High Courts Weekly Roundup [June 21, 2021 To June 27, 2020]

Akshita Saxena & Sparsh Upadhyay

28 Jun 2021 1:19 AM GMT

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  • High Courts Weekly Roundup [June 21, 2021 To June 27, 2020]

    Allahabad High Court 1. Petitions In Allahabad High Court Challenging 'Love Jihad' Ordinance Dismissed As Withdrawn With Liberty To Challenge Act A Bench of Chief Justice Sanjay Yadav and Justice Siddhartha Varma asked the Petitioners challenging the constitutional validity of Uttar Pradesh Prohibition of Unlawful Religious Conversion Ordinance to withdraw their petitions...

    Allahabad High Court

    1. Petitions In Allahabad High Court Challenging 'Love Jihad' Ordinance Dismissed As Withdrawn With Liberty To Challenge Act

    A Bench of Chief Justice Sanjay Yadav and Justice Siddhartha Varma asked the Petitioners challenging the constitutional validity of Uttar Pradesh Prohibition of Unlawful Religious Conversion Ordinance to withdraw their petitions as infructuous, as the Ordinance has been replaced with an Act.

    The Court however issued notice on a PIL filed by the Association for Advocacy and Legal Initiatives through Advocate Vrinda Grover, challenging the Act of 2021. It has directed that the pleadings be completed in the case before the next date. The matter will be listed for arguments in the week commencing August 2nd, 2021.

    Also Read: Allahabad High Court Issues Notice On Plea Challenging Uttar Pradesh 'Love Jihad' Act

    2. 'Prima Facie Raises Important Questions': Allahabad High Court Issues Notice On Pleas Against Demolition Of Gareeb Nawaz Mosque In UP [UP Sunni Central Waqf Board v. State of UP & Ors.]

    A Bench of Justices Saurabh Lavania and Rajan Roy issued notice on a writ petition filed by the Uttar Pradesh Sunni Central Waqf Board, challenging the demolition of the Gareeb Nawaz Mosque in Uttar Pradesh's Barbanki District (Ram Sanehi Ghat area). All the opposite parties have been directed to file their counter affidavit in the matter, positively within 3 weeks. The case is fixed for hearing on July 23.

    It observed that the petitions prima facie raise important questions as to the existence of a Mosque on public utility land. It said that the petition also raises questions with regard to exercise of power by State authorities under Section 133 Cr.P.C. and other related provisions, its scope, especially the allegations of malafide exercise of power and the manner in which it has been done.

    3. Underreporting Of Covid-19 Deaths In Uttar Pradesh: Plea In Allahabad High Court Seeks Death Audits [Ashma Izzat v. State of UP]

    A Division Bench of Justices Ritu Raj Awasthi and Dinesh Kumar Singh at Lucknow has relegated a PIL seeking audit of number of Covid-19 deaths in Uttar Pradesh, to bust the state's under-reporting regime, to the Chief Justice's Bench at Allahabad that is dealing with Covid related PILs.

    The Petitioner has also urged that, directions be issued to include Covid-19 deaths taking place at Covid Isolation Homes, in transit, homes of Covid-19 patients etc. A further prayer is made to direct the Respondents to provide information as to whether deaths related illness arising out of Covid-19 like Black Fungus, yellow fungus etc. are counted as Covid-19 related deaths or not.

    4. Plea Praying That No Case Of Petitioner Be Listed Before A Particular Judge: Allahabad High Court Dismisses It With 20K Cost [Arun Mishra v. Allahabad High Court]

    A Division Bench of Justice Manoj Misra and Justice Anil Kumar Ojha dismissed a plea with 20,000/- cost in which the petitioner had prayed that no case filed by him be listed before a Court comprising a particular Judge. It observed that the prayer made by the petitioner was completely misconceived.

    The Court noted that the petition had been filed with a 'strange prayer' by impleading the High Court as a party respondent. The prayer was that certain writ petitions be listed before a Court not comprising a particular Judge. "It is well settled that the master of the roster is The Chief Justice. It is the prerogative of The Chief Justice as to before which Judge or Judges the matter is to be listed," the Court said.

    5. "She Hasn't Even Filed Divorce Plea": Allahabad HC Dismisses Plea of Woman In Live-In Relation Seeking Protection Against Husband [Surabhi v. State Of UP & Ors.]

    A Bench of Justices Sunita Agarwal and Sadhna Rani (Thakur) dismissed a protection plea of a woman in a live-in relationship who alleged that she left her matrimonial house in view of the anti-social activities of his husband and is now living with one Mohit in a live-in relationship. In her plea, she asserted that a representation/application had been moved by her before the Chairman, Human Rights Commission, New Delhi, seeking protection from her husband.

    However, the Court noted: "It is admitted fact of the matter that the petitioner has not moved any application under the relevant provisions such as Domestic Violence Act and Indian Penal Code, for any threat or act of violence of her husband. It is admitted fact of the matter that the petitioner has not even filed any petition under Hindu Marriage Act for divorce."

    6. Allahabad High Court Grants Bail To Student On Internship Accused Of Violating COVID Vaccine Clinical Trial Rules [Sudhakar Yadav v. State of UP]

    A Bench of Justice Shekhar Kumar Yadav granted Bail to a student who has been accused of violating the COVID Vaccine clinical trial rules and involved in administering vaccines allegedly without having the required documents/papers/permission. The Applicant had filed his bail plea in a case under Sections 420 IPC and Section 15(2), 15(3) of the Indian Medical Council Act.

    7. 'Personal Grudge Can't Be Settled In PILs': Allahabad High Court Imposes Cost On Petitioner Seeking Action On SIT Report On Criminal Activities Of Gangster Vikas Dubey [Saurabh Bhadauria v. Stat of UP & Ors.]

    A Division Bench of Chief Justice Sanjay Yadav and Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi dismissed with cost, a PIL seeking directions to the UP Government for taking action on the SIT report that recommended action against 90 Government officials, for assisting deceased gangster Vikas Dubey, in his alleged criminal activities.

    It observed that the plea is an attempt of the Petitioner have his personal grievance redressed through a mode of public interest litigation. "Evidently the petition is nomenclatured as Public Interest Litigation, however on going through entire pleadings it appears that the petitioner has approached this Court to have his personal grievance redressed through a mode of public interest litigation," the Court said.

    8. Explain The Criteria To Acquire Land For Proposed Ayodhya International Airport: Allahabad High Court Seeks District Admin. Response

    The Allahabad High Court has sought the response of the Ayodhya District Administration as to what is guideline or criteria laid down for the purchasing of land for the proposed Ayodhya International Airport.

    The Bench of Justice Rajan Roy and Justice Saurabh Lavania was hearing the plea of the petitioners Panchram Prajapati and others who alleged that their land was being encroached for construction of the Airport in gross violation of their right to property as also to be treated in a fair and reasonable manner.

    Also Read: Lawyer Appears For VC Hearing While Riding Scooter: Allahabad High Court Declines To Hear Him

    "Court Below Erred In Rejecting The Bail Application": Allahabad High Court Grants Bail To Man Booked Under UP 'Love Jihad Law'

    "She Hasn't Even Filed Divorce Plea": Allahabad HC Dismisses Plea of Woman In Live-In Relation Seeking Protection Against Husband

    Andhra Pradesh High Court

    1. Andhra Pradesh High Court Takes Suo Moto Revision Over Withdrawal Of Cases Against Chief Minister; State Objects

    In an extraordinary development, the High Court took suo moto cognizance against the withdrawal of eleven criminal complaints against the Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy. The cases were listed before a single bench of Justice Lalitha Kannengati.

    Advocate General of Andhra Pradesh, Mr. Subrahmanyam Sriram, objected to the suo moto cases. He said that the suo moto cases, which are registered in purported exercise of powers under Sections 397, 401, 482 and 483 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, could not have been initiated by the High Court on its administrative side. The arguments will continue on June 25.

    Bombay High Court

    1. Maharashtra Govt Not Cooperating With Probe Against Ex-Home Minister Anil Deshmukh: CBI To Bombay High Court [State of Maharashtra v. CBI]

    The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has accused the Maharashtra Government of being in contempt of the Bombay High Court's order by refusing to part with the documents sought by the agency related to alleged political influence and corruption in the transfers and posting of police officers in Maharashtra.

    The agency made the allegation before a bench of Justices SS Shinde and NJ Jamadar hearing the state's petition challenging certain portions of the CBI's FIR against former state Home Minister Anil Deshmukh and unknown others.

    Latest Update: Bombay High Court Reserves Judgment On Maharashtra Govt Plea Challenging Portions Of CBI FIR Against Anil Deshmukh

    2. Bombay High Court Seeks Reply On Sudha Bharadwaj's Plea For Default Bail In Bhima Koregaon Case

    A division bench of Justices SS Shinde and NJ Jamadar directed the National Investigating Agency and State to file their replies in lawyer-activist Sudha Bharadwaj's plea seeking default bail on the grounds that the Pune judge was not authorized to grant extension for filing the charge sheet against her in 2018 or to take cognizance of the charge sheet filed subsequently in February 2019.

    Bharadwaj was arrested on August 28, 2018 in connection with the Bhima Koregaon/Elgar Parishad case. The case was initially investigated by the Pune police, however, the Union government handed over the case to the NIA in 2020.

    3. Bombay High Court Grants 4 Weeks Transit Anticipatory Bail To Journalist Rana Ayyub In UP Police FIR Over Tweet On Ghaziabad Incident

    A single bench of Justice PD Naik granted 4 weeks transit anticipatory bail to journalist Rana Ayyub in the FIR registered by the Uttar Pradesh police over her tweet on the Ghaziabad incident relating to the assault of an elderly Muslim man. It ordered that protection can be granted to Ayyub for a period of four weeks to enable her to approach the appropriate court to seek appropriate reliefs.

    Senior Advocate Mihir Desai, who appeared for Ayyub, told the bench that she was a globally renowned journalist who has won several awards for her work and contended that she had only made a tweet based on news reports about the incident of the Muslim man being attacked.

    4. "Comments Made About Me As Judge": Bombay HC Directs 'Udaipur Times' To Appear Before It For Its 'Impermissible Reporting' Of Trial

    The Bombay High Court on Monday issued notice to Udaipur-based newspaper, the Udaipur Times, for its impermissible reporting of the actual trial related to the Dawoodi Bohra community before the Bombay High Court.

    Noting that the newspaper did publish the extracts of the cross-examination, the Court said:

    "Whether or not these are verbatim reproductions of the transcripts will need to be more closely examined at a later date. If indeed they are exact reproductions, then the matter is even more serious because the transcripts are unavailable to anyone except the two parties, their legal teams and the Court. They are certainly not made available to the press. They are not uploaded online."

    Also Read: Journalists Expected To Know That Reproductions Of Ongoing Trials Isn't Permitted: Bombay High Court

    5. Unimaginable That At Time Of Humanitarian Crisis, People Are Committing Such Frauds: Bombay HC On Fake Covid Vaccination Drives In Mumbai

    A Division bench comprising Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice GS Kulkarni took serious note of a series of Covid-19 vaccination frauds in Mumbai and directed the police to submit a status report on their investigation into these scams by Thursday. "It is unimaginable that during this time of crisis, when entire humanity is suffering, people are committing such frauds," it observed.

    The court also asked the Maharashtra Government and BMC to inform the court about the "procedure to be adopted by housing societies, to ensure that such fake vaccination drives are not undertaken."

    6. 'Preventive Detention Not A Substitute To Deal With Ordinary Law And Order Problems' : Bombay High Court Quashes Detention Order

    A person cannot be placed under preventive detention as an 'easy substitute' to deal with ordinary law and order issues and it must be ascertained if his acts disturbed the ordinary tempo of life of the community leading to disturbance of public order, the Bombay High Court has held.

    "A proper test to distinguish between "law and order" and "public order" is whether the complained acts led to disturbance of the ordinary tempo of life of the community so as to amount a disturbance of the public order or it merely affected an individual leaving the tranquility of society undisturbed."

    "It is, therefore, said that the essential distinction between the concepts of "public order" and "law and order" is not in the nature or quality of the act but in the degree, potentiality and extent of its reach upon society. The given act by itself may not be determinant of its own gravity. It is the propensity and potentiality of the act of disturbing the even tempo of life of the community that renders it as prejudicial to the maintenance of public order," the bench said.

    Also Read: Didda Copyright Row- "Historical Work And Historical Facts Can Never Be Copyrighted: Kangana Raut Moves Bombay HC To Quash FIR

    Calcutta High Court

    1. 'If I Recuse, Will It Be Giving Into Media Trial?' : Justice Kausik Chanda Of Calcutta High Court Reserves Order On Mamata Banerjee's Plea Seeking Recusal [Mamata Banerjee v. Suvendhu Adhikari]

    A single bench of Justice Kausik Chanda reserved order on an application moved by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee seeking the judge's recusal from hearing her election petition. Banerjee's election petition challenges the election of BJP candidate Suvendhu Adhikari from Nandigram in the recently held West Bengal assembly polls.

    The Chief Minister has objected to Justice Chanda hearing her petition citing "likelihood of bias "due to the associations he had with BJP during his days as a lawyer. "There is a media trial already ongoing before this issue came up before Court. Hundreds of tweets have already been posted saying he should recuse. If I recuse now, will I be giving in to this media trial?", the Judge had asked during the hearing.

    2. 'West Bengal Govt Conduct Doesn't Inspire Confidence': Calcutta High Court Refuses To Recall Order Asking NHRC To Examine Post Poll Violence Complaints

    A 5-Judges Bench comprising Acting Chief Justice Rajesh Binal and Justices IP Mukerji, Harish Tandon, Soumen Sen and Subrata Talukdar refused to recall its June 18 order directing the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) to constitute a committee for examining complaints filed by persons displaced during post-poll violence in West Bengal.

    It observed that the order was passed after the State failed to inspire confidence of the Court and it does not find any occasion to recall/ modify or stay its operation. It further said that the order is innocuous and does not prejudice the State in any manner.

    3. "A Senior Citizen is Entitled To Live In peace In His Own House Under Article 21":Calcutta High Court Orders Eviction Of Son And Daughter In Law [Ali Burhan & Anr v. State of West Bengal and Ors]

    The Calcutta High Court last week vide order dated 17.6.2021 extended police protection to an elderly couple by directing the son and daughter-in-law of the couple to vacate the residential premises immediately.

    The elderly couple had submitted before the Court that the presence of the Respondents posed a risk to their safety and hence prayed for relief.

    "Given the fact that the petitioner no.1 is a senior citizen and is entitled under Article 21 of the Constitution of India to live in peace in his own house, this Court is inclined to in exercise high prerogative writ jurisdiction under Article 226 of the Constitution of India and directs the Officer-in-charge, Bankura Sadar Police Station to physically escort out the respondent nos.4 and 5, out of the said premises immediately", Justice Rajasekhar Mantha observed.

    4. "Prima Facie Case Made Out": Calcutta HC Issues Notice To BJP's Ashoke Dinda On TMC Leader's Plea Challenging His Election Win [Sangram kumar Dolai v. Ashoke Dinda]

    The Calcutta High Court has issued notice to Bharatiya Janata Party MLA from Moyna Constituency and Cricketer Ashoke Dinda on the election plea filed by All India Trinamool Congress' leader Sangram Kumar Dolai.

    Sangram Dolui had lost to BJP's Ashok Dinda by 1,260 votes in Moyna Constituency and thus, in his election plea, he had alleged irregularities in counting.

    Hearing the matter, Justice Tirthankar Ghosh observed thar prima facie, a case had been made out for issuance of notice against the respondent.

    5. Saradha Chit Fund Scam: "CBI Couldn't Justify Her Further Custodial Detention" Debjani Mukherjee Granted Bail By Calcutta High Court [Debjani Mukherjee v. CBI]

    A division bench comprising Acting Chief Justice Rajesh Bindal and Justice Arijit Banerjee granted bail to Debjani Mukherjee, who is an accused in the multi-crore Saradha chit fund scam. It granted her bail noting that it does not appear that the trial will conclude within a measurable distance of time.

    The Court also observed that it would be a travesty of justice to keep her confined in jail any further if after the trial the petitioner is ultimately found to be innocent, however, she would continue to remain behind bars since she is yet to obtain bail in cases pending against her in other states.

    Also read: Calcutta High Court Seeks State's Response On Covid Treatment Rates, Allocation And Pricing Of Vaccines, Welfare Schemes For Covid Victims' Kin

    Delhi High Court

    1. Justice Anup Bhambhani Of Delhi High Court Recuses From Hearing Pleas Against IT Rules

    Justice Anup Jairam Bhambhani of the Delhi High Court today recused himself from hearing pleas by digital media houses The Wire, The Quint and others challenging the constitutional validity of the Information Technology (Guidelines For Intermediaries And Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021.

    2. Delhi High Court Refuses To Stay CCI Probe Against WhatsApp's Privacy Policy [Whatsapp LLC v. CCI]

    A vacation division bench of Justices Anup Jairam Bhambhani and Jasmeet Singh refused to stay the Competition Commissionof India's (CCI) enquiry against WhatsApp's new privacy policy. It heard an appeal by WhatsApp and its parent company Facebook Inc against a single bench order declining to interfere with CCI's investigation.

    The court held that, "there is no doubt that the issuance of impugned notice dated 04.06.2021 by the DG is a step in furtherance of the investigation...., which investigation is subject matter of the challenge in the present LPA." However, the court said that an application seeking stay of further steps in the investigation already stands filed before the Chief Justice in another matter, on which notice has already been issued to the DG; in which no interim relief was given by the Division Bench on 06.05.2021 or thereafter; and which is already listed before the Division Bench (Roster Bench) for further consideration on 09.07.2021."

    3. Sushant Singh Rajput Case: Delhi High Court Directs Parties To Clarify Release Of "Nyaay: The Justice"

    A vacation bench of Justices Anup Jairam Bhambhani and Jasmeet Singh directed late Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput's father - Krishna Kishore Singh, and producers of the movie "Nyaay: The Justice" to clarify whether the movie has already released or not. The court was hearing an appeal against a single bench order which refused to restrain the producers from using the name, caricature, and/or likelihood of the actor in the movie.

    The film was admittedly inspired from the life of Sushant Singh Rajput. His father moved Court seeking injunction on any and all movies planned, in the pipeline, and to be made in future, from using his son's name, caricature or likelihood - he claimed that as the sole legal heir of his son, he owns celebrity rights hitherto belonging to his son.

    Also read: Delhi High Court Issues Notice On Plea Seeking Stay Of Film 'Nyay: The Justice'

    4. "1 Crore Ex-Gratia Promised By CM Not Given Even After 1 Yr": Wife Of Constable Who Died Due To COVID Moves Delhi HC, Notice Issued [Pooja vs State Of Gnct Of Delhi & Ors]

    The wife of Constable (Late) Amit Kumar, who was the first policeman in the national capital to die due to coronavirus, has moved the Delhi High Court seeking the release of ex gratia amount of Rs.1 crore as promised by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.

    The Bench of Justice Amit Bansal issued the notice to the Delhi Government, among others and listed the matter for further hearing on July 23 and directed the respondents to filed their counter affidavit within 4 weeks.

    5. NDPS Act- Whether Weight Of Neutral Substance Be Ignored In Manufactured Drugs With Minuscule Percentage Of Narcotic Substance? Delhi HC Refers Issues To Larger Bench [MOHD AHSAN v. CUSTOMS]

    The Delhi High Court on Friday referred to larger bench the issue as to whether the weight of neutral substance can be ignored in cases of manufactured drugs with Miniscule percentage of narcotic substance in them?

    Justice Subramonium Prasad referred the following issues to a larger bench:

    - Whether in cases specifically related to manufactured drug with a miniscule percentage of a narcotic substance, the weight of the neutral substance ought to be ignored while determining the nature of the quantity seized i.e. small, commercial or in between?
    - Whether Note 4 of the S.O. 1055 (E) dated 19th October, 2001 published in the Gazette of India, Extra., Pt.II, Sec3 (ii) dated 19th October 2001, as amended on 18.11.2009, should be held inapplicable to manufactured drug which contain a miniscule percentage of a narcotic drug?
    - Whether Note 4 of the S.O. 1055 (E) dated 19th October, 2001 published in the Gazette of India, Extra., Pt.II, Sec3 (ii) dated 19th October 2001, as amended on 18.11.2009, should be made applicable to cough syrups containing miniscule percentage of Codeine since it has medicinal value and is also easily available?

    6. Foreign State Cannot Claim Sovereign Immunity Against Enforcement Of Arbitral Award Arising Out Of Commercial Transaction: Delhi High Court [KLA Const Technologies Pvt. Ltd v. Embassy Of Islamic Republic Of Afghanistan]

    A single judge bench comprising of Justice JR Midha held that a Foreign State cannot claim sovereign immunity under sec. 86 of Code of Civil Procedure against enforcement of an Arbitral Award arising out of a commercial transaction.

    "In a contract arising out of a commercial transaction, such as the transactions which are subject matter of the present petitions, a Foreign State cannot seek Sovereign Immunity for the purpose of stalling execution of an arbitral award rendered against it. Once a Foreign State opts to wear the hat of a commercial entity, it would be bound by the rules of the commercial legal ecosystem and cannot be permitted to seek any immunity, which is otherwise available to it only when it is acting in its sovereign capacity," it observed.

    7. "No Coercive Action": Delhi High Court Grants Interim Protection To NewsClick Editor-In-Chief In Money Laundering Case

    A single judge bench comprising of Justice Jasmeet Singh granted interim protection to NewsClick Editor in Chief Prabir Purkayastha and PPK Newsclick Studio Private Limited, which owns the news portal till July 5 in connection with the money laundering case registered against it by the Enforcement Directorate.

    The Court also sought response from the Enforcement Directorate in a plea seeking copy of the Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR) registered by it against the news portal NewsClick and granted two weeks time to the ED to file it's reply. The allegations against the petitioner company PPK Newsclick Studio Pvt Ltd is that it had allegedly received foreign direct investment by overvaluing the share to avoid the cap of FDI requirement.

    8. COVID- One Time Relief Measure: Cap of 20 Lakh Beneficiaries for Distribution of Non-PDS Ration Arbitrary and Ad-hoc, Says Delhi High Court

    Forming a prima facie observation that the policy appears to be arbitrary and an ad hoc figure, the Delhi High Court on Friday said that even on a broad brush basis to say that there are only 20 lacs non PDS Beneficiaries looking for food grain under the Delhi Government's guidelines will be a substantial under-estimation.

    While posting the matter for further consideration in second week of July, a vacation bench comprising of Justice Anup Jairam Bhambhani and Justice Jasmeet Singh observed thus:

    "We are prima facie of the view that to cap the number of non PDS Beneficiaries to 20 lacs, appears to be an arbitrary and ad hoc figure."

    9. Delhi High Court Issues Practice Directions To Magistrates Pursuant To Supreme Court Order On Cheque Bouncing Cases

    The High Court issued practice directions to Magistrates and Trial Courts having jurisdiction to try offences under the Negotiable Instruments Act pursuant to the directions issued by the Supreme Court (In Re Expeditious Trial Of Cases Under Section 138 of N.I Act) regarding the trial of Cheque bouncing cases

    The practice directions dated 21st June 2021 that came into force with immediate effect stated that the Magistrates having jurisdiction to try offences under the Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881 "shall record cogent and sufficient reasons" before converting a complaint under sec. 138 of the N.I. Act from summary trial to summons trial in exercise of power under the second proviso of sec. 143 of N.I.Act.

    Gauhati High Court

    1. Regular Testing, Vaccination Of Shopkeepers Including Vegetable Vendors Should Be Taken Up On Priority Basis: Gauhati HC To State Govt [IN-RE KOHIMA, NAGALAND VERSUS 1:THE STATE OF NAGALAND AND 5 ORS]

    In view of the present covid 19 situation, the Gauhati High Court, Kohima Bench has told the State Government that regular testing and vaccination of shopkeepers including vegetable vendors should be taken up on priority basis.

    Seeking response on the steps taken by the respondent authorities including the Principal Secretary Health, Principal Director Health and Chief Medical Officers of all district in the State of Nagaland, a division comprising of Justice Songkhupchung Serto and Justice S. Hukato Swu observed thus:

    "Keeping in view the way how the virus is spreading we are of the view that regular testing and vaccination of shopkeepers including vegetable vendors should be taken up on priority basis. Mr. N. Mozhui shall inform the Court as to what steps have been taken regarding this on the next date of hearing."

    2. Gauhati High Court Directs State Govt To Reconsider Maximum Rates Fixed For COVID Treatment Of Patients In Private Hospitals [ADVOCATES ASSOCiATION FOR INDIGENOUS RIGHTS OF ASSAMESE AND ONE OTHER]

    Making a prima facie observation that the prices appear to be on a higher side, the Gauhati High Court has directed the State Government to reconsider the maximum rates fixed by it for Covid 19 treatment in private hospitals.

    A division bench comprising of Chief Justice Sudhanshu Dhulia and Justice Manash Ranjan Pathak ordered thus:

    "..prima facie it appears to be slightly on the higher side, we can only direct the State Government that it may reconsider these prices, including the rate of single cabin, after hearing all the stakeholders."

    Also Read: Marginalized, Daily Wage Workers Unable To Sustain Themselves In Pandemic- Gauhati HC Directs DLSA To Provide Immediate Relief

    "Question Paper Leak Is An Organized Crime": Gauhati HC Denies Bail To Former DIG & Two Others For Leaking State Police Recruitment Examination Paper

    COVID 19: Gauhati High Court Further Extends Interim Orders Till July 14

    Gujarat High Court

    1. Does Right To Privacy Include Right To Drink Alcohol? Gujarat High Court Reserves Judgment On Maintainability Of Pleas Challenging Liquor Prohibition [Rajiv Piyush Patel v. State Of Gujarat]

    A Division Bench of Chief Justice Vikram Nath and Justice Biren Vaishnav reserved order on the maintainability of a batch of petitions challenging the prohibition on manufacture, sale and consumption of liquor in the state vide the Gujarat Prohibition Act, 1949, on grounds of 'manifest arbitrariness' and violation of 'right to privacy'.

    The State had raised preliminary objections to the challenge. It stated that the High Court cannot sit in appeal over the Supreme Court's decision in State Of Bombay & Anr. v. FN Balsara where validity of Sections 12, 13 of the Act (prohibition on manufacture, sale and consumption of liquor) was upheld.

    The Petitioners however contended that challenge to the legislation before the Supreme Court was only to the limited extent of medicinal and toilet preparation. It was stated that question of validity of prohibiting consumption of alcohol was not decided by the Supreme Court and it is in this context that the Gujarat High Court is competent to adjudicate.

    2. Indian Air Force Officer Receives Notice Over Refusal To Take COVID Vaccine: Gujarat High Court Grants Temporary Relief [Yogendra Kumar v. Indian Air Force]

    A Division Bench of Justices AJ Desai and AP Thaker restrained Indian Air Force (IAF) from taking any coercive action against an Air Force Officer who refused to take COVID Vaccine and thus, he was served a show-cause notice by the IAF.

    The order was passed on the plea of Air Force Officer, Yogendra Kumar (currently posted in Gujarat's Jamnagar) who has been served a show-cause notice seeking explanation as to why his service should not be terminated for his refusal to take the Covid-19 vaccine.

    3. Community Members' Act Of Snatching Away Woman's Right To Marry Requires To Be Condemned: Gujarat High Court [Sureshbhai Hathibhai Khant v. State Of Gujarat]

    A Single Bench of Justice Gita Gopi ruled that the act of community members in snatching away a woman's right to marry and entering into violence and causing harassment is required to be condemned. It observed thus while taking into account the fact that a major woman has a right to decide about her marriage and her future.

    The Bench, therefore, dismissed two applications that prayed for quashing of the criminal proceedings against the accused, who happen to be the relatives of the girl and who allegedly harassed the family of the boy with whom the woman got married.

    4. "Live Your Own Life As Per Your Own Wish": Gujarat High Court Reunites Inter-Caste Couple Who Were Earlier Forced To Divorce [Hitendrakumar Ranchhodji Thakore v. State of Gujarat]

    The Gujarat High Court on Friday reunited an inter-caste couple who was forced into a divorce in the year 2017, within two weeks of marriage, as the family of the woman didn't approve of the relationship.

    The bench of Justice R. M. Chhaya and Justice Nirzar Desai was hearing the habeas corpus plea of Hitendrakumar Ranchhodji Thakore, a doctor by profession who sought production of Rinkuben, 26 years old nurse.

    Karnataka High Court

    1. Ghaziabad Video: Karnataka HC Issues Notice On Mohammed Zubair's Plea For Transit Bail; No Intention To Arrest, Say UP Police

    A single bench of Justice Mohammed Nawaz issued notice on a petition filed by Mohammed Zubair, co-founder of fact-checking portal 'AltNews', seeking transit anticipatory bail in an FIR registered by Uttar Pradesh police over tweets on the Ghaziabad incident related to assault on an elderly Muslim man.

    Zubair's lawyers informed the High Court that after the bail application was filed, the UP Police had served him notice under Section 41A of the CrPC last night, seeking his presence before the investigating officer on June 28 to record his statement in relation to the FIR. The police stated that they were not intending to arrest Zubair, as the offences mentioned in the FIR are punishable with less than 7 years imprisonment.

    2. PG Ayurveda Course : Karnataka High Court Students Admitted In 2017-18 Without Entrance Exams To Continue Course [Dr. Sontakke Kanchan Ramrao v. Union Of India]

    In a big relief to students admitted to the Post Graduate Ayurveda course in the academic year 2017-18, a division bench of Justices Aravind Kumar and NS Sanjay Gowda directed the authorities to permit them to continue and complete their respective Post Graduate courses.

    The court relied on Federation Of Self Financed Ayurvedic Colleges Punjab case, in which it was held that it was necessary for the students to take up the entrance test, but it had permitted the petitioners in that particular case to continue their studies. It therefore directed the Respondents to "announce the results of the examinations taken by the petitioners pursuant to the interim orders granted by this Court in these writ petitions."

    3. Receipt Of Financial Benefits Due To Employee's Death Not A Bar To Seek Compassionate Appointment For Dependents : Karnataka High Court [Kiran P. v. Bengaluru Development Authority]

    A division bench of Justice B V Nagarathna and Justice N S Sanjay Gowda held that the policy for providing compassionate appointments does not disentitle a dependant from seeking for a compassionate appointment merely because the family is recipient of certain financial benefits, due to the death of the employee.

    The Court said "..the receipt of any terminal benefits cannot and should not be the yardstick to disentitle a dependent member of the family to seek for appointment on compassionate grounds and so long as there is a policy in force regarding compassionate appointment in force, the case of the dependents would have to be considered in accordance with the Rules notwithstanding the receipt of any financial benefit that the family of the deceased had received from the employer."

    4. Don't Wait For Certified Copies Of Documents To Give Opinion On Filing Appeals In SC/ST Cases : Karnataka High Court

    A division bench of Chief Justice Abhay Oka and Justice Suraj Govindaraj directed the state government to correct the practise followed by the prosecution department of commencing the work of giving opinion for filing appeals against acquittals in cases registered under the Schedule Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, only after receiving certified copies of the order and other documents.

    The court added "We direct the state to correct the said method and ensure that work of giving opinion commences on the basis of depositions, copies of documents exhibited and ordinary copy of the judgement. Only if the concerned prosecutor who is supposed to give an opinion finds that certain documents are missing an application for certified copy can be made." The court has directed the Director of Prosecutions to frame proper guidelines in this behalf and place before the court within a period of three weeks.

    5. Personal Law Will Not Override POCSO Act, Child Marriage Restraint Act : Karnataka High Court [Rahul v. State of Karnataka]

    A single bench of Justice K Natarajan said that "though second marriage is permissible under the Mohammedan Law, but the personal law cannot override the Special Law of POCSO, Child Marriage Restraints Act and General Penal Code of this Country."

    While dismissing the accused' bail application, it said, "Merely because the parties are Mohammedan that does not mean that the petitioner-accused No.1 has right to marry a minor girl by enticing and abducting her. The consent or will of the victim minor girl is immaterial and even if she has voluntarily went with the accused, that amounts to abduction or kidnapping under Section 363 of IPC. The accused not only abducted the victim minor girl aged about 15 years, he got married to her which attracts Sections 9 and 10 of the Child Marriage Restraint Act. Apart from that, he has sexually assaulted her which also attracts Sections 4 and 6 of POCSO Act."

    6. Karnataka High Court Protects Twitter India's Manish Maheshwari From UP Police Coercive Action In Ghaziabad FIR

    A single bench of Justice G Narender restrained the Uttar Pradesh police from taking coercive action against Manish Maheshwari, an employee of Twitter Communications India Private Ltd (TCIPL), pursuant to the notice issued to him under Section 41A of the Code of Criminal Procedure in the Ghaziabad FIR.

    The Twitter employee was asked by the UP Police to appear before Loni Border Police Station in relation to the investigation on the Ghaziabad video issue. "Prima facie the petitioner is apprehending deprivation of liberty…There will be an interim order restraining the respondents from initiating any coercive action against the petitioner," the bench stated.

    7. Plea For Anticipatory Bail Maintainable Even After Section 41A CrPC Notice Issued By Police : Karnataka High Court [Ramappa v. State of Karnataka]

    The Karnataka High Court has said that the apprehension of arrest always does exist even after issuance of notice of appearance under Section 41A Cr.P.C. and under such circumstance the Courts cannot evade an application for anticipatory bail under Section 438 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.

    A single bench of Justices Shivashankar Amarannavar, while allowing a petition filed by Ramappa @ Ramesh seeking anticipatory bail, said:

    "A person gets apprehension of being arrested in two situations:- firstly when a 'Notice' is issued to him under Section 41A (1) of the Code and secondly, after complying the terms of 'Notice' the police officer forms an opinion that such person ought to be arrested or in a situation, such person fails to comply the terms of 'Notice' or is unwilling to 'identify' himself. In all the above three situations such a person can maintain an anticipatory bail application as Section 41A of the Code does not stipulate the specific condition of notice of appearance."

    Other developments:

    Kerala High Court

    1. No Prima-Facie Reason To Exclude Meat & Chicken From Mid-Day Meals : Kerala High Court Stays Lakshadweep Administration's Order

    A division bench comprising Chief Justice S Manikumar and Justice Shaji P Chaly said that it was unable to understand why the food menu of school children was changed by the Lakshadweep administration by removing chicken and meat from mid-day meals. As such, the Bench stayed the decision pending disposal of the writ petition.

    The Court failed to understand how such a sudden change could be brought to the menu for children considering the vital aspect of health factor. The minutes of the Meeting also disclosed an attendee physician's opinion that non-vegetarian food is essential for the growth of children and for a healthy balanced diet, which has not been considered by the Administrator.

    Also Read: Kerala High Court Stays Orders Of Lakshadweep Administration To Close Down Dairy Farms & Remove Meat From School Children's Diet

    2. Bring Petroleum Products Under GST? Kerala High Court Asks GST Council To Decide [Kerala Pradesh Gandhi Darshanvedhi v. Union Of India & Ors.]

    A Bench comprising Chief Justice S Manikumar and Justice Shaji P Chaly asked the Goods and Services Council to take a decision on a representation seeking to bring petroleum products under the GST regime.

    The primary contention leveled in the PIL filed by Kerala Pradesh Gandhi Darshanvedi was that the petrol and diesel prices being sold at different rates across the country owing to difference in taxes among states. It was alleged that non-inclusion of petrol and diesel under the GST regime was violative of Article 14 and 21 of the Constitution of India.

    3. Kerala High Court Rejects Private Labs's Plea Against Order Refusing To Stay Govt. Decision To Reduce RT-PCR Test Rates [Devi Scans (P) Ltd & Ors v. State of Kerala]

    A Division Bench of Justices Anil K. Narendran and Ziyad Rahman AA refused to interfere with the order of the Single Judge Bench refusing to stay the government order reducing the rates of RT PCR tests from Rs. 1700 to Rs. 500. It held that there is massive price reduction in the market for test kits and consumables due to multiple competent players, which is equally applicable to the private sector.

    The appeal was preferred by Devi Scans (P) Ltd and other private diagnostic laboratories in Kerala. Adv. Paul Jacob argued on behalf of the petitioners challenged the order of a Single Judge Bench of this court on the ground that the order re-fixing the rate for RT-PCR test for COVID-19 is issued in violation of the principles of natural justice.

    Also Read: Kerala High Court Suspends Government Order Which Permitted Private Hospitals To Fix Room Rent For Covid Patients

    4. "Real Culprits Are Still At Large": Kerala High Court Orders Reinvestigation In Bengali Migrant Murder Case [Sanjay Oraon v. State Of Kerala]

    A Division Bench of Justice K. Vinod Chandran and Justice MR Anitha invoked its plenary powers under Article 226 and directed for a re-investigation of the murder of a migrant worker after finding that the previous investigation was a farce to incarcerate a fellow migrant worker.

    The prosecution had proceeded against the accused on the ground of last seen together theory, motive behind the incident, and recovery of his pants with deceased's blood group to establish an unbroken chain of circumstances. The appellant put forth several arguments to prove the defective investigation. To start with, motive alleged was flimsy and not proved. It was also argued that the Sub Inspector of Police on getting information about the crime did not visit the spot. Moreover, there was inordinate delay in registering the FIR. Additionally, the Prosecution failed to prove the connecting links in the chain of circumstances pointing to the guilt of the accused.

    5. "Attempt To Prevent Investigation": ED Moves High Court Challenging Judicial Inquiry Ordered By Kerala Govt In Gold Smuggling Case

    The Enforcement Directorate (Cochin Zone) has moved the Kerala High Court against appointment of a Judicial commission by the State Government to inquire into conduct of various Central Agencies in Kerala from July 2020.

    The Kerala Government had constituted a Judicial Commission chaired by Former Kerala High Court Judge VK Mohanan to examine the alleged attempt on the part of the Customs Department and the Enforcement Directorate (ED) to falsely implicate Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan in the UAE gold smuggling case.

    6. Service Benefits- Female Partner In A Live-In Relationship Cannot Have A Better Claim Than A Legally Married Wife: Kerala High Court

    A Division Bench of the Kerala High Court on Wednesday while deciding a matrimonial appeal held that when there is evidence of long cohabitation of a man with two women simultaneously, one pursuant to a ceremonial marriage and the other not so, the presumption of valid marriage leans in favour of the former.

    "It is true that the parties to a live-in relationship or non formal relationship who have lived together for an extended period of time could be brought within the purview of laws relating to maintenance and domestic violence and could be considered as husband and wife for the said limited purpose. But, parties to such a relationship cannot be elevated to marital status. A female partner in a live-in relationship cannot have a better claim than a legally married wife". A Division Bench of Justice A. Muhamed Mustaque and Justice Kauser Edappagath observed.

    7. 'No Malicious Motive To Subvert The Government': Kerala High Court Grants Anticipatory Bail To Aisha Sultana In Sedition Case [Aisha Sultana v. Union Territory of Lakshadweep]

    The Kerala High Court on Friday allowed the anticipatory bail application filed by Aisha Sultana earlier this month. Justice Ashok Menon cited that prima facie, the applicant did not have a malicious motive to subvert the Government established by law by merely using the strong words to express her vehemence in disapproval of the subject under discussion.

    The Court observed that the applicant's intention was to merely criticize the relaxation of SOP by the Administrator. On that note, it was observed as follows:

    "The decisive ingredient for establishing the offence of sedition under S.124-A IPC is the doing of certain acts which would bring the Government established by law in India into hatred or contempt etc. In this case, there is not even a suggestion that applicant did anything as such against the Government of India."

    Also read: 'No Motive To Subvert Govt Of India By Merely Using Strong Word 'Bio-Weapon' In Criticism' : Kerala HC In Sedition Case Against Aisha Sultana

    8. What Steps Taken To Ensure 'Covaxin' Is Recognized Internationally? Kerala High Court Asks Centre [Rahim Pattarkadavan & Anr v. Union of India & Ors]

    Also read: CBI FIR In ISRO Conspiracy Case: Kerala High Court Grants Interim Protection To Ex-Deputy Central Intelligence Officer Till July 1

    Police Officer Manhandles Doctor Alleging Delay In His Mother's Treatment: Kerala High Court Grants Anticipatory Bail

    Madhya Pradesh High Court

    1. Madhya Pradesh High Court Seeks State's Reply on Plea Challenging Cut-Off Date In Scheme For Children Orphaned Due To Covid-19 [Dharmesh Basedia & Anr. v. State of MP & Ors.]

    A Division Bench of Chief Justice Mohammad Rafiq and Justice Vijay Kumar Shukla issued notices on a petition challenging the validity of CM COVID-19 Child Welfare Scheme, inasmuch it has limited its benefits to such children whose parents died due to Covid-19 between March 1, 2021 to June 30, 2021.

    It is stated in the petition that though the object of the Scheme is laudable, however, due to the restrictive definition of Covid19 death as provided in clause 3.3, any child or student beneficiary who is otherwise eligible for grant of benefit under the Scheme would become ineligible simply for the reason that her/his parents or guardian have expired prior to the cut-off date i.e. 1 March, 2021.

    2. Wary Of Those Who Seek Fire-Arm License To Flaunt/Parade In Public As Fashion Trend: Madhya Pradesh High Court To Authorities [Gurdeep Singh Dhinjal v. State of MP & Ors.]

    Stressing that an individual's own feeling of insecurity is an important factor while granting the fire-arm license, a Bench of Justice SA Dharmadhikari ruled that the Authority, however, must be wary of those needs which are fanciful or simply pretentious or purely fired by a desire to flaunt or parade in public the fire-arm as a fashion trend.

    It remarked: "It is now a settled law that as possession of a non-prohibited fire-arm helps effectuate a person's right to protect himself, the right is considered as a part of fundamental right under Article 21 of the Constitution of India, subject of course to reasonable restrictions."

    3. Section 24 CrPC- "Can Advocates With Less Than 7 Yrs Of Practice Represent State In Criminal Cases?": MP High Court Seeks State's Response [Gyan Prakash v. Government of Madhya Pradesh & Ors.]

    A Division Bench of Chief Justice Mohammad Rafiq and Justice Vijay Kumar Shukla expressed serious concern on contractually appointed Panel Lawyers without the requisite 7 years of experience representing the State Government in important criminal matters like criminal appeals, suspension of sentences, bail applications, etc.

    It questioned the State & Centre: "Whether a Panel Lawyer may appear in the Court before the High Court in criminal matters like Criminal Appeals, Bail Applications, Criminal Revisions, application for suspension of sentence, MCRCs, etc. even without having the practice of a minimum of seven years and without the consultation with the High Court as required under Section 24 (1) of Cr.P.C.?"

    4. "How Many More Nirbhayas' Sacrifice Needed To Shake Lawmakers' Conscience?": MP High Court Denies Bail To 15-Yr-Old Boy In Rape Case [Sunil s/o Budiya Parmar (Juvenile) through guardian (Father) Budiya s/o Kidiya Parmar Versus The State of Madhya Pradesh]

    The Madhya Pradesh High Court denied Bail to a 15-year-old juvenile who has been accused of committing rape of a minor girl aged around 10-11 years old whereby she was left bleeding for a prolonged period of time.

    Significantly, the Court further added:

    "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"

    5. Food Adulteration : MP High Court Calls For Stringent Punishment So That Executive Is Not 'Tempted' To Invoke Preventive Detention [Somkant Singh Vs. State of M.P.& others]

    The Madhya Pradesh High Court has recently urged to the Legislature for either making provisions under the Indian Penal Code more stringent and deterrent or to prescribe higher punishment under the Food Safety and Standards Act so that the executive authority "is not tempted" to adopt measure of preventive detention in cases involving food adulteration.

    "This Court thus beseeches the legislature to either make the provision under IPC more stringent and deterrent or prescribe higher punishment under Food Safety and Standards Act so the executive is not tempted to adopt the extraordinary measure of preventive detention in cases of food adulteration." The Court said.

    6. "Can Accused Avail Remedy Of Section 156(3) CrPC To Raise Grievance Of Improper/Delayed Investigation?": MP High Court To Decide [Kishanvihari Sharma @ Satya Vs The State Of Madhya Pradesh And Others]

    The Madhya Pradesh High Court has sought the assistance of the Bar and had invited every Member of the Bar to address the Court on the issue as to whether the remedy under Section 156(3) CrPC so far as it relates to the grievance of improper/ delayed investigation can be availed by accused or not.

    The Bench of Justice Sheel Nagu and Justice Anand Pathak has directed the Principal Registrar of the Court to publish the order on the notice Board of the Bar Association and communicate the same to the Office-bearers of the Bar Association so that as and when the hearing takes place after the resumption of the physical hearing, the matter can be properly adjudicated

    Also read: Madhya Pradesh High Court Starts Live Streaming Of Court Proceedings Pursuant To Journalists' Plea For Live Reporting

    Beating Up Dalit Rape Surviver At Police Station: Madhya Pradesh High Court Orders CBI Probe And Departmental Enquiry Against Police Officers

    Live-In Relation: "Take Care Of Girl's Basic Needs, Ensure Dignified Life": MP High Court Directs Man; Para Legal Volunteer To Visit Their Residence

    Madras High Court

    1. 'Legacy Media Houses Wrongfully Classified As Digital Media' : DNPA Moves Madras High Court Against IT Rules

    A Bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy issued notice on a plea filed by the Digital News Publishers Association (DNPA) as well as journalist Mukund Padmanabhan, challenging the constitutionality of the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021, and seeking declaration of the same as "ultra vires, void and violative of Articles 14, Article 19(1)(a) and 19(1)(g) of the Constitution of India".

    The DNPA contends that online news portals of "legacy media houses", which run newspapers and TV channels, do not come within the purview of IT Rules. It has further been submitted that the Rules, such as Rule 3(2)(b), Rule 3(1)(d), Rule 4(2) and Rule 4(4) under Part II, seek to curb the freedom of speech and expression, as well as freedom of press by proscribing content on the basis of vague and subjective grounds, and also seek to "usher in an era of surveillance and fear, thereby resulting in self-censorship, which curtails the fundamental rights as envisaged under the Constitution of India".

    2. 'Strict Liability': Madras High Court Orders Interim Compensation To The Parents Of An Infant Whose Thumb Was Allegedly Severed By Nurse

    A single judge bench of Justice N. Anand Venkatesh directed the Tamil Nadu Government to pay an interim compensation of Rs. 75,000/- to the parents of the newborn whose thumb was allegedly cut-off by a staff nurse in the Government Rajah Mirasdar Hospital, Thanjavur. It further directed the State Government to get the child admitted to a Multi-Speciality Hospital for specialised surgery to ensure that the child does not suffer a permanent disability.

    A newborn was admitted to the Government Rajah Mirasdar Hospital, Thanjavur, since she was suffering from Congenital Anomalies. One day when the toddler's parents returned to the ward where the child was admitted, they found the thumb of the left hand lying on the floor severed, and she was bleeding profusely. The parents found that a hospital staff nurse, while removing the paediatric venflon (cannula) from the left thumb, wrapped with the surgical tape, had cut a portion of the left-hand thumb of the child.

    3. Hoping That Union & State Would Take Appropriate Measure To Prepare For Next Wave: Madras High Court Closes Suo Moto COVID Case

    The Bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy closed Suo Moto COVID cases noting that it appears now to be under control, and expressing a hope that appropriate measures would be taken by the Union and the State Governments of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry to deal with any further surge by being more prepared than the country if further surge comes.

    It noted that all counts, the second surge appears to have subsided, though there is an apprehension of even a third surge. "It is best that the facilities developed on an emergency basis to deal with the second surge are not dismantled immediately, so that in the event there is a third surge within the next four to six months, the same may be tackled with adequate facilities at hand," it observed.

    4. Rajiv Gandhi Assassination- "Will Not Prejudice Security Of Nation": Madras HC Allows Nalini, Sriharan To Video Call Family [Padma v. State of Tamil Nadu & Ors.]

    The Madras High Court has recently allowed Nalini and her husband Sriharan, life convicts in Rajiv Gandhi assassination case, to call Sriharan's mother and sister living in Sri Lanka and London respectively, on account of his father's death in April last year.

    Holding that the son who lost his father is entitled to have conversation through Video Call with his mother and sister, a division bench comprising of Justice N Kirubakaran and Justice VM Velumani observed thus:

    "Allowing the convict to speak to his mother for 10 minutes atleast for 10 days will not in any way prejudice the security of the nation."

    The Court further observed thus:

    "If the relatives are unable to come over to India to meet the prisoner due to lack of funds or circumstances, it cannot be put against the prisoners. Already the convicts are incarcerated for more than 28 years."

    5. "Textbook Example Of State Instrumentality's Unjust Enrichment": Madras High Court Slams BSNL For Its Failure To Use Land For 20 Yrs [A. S. Marimuthu v. The Ministry of Telecommunications, Government of India]

    The Madras High Court on Wednesday slammed BSNL for virtually grabbing the property belonging to one A. S. Marimuthu by paying a paltry sum of just Rupee one.

    The Bench of Justice N. Anand Venkatesh observed:

    "This writ petition is a textbook as to how the instrumentality of a State has attempted to unjustly enrich itself and had thereby virtually grabbed the property belonging to the petitioner measuring an extent of 59 cents by paying a paltry sum of just Rupee one."

    Also Read: COVID- "Show More Sympathy While Dealing With Students": Madras High Court To Education Authorities

    Orissa High Court

    1. "Jagannath Temple Constitutes A Class Apart": Orissa HC Dismisses Pleas For Permission To Hold Rath Yatras In Other Places On Parity With Lord Jagannath Temple [Ratha Yatra Committee, Bhatli & Ors. v. Government of Odisha & Ors.]

    A division bench comprising of Chief Justice S. Muralidhar and Justice SK Panigrahi dismissed a bunch of petitions filed by devotees and the sevayats of the deities praying for permission to hold Rath Yatras/Car Festival in other places in the State on parity with the permission granted in relation to Lord Jagannath Temple at Puri.

    "These are extraordinary times in which not just Odisha but the entire country is barely recovering from the second wave of the deadly Covid pandemic. The measures and precautions taken by the State of Odisha have to be viewed in the said context. Consequently, this Court is not inclined to entertain any of the prayers in any of the above writ petitions, praying for permission to hold their respective Rath yatras/festivals on parity with the temple of Lord Jagannath at Puri," it observed.

    Also read: "Extremely Unfortunate", Orissa High Court Imposes 5K Fine On An Absent Lawyer For 'Unnecessary Adjournment'

    Whether State Govt. Enquired Into The Issue Of Undercounting Of COVID Deaths?: Orissa High Court Seeks District-Wise Death Data

    Rajasthan High Court

    1. Rajasthan HC Seeks Centre's Response On Not Specifying Small Or Commercial Quantity Of Opium Poppy Plants Under NDPS Act [Suo Moto v. Union of India]

    In with a suo moto case registered this year, a vacation bench of Justice Dinesh Mehta sought Centre's response on explaining the rationale behind its notification dated 19th October 2001 for not specifying small or commercial quantity for cultivation of Papaver somniferum commonly known as opium poppy or poppy plants under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985.

    It issued notice to Union of India, through Ministry of Finance, Department of Revenue and also to the State of Rajasthan.

    Also read: Rajasthan High Court To Commence Hybrid Hearing Of Cases From June 28

    Bar Council Of Rajasthan Writes Letter To Chief Justice Opposing New COVID Restrictions Imposed By The High Court

    Uttarakhand High Court

    1. "Major Persons Have The Fundamental Right To Choose Their Own Life Partners Inspite Opposition Voiced By Family Members": Uttarakhand High Court

    A division bench comprising of Chief Justice Raghvendra Singh Chauhan and Justice Alok Kumar Verma granted protection to an inter faith couple by directing the Police to provide them immediate protection after observing that individuals who are major have a fundamental right to choose their life partners despite the opposition voiced by their family members.

    "Undoubtedly, persons, who are major, have a fundamental right to choose their own life-partners, even inspite of the opposition voiced by the family members. Therefore, respondent Nos. 3 & 4 should not be permitted to threaten or to hurt the petitioners," the Court observed.

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