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High Courts Weekly Roundup [Oct 26 - Nov 01]

Akshita Saxena
1 Nov 2020 11:41 AM GMT
High Courts Weekly Roundup [Oct 26 - Nov 01]
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Week commencing from October 26, 2020 Till November 1, 2020 Allahabad High Court 1. UP Prevention Of Cow Slaughter Act Being Misused Against Innocent Persons; Any Recovered Meat Is Shown As Beef : Allahabad High Court [Rahmu @ Rahmuddin v. State of UP] While hearing the bail application of one Rahmuddin, accused of cow slaughter and sale of beef under Sections 3, 5 and 8 of the...

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Week commencing from October 26, 2020 Till November 1, 2020

Allahabad High Court

1. UP Prevention Of Cow Slaughter Act Being Misused Against Innocent Persons; Any Recovered Meat Is Shown As Beef : Allahabad High Court [Rahmu @ Rahmuddin v. State of UP]

While hearing the bail application of one Rahmuddin, accused of cow slaughter and sale of beef under Sections 3, 5 and 8 of the said Act, the Single Bench of Justice Siddharth expressed concern over frequent misuse of the provisions of Uttar Pradesh Prevention of Cow Slaughter Act, 1955, for implicating innocent persons.

It observed, "Act is being misused against innocent persons. Whenever any meat is recovered, it is normally shown as cow meat (beef) without getting it examined or analyzed by the Forensic Laboratory. In most of the cases, meat is not sent for analysis. Accused persons continue in jail for an offence that may not have been committed at all and which is triable by Magistrate Ist Class, having maximum sentence upto 7 years."

2. Allahabad High Court Grants Protection From Arrest To Actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui & 4 Family Members In Molestation Case [Minajhuddin Siddqi & Ors. v. State of UP & Ors.]

The Division Bench comprising of Justices Manoj Misra and Sanjay Kumar Pachori granted protection from arrest to actor Nawazuddin Siddiqui and his three family members in connection to a molestation case filed by his estranged wife, Aliya. The relief was not granted in favour of Siddiqui's third brother, Minajhuddin, as there was a specific allegation against him of molesting a minor child in the family in 2012.

The Court said, "Considering that specific allegation of child abuse is against the petitioner no. 1 (Minajhuddin) only and the rest of the petitioners have been implicated by levelling general allegation, we deem it appropriate to dispose off this writ petition by providing that in so far as the petitioner no. 2 (Faiyajuddin Siddiqi); petitioner no. 3 (Ayajuddin Siddiqi); petitioner no. 4 (Smt. Mehrunisha Siddiqi); and petitioner no. 5 (Nawajuddin Siddiqi) are concerned, the investigation shall continue and brought to its logical conclusion but they shall not be arrested in the above case till submission of police report under Section 173 (2) CrPC…"

3. 'Juvenile Has Put Society On Alarm; Made Children Feel Unsafe' Allahabad High Court Denies Bail To Juvenile Accused Of Raping 6 Yr Old Girl [Akash @ Nirmal Mishra (Juvenile) v. State Of UP & Anr.]

The Bench of Justice JJ Munir refused to interfere with the order of Special Judge (POCSO), Kanpur Nagar, dismissing the criminal appeal of a Juvenile accused of raping a 6-year-old girl.

"The case in hand shows that the revisionist by his action, if true, has put the society and its surroundings on alarm. His actions have led to a situation, where prima facie no child of tender years, and more than that the parents or the guardians of a young child, would feel safe during their daily routine, when there is nothing otherwise to call extra caution," the Court observed.

4. Govt. Must Be Sensitive While Imposing Severe Punishment Of Dismissal Pursuant To Disciplinary Action: Allahabad High Court [Board of Basic Education & Anr. v. Arvid Prakash Dwivedi & Ors.]

While refusing to interfere with the Single Bench Judgment, the Division Bench of Chief Justice Govind Mathur and Justice Siddhartha Varma observed that "the government authorities must be quite sensitive while imposing the severe punishment of dismissal as a consequence of disciplinary action."

In this case, the Petitioner, a Head Master of a Junior High School was placed under suspension and was subjected to disciplinary action for availing benefit of two educational certificates. "It is not in dispute that at the relevant time the respondent petitioner could have obtained two qualification simultaneously and the respondent-petitioner as such possessed requisite qualification to hold the post of Assistant Teacher as well as the further promotional post," the Court observed.

5. 'Religious Conversion Just For The Purpose Of Marriage Is Unacceptable': Allahabad High Court Dismisses Plea Of Married Couple [Priyanshi & Anr. v. State of UP & Ors.]

The Single Bench of Justice Mahesh Chandra Tripathi dismissed a writ petition seeking police protection filed by a married couple after it noted that the girl was a Muslim by birth and had converted her religion to Hinduism, just a month before the marriage was solemnized.

This clearly reveals that the conversion has taken place only for the purpose of marriage, the Court said while referring to a 2014 judgment in Noor Jahan Begum @ Anjali Mishra & Anr. v. State of U.P. & Ors., in which it was observed that conversion just for the purpose of marriage is unacceptable.

Bombay High Court

1. [SSR Medial Trial] 'We Would Like Media Not To Cross Boundaries': Bombay High Court Mulls Guidelines For Reporting On Investigation

The High Court indicated that it was thinking of laying down guidelines for the media reporting on ongoing criminal investigations. "We would like the media not to cross boundaries", observed a Division Bench comprising of Chief Justice Dipankar Dutta and Justice GS Kulkarni which is hearing a batch of PILs seeking regulation of "media trial" in the context of reporting of the Sushant Singh Rajput death case.

The Chief Justice said that the court will consider the issues: (i) whether parallel investigation by media would amount to "interference with the administration of justice" under Section 2(c) of the Contempt of Courts Act, 1971 and (ii) whether the court should lay down guidelines for media reporting on criminal investigation.

Also Read: Media Trial Is Interference With Administration Of Justice; Amounts To Contempt Of Court: Aspi Chinoy Argues In Bombay High Court

Also Read: 'Asking Public About Who To Be Arrested Is Investigative Journalism?' Bombay HC Asks Republic TV In SSR Media Trial Case

Also Read: 'If You Become Investigator, Prosecutor & Judge, Why Are We Here?' Bombay HC Expresses Concerns Over Media Trial

Also Read: Media Highly Polarized Now; Journalists Were Responsible & Neutral In Past, Bombay High Court Says While Hearing SSR Media Trial Case

Also Read: 'Self-Regulation Of Media Has Failed', Says Bombay HC In Plea Against 'Media Trial' In SSR Case

2. Bombay High Court Imposes Hefty Fine Of Rs 1 Lakh On A Social Worker Accused Of Assaulting Doctor Over Covid Death [Shivaji Bhanudas Jadhav v. State of Maharashtra]

The Bench of Justice Bharati Dangre imposed a hefty fine on a Social Worker, accused of assaulting a Doctor and abusing medical staff of the hospital after a COVID patient's death. The Court directed the applicant/accused to deposit an amount of Rs.One lakh in the C.M. Relief Fund. The Court also clarified that failure to deposit the amount would denude him of the protection from his arrest.

3. State Cannot Issue Notification Regulating Rates Chargeable By Private Hospitals To Non-Covid Patients; Bombay HC Quashes Notifications [Hospitals' Association, Nagpur & Anr. v. Government of Maharashtra & Anr.]

In what may come as a significant economic relief to private hospitals, the Division bench of Justice PV Ganediwala and Justice RK Deshpande held that the State Government does not have the power to frame a law or issue notification regulating rates chargeable by private hospitals to non-covid patients and quashed two state government notifications fixing rates applicable to Non-Covid patients in the private hospitals/health care providers.

"In our view, Entry 6 regarding public health and sanitation; hospitals and dispensaries in the State List is neither an entry to regulate or control, the charges, fees or rates, nor it can be read to include the power to prescribe or regulate the charges, fees or rates in 27 wp1936.20.odt respect thereof," the Court held.

4. "BMC Has Shown Its Inhuman Face": Bombay High Court Directs To Pay Lockdown Salary Dues To Physically Disabled Employees [National Association of Blind v. BMC & Anr.]

Division bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice GS Kulkarni repudiated the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation for issuing a circular withdrawing earlier exemption granted to physically disabled employees of the Corporation from attending office during lockdown, resulting in these employees not being paid any salary during the lockdown as their absence from work was treated as permissible leave.

"We direct the Corporation to ensure that none of the physically disabled employees, who have not reported for duty during the pandemic are denied pay benefits which they would have been entitled to, but for the pandemic and had they reported for duty. The monetary benefits that each employee is entitled shall be calculated and released in their favour in two equal monthly installments as early as possible, the first of which should reach them before Diwali and the second within 45 days of payment of the first installment," the Bench directed.

5. Relief To Mahesh Bhatt As Luviena Lodh's Lawyer Assures Bombay HC That She Will Not Make Defamatory Statements On Social Media

The Bench of Justice AK Menon heard the civil defamation suit filed by filmmakers Mahesh Bhatt and Mukesh Bhatt seeking injunction against actor Luveina Lodh for making "false, defamatory, distasteful" allegations against them on social media and sought Rs.1 Cr each in damages for the same.

The Court restrained the defendant from making any defamatory statement against the Bhatts and granted her three weeks' time to reply to the suit, after Luveina Lodh's lawyer Advocate Prashant Pandey made a statement to that effect and said that his client will not be making or circulating any such statements against the plaintiffs. Although the plaintiffs sought immediate deletion of video as well, the Court did not grant any relief in this regard.

6. Personal Info Of More Than 4000 RTI Applicants Displayed On Official Website: Bombay High Court Pulls Up I&B Ministry

While hearing RTI Activist Saket Gokhale's writ petition against the Union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting's decision to upload his personal details on their website, the division bench of Justice Nitin Jamdar and Justice Milind Jadhav pulled up the Ministry after being informed that personal details of more than 4000 of such RTI applicants were disclosed on the official website until recently. Court will now hear the matter on November 5.

7. OCI Card Issued To Foreigner On Spouse Basis Liable To Be Cancelled Upon Dissolution Of Marriage; Bombay HC Rejects Canadian Woman's Plea [LeeAnne Arunoday Singh v. MHA & Anr.]

Division bench of Justice Nitin Jamdar and Justice Milind Jadhav held that Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) card issued to someone of foreign origin is liable to be cancelled upon dissolution of marriage by a competent court. Court rejected a writ petition filed by LeeAnne Singh, a Canadian citizen who challenged a notice issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs asking her to surrender her OCI card after dissolution of marriage.

8. [Divorce By Mutual Consent] In View Of Woman's Pregnancy From Other Person, Bombay High Court Waives Cooling Off Period [KK Dhillon v. KS Prakash Rao]

The Bench of Justice Nitin W. Sambre allowed a Joint plea for waiving the Cooling-off period as specified under Section 13B of the Hindu Marriage Act and asked the family court to decide the divorce plea of a couple on an urgent basis. The Court waived the statutory period under Section 13B of the Hindu Marriage Act on the ground that the Woman (Wife) is pregnant from some other person, whom she wanted to marry soon.

9. Digitization Is For The Convenience Of Tax Payers Not To Harass Them; Bombay High Court On Transition Of Credit Denial Due To Technical Glitch In GST Network [BMW India Financial Services Lyd. v. Union of India & Ors.]

While granting relief to BMW India Financial Services limited in a matter relating to denial of transition of credit of over Rs.17 lakhs despite successful submission of TRAN-1 form, a Division bench of Justice Ujjal Bhuyan and Justice Abhay Ahuja observed that the whole objective of digitization is to convenience the taxpayers not to harass them. The transition of credit was denied due to a technical glitch in the Goods and Services Tax Network.

"We are of the view that merely because there were no technical glitches in the GSTN with respect to the Petitioner's TRAN-1 which was admittedly filed in time, the claim of the Petitioner, if it was otherwise eligible in law, cannot be rejected for no apparent fault on the part of the Petitioner. This cannot be the objective of the GST system or digitisation. Such a situation cannot be countenanced as it would be wholly unfair and unjust. We are, therefore, of the view that this is a fit case for invocation of our writ jurisdiction," it observed.

Delhi High Court

1. Delhi High Court Grants 6 hrs 'Custody Parole' To UAPA Accused To Accompany Wife For Surgery [Mohd Hussain Molani v. NIA]

A division bench of Justices Brijesh Sethi & JR Midha granted Custody Parole to an accused, charged under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act for a period of 6 hours, to accompany his wife who is to undergo surgery.

2. Delhi High Court Seeks EC's Reply On Plurals Party's Plea Seeking Common Symbol To Contest Bihar Polls [The Plurals Party v. Election Commission Of India]

The Bench of Justice Jayant Nath sought the response of the Election Commission of India (ECI) on a plea filed by the newly formed political outfit, Plurals Party, seeking to use 'Chess Board' as an election symbol during the Bihar Assembly polls.

It may be noted that before the Delhi High Court, it was submitted by the Plurals Party that by the time the Party was registered with ECI, the last date of the first stage for filing nominations for the elections in the State of Bihar was over.

3. Delhi HC Directs Adoption Of Effective Measures Against Child Porn Content To Social Media Platforms [X v. State & Ors.]

The Single Bench of Justice Vibhu Bakhru passed an order directing intermediaries i.e social media platforms to take all effective measures available with them to ensure that the child porn content is not hosted on their platforms. This order was passed in a petition seeking removal of child porn content from social media.

4. "Selection To IAS Can't Be A Whimsical Process": Delhi High Court Pulls Up UPSC For Cancelling Interviews By Selection Committee [Shri Akul Bhargava v. UPSC]

Single Bench of Justice Prathiba M Singh agreed to hear on merits the plea challenging the letter issued by the Union Public Service Commission on December 31, 2019, whereby the interviews scheduled to be conducted by the Selection Committee were cancelled.

"Selection to the civil services, especially the IAS – a coveted service, cannot be a whimsical process. It has to follow certain norms, procedures and discipline. When the State or any instrumentality thereof fails to follow the said discipline, it can lead to misgovernance and misuse by vested interests. The cancellation of interviews as in the present case is not to be viewed solitarily as a one-off incident. It represents a deeper malaise in selection, which ought to be conducted fairly and in a transparent manner," the Court remarked.

5. Delhi High Court Suspends Sentence of Former Union Minister Dilip Ray In Coal Scam Case

The High Court suspended the sentence of 3 years given to former Union Minister Dilip Ray who was sentenced on Monday by a Special CBI court for illegally allocating a coal block in Jharkhand to a private company in 1999.

Gauhati High Court

1. Explain Inclusion Of 'Undeserving' Individuals In Assam National Register Of Citizens: Gauhati High Court Directs NRC Coordinator [Rahima Begam v. Union of India & Ors.]

The Bench comprising of Justice Manojit Bhuyan and Justice Soumitra Saikia asked the coordinator of National Register of Citizens (NRC) to explain how the name of the Petitioner got included in the Register despite the fact that at the relevant point of time, proceedings against her were continuing.

The order was passed after the Court observed that the Petitioner's name appeared in the NRC even when proceedings against her had been initiated and continued on the basis of reference made by the Superintendent of Police (Border), Nalbari.

2. Offspring From An Illegitimate Marriage Of Deceased Also Entitled To Family Pensionary Benefit: Gauhati High Court [Nikita Sutar Minor v. State of Assam & Ors.]

The Bench of Justice Achintya Malla Bujor Barua held that offspring from an illegitimate marriage of a deceased will also be entitled to the family pensionary benefit of such deceased. The Bench noted that this issue is no longer res integra and was discussed by the Supreme Court in Rameshwari Devi v. State of Bihar & Ors., (2000) 2 SCC 431.

Gujarat High Court

1. Gujarat High Court Quashes Complaint Against Home Minister Pradipsinh Jadeja For Alleged Poll Code Violation [Pradipsinh Bhagvatsinh Jadeja v. State Of Gujarat]

The Bench of Justice Ilesh J. Vora quashed and set aside a criminal complaint filed against State Home Minister Pradipsinh Jadeja for the alleged violation of the model code of conduct during the 2007 Gujarat Assembly polls when he fought elections from Asarwa seat in Ahmedabad as a BJP candidate.

"A bare reading of the complaint, it is not alleged that applicant has published, printed and distributed the ''election pamphlet''. When this Court finds that the pamphlet, cannot be said to be an ''election pamphlet'', as defined under provision of Section 127(3)(b) of the Act, 1951, the learned Magistrate materially erred in taking cognizance and issuing summon against the applicant. Similarly, there is no prima-facie evidence for the offence under Section 127 A(2)(a)," the Court said.

Himachal Pradesh High Court

1. 'Posting Wife's Nude Snaps In Public Domain Amounts To Betrayal Of Mutual Trust & Confidence', HP High Court Denies Bail To Husband [Abhishek Mangla v. State of HP]

Bench of Justice Vivek Singh Thakur denied the benefit of Anticipatory Bail to a Husband accused of posting and uploading nude photographs of his wife in the public domain.

Calling it "not only serious but a heinous crime", the Court observed that, "Posting and uploading nude photographs of the spouse, particularly of wife, in public domain amounts to betray the mutual trust and confidence which marital relations imply."

2. S. 82 CrPc Neither Creates Riders Nor Imposes Restrictions In Filing Of Anticipatory Bails By Proclaimed Offenders: Himachal Pradesh High Court [Mahender Kumar v. State of Himachal Pradesh]

Single Bench of Justice Anoop Chitkara made it clear that declaration of an accused as an "absconder" under Section 82 of CrPC does not preclude him from filing an application for seeking anticipatory bail. "Section 82 of CrPC neither creates any riders nor imposes any restrictions in the filing of anticipatory bails by the proclaimed offenders," the Court held.

Also Read: Application For Anticipatory Bail Is Maintainable Even After An Accused Is Declared "Absconder": Madhya Pradesh HC

3. 'State Cannot Act In A Misogynistic Way': Himachal Pradesh High Court Reads Down Policy Excluding Married Daughters From Compassionate Appointment [Mamta Devi v. State of Himachal Pradesh & Ors.]

"The State cannot act in a misogynistic way," the Bench comprising of Justice Sureshwar Thakur and Justice Chander Bhusan Barowalia remarked while allowing a married daughter's plea seeking compassionate appointment in her deceased father's place.

"If the marital status of a son does not make any difference in the eyes of law, then it is difficult to think, how marital status of a daughter makes such a huge difference in her eligibility. In fact, marriage does not have proximate nexus with identity and even after marriage, a daughter continues to be a daughter. Therefore, if a married son has right to compassionate appointment, then a married daughter also stands on the same footing and her exclusion does not have any plausible basis or logic, so her exclusion has no justifiable criteria," the Court held.

Jammu & Kashmir High Court

1. Jammu & Kashmir High Court Issues Instructions For Proper Sequencing Of Paragraphs In Replies/ Objections/ Rejoinders [Rayaiz Ahmed v. Union Territory of J&K & Ors.]

The Court appealed to all the Advocates/ Litigants to properly number the paragraphs in all the filings, for convenience of both the Bench as well as members of the Bar.

"It has been observed that in majority of the petitions Reply/Objections as well as the Rejoinder so filed, are not prepared in sequence with the serial numbers of the paragraphs forming part of the petition/objections," the Bench comprised of Justice Rajesh Bindal said.

Access full report to read Court's suggestions.

2. Court Verdicts Do Not Give Cause Of Action; Only Declare Law 'As Was, As Is': Jammu & Kashmir High Court [Subash Chandra & Ors. v. Commissioner State Road Transport Corporation Jammu & Ors.]

The Bench Justice Rajesh Bindal made it clear that a Court order, that might be favourable to any person's case, does not give him a cause of action and cannot be used to revive a case, otherwise suffering from delay or laches.

"Any benefit which are due to an employee during his service carrier have to be claimed while he is in service or at the most, may be immediately after retirement. The same cannot be claimed more than seven years after the retirement even if in some cases pending before the Court such relief was granted to the employees, who may be in service. The judgments of the Court do not give any cause of action. They only declare the law; 'as was', 'as is'," the Court observed.

Karnataka High Court

1. State Should Facilitate Establishment Of Private Schools To Fructify Right To Education: Karnataka High Court [Nexgen Education Trust v. State Of Karnataka]

Observing that "the Constitutional guarantee of free-primary-education will not fructify in the absence of enough number of schools and therefore, the State action should be facilitative & complimentary to the establishment of private schools," the Bench of Justice Krishna S Dixit directed the State government to consider afresh an application made by a trust seeking permission to start a school.

2. Karnataka HC Grants Bail To Prime Accused Mansoor Khan In IMA Money Laundering Case [Mohammad Mansoor Khan v. Directorate of Enforcement]

Bench of Justice Sreenivas Harish Kumar granted bail to Mohammad Mansoor Khan, prime accused in the 'I Monetary Advisory' (IMA) scam in a case registered with the Enforcement Directorate, on health grounds. It took into consideration that Khan has been a diabetic since the year 2013, suffering from hyper tension since the year 2010 and has cardiac problems and has also been suffering from degenerative spondylosis since October 2018.

Kerala High Court

1. [LIFE Mission Case] Kerala High Court DB Dismisses PIL Seeking Interference In Proceedings Before Single Bench [Michael Varghese v. Pinarayi Vijayan & Ors.]

Bench of Chief Justice S. Manikumar and Justice Shaji P. Chaly dismissed as non-maintainable, a PIL filed by journalist Michael Varghese, seeking to quash the proceedings before a Single Bench of the High Court under Section 482 of CrPC, for quashing of complaint registered in connection with the FCRA irregularities in the 'LIFE Mission' project of the State Government.

"Fundamentally speaking, there is no such procedure of interference by a writ court in a Public Interest Litigation seeking intervention in a pending proceedings before the learned single Judge. The Code of Criminal Procedure as well as the Kerala High Court Act, and the Rules of the High Court enables a writ court to function only in accordance with the powers conferred thereunder and the constitution and the laws and not abrogative to law. This is more so when an aggrieved person is left with a right and liberty to take up the matter before any appellate legal forum and so is the case of the writ petitioner," the Court held.

Also Read: Kerala High Court Denies Pre-Arrest Bail To M Siva Sankar IAS In Gold Smuggling Case

Also Read: Strong Indications To Suggest That Siva Sankar May Be Involved In Money Laundering With Swapna Suresh : Kerala HC

2. When Party Members of Constituents Of A Coalition Act Against Coalition's Interest, It Amounts To Acting Against Their Own Party: Kerala High Court [Boby Abraham v. Abraham & Ors.]

While upholding the decision of the Election Commission, the Bench of Justice A. Muhamed Mustaque dismissed Writ Petitions filed against the decision of EC declaring the petitioners "disqualified" for being members of Grama Panchayath and also disqualified them from contesting as candidates in any election of the local body for a period of six years.

The petitioners had contended that they were independent candidates and any whip issued by the political party would not bind them. "Acting against the interest of coalition by party members of the constituents of the coalition amounts to acting against their own party. The Election Commission entered into a finding based on the materials before it, there was valid whip and the petitioners were aware of such whip," the Bench held.

Madhya Pradesh High Court

1. Cases Generating Much Heat In Public Domain Can't Influence Court's Decision: Madhya Pradesh High Court

"In the hierarchy of justice administration, at no level, can the Courts be held hostage to the shrill screech of public perception. The day that happens, no longer would it be said that the Courts are impervious to influence", remarked the Bench of Justice Atul Shreedharan

It added, "If Courts yield to the passive and subliminal opinion of what ought to be done in cases, or who the culprits are, as is expressed with increasing, and sometimes wanton regularity by the ubiquitous "vox-populi" viz., the print, electronic and social media, the Constitution, the liberty and life of the individual it professes to protect, would be no more valuable than the paper on which it is printed."

2. BCI Has Power To Frame Further Rules Laying Down Conditions Before Permitting A Person To Practice As An Advocate: Madhya Pradesh High Court [Chanchal Tiwari & Ors. v. Union of India & Ors.]

The Bench of Acting Chief Justice Sanjay Yadav and Justice Rajeev Kumar Dubey observed that an advocate getting enrolled under Section 24 of the Advocates Act, 1961 can be subjected to further conditions before he is permitted to practise as an advocate in court.

The Court observed that - while on one hand, Section 30 of the Act of 1961 makes provision as to the right of advocates to practise, on the other hand, Section 49 confers on the Bar Council of India, the general power to make rules for discharging its functions under the Act of 1961.

Madras High Court

1. Purchasing PG Medical Seats: Madras High Court Orders Enquiry Into Probable Conspiracy Between Directorate Of Medical Education & Colleges [Dr. M. Keethanjali v. Director of General Health Services & Ors.]

Expressing serious concern over the manner in which admissions are being granted in post-graduate medical courses, especially in self-financing colleges, the Bench of Justice N. Anand Venkatesh ordered an enquiry into the conspiracy, if any, between the officials of the Directorate of Medical Education and the self-financing colleges.

"It is very important to identify this malice that is afflicting admissions in post-graduate medical courses. At the end of the day, money, contacts and power should not be the determining factor for getting a seat in a post-graduate course and it should be merit and merit alone which should form the basis for allotting a seat to a candidate in post-graduate courses and super-specialties," the Bench observed.

2. Courts Cannot Mechanically Relegate Parties To File Election Petition When There Is Subversion Of Election Process By Adopting Illegal Means: Madras High Court [R. Jayalakshmi v. State Election Commissioner & Ors.]

"The Election process even for Panchayats must be recognized and given the status of the Elections conducted for forming the Government in the Centre or the State. A local body Election has been given such a status by the Constitution itself. Therefore, any interference that takes place in a free and fair Election conducted for the local body, must be taken very seriously by this Court," held the bench of Justice N. Anand Venkatesh.

The Court noted that confusion in allotment of election symbols in this case arose only after a particular candidate was declared winner. "This is a clear after thought and an apparent attempt made to dislodge the Election process for reasons best known to the official respondents," the Bench remarked.

Orissa High Court

1. [Loss of Livelihood Due To COVID] 'If Possible, Provide Financial Aid To Sarala Temple Sevayats/Sevaks', Orissa High Court To State Govt. [Khirod Kumar Roul & Ors. v. State of Orissa & Ors.]

The Bench of Justice S. Panda and Justice S. K. Panigrahi directed the Commissioner of Endowments to consider and dispose of the representation of Sevayats and other similarly situated Sevaks of the Maa Sarala Thakurani Temple and if possible, extend financial assistance.

Patna High Court

1. 30K Vacant Posts Of Sub-Inspectors & Constables: Patna High Court Calls For Action Taken Report From Bihar Govt. Within 4 Weeks [Based on the order of Hon'ble The Chief Justice v. State of Bihar]

On being informed that more than 30,000 posts in the Police Department are lying vacant, The Bench of Chief Justice Sanjay Karol and Justice S. Kumar asked the State Government to file a status report regarding filling up the posts of Sub-Inspectors and Constables in the State of Bihar.

Punjab & Haryana High Court

1. Drug Menace Destroying Lives Of Citizens: Punjab & Haryana High Court Denies Alleged Drug Peddler's Pre-Arrest Bail Plea [Parmila v. State of Haryana]

The Single Bench of Justice Harsimran Singh Sethi expressed concern over the rising drug menace in the state, which is ultimately "destroying the lives" of its citizens.

It observed, "The lives of the citizens are being destroyed due to the selling of these banned substance. There is an alarming spike in the number of people buying and selling these contraband in the country, which needs to be controlled in an effective manner so as to minimise the said offence, if not to eradicate."

2. On Attaining Majority Women Are Entitled To Make Own Choices; Court Can't Assume Role Of Super Guardian: Punjab & Haryana High Court [Usman Khan v. State of Haryana & Ors.]

The Bench of Justice Arun Kumar Tyagi observed in a Habeas Corpus Petition that Women, who have attained the age of majority, are entitled to make their own choices and they can live wherever they want. The Court further opined that the Courts cannot assume the role of a super guardian to impose any restrictions on them.

3. People In India Live In Harmony But Some Mischievous Persons Try To Create Tension By Hurting Religious Sentiments: Punjab & Haryana High Court [Lakhveer Singh v. State of Punjab]

"India is a country, which is inhabited by various people belonging to various religions, races, castes and creeds. All people live in harmony. Mostly, people show respect for each others' religious feelings but on some occasions, some mischievous persons try to create tension by hurting religious sentiments of others", observed the Bench of Justice H. S. Madaan while hearing pre-arrest bail plea of a man accused of showing disrespect to the Sikh culture.

"In case, such type of incidents are viewed lightly and in a casual manner that may result in creating communal and religious tension in the society, affecting peace and tranquillity," the Bench added and dismissed the petition.

4. In Criminal Law, The Remedy Of Appeal Can't Be Allowed To Be Defeated On Technical Grounds: Punjab & Haryana High Court [Vipin Sharma v. State of Punjab]

"It needs to be constantly borne in mind that in criminal law, there is only one remedy of appeal, therefore, it acquires much importance and the said remedy cannot be allowed to be defeated on technical grounds," observed the Bench of Justice Manoj Bajaj.

The Court was hearing a criminal revision, against the orders passed by the appellate court (Nawanshahr), whereby, firstly the appellant's application for condonation of two days delay in filing the criminal appeal against the judgment of his conviction was permitted to be withdrawn, and later the appeal was also dismissed qua the petitioner.

5. Submit Details Of FIR Against Police Officers Of All Ranks; Explain Rationale Of Their Continuance In Service: Punjab & Haryana High Court To Govt. [Surjit Singh v. State of Punjab & Ors.]

The Single Bench of Justice Anupinder Singh Grewal asked for details of the FIRs registered against the serving police officers of all ranks in the State of Punjab including their nature. The Bench also asked the State, through its home secretary, to specify the current posting of such officers.

The order was passed after the Court was informed that there are a large number of police officers in the State of Punjab who are continuing in service despite registration of criminal cases against them.

6. 'Arrest Of Accused Not Automatic On Registration Of FIR': Punjab & Haryana High Court Reiterates [Hitesh Bhardwaj v. State of Punjab & Ors.]

The Single Bench of Justice Raj Mohan Singh cautioned that even though registration of FIR is mandatory when a complaint discloses commission of a cognizable offence, "the arrest of the accused is not automatic on registration of an FIR."

It held, "The arrest cannot be made in a routine manner on a mere allegation of commission of an offence. It would be prudent for a Police Officer not to arrest a person without a reasonable satisfaction after some investigation as to the genuineness and bona fide of a complaint and reasonable belief in the context of complicity of the accused. The arrest of person and registration of FIR are not directly linked as both have two concepts, operating under different parameters."

7. [Honour Killing] 'Fast Track Investigation By SITs Needed', Punjab And Haryana High Court Calls For Details Of Pending Cases [Ravi Kumar v. State of Haryana]

The Bench of Justice Arun Kumar Tyagi directed the DGP, Haryana, to file an affidavit regarding the number of Honour Killing cases registered in the state in which trial or probe is pending, and what steps have been taken to fast-track the same.

The Court further asked the State DGP to spell out the steps taken for the protection of the survivor-wife or the husband and other important witnesses in the completion of the chain of circumstantial evidence incriminating the accused responsible for commission of the heinous offence.

8. Doli Ceremony On Hold: Punjab & Haryana High Court Acknowledges Newly Married Lawyer's Dedication And Grants His Client Bail [Angrej Singh v. State of Punjab]

The Bench of Justice Arun Monga acknowledged a Lawyer's dedication and commitment in discharging his duty towards his client, as he waited for his case to be heard by the Court while his (Lawyer's) doli ceremony was on hold. "Notwithstanding his personal difficulty, as he got married only yesterday night, and morning ceremony of Doli has been on the hold due to him, since he has been throughout sitting in the video conference, waiting for his turn in the larger interest of discharging his duty to his client. This court wishes him a blissful and happy married life", the order stated.

The Court then allowed the anticipatory bail application of the client/petitioner "given the inordinate delay in filing the challan by the prosecution".

Uttarakhand High Court

1. 'Dissent Suppressed Under Sedition Law Would Make Democracy Weak', Uttarakhand High Court Quashes FIR Against Journalist [Umesh Kumar Sharma v. State of Uttarakhand & Anr.]

Bench of Ravinda Maithani directed the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to file an FIR and investigate the allegations of corruption levelled against Uttarakhand's Sitting Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat by a journalist (Umesh Sharma). [This direction has been stayed by the Supreme Court.]

Apart from this, the Court also allowed the plea filed by Journalist Umesh Sharma (who owns local News Channel 'Samachar Plus') to quash an FIR filed against him in July 2020 for publishing a video levelling corruption allegations against TSRCM.

Also Read: Supreme Court Stays Uttarakhand High Court Order Directing CBI Investigation Against CM Trivendra Singh Rawat


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