Supreme Court Monthly Digest- December 2019

Ashok Kini

31 Dec 2019 6:10 AM GMT

  • Supreme Court Monthly Digest- December 2019

    Consumer Forums/Commissions Cannot Consider Complaint/Appeal On Merits After Finding That It Is Time Barred M/S. Singal Udyog V. National Insurance Company Ltd. & Ors. The Supreme Court observed that a Consumer Forum/Commission after having come to the conclusion that the complaint/appeal was barred by limitation, could not consider the merits of the matter. The bench...

    Consumer Forums/Commissions Cannot Consider Complaint/Appeal On Merits After Finding That It Is Time Barred

    M/S. Singal Udyog V. National Insurance Company Ltd. & Ors.

    The Supreme Court observed that a Consumer Forum/Commission after having come to the conclusion that the complaint/appeal was barred by limitation, could not consider the merits of the matter. The bench further observed that, In any case, the delay of 150 days, in the present circumstances, was not so alarming that the matter should have been rejected on the ground of delay. Imposing costs of Rs. 25,000, the bench condoned the delay and restored the appeal before the National Commisssion.

    Section 228 CrPC: Detailed Reasons Need Not Be Recorded While Framing Charges

    Bhawna Bai vs. Ghanshyam

    The Supreme Court observed that for framing the charges under Section 228 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, a trial judge is not required to record detailed reasons. The bench of Justice R. Banumathi, Justice AS Bopanna and Justice Hrishikesh Roy observed that, at the stage of framing the charge, the court is not required to hold an elaborate enquiry; only prima facie case is to be seen.

    High Court Can Intervene If NCLT Passes Order In A Matter Pertaining to Public Law

    M/s Embassy Property Developments Pvt. Ltd. V. State of Karnataka & Ors.

    Supreme Court held that the High Court can exercise its powers under Article 226 of the Constitution, if NCLT has passed an order pertaining to a matter falling under the realm of public law. The Division Bench of Justice Nariman, Justice Bose and Justice Ramasubramanian held that wherever the corporate debtor has to exercise a right that falls outside the purview of the IBC, 2016, especially in the realm of the public law, they cannot, through the resolution professional, take a bypass and go before NCLT for the enforcement of such a right.

    Compromise Between Accused & Victim Is Of No Relevance In Deciding Rape Cases

    Ramphal V. State of Haryana

    The Supreme Court emphasized that compromise between rape accused and victim is of no relevance in deciding criminal cases. The bench of Justice Mohan M. Shantanagoudar and Justice Krishna Murari observed thus while disposing of a criminal appeal.

    SC Paves Way For Release Of P Chidambaram After 105 Days In Jail As He Gets Bail In INX Media [ED] Case

    P. Chidambaram V. Directorate of Enforcement

    The Supreme Court granted bail to former Union Minister and Senior Advocate P Chidambaram in the case registered by Enforcement Directorate in INX Media scam. The SC bench of Justices R Banumathi, A S Bopanna and Hrishikesh Roya observed that Chidambaram satisfied the triple tests for granting bail, and criticized the Delhi High Court for making observations on the merits of the allegations. Justice A S Bopanna, reading out the judgment, observed that Chidambaram had participated in the investigation.

    Denial Of Bail On Findings Based On Sealed Cover Documents Presented By Prosecution Is Against Fair Trial

    P. Chidambaram V. Directorate of Enforcement

    In the judgment granting bail to P Chidambaram in the INX Media case, the Supreme Court made certain pertinent observations regarding the practice of courts relying on sealed cover documents produced by prosecution during bail hearings. The SC observed that recording of findings based on the sealed cover documents submitted by the prosecution as if the offence has been committed, and using of such findings to deny bail would be against the concept of fair trial.

    Separate Classification In Favour Of Properties Of Religious Institutions For Rent Laws Not Violative Of Article 14

    Harbhajan Singh vs. State of Punjab

    The Supreme Court, while upholding the constitutional validity of the Punjab Religious Premises and Land (Eviction and Rent Recovery) Act, observed that separate classification of properties of religious institutions for rent legislation will pass a challenge under Article 14 of the Constitution of India

    SARFAESI: Only Expressly Created Statutory First Charges Under Central/State Laws Can Take Precedence Over Secured Creditors' Claim

    Maharashtra State Co-operative Bank Ltd. vs. Babulal Lade

    Only expressly created statutory first charges under Central and State laws can take precedence over the claims of secured creditors under the Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest Act (SARFAESI), the Supreme Court reiterated.

    Minimum Qualifying Service Stipulated In Pension Rules Can't Be Ignored While Considering Claim For Invalid Pension

    State of Odisha vs. Manju Naik

    The Supreme Court observed that the minimum qualifying service prescribed under the Pension Rules cannot be ignored for the purpose of consideration of invalid pension. In this case, the Odisha Administrative Tribunal, and the High Court held that the deceased employee's husband is entitled to invalid pension under Rule 39 of the Orissa Civil Services (Pension) Rules- 1992.

    Section 482 CrPC: HC Should Not Embark Upon An Enquiry Into Validity Of Evidence Available

    M. Jayanthi vs. KR Meenakshi

    While invoking the power under Section 482 Cr.P.C for quashing a complaint or a charge, the High Court should not embark upon an enquiry into the validity of the evidence available, the Supreme Court has reiterated.

    Unreasoned Order Granting/Rejecting Bail Raises Presumption Of Non Application Of Mind

    Mahipal vs. Rajesh Kumar @ Polia

    Where an order refusing or granting bail does not furnish the reasons that inform the decision, there is a presumption of the non-application of mind, the Supreme Court observed while setting aside an order passed by Rajasthan High Court, Jaipur bench.

    Fresh Environmental Clearance Must For Expansion Beyond Limits Approved By Prior EC

    Keystone Realtors Pvt. Ltd. v. Shri Anil V Tharthare & Ors

    The Supreme Court held that a fresh Environmental Clearance is necessary for the expansion of a project beyond the limits approved by the prior EC. The Court added that such fresh EC is mandatory, even if the expanded project is within the upper limits prescribed under the Environmental Impact Assessment notification 2006.

    GST: HC Should Be Loathe To Entertain Writ Petitions Questioning Seizure Of Goods

    The State Of Uttar Pradesh & Ors. V.Vm/S Kay Pan Fragrance Pvt. Ltd.

    High Court should be loathe to entertain the Writ Petitions questioning the seizure of goods, the Supreme Court observed. The court made this observation while considering the appeal filed by the State of Uttar Pradesh against interim order passed by the Allahabad High Court directing it to release the seized goods under Central Goods and Service Tax, subject to deposit of security other than cash or bank guarantee or in the alternative, indemnity bond equal to the value of tax and penalty to the satisfaction of the Assessing Authority.

    For Sales Tax On Transfer Of Right To Use Goods, Place Of Contract Is Relevant Than Location Of Goods

    The Great Eastern Shipping Company Ltd v State of Karnataka

    In a significant judgment in the context of 'deemed sale', the Supreme Court has clarified that for the purposes of levy of sales tax, the place of the contract for transfer of right to use of good is relevant than the location of the goods. This ruling was given by a three judges bench comprising Justices Arun Mishra, M R Shah and B R Gavai.

    Victim Girl Being Habitual To Sex Cannot Be Valid Defence To Act Of Rape

    Abdul Sattar V. The State Of Uttar Pradesh & Anr.

    The Supreme Court observed that the fact that victim of rape is habituated to sex, cannot be a valid defence to the act of rape. The bench also comprising of Justices BR Gavai and Surya Kant then cancelled the bail and directed the accused to surrender before the concerned Judicial Magistrate in Muzaffarnagar,Uttar Pradesh within a period of four weeks.

    Fresh Environmental Clearance Must For Expansion Beyond Limits Approved By Prior EC

    Keystone Realtors Pvt. Ltd. v. Shri Anil V Tharthare & Ors

    The Supreme Court held that a fresh Environmental Clearance is necessary for the expansion of a project beyond the limits approved by the prior EC. The Court added that such fresh EC is mandatory, even if the expanded project is within the upper limits prescribed under the Environmental Impact Assessment notification 2006.

    [Section 197 CrPC] No Protection Of Sanction Where The Acts Are Performed Using The Public Office As A Mere Cloak For Unlawful Gains

    Station House Officer, CBI vs. B.A. Srinivasan

    The Supreme Court observed that protection of sanction to public servants under Section 197 of the Code of Criminal Procedure is not available where the acts are performed using the office as a mere cloak for unlawful gains. The Court also observed that the protection of sanction under Section 19 of the Prevention of Corruption Act would not be available to a public servant after he had demitted his office or retired from service.

    Preliminary Inquiry Not Mandatory In All Corruption Cases

    State of Telangana vs. Sri Managipet @ Mangipet Sarveshwar Reddy

    The Supreme Court observed that a preliminary inquiry before registration of First Information Report (FIR) is not required to be mandatorily conducted in all corruption cases. The bench of Justice L. Nageswara Rao and Justice Hemant Gupta was considering state's appeal against the High court judgment which quashed the criminal proceedings against a Police Officer who was said to be in possession of assets worth Rs.3,18,61,500 alleged to be disproportionate to his known sources of income.

    Resigned Govt. Employees Not Entitled To Pension

    BSES Yamuna Power Ltd. V. Sh. Ghanshyam Chand Sharma & Anr.

    The Supreme Court observed that an employee who has resigned from service is not entitled to pensionary benefits available to those who 'voluntary retired'. The bench noticed that Rule 26 of the CCS Pension Rules provides that the past service of employee stands forfeited upon resignation. Therefore he is not entitled to pensionary benefits, the bench held.

    There Can Be No Reservation Of A Solitary Post

    R R Inamdar V. State of Karnataka

    There can be no reservation of a solitary post, reiterated the Supreme Court while upholding a Karnataka High court judgment. The bench comprising Justice Dhananjaya Y. Chandrachud and Justice Ajay Rastogi observed that the Constitution Bench in Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research v Faculty Association had approved the view that there could be no reservation in respect of a single post.

    Whether Coastal States Have Power To Levy Sales Tax On Goods In Territorial Waters

    The Great Eastern Shipping Co. Ltd. V. State Of Karnataka & Ors.

    The issue whether coastal states have power to levy sales tax on goods in territorial waters has been left open by the Supreme Court. Notably, the Court set aside the findings of the High Court of Karnataka, which held that State Government has competence to levy tax in territorial waters.

    Strict Standard Needs To Be Applied For Judging Conduct Of Judicial Officer

    Ram Murti Yadav V. State Of Uttar Pradesh

    While upholding the punishment of compulsory retirement imposed on a judicial officer, the Supreme Court observed that the standard or yardstick for judging the conduct of the judicial officer has necessarily to be strict. The bench of Justice Ashok Bhushan and Justice Navin Sinha observed that the public has a right to demand virtually irreproachable conduct from anyone performing a judicial function

    No Protection For Intermediary Under Sec 79 IT Act From Criminal Defamation Before 2009 Amendment

    Google India Private Ltd v Visakha Industries

    The Supreme Court asked Google India to face trial in a criminal defamation case by rejecting its plea of immunity from liability as an internet intermediary. The top court said that before the amendment made to Section 79 of the Information Technology Act in 2009, a network service provider was protected only from liability under the IT Act. The protection did not extend to liabilities arising under other enactments, prior to 2009 amendment.

    State Legislature Cannot Enact Law Which Affects Jurisdiction Of Supreme Court

    Rajendra Diwan vs. Pradeep Kumar Ranibala

    The Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court held that Section 13(2) of the Chhattisgarh Rent Control Act, 2011, is unconstitutional as the State Legislature lacked legislative competence to enact a provision providing direct appeal to Supreme Court of India.

    MBBS Course: Admission Can Be Directed To Be Given To Meritorious Candidate Even After Cut Off Date In Exeptional Cases

    S. Krishna Sradha V. The State of Andhra Pradesh & Ors.

    The Supreme Court observed that, in exceptional cases, a direction can be issued to grant admission to meritorious candidates to MBBS Course even after cut-off date. The bench of Justices Arun Mishra, MR Shah and BR Gavai was answering a reference made to it by a two judge bench which noticed conflicting views in two judgments in this regard.

    SC Directs Awarding Of Grace Marks To Candidates Of Haryana Civil Service (Judicial Branch) Examination 2017

    Pranav Verma & Others V. The Registrar General Of The High Court Of Punjab And Haryana At Chandigarh

    directed the Registrar General of the Punjab and Haryana High Court to award 20 grace marks in Civil Law-I paper and 10 grace marks in Civil Law-II paper to all the candidates of Haryana Civil Service (Judicial Branch) Examination – 2017.

    Second Appeal Cannot Be Dismissed On Merits When Appellant Is Unrepresented On The Day Fixed For Hearing

    Prabodh Ch. Das vs. Mahamaya Das

    The Supreme Court observed that a High Court cannot dismiss a second appeal on merits where the appellant is unrepresented on the date fixed for hearing. If the appellant does not appear, the Court may if it deems fit dismiss the appeal for default of appearance but it does not have the power to dismiss the appeal on merits, the bench observed.

    Intoxication Not A Mitigating Factor When Accused Was Not In A Highly Inebriated Condition

    Suraj Jagannath Jadhav vs. State of Maharashtra

    The Supreme Court observed that mere intoxication is not a mitigating factor when the accused was not in a highly inebriated condition. The bench of Justice Ashok Bhushan and Justice MR Shah was dealing with a contention that the accused was under the influence of liquor while he poured kerosene and threw match­stick on his deceased wife and set her ablaze and therefore his condition was such that he could not understand what he was doing.

    No One Can Be Inflicted With An Adverse Order Without Being Afforded A Minimum Opportunity Of Hearing

    M/S Daffodills Pharmaceuticals Ltd. V. State Of U. P.

    No one can be inflicted with an adverse order, without being afforded a minimum opportunity of hearing, remarked the Supreme Court while quashing an order passed by Uttar Pradesh Government directing its Medical and Health Department to stop local purchase from Daffodills, a pharmaceutical supplier.

    Section 362 CrPC Does Not Bar Inherent Power Of High Court To Recall An Order

    New India Assurance Co. Ltd. V. Krishna Kumar Pandey

    The Supreme Court observed that the High Court has inherent power under Section 482 of the Code of Criminal Procedure to recall an order and the provisions of Section 362 Cr.P.C. would not bar it from exercise of such powers.

    Candidate Not Estopped From Challenging Selection Process When Misconstruction Of Statutory Rules Is Alleged

    Meeta Sahi v State of Bihar

    In a notable judgment in service law, the Supreme Court held that a candidate will not be estopped from challenging a selection process on the ground of having participated in it when there is allegation of "misconstruction of statutory rules and discriminating consequences arising therefrom". This was held by a bench comprising Justices Deepak Gupta and Surya Kant while deciding a preliminary objection against the maintainability of an appeal.

    Hospital Vicariously Liable For Medical Negligence Committed By Its Doctors

    Maharaja Agrasen Hospital vs. Master Rishabh Sharma

    The Supreme Court observed that a hospital is vicariously liable for the acts of negligence committed by the doctors engaged or empanelled to provide medical care. The bench of Justice Uday Umesh Lalit and Justice Indu Malhotra observed thus while upholding an NCDRC order holding a Hospital to be vicariously liable for medical negligence of the Doctors who allegedly failed to carry out the mandatory check up of Retinopathy of Prematurity of a pre-term baby, which led to his total blindness.

    Article 142 Can Be Invoked To Dissolve A Marriage Found To Be A Dead Letter

    Marriages are said to be made in heaven. They are broken on earth, said the Supreme Court while dissolving a marriage on the ground of its irretrievable breakdown. The bench comprising Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Justice KM Joseph observed that Article 142 of the Constitution of India can be invoked to dissolve a marriage in cases where a marriage is found to be a dead letter

    SC Sets Aside Death Sentence In A 13 Day Trial, Says 'Fast Tracking Must Not Result In Burial Of Justice'

    Anokhilal V. State of Madhyapradesh

    The Supreme Court observed that expeditious disposal of criminal cases must never result in burying the cause of justice. The bench comprising Justice Uday Umesh Lalit, Justice Indu Malhotra and Justice Krishna Murari set aside a death penalty awarded to a rape and murder accused in a trial that finished within thirteen days.

    SC Directs Bank To Compensate A School Who Lost Money In Online Banking Fraud

    DAV Piblic School V. Indian Bank, Midnapur Branch

    The Supreme Court directed a bank to give compensation of Rupees Twenty Five Lakhs to a school whose money from the bank account was siphoned out by the miscreants. The bench comprising Justice Dhananjaya Y. Chandrachud and Justice Hrishikesh Roy noted the finding of the State Commission, the Banking Ombudsman and also by the NCDRC, that, the bank has rendered themselves liable by enabling net banking facility by linking the individual account of the school's Principal, to the school's account.

    Inadequacy Of Reasons In Arbitral Award And Unintelligible Awards: SC Explains Difference

    Dyna Technologies Pvt. Ltd vs. Crompton Greaves Ltd

    The Supreme Court, in a judgment highlighted the difference to be noted by the Courts between inadequacy of reasons in an award and unintelligible awards under the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996. The bench headed by Justice NV Ramana observed that ordinarily unintelligible awards are to be set aside, while the challenge on inadequacy of reasons, has to be adjudicated based on the degree of particularity of reasoning required having regard to the nature of issues falling for consideration.

    [Section 304B IPC] Seeking Financial Assistance Can Also Constitute Demand For Dowry

    Jatinder Kumar vs. State of Haryana

    The Supreme Court observed that seeking financial assistance can also constitute 'demand for dowry'. In a criminal appeal related to dowry death case, the contention raised by the accused was that the money demanded by him was for extension of clinic, and not as dowry. Relying on the judgment in Appasaheb & Anr. vs. State of Maharashtra (2007) 9 SCC 721, it was urged that a demand for money on account of some financial stringency or for meeting some urgent domestic expenses or for purchasing manure cannot be termed as a demand for dowry.

    Landlord's Derivative Title Has To Be Established When It Is Challenged By Tenant

    Vinay Eknat Lad vs. Chiu Mao Chen

    The Supreme Court observed that, though in a landlord-tenant suit, the landlord is not required to prove his title in the subject property as in a title-suit, but when his/her derivative title is challenged, the same has to be established in some form. In this case

    Detention Order Cannot Be Based On 'Stale & Irrelevant' Incidents

    Khaja Bilal Ahmed V. State of Telengana

    The Supreme Court observed that stale and irrelevant incidents cannot be the basis of an order of detention. The court noted that the order of detention in the present case contains a reference to fourteen cases which were instituted against the appellant between 2007 and 2016.

    Ex-Parte Order Of State Consumer Commission Can Be Challenged Before NCDRC

    Shiur Sakhar Karkhana Pvt. Ltd vs. State Bank of India

    The Supreme Court held that an ex-parte order passed by State Consumer Commission can be challenged before the National Commission. In this case the Bombay High Court, to hold that writ petition can be entertained against an Ex Parte order passed by State Consumer Commission, observed that an appeal does not lie before the National Commission under Section 21 of the Act and consequently there was no alternative remedy available.

    Disciplinary Proceedings Are Not Quasi Criminal In Nature

    Uttarakhand Transport Corporation V. Heera Singh Parihar

    The Supreme Court observed that disciplinary proceedings are not quasi criminal in nature. The bench of Justice Dhananjaya Y. Chandrachud and Justice Hrishikesh Roy was considering an appeal against High Court judgment which set aside the findings of the disciplinary inquiry holding that the nature of a disciplinary inquiry is quasi criminal.

    Non Speaking Order Dismissing SLP Does Not Attract Doctrine Of Merger

    P. Singaravelan vs. District Collector, Tiruppur

    The Supreme Court reiterated that a non-speaking order dismissing a special leave petition, does not constitute a declaration of law under Article 141 of the Constitution, nor attracts the doctrine of merger. The issue in this case was in connection with the interpretation of Government Order issued by the State of Tamil Nadu. The court noticed that there are several orders of the supreme Court dismissing SLPs against the grant of relief to drivers, but all of them were passed at the stage of admission itself.

    Other Significant Orders and Proceedings

    • Quashed Criminal Cases registered against Bollywood Actor Salman Khan in connection with the controversy surrounding the release of the movie "Loveratri– a journey of love".
    • Reserved its order on a plea moved by DMK seeking postponement of local body elections in Tamil Nadu, which are scheduled for December 27 and Dec 30, on grounds that delimitation of 9 newly bifurcated districts have not taken place.
    • Allowed the local body elections in Tamil Nadu to be conducted as per schedule, except in nine newly bifurcated districts. In those nine districts, elections should be held within four months after delimitation process is complete, ordered the bench.
    • Expressed its concern about disturbing trend of making judicial officers scapegoats. The bench of Justice Indira Banerjee and Justice BR Gavai observed thus while upholding the Calcutta High Court judgment reinstating a judicial officer who was compulsorily retired from service.
    • Permitted Vyapam scam accused, Sanket Vaidya, to travel abroad for further studies, on the condition that he furnishes a fixed deposit of Rs 1.26 crore with the trial court and a surety from his father that he will appear for hearings.
    • A group of residents of the Golden Kayaloram complex - one of the four apartments in Maradu which have been directed to be demolished- became unsuccessful in persuading the Supreme Court to direct the Attorney General to grant sanction for initiating criminal contempt against the members of the Committee, which was constituted by the Court for probing the violations. "Several orders have already been passed on the issue and you are making mockery of it. Dismissed, " a bench comprising justices Arun Mishra and Sanjiv Khanna said while dismissing the plea
    • Issued notice to all states and sought their response on the issue whether they have grievance redressal mechanism in place to ensure food to everyone under the National Food Security Act.
    • Disapproved the practice of summoning officers by the High Court while considering the writ petitions which impugns the order passed by said officers. Merely because the Principal Secretary has passed the said order, the High Court, in our view, was not right in directing the presence of Principal Secretary in the Court and explain as to the reasons in passing the said order, the bench comprising Justice R. Banumathi and Justice AS Bopanna said.
    • Issued notice to the Election Commission of India on a plea by TMC MP Mahua Moitra seeking directions to the poll body to publish details of voter turnout and final vote counts on their website.
    • Allowed construction activity in the Delhi-NCR region between 6 am and 6 pm, partially lifting its complete ban on it.
    • Referred to the larger bench the issue of constitutional validity of domicile/residence-based reservation in admission to "PG Medical Courses" within the State Quota.
    • Dismissed 18 review petitions which were filed against the November 9 judgment in the Ayodhya-Babri Masjid case. The petitions were considered in the chamber by a five judges bench comprising Chief Justice SA Bobde, Justices D Y Chandrachud, Ashok Bhushan, Abdul Nazeer and Sanjiv Khanna (who came in place of former CJI Gogoi).
    • Ordered judicial enquiry into the killings of four men accused of gang-rape and murder of a veterinarian in an alleged encounter with Hyderabad police on December 6. The probe will be headed by former Supreme Court judge Justice V S Sirpurkar. Ex Bombay HC judge Justice Rekha Baldota and former CBI Director Karthikeyan will be other members of the enquiry panel.
    • Proposed to appoint a former SC judge to conduct an inquiry into the killings of four men accused of gang-rape and murder of a veterinarian in an alleged encounter with Hyderabad police on December 6.
    • Even while agreeing that there was no stay of the judgment allowing entry of women of all age groups to Sabarimala temple, the Supreme Court chose not to pass protection orders for women seeking to visit the hilltop shrine of Lord Ayyappa. Chief Justice of India S A Bobde said that it was an "emotive issue", and that the Court would prefer to exercise its discretion to decline relief to prevent violent reactions.
    • Expressed satisfaction with the fresh report submitted by Jammu and Kashmir Juvenile Justice Committee which stated that no minors were under illegal detention in the region. Based on this, a bench headed by Justice Ramana disposed off the Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by child rights activists Enakshi Ganguly and Shanta Sinha.
    • The Supreme Court bench comprising Justices R Banumathi, Ashok Bhushan and AS Bopanna dismissed the last pending review petition in the Nirbhaya gang rape -murder case, which was filed by Akshay Kumar Sing, one of the four convicts awaiting execution of death sentence
    • In a decision set to bring cheers to 1.8 million investors who lost their savings of Rs 8,500 crore in two "ponzi schemes" run by Royal Twinkle Star Club and Citrus Check Inns, the Supreme Court directed the Sale cum Monitoring Committee (SMC) headed by Justice J P Deodhar (Retd) to proceed with the sale of 114 properties/investments identified by the Resolution Professional and endeavor to complete the process within six months.
    • Asked the petitioners to approach the concerned High Courts with their prayers for a Court-monitored probe into the reports of police atrocities against students of Jamia Milia Islamia and Aligarh Muslim University during protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act.
    • Chief Justice of India S A Bobde recused from hearing the review petition of Akshay Kumar Singh, one of the four death row convicts in the Nirbhaya gang rape -murder case. This was after CJI Bobde happened to spot the name of his nephew, Advocate Arjun Bobde, in the orders of the review petitions filed by the other three convicts.
    • In a major relief to the Maharashtra government, the Supreme Court stayed the Bombay High Court judgment that quashed the Coastal Road Zone clearances granted to the city civic body's Rs 14,000 crore coastal road project.
    • Issued notice to all petitions challenging the Constitutional Validity of Citizenship (Amendment) Act 2019. The Bench comprising CJI Bobde and Justices BR Gavai and Surya Kant asked the Centre to file the response by the second week of January.
    • Being concerned over the growing anger and agitation by the public over delay in justice in the cases of rape and sexual offences and to ensure speedy justices to the victims, the Supreme Court registered a suo motu petition and sought status report from Centre through Home Secretary, all states and Union Territories (UT) through Chief Secretaries and DGPs with regard to investigations into rape cases, medical examination of the victim and also speedy trial of such cases .
    • Issued notices on a plea challenging the decision of the Uttar Pradesh government to cut around 64,000 trees along the Gomti river in Lucknow, for holding different programmes during the next year's Defence Expo.

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