Supreme Court Weekly Round Up

Sanya Talwar

11 Oct 2020 11:02 AM GMT

  • Supreme Court Weekly Round Up

    Week Commencing October 4th to October 11, 2020

    Top Stories This Week:1. Justice Ramana Influencing AP Judiciary In Politically Sensitive Matters, Andhra CM Alleges In Complaint To CJIThe State of Andhra Pradesh is witnessing an unprecedented constitutional crisis with the State Government openly declaring no-confidence in some of the High Court judges. Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy, the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, has written a complaint to...

    Top Stories This Week:

    1. Justice Ramana Influencing AP Judiciary In Politically Sensitive Matters, Andhra CM Alleges In Complaint To CJI

    The State of Andhra Pradesh is witnessing an unprecedented constitutional crisis with the State Government openly declaring no-confidence in some of the High Court judges. Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy, the Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, has written a complaint to the Chief Justice of India, S A Bobde, alleging that some High Court judges are attempting to protect the interests of the major opposition party, Telugu Desom Party, in politically sensitive matters.

    2. Republic TV CFO Moves SC Against Mumbai Police's Summons In TRP Scam

    Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of Republic Media Network, S. Sundaram, has moved the Supreme Court against a FIR registered against him by the Mumbai Police, in connection with the alleged "spiked TRP scam". In response to a notice issued by ACP, Mumbai, to summon Sundaram, it was disclosed that Sundaram has filed a writ petition before the Supreme Court in relation to this matter. He thus requested the officer to defer the investigation accordingly.

    3. SC Allows CLAT 2020 Aspirants To Make Representation Before Grievance Redressal Committee Within Two Days; Committee To Decide At The Earliest [Lavanya Bhatt V. NLU Consortium]

    The Supreme Court allowed CLAT 2020 aspirants, liberty to make representation(s) before the Grievance Redressal Committee which is headed by Retired Chief Justice of India regarding their grievances pertaining to the conduct of the Examination. A bench headed by Justice Ashok Bhushan stated that the Committee should take a decision at the earliest on the objections raised by aspirants.

    4. 'Extremely Evasive, Brazenly Short Of Details': CJI Pulls Up Centre For Filing Shoddy Affidavit In Pleas Seeking Action For Communal Branding Of Covid19 [Jamiat-ulema-i-Hind V. UOI & other Pleas]

    The Supreme Court pulled up the Centre for filing a shoddy affidavit in a plea seeking strict action against the media for communalization of the Coronavirus pandemic, in light of the Tablighi Jamaat meeting in Delhi's Nizamuddin. A bench of Chief Justice SA Bobde, Justices AS Bopanna & V. Ramasubramaniun noted that the Ministry concerned had filed an affidavit without even taking into account the details related to the incidents of bad reporting.

    Also Read: 'Freedom Of Speech May Be Most Abused Freedom In Recent Times': CJI SA Bobde

    5. "Public Places Cannot Be Occupied Indefinitely": Supreme Court On Shaheen Bagh Protests [Amit Sahni V. UOI]

    The Supreme Court on Wednesday held that the public places cannot be occupied indefinitely. "Dissent and democracy go hand in hand but protests must be carried out in designated area", said the bench comprising Justices S K Kaul, Aniruddha Bose and Krishna Murari while delivering a judgement on the scope of right to protest and whether or not there can be any limitations on such a right. The court added that "social media channels are often fraught with danger" and they lead to highly polarising environments. "This is what was witnessed in Shaheen Bagh. What Started out as a protest caused inconvenience to commuters," said the top court while holding in a batch of petitions pertaining to a road blockade at Shaheen Bagh in Delhi by protesters who were opposing the Citizenship Amendment Act. The court also pulled up the administration and its inability to clear encroachments and obstructions, waiting on the judicial orders for doing so, adding that it was the laxity of the administration that warranted intervention of the court.

    Also Read: [Shaheen Bagh] Demonstrations Expressing Dissent Have To Be In Designated Places Alone: SC

    6. Hathras Case: SC Asks UP Govt. To File Witness Protection Plan; Seeks Suggestions From Parties For Enlarging Scope Of Allahabad HC Proceedings [Satyama Dubey V. UOI]

    The Supreme Court on Tuesday directed the State of Uttar Pradesh to file an affidavit stipulating Witness Protection Plan for the family and witnesses of the 19-year old woman who was allegedly gang-raped by four upper-caste men in Hathras District, Uttar Pradesh. A bench of Chief Justice SA Bobde, AS Bopanna & V. Ramasubramaniun also asked the Solicitor General, appearing for the State of UP to find out whether the victims family had chosen a lawyer for representation.

    Also Read: "This Is A Shocking Incident": Chief Justice On Hathras Case [Read Courtroom Exchange]

    7. . Stubble Burning] SC To Consider Whether A Portion Of MSP Can Be Withheld From Farmers Indulging In Stubble Burning  [MC Mehta V. UOI]

    The Supreme Court stated that it shall look into the suggestion of withholding a portion of Minimum Support Price (MSP) from farmers till it is verified that they did not indulge in stubble burning. A bench comprising Chief Justice SA Bobde, Justices AS Bopanna & V. Ramasubramaniun was hearing an application filed by a Farmer Vikram Tongad urging the Court for an alternative incentive mechanism for tweaking the amount of Rs. 100 per quintal and for its payment be deferred from within the MSP until it is verified that no stubble has been burnt.

    8. "Criminal Cases Against Legislators Hanging On Heads Of People, Centre Must Take Final Call": SC [Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay V. UOI]

    The Supreme Court on Tuesday asked the Centre to submit details regarding criminal cases pending against legislators across the country. A bench headed by Justice NV Ramana noted that various High Courts had been asking for Video Conferencing facilities for effectuating disposal of pending criminal cases and asked the Centre to take instructions in this regard, particularly in terms of financing.

    Judgments This Week:

    9. Related Witnesses' Testimony, If Found Truthful, Can Be The Basis Of Conviction: SC [Karulal V. State of MP]

    The Supreme Court has observed that testimony of the related witness, if found to be truthful, can be the basis of conviction. If the witnesses are otherwise trustworthy, past enmity by itself will not discredit any testimony, the bench comprising Justices NV Ramana, Surya Kant and Hrishikesh Roy observed. The court upheld observed thus while upholding conviction of five persons accused in a murder case. The court dismissed the appeal against Madhya Pradesh High Court judgment upholding their conviction under Section 148, 302 read with Section 149 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860. Karulal, Amra, Kachru, Suratram and Bhagirath were accused of murder of one Madhavji.

    10. Medical Admission - NRI Quota Not Compulsory; Private Colleges Have Discretion To Abolish It: SC [Nilay Gupta Vs. Chairman Neet Pg Medical And Dental Admission/Counselling Board 2020]

    The Supreme Court has held that it is not compulsory for the private medical colleges to provide for 15% NRI quota. Private colleges and institutions which offer such professional and technical courses can decide whether, and to what extent, they wish to offer NRI or management quotas, subject to limits set by judicial precedents, enacted law or subordinate legislation, held a bench of Justices LN Rao & S. Ravindra Bhat.

    11. Payal Tadvi Suicide : SC Permits Accused Doctors To Re-Enter College And Resume Studies [Ankita Kailash Khandelwal & Ors. V. State of Maharashtra & Ors.]

    The Supreme Court permitted the doctors accused of abetting the suicide of Dr.Payal Tadavi to re-enter the College and the Hospital to pursue their courses of study. The three doctors, Dr. Ankita Kailash Khandelwal, Dr. Hema Suresh Ahuja and Dr. Bhakti Arvind Mehare are accused of abetting the suicide of Dr.Payal Tadavi by humiliating her and passing disparaging remarks about her caste. While granting conditional bail, the Bombay High Court had observed that they will not be allowed inside the BYL Nair hospital premises during the bail period.

    12. Filing Of The Charge-sheet By Itself, Does Not Entitle An Accused To Copy Of Statement Recorded U/s 164 CrPC: SC [Miss A V. State of Uttar Pradesh]

    Filing of the charge-sheet by itself, does not entitle an accused to copies of any of the relevant documents including statement under Section 164 of the Code, the Supreme Court observed while setting aside the Allahabad High Court order which allowed the plea of former Union Minister and BJP leader Chinmayanand to seek a certified copy of the statement of the rape victim. The right to receive a copy of such statement will arise only after cognisance is taken and at the stage contemplated by Sections 207 and 208 of the Code and not before, the three judge bench headed by Justice Uday Umesh Lalit held.

    13. "Accused Was A Juvenile At The Time Of Occurrence": SC Quashes Life Sentence In A Four Decade Old Murder Case  [Satya Deo @ Bhoorey V. State of UP]

    The Supreme Court has set aside the life imprisonment sentence imposed on a person accused in a 1981 murder case noticing that he was less than 18 years of age on the date of commission of offence. The bench comprising Justices S. Abdul Nazeer and Sanjiv Khanna, though upheld the conviction, directed the Juvenile Justice Board to pass orders regarding detention and custody under the Juvenile Justice Act, 2000 Act.

    14. Mere Inclusion Of Candidate In A Selection List Does Not Confer Upon Them A Vested Right To Appointment, Reiterates SC [Commissioner of Police & Anr. V. Umesh Kumar]

    The Supreme Court has reiterated that mere inclusion of candidate in a selection list does not confer upon them a vested right to appointment. In this case, the candidates participated in the selection process to the 2013 batch of Constables (Executive) – Male in Delhi Police. They were declared to have been successful in the first result. The results were revised later and they were ousted. The candidates approached the Central Administrative Tribunal which dismissed their OA. This order was challenged before the Delhi High Court, which directed the appointment.

    15. SLP Against HC Order Rejecting Review Petition Cannot Be Entertained When Main Judgment Is Not Challenged: SC [T.K. David. V. Kurupampady Service Co-operative Bank Ltd. & Ors.]

    The Supreme Court has observed that a special leave petition challenging the order of High Court rejecting the review petition cannot be entertained when main judgment in the writ petition is not challenged. When the main judgment of the High Court cannot be effected in any manner, no relief can be granted by this Court in the special leave petition filed against order rejecting review application to review the main judgment of the High Court, the three judge bench observed.

    Other Important SC Updates:

    16. 'Let Us Show Confidence In The Process':, Says Justice Chandrachud [Firoz Iqbal Khan V. UOI]

    The Supreme Court on Monday adjourned the hearing in the Sudarshan TV matter to October 26. At the outset, SG Tushar Mehar sought a deferment of the hearing. "On September 23, a show-cause notice was issued to Sudarshan TV. Your Lordships may please record this. A reply was received from the channel on September 28, which was the time granted to them. We have a system of inter-ministerial committee to peruse the content of the reply...(Justice D. Y. Chandrachud remarked that he is aware) a committee was set-up which viewed the four episodes in question ('When?', asked Justice Chandrachud)...on October 1. The committee had also heard Sudarshan TV and it is recorded in its minutes...Now, the committee is not the decision-making authority. It communicated its recommendations in a report to the Central government. Considering the nature of the recommendations, the central government, upon its perusal of the report, issued a show-cause notice to Sudarshan TV and the hearing is scheduled for tomorrow...we are requesting for some time", he advanced.

    17. "Secret" Extradition Proceedings Going on to Bring Vijay Mallya To India : Centre Tells SC [United Breweries V. SBI]

    The Centre on Monday told the Supreme Court that "secret" extradition process was going on to bring fugitive businessman Vijay Mallya to the country but it was not aware about its status. The Centre also told the top court that it was not a party to the proceedings.

    18. [SNC-Lavalin] If 2 Courts Concurrently Allowed Discharge, Strong Submissions Needed To Dislodge The Judgments: SC Tells SG

    The Supreme Court agreed to hear on October 16 the CBI appeal challenging the Kerala High Court verdict upholding a special court's decision to allow the discharge petition of Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, one of the accused in the SNC-Lavalin case. "This is a case where the accused were discharged despite a detailed charge sheet having been filed by the CBI. I have submitted the chronology of facts- a PIL was filed and the Kerala High Court directed investigation by the CBI. The investigation was carried out and a detailed charge sheet was filed on 10.6.2009. Thereafter, discharge applications were filed, which were allowed. Thereafter, the High Court in revision approved the order of discharge, which we have impugned before Your Lordships' ', began SG Tushar Mehta, appearing for the CBI, a petitioner.

    19. Loan Moratorium Exceeding 6 Months Will Impact Borrowers' Credit Behaviour: RBI Tells SC, Also Urges To Lift The Stay On NPA Classification [Gajendra Sharma V. UOI]

    In response to a large number of Writ Petitions making diverse prayers relating to its Circular on Covid-19 - Regulatory Package dated March 27, 2020, and subsequent circulars issued on the matter; and the Circular on Resolution Framework for Covid19-related Stress dated August 6, 2020, the RBI has filed a consolidated reply before the Supreme Court. "Reserve Bank of India has taken a balanced view, taking into account the interest of the depositors, borrowers, real sector entities and banks. Financial stability and economic growth of the country were also kept in mind while arriving at its policy decisions by the Reserve Bank. All the issues that were advanced by the petitioners have been adequately addressed. 

    20. [2020 Tribunal Rules] AG Defends Exclusion Of Advocates From Appointment To Single-Member Tribunals, SC Reserves Judgment [Madras Bar Association V. UOI & Batch Pleas]

    The Supreme Court on Friday reserved judgment on the plea by the Madras Bar Association challenging the Tribunal Rules of 2020, on the grounds that it is in the teeth of the principles of separation of power and independence of judiciary. The Bench of Justices L. Nageswara Rao, Hemant Gupta and Ravindra Bhat were hearing the matter. The bench on Friday directed that the terms of all chairpersons, vice-chairperson and other members of all 19 tribunals, which are due to expire, shall be extended till December 31.

    21. "Be Good Children & Withdraw The Plea": SC Refuses To Entertain Plea Seeking Interest Free Loans For Lawyers Amid Pandemic [Supreme Court's Arguing Counsel V. UOI]

    The Supreme Court refused to entertain a plea filed by a lawyers' body seeking interest free loans for lawyer of upto 20 lacs. A bench of Chief Justice SA Bobde, Justices AS Bopanna & V. Ramasubramaniun asked the petitioner-association, Supreme Court Arguing Counsel Association to withdraw the plea and instead file an intervention application in another matter which is pending before the court on the same issue.

    22. SC Sets Aside Allahabad HC Order Which Allowed Former Union Min Chinmayanand Access To Victim's Statement Under Section 164 CRPC

    The Supreme Court on Thursday set aside the Allahabad High Court order which had allowed former Union Minister and BJP leader Chinmayand to seek a certified copy of the statement of the victim recovered under Section 164 of the Code of Criminal Procedure. A Bench headed by Justice UU Lalit dictated the Order and stated that the appeal filed by the law student was allowed, thereby overruling the November 7 order of the Allahabad High Court which had allowed Chinmayanand's application seeking a certified copy of the statement of the victim recovered under Section 164 of the Code of Criminal Procedure.

    23. [Article 164(4)] Who Decides What Are Extraordinary Circumstances For Appointment Of Non-Legislators As Ministers? Asks SC, Directs Petitioner To Approach MP HC

    The Supreme Court disposed off a plea against the appointment of persons who are not MLAs as ministers in the Madhya Pradesh government, granting the liberty to approach the High Court. "We have been told that before the power to appoint was exercised, the Speaker had already passed the order disqualifying candidates? If it is so, then the petition is infructuous", observed Chief Justice S. A. Bobde.

    24. SC Reserves Judgment On Senior Journalist Vinod Dua's Plea Seeking To Quash Sedition FIR Against Him [Vinod Dua V. UOI]

    The Supreme Court reserved verdict on a plea of senior journalist Vinod Dua seeking quashing of FIR lodged against him for sedition and other offences by a local BJP leader in Himachal Pradesh over his YouTube show. A bench of Justices U U Lalit and Vineet Saran, after hearing arguments for Dua, Himachal Pradesh government and the complainant in the case, asked the parties to file written submissions in the matter within three days.

    25. Persons From Vernacular Medium Find It Tough To Argue In SC, Submits Viswanathan; CJI Disagrees 

    The hearing in the case relating to the Andhra Pradesh government's decision to implement English as the compulsory medium of instruction in government schools witnessed some interesting exchanges between Senior Advocate K V Viswanathan and Chief Justice of India, S A Bobde. Those who have studied in vernacular medium find it difficult to argue in the Supreme Court, submitted Vishwanathan, appearing for the Government of Andhra Pradesh in the Special Leave Petition challenging the AP High Court's judgment quashing the decision to convert all classes from I to VI as English Medium.

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