therefore, on account of the order passed by the Hon'ble Supreme Court, the question of permitting the State Government and the Mysure Mahanagara Palike to install the statue does not arise."

4. Karnataka High Court Denies Relief To Priest Who Performed Last Rites On Dead Body Outside Church In Violation Of Covid-19 Norms [Rev. Elish Kumar v. State of Karnataka]

The Court refused to quash the criminal case registered against a Church priest in Mysuru, for allegedly violating Covid-19 norms while performing last rites over a dead body.

It is alleged that priest's action of performing last rites outside the church attracted a large gathering amid Covid induced lockdown. The counsel for the petitioner argued that there was no gathering, that the deceased tested negative for COVID-19 and that actually all the rituals were conducted in the presence of corporation officials.

5. Take Prompt Action Against Unauthorized Hoardings, Ads Of Politicians At Public Places & In Govt. Projects: Karnataka High Court Tells State [H M Venkatesh v. State of Karnataka]

The Court directed the State government to take prompt action for removal of unauthorized advertisements, hoardings, display boards of political functionaries and political leaders and also to remove photographs of political persons in respect of government projects.

A division bench of then Acting Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Sachin Shankar Magadum said, "The respondent State is directed to ensure that in future also, no display boards, unauthorized advertisements, hoardings at public places as well as in respect of various Government projects are displayed in future. The Government is directed to take prompt action in the matter keeping in view the Circular and the orders passed by the Hon'ble Supreme Court in W.P.(Civil) Nos.13/2003, 197/2004 and 302/2012 (Common Cause vs. Union of India)."

6. Action Taken Against Police Officials Who Interrogated School Kids Over Anti-CAA Drama, Karnataka HC Told [Nayana Jyothi Jhawar v. State of Karnataka]

The State Government orally informed the Court that action has been taken against delinquent police officials who were seen (in photographs submitted to the court) wearing their uniforms and carrying weapons, during the interrogation of children with regard to the sedition case on staging of an anti-CAA drama at Shaheen Education Society in Bidar last year.

Chief Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi and Justice Sachin Shankar Magdum in its order recorded that "AGA on the basis of instructions submitted that action has already been taken against the erring police officers and circular has been issued by the Director General of Police, to all police stations, that in future there will be strict compliance to the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Model Rules, 2016."

7. Karnataka High Court To Hear Next Week Challenge To Online Gambling Ban [All India Gaming Federation V. State Of Karnataka]

The Court said it would on October 27th hear a batch of petitions filed challenging the Constitutional validity of the Karnataka Police (Amendment) Act 2021, by which the state government has banned all online gambling and betting, and provide maximum imprisonment of three years and penalty upto Rs 1 lakh for violation of the provisions.

Justice Krishna S Dixit while hearing the petition filed by the ALL INDIA GAMING FEDERATION, orally directed the state government to instruct the police to not take any action.

8. 'Offence U/S 171H IPC Can Only Be Done By A Person Other Than Election Candidate': Karnataka HC Sets Aside Case Against BJP Leader Karunakarareddy [Karunakarareddy v. State of Karnataka]

The Court has quashed and set aside the criminal case registered against BJP leader, Karunakarareddy for conducting an election program and holding a public meeting in 2018, within the premises of Chowdeshwari Temple without written permission from the Election Commission. Karunakarareddy was the BJP Assembly Candidate from Harapanahalli Taluk, Davanagere.

A single bench of Justice S. Sunil Dutt Yadav held, "Clearly, the person who is an accused under Section 171H of IPC would be a person other than the candidate. In light of the same and in light of the only offence being made out in the charge sheet is Section 171H of IPC, the case against petitioner No.1 as regards the offence under Section 171H of IPC cannot be permitted to be continued as Section 171H of IPC would not apply as regards the petitioner No.1."

9. State's Survey Of Christian Churches Affronts The 'Secular Fabric'; Says PIL Challenging Letter By Directorate Of Minorities, Karnataka HC To Hear On Monday [People Union For Civil Liberties And State Of Karnataka]

The Court will on October 25th hear a petition filed challenging the communication issued by the State government dated July 7, seeking to collect information about churches in the state.

A division bench of Chief Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi and Justice Sachin Shankar Magadum directed the counsel for petitioner People's Union For Civil Liberties to furnish the translation copy of Annexures-A to C of the petition and posted the matter for further hearing on October 25.

Kerala High Court

1. Kerala HC Upholds Vaccination Mandate To Enter Colleges; Says Advantages Given To Vaccinated Not Discriminatory [Sanil Narayanan & Ors v. State of Kerala & Ors.]

The Court ruled that although an individual is entitled to the right to refuse medical treatment under the Constitution, such right does not affect the authority of the executive to take measures to restore normalcy amidst a pandemic.

Justice P.B. Suresh Kumar observed so while upholding a Government order and a circular that mandated the students to be vaccinated with at least one dose to be allowed into higher educational institutions and their hostels which re-opened recently.

2. Kerala High Court Prompts State To Publish Guidelines For Medical Professionals In Custodial Torture Cases [Dr. Prathibha K v. State of Kerala & Ors.]

The Court directed the State to expeditiously notify an order clarifying the procedure to be followed by medical professionals while examining accused and under-trial persons for evidence of any manner of custodial torture or injury.

Justice PV Kunhikrishnan directed so upon being informed that the State government had already initiated proceedings to issue a government order to implement to recommendations of the Justice K Narayana Kurup Commission, which had investigated a custodial death that occurred in the State.

Also Read: [ISRO Espionage] Kerala High Court Extends Time Limit On Siby Mathew's Pre-Arrest Bail Order Till 27th November

3. Kerala High Court Directs Expeditious Setting Up Of Detention Centre For Foreign National [Johny Alexander Duran Sola v. State of Kerala & Ors]

The Court ordered a detention centre to be immediately set up for Johny Alexander Duran Sola, an El Salvador citizen who was accused of smuggling cocaine to the State. Justice P.V. Kunhikrishnan directed the authorities to take expeditious steps upon noticing that despite his acquittal in the case, he has been in jail:

"The authority concerned should take the necessary steps to see that another temporary detention centre is set up immediately. Meanwhile, the petitioner can continue in the jail with the facility of an A-class prisoner."

4. Foreign Medical Graduates Who Interned In Country Of Study Not Required To Undergo Another Internship In State: Kerala High Court [Sadhiya Siyad v. State of Kerala & Ors.]

The Court has held that a medical graduate from a foreign university who has fulfilled all requisite qualifications as per the norms prevailing in that country to become eligible to be enrolled as a medical practitioner therein, need not undergo another internship in the State to be registered with the State Medical Council to practice Medicine in terms of the Travancore Cochin Medical Practitioners Act, 1953.

Justice P.B. Suresh Kumar directed the State Medical Council to grant permanent registration to the petitioner within two months without insisting her to undergo a compulsory internship when she applies for the same. However, it was clarified that the Council may persuade foreign medical graduates to undergo internship for diseases and treatments peculiar to the State.

5. 'A Very Dangerous Trend': Kerala High Court Cautions Officer With Contempt Charges For Repeatedly Circumventing Its Orders [Ambika P v. Augustine Bernard Monthero]

The Court warned an Assistant Educational Officer of contempt proceedings under Article 215 of the Constitution, for his repeated circumvention from the orders of the Court. Justice Devan Ramachandran pulled up the AEO for proceeding with contempt despite being given several opportunities:

"When this court notices obstinate belligerence from the respondent answering a contempt charge it will certainly have to be taken with the seriousness it deserves".

Also Read: Technical Glitches Not To Hinder Grant Of Tax Refunds: Kerala High Court

6. Plea Before Kerala High Court Assails Part II Of IT Rules, 2021, Says It Exceeds The Bounds Of Delegated Legislation [Praveen Arimbrathodiyil v. Union of India & Anr.]

A petition has been filed in the Court challenging certain provisions of the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021. When the plea came before Justice P.V Kunhikrishnan, the Centre submitted that it was taking steps to file a petition before the Supreme Court in this regard. Accordingly, the matter was directed to be posted when moved again.

The petition was filed by Praveen Arimbrathodiyil, a software developer and a volunteer member of the Free Software Community of India (FSCI) to quash Part II of the Intermediary Rules, 2021, and declare them violative of Articles 14, 19 and 21.

7. COVID-19: Kerala High Court Disposes Plea Challenging Proposal To Give Homeo Immunity Booster To School Kids [Dr Cyriac Abby Philips v Union of India & Ors.]

The Court disposed of a plea challenging the proposal to administer a homoeopathic drug, Arsenicum Album 30CH (Ars. Alb. 30) among school students as a preventive measure against COVID-19 without any study regarding its efficacy or safety.

A Division Bench comprising of Chief Justice S. Manikumar and Justice Shaji P Chaly directed the petitioner to approach the State with a representation in the matter. The State has been directed to dispose of the representation within 10 days of receipt.

Also Read: COVID-19: Doctor Moves Kerala High Court Against Proposal To Give Homeo Medicines As Immunity Booster To School Kids, Calls It 'Inhumane'

8. Only Scrutiny Committee Empowered To Withdraw Community Certificates: Kerala High Court Quashes Tahsildar's Order [Vinod K.S v. State Election Commission & Ors.]

The Court ruled that Tahsildars are not empowered to withdraw or suspend a community certificate issued under the Kerala (Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes) Regulation of Issue of Community Certificate Act, 1996 merely because it is the authority empowered to issue such certificate.

Justice T.R Ravi established that only the Scrutiny Committee constituted under the Act was empowered to conduct an enquiry and thereby cancel community certificates if it was found to have been obtained by fraud.

9. Kerala High Court Dismisses E Bull Jet Vlogger's Plea Challenging Cancellation Of Registration Of His Modified Caravan [Ebin Varghese v. State of Kerala & Ors.]

The Court declined to entertain a writ petition filed by a YouTube vlogger challenging the decision of the Motor Vehicles Department to cancel his vehicle's registration for unauthorized modifications.

Justice Sathish Ninan while dismissing the petition observed in the order: "On the violations alleged and noticed above, I do not find any reason to interfere with e-Challan issued against the petitioner. If the petitioner disputes any of the violations alleged, it is for him to defend the proceedings before the jurisdictional Magistrate's Court."

10. Is Govt Authorized To Manage Affairs Of A Temple? Kerala High Court Asks In Sabarimala Virtual Queue Case [Suo Motu v. Travancore Devaswom Board]

The Court questioned the State and its Police Force if they are empowered to manage the affairs of the Sabarimala temple, overriding the powers of the Travancore Devaswom Board that acts as a trustee of the deity.

A division bench of Justices Anil K Narendran and P.G Ajithkumar was adjudicating upon a PIL challenging the legality of the 'Sabarimala Pilgrim Management System' ('SPMS') implemented by the Kerala Police, alleging that it restricts Darshan in Sabarimala to only those who avail the Virtual Queue Services.

Also Read: 'Violation Of Apex Court Directions Banning Bandh To Be Viewed Seriously': Kerala High Court On Educational Strike

11. Long Queues Outside Liquor Stores Hinder Safe Movement Of Women & Children: Kerala High Court Urges Excise Dept. To Consider Walk-In Shops [My Hindustan Paints v. S. Aanathakrishnan IPS]

The Court urged the Excise Department and BEVCO to start thinking about providing walk-in facilities at liquor outlets, instead of letting people line up in the streets.

Justice Devan Ramachandran while considering a contempt petition orally remarked: "Nobody wants a liquor store next to their residence. This is a fact; there is no point in lying about it. But if liquor stores were like all the other stores with a walk-in facility, it would solve half the problem. The issue is that since these outlets are small and dingy, people line up on the streets, making it impossible for women and children to safely walk through these areas. I don't see why we are burying our heads in the sand; this is happening and we all know it."

12. PIL Before Kerala High Court Alleges Statutory Mechanism Of Consumer Protection Act 2019 Not Fully Implemented In State [CK Mithran v. Union of Indian & Ors.]

A PIL has been filed before the Court alleging that the statutory mechanism and the provisions of the Consumer Protection Act, 2019 are not fully implemented in the State, thereby affecting the rights of the consumers and their right to access to justice.

A Division Bench of Chief Justice S. Manikumar and Justice Shaji P Chaly admitted the plea on Wednesday and posted the matter on 11th November for consideration.

Other Developments:

Madras High Court

1. NEET-UG : Madras HC Permits OCI Candidates To Appear For Counselling In General Category For 2021-22; Says 'Treat At Par With Indian Citizens' [Sadhvi Sreeram v. Govt of India and Ors]

The Court passed an interim order allowing Overseas Citizens of India (OCI) candidates to participate for the NEET-UG counselling in the general category for the year 2021-22 instead of the category reserved for NRIs or foreign nationals.

Justice V. Parthiban passed the direction while taking into consideration that the Supreme Court had passed a similar order on September 30. The judge made a reference to the September 30 order issued by a Bench comprising Justices Abdul Nazeer and Krishna Murari of the Supreme Court

Also Read: Madras High Court Seeks Response From State Gov, DMK On PIL Seeking Compensation For 'False Promises' Made By State Gov On NEET

2. 'Take Stringent Action Against Persons Who Follow Such Inhuman Practice': Madras HC Directs State To Ensure Access To Common Burial Grounds By Marginalised Communities [S Amirthavalli v. The District Collector, Coimbatore and ors]

The Court observed with anguish that the 'loathsome practice' of prohibiting the cremation or burial of persons belonging to marginalized castes in common burial grounds continues in several villages.

Justice N Anand Venkatesh lamented that it is quite unfortunate that even at the time of death, the caste factor does not leave a person.

3. 'Every Endeavour Should Be Made By HR & CE Department To Ensure That Land Belonging To Temples Are Preserved': Madras High Court [Eternal Word Trust v. State of Tamil Nadu]

The Court took on record the affidavit filed by the Joint Commissioner of Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments (HR&CE) department in connection with a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) petition filed against the encroachment of almost 400 acres of land belonging to the Bhaktavatsala Perumal temple at Tirukannamangai in Tiruvarur district.

On the previous date of hearing, a Bench comprising Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and PD Audikesavalu had expressed strong reservations against the 'cavalier manner' in which the counter affidavit by the Joint Commissioner had been filed.

Also Read: Madras High Court Seeks State's Response In Plea Challenging Recruitment Of Only Hindus In HR&CE Educational Institutions

4. 'Matter Pending Consideration Before Committee, Report To Be Furnished Within Next Few Weeks': Madras HC Defers Hearing Of Challenge To Senior Designation Rules [Rangasamy and Ors v. The High Court of Madras]

A public interest litigation (PIL) petition has been filed before the Court challenging the validity of Rules 4(1)(a) and 4(1)(b) of the Madras High Court Designation of Senior Advocates Rules, 2020, which stipulate a minimum age (45 years) and experience criteria for an advocate to be eligible to be designated as a Senior Advocate.

A Bench comprising Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice PD Audikesavalu on Thursday stated that a committee had been constituted after a Full Court meeting to look into the grievance and that the Committee's report is likely to be furnished shortly.

5. Cataloguing Of Captive Elephants In State Completed: Forest Dept. Informs Madras High Court [Rangarajan Narasimhan v. The Chief Secretary and Ors]

The Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (PCCF) on Thursday informed the Madras High Court that the Forest Department has prepared a catalogue of captive elephants in the State.

On the last date of hearing, the Court had ordered that a catalogue of all captive elephants in the State must be made containing video-recordings of all such elephants, together with complete profile of each elephant, including the age, sex, lineage, if possible. The department had also been directed to make every effort to indicate how the elephants came to be captured or domesticated.

6. Magistrate's Order On Impounding Of Leena Manimekalai's Passport Set Aside, Madras High Court Told [Leena Manimekalai v. The Regional Passport Officer]

Filmmaker, poet and civil rights activist Leena Manimekalai's counsel informed the Court that the order of a Magistrate which had directed the Passport Authority to take action on impounding of her passport has been set aside by the Sessions Court on October 20.

The Court was hearing a plea moved by Manimekalai challenging an order passed by the Regional Passport Officer, Chennai, to impound her passport.

7. 'Virtual Mode Of Operation Can Go On Hand In Hand With Physical Mode': Madras High Court Bats For Online Classes, Virtual Courts [Nervazhi Iyakkam Trust v. Union of India]

Observing that the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic has opened up new avenues such as the conduct of online classes for school and college students as well as virtual courts for lawyers and litigants, the Court underscored the need to continue the virtual mode of education for the benefit of stakeholders.

A Bench comprising Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice PD Audikesavalu stated that nodal agencies such the University Grants Commission (UGC) and the All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE) could consider extending online classes in future too especially for those with locomotor disabilities.

Also Read: Plea In Madras High Court Challenges Appointment Of Priests By 'Fit Persons' Instead Of Temple Trustees

8. Prepare Exigency Plan To Ensure Midday Meal Scheme Is Not Stalled During Future Calamities, Pandemic: Madras High Court Directs State Govt [Citizen Consumer And Civic Action Group v. Union of India]

The Court urged the State government to prepare a plan of action to ensure that the Midday Meal Scheme at schools is not disrupted in the event of future natural calamities or disasters such as the COVID-19 pandemic.

A Bench comprising Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice PD Audikesavalu observed, "While it is hoped that the worst is behind us, what the pandemic may have taught humanity is to not take anything for granted and be prepared for the worst. It would do well for the State to prepare a plan of action where, whether there is any natural calamity or disaster or the pandemic or anything which is beyond the everyday difficulty, there is a Plan-B or a Plan-C ready, so that the vulnerable children and young adults do not go without nutritious meals."

Madhya Pradesh High Court

1. MP High Court Raps State Police Dept. For Its Failure To Execute Summons, Warrants Issued Against Police Personnel [Gaurav Yadav Vs. State of M.P.]

The Gwalior Bench rapped the State Police department for its failure to execute bailable warrants/warrants of arrest issued against its own police personnel.

The Court was dealing with the bail application filed by one Gaurav Yadav, charged for robbery (Section 392 IPC) who has been behind the bars for more than four years as the trial in the matter couldn't come to an end due to the non-appearance of the prosecution witnesses, including two policemen.

Punjab & Haryana High Court

1. Look Into The Backlog Of Court Cases In All The Districts: Punjab & Haryana High Court Directs Registrar General Of HC [Ram Dev v. State of Punjab and others]

Observing that pendency before an Amritsar Court is phenomenally on the higher side, the Punjab and Haryana High Court last week directed the Registrar General of the High Court to look into the matter as to whether the pendency is only in the Court concerned or is it the case in every District of the state. The bench of Justice Gurvinder Singh Gill was hearing a plea seeking directions to the court of additional sessions judge in Amritsar district to dispose of the trial in a case registered under Sections 306 and 34 of the IPC within a fixed timeframe.

2. Courts Have To Be Circumspect While Allowing Foreign Travel During Pendency Of Criminal Case: Punjab & Haryana High Court [Daljit Singh Pandher V. State Of Punjab & Ors.]

The High Court last week observed that Courts have to be 'even more circumspect' while granting permission to a person to travel abroad during the pendency of a criminal case against him/her.

The Bench of Justice Manjari Nehru Kaul, however, did underscore that the right of a person to travel admittedly cannot be curtailed. "However, if the person is seeking to travel that too outside India, during the pendency of a criminal case against him, the Court shall have to be even more circumspect while granting any such permission," the Court further added.

Also Read: Punjab & Haryana High Court Makes Verification Of Identity/Address Proof Mandatory Before Filing Of Pleas

3. Menace Of Encroachments On Public Properties Creating Obstructions To Planned Development Of Nation: P&H High Court [Gurmukh Singh v. State of Punjab and others]

The High Court observed that the menace of encroachments on public properties are creeping up day-by-day and creating obstructions to the planned development of the nation.

The Bench of Justice Augustine George Masih and Justice Ashok Kumar Verma observed thus while dealing with a plea filed by one Gurmukh Singh, accused of encroaching upon a common property under the control of Gram Panchayat, Maheru.

4. SC/ST Act Misuse- Don't Register FIR At 3rd Party's Instance Sans Opinion Of District Attorney (Legal): P&H HC Directs Punjab DGP [Bhagwant Singh Randhawa and another v. State of Punjab]

The High Court recently directed the Director-General of Police, Punjab to not register FIR under the SC&ST Act at the instance of a third party unless an opinion is sought from the District Attorney (Legal) that the complainant falls within the definition of the victim as per the SC&ST Act.

The Bench of Justice Arvind Singh Sangwan made the obtaining of legal opinion mandatory while observing that so-called social activists are misusing the provisions of the SC&ST Act.

Telangana High Court

1. 'Infringement Of Right To Life Of Rape Victim Outweighs Right To Life Of Child In Womb': Telangana HC Permits Minor Rape Victim To Abort 26 Week Old Foetus

The Court has permitted a minor rape victim to terminate her 26 week old pregnancy by observing that the life of the foetus or the unborn born child cannot be placed at a higher pedestal than that of the life of the mother.

Justice B Vijaysen Reddy observed, "The dignity, self-respect, healthy living (mental or physical) etc. are facets of right to life and personal liberty enshrined under Article 21 of the Constitution of India, which also include right of a woman to make a choice of pregnancy and terminate pregnancy, in case, where pregnancy is caused by rape or sexual abuse or for that matter unplanned pregnancy, subject to reasonable restrictions under law."

Tripura High Court

1. 'Should Not Become An Epidemic': Tripura HC Directs State To Conduct HIV Tests In Prisons, Ensure Treatment [Court On Its Own Motion v. State of Tripura and Ors]

The Court directed the State government as well as the Union to issue necessary guidelines to its authorities in association with the Aids Control Society in order to curb the spread of HIV virus in prisons across the State.

A Bench comprising appointed Chief Justice Indrajit Mahanty and Justice Subhashish Talapatra took suo moto cognisance of this issue and accordingly directed the Central and State governments to conduct a thorough research of all persons residing in State prisons either as prisoners or as undertrial prisoners who may be inflicted with the HIV virus.

2. Tripura High Court Asks Govt To Form Expert Committee To Assess Condition Of Endangered Karbong Community [Court On Its Own Motion v. State of Tripura and Ors]

The Court took suo motu cognizance of a news report highlighting the plight of Karbong community, said to be on the verge of extinction on account of poor socio-economic conditions.

A Bench comprising newly appointed Chief Justice Indrajit Mahanty and Justice Subhashish Talapatra directed the Central and State governments to conduct a detailed study on the community and submit the findings by way of an affidavit by November 9.

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