Supreme Court Weekly Round Up

Sanya Talwar

22 Nov 2020 12:56 PM GMT

  • Supreme Court Weekly Round Up

    Week Commencing November 15 to November 22, 2020

    Top Stories:1. Siddique Kappan Was Using 'Garb Of Journalism' To Disturb Law & Order In Hathras: UP Govt Tells SC [Kerala Union of Working Journalists V. UOI]The State of Uttar Pradesh has submitted before Supreme Court that Journalist Siddique Kappan has no locus to approach the Top Court under an Article 32 petition, since he is not in an illegal custody/confinement but is in...

    Top Stories:

    1. Siddique Kappan Was Using 'Garb Of Journalism' To Disturb Law & Order In Hathras: UP Govt Tells SC [Kerala Union of Working Journalists V. UOI]

    The State of Uttar Pradesh has submitted before Supreme Court that Journalist Siddique Kappan has no locus to approach the Top Court under an Article 32 petition, since he is not in an illegal custody/confinement but is in judicial custody in "pursuance of the valid judicial order passed by the competent court". The counter-affidavit filed by the UP Government states that the petition filed by Kerala Union of Working Journalists(KUWJ) directly under Article 32 of the Constitution of India "is not maintainable and it is for the person in judicial custody to approach the jurisdictional High Court namely High Court of Allahabad."

    Also Read: Supreme Court Records State Of UP's No Objection To Siddique Kappan Meeting Lawyer In Jail; Hearing Deferred To Next Week

    Also Read: 'We Are Trying To Cut Down Article 32 Jurisdiction': Chief Justice of India

    2. New Tweet Against CJI: Attorney General Grants Consent To Initiate Contempt Against Comedian Kunal Kamra

    The Attorney General for India, KK Venugopal has granted his consent for initiation of contempt proceedings against comedian Kunal Kamra, over his latest tweet passing comments on the Chief Justice of India. Responding to the request made by Advocate Anuj Singh, the AG said, "The depiction of the two fingers, with the legend that he means the middle one, is to deliberately insult the Chief Justice of India which would equally be an insult to the Supreme Court of India itself, which the Chief Justice heads. The said tweet is grossly vulgar and obnoxious, and I have no doubt that it would tend to lower the authority of the Supreme Court of India as well as undermine the confidence that the litigant public have in the institution of the Supreme Court of India itself.

    3. Supreme Court Issues Notice On Centre's Challenge To Kerala HC Judgement Which Quashed Preventive Detention Under COFEPOSA Act [Union of India V. Beevikunju]

    The Supreme Court on Thursday issued notice in a special leave petition filed by the Union of India challenging a Kerala High Court judgment which quashed the preventive detention orders passed against two person under Conservation of Foreign Exchange and Prevention of Smuggling Activities Act (COFEPOSA) was quashed.

    4. Waiver Of Loan Interest: Sufficient Relief Granted; Further Intervention Not Needed, Centre Tells Supreme Court [Gajendra Sharma V. Union of India]

    The Centre urged a bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan, MR Shah and Subhash Reddy to not intervene and provide further relief to borrowers under Article 32 as the Government was already "on top of it". Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told top Court today that many relief packages and schemes had been worked out with technical experts and the intervention of the Court in fiscal policy issues was uncalled for. The law officer informed Court that the Government was not oblivious to the stress suffered by various stakeholders but, there was no room to do anything beyond the constraint of finance.

    5. Sudarshan TV's UPSC Jihad Show Not In "Good Taste", Likely To Promote Communal Attitudes: MIB Cautions Channel [Firoz Iqbal Khan V. UOI]

    The Ministry of Information & Broadcasting has filed an affidavit in the Supreme Court stating that Sudarshan TV's UPSC Jihad program is "not in good taste" and has likelihood to "promote communal attitudes". In this context, it has "cautioned" the Suresh Chavhanke led channel to be "careful in future."

    6. "PMO Unique, Matter Cannot Be Kept Pending" :SC Reserves Order In Plea Against Narendra Modi's Election From Varanasi [Tej Bahadur V. Narendra Modi]

    The Supreme Court on Wednesday reserved orders in a petition filed by ex-BSF jawan Tej Bahadur Yadav, challenging the election of Prime Minister Narendra Modi from Varanasi constituency in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. A bench of Chief Justice SA Bobde, Justices AS Bopanna & V. Ramasubramaniun said that the issue concerned with the most important office of the country, i.e. the PMO and that it cannot be kept pending indefinitely. This happened after the counsel for petitioner sought adjournments and pass overs many times during the hearing.

    7. 'Frivolous' Plea To Protect Pending Ram Temple Artefacts At Ayodhya:Supreme Court Partially Waives Cost And Closes The Matter [Satish Chindhuji Sambharkar V. UOI]

    Noting that such pleas "create aspirations" and "disrupt emotions", the Supreme Court on Friday partially waived the costs imposed on the petitioners for two 'frivolous' PILs seeking preservation of artefacts recovered from the Ram Janmabhoomi site at Ayodhya, with the warning that such ventures not be indulged in in the future.

    8. Default Bail Granted Erroneously Can Be Cancelled By High Court U/s 439(2) CrPC: Supreme Court [VENKATESAN BALASUBRAMANIYAN vs. THE INTELLIGENCE OFFICER, D.R.I. BANGALORE]

    The Supreme Court has observed that a 'default bail' illegally or erroneously granted under Section 167(2) Cr.PC can be cancelled under Section 439(2) Cr.PC. In this case, the High Court had allowed the petition filed under Section 439(2) CrPC, by the Intelligence Officer, Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, Bangalore Zonal Unit, Bangalore, requesting to cancel the regular bail granted to accused under Section 167 (2) Cr.P.C.

    9. 'Will Not take Any Coercive Action Against Former ICICI Bank CEO Chanda Kochhar In Money Laundering Case': ED Tells Supreme Court [Chanda Kochhar V. ICICI]

    The Supreme Court on Friday was informed by the ED that no coercive action would have proceeded against former ICICI Bank CEO and MD Chanda Kochhar in a money laundering case. The bench of Justices S. K. Kaul, Dinesh Maheshwari and Hrishikesh Roy was told that the agency would not take any coercive step in connection with the ICICI Bank-Videocon Group loan case. "Although there is a sword hanging on your head, there is no hurry as such", said Justice Kaul.

    10. Supreme Court Stays Release Order Issued By Navy To Woman Officer Without Considering Claim For Permanent Commission [Lt. Cdr. Harmeet Kaur V. UOI]

    The Supreme Court on Thursday stayed the order of release issued by the Indian Navy to a woman officer without considering her claim for permanent commission. The lady officer, Lt Cdr Harmeet Kaur, approached the Supreme Court saying that her case was covered by the 'Lt Cdr Annie Nagaraja' judgment of March 2020 whereby the Navy was directed to grant permanent commission to women officers.

    11. Supreme Court Refuses To Lift Stay On Release of Amitabh Bachchan Starrer "JHUND" [Super Cassettes Industries Pvt. Ltd. V. Nandi Chinni Kumar]

    The Supreme Court on Wednesday refused to lift the stay imposed by the Civil Court as well as the Telangana High Court on the release of the movie "JHUND" which stars Bollywood actor Amitabh Bachchan. A Bench headed by Chief Justice of India SA Bobde dismissed the special leave petition filed by Producer of the movie, Super Cassettes, which challenged the October 19 judgement of a Division Bench of the Telangana High Court wherein the Petitioner's Appeal against the Order dated 17 September of the Trial Court had been dismissed.

    13. "Every High Courts Have The Power To Strike Down Central Acts": Supreme Court Asks Petitioner Challenging Epidemic Act To Move HC 

    The Supreme Court on Tuesday required the withdrawal of a writ petition challenging the constitutional validity of the Epidemics Act, suggesting that the concerned High Court be approached. "What kind of a writ petition have you filed? Don't you have something called the High Court of Judicature of Bombay?', asked Justice D. Y. Chandrachud at the outset from petitioner-in-person Harshal Mirashi.

    14. 'Janardhan Reddy Holds Considerable Influence, Can Tamper With Witnesses': CBI Opposes Bail Plea Of Mining Baron In SC [Gali Janardhan Reddy V. UOI]

    The Central Bureau of Investigation on Monday opposed the bail plea of mining baron accused in illegal mining case(s) Gali Janardhan Reddy. A bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan & R. Subhash Reddy directed the CBI to file detailed affidavit in this regard. Senior Advocate Madhavi Divan (ASG) told top court that Janardhan should not be let out on bail and visit district Bellary in Karnataka as he holds considerable influence and might interfere with the investigation.


    14. Right To Education Under Article 21A Envisages That Teachers Must Be Meritorious & The Best Of The Lot: SC [Ram Sharan Maurya and Ors. Vs. State of U.P.]

    Right to education guaranteed in terms of Article 21A of the Constitution would envisage quality education being imparted to the children which in turn, would signify that the teachers must be meritorious and the best of the lot, the Supreme Court observed while dismissing the appeals filed by Uttar Pradesh Shiksha Mitra Association in a case related to the recruitment of 69,000 assistant teachers in the State of Uttar Pradesh.

    15. DSPE Act Provision Requiring States' Consent For CBI Investigation Is In Tune With Federal Character Of Constitution: Supreme Court [FERTICO MARKETING AND INVESTMENT PVT. LTD. vs. CBI]

    The Supreme Court has observed that the provision in Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, which requires the consent of State Government for CBI to exercise of powers and jurisdiction, are in tune with the federal character of the Constitution. "Though Section 5 enables the Central Government to extend the powers and jurisdiction of Members of the DSPE beyond the Union Territories to a State, the same is not permissible unless, a State grants its consent for such an extension within the area of State concerned under Section 6 of the DSPE Act. Obviously, the provisions are in tune with the federal character of the Constitution, which has been held to be one of the basic structures of the Constitution.", the bench comprising Justices AM Khanwilkar and BR Gavai observed in a judgment delivered on Tuesday (11 Nov 2020).

    16. Registered Document Is Presumed To Be Genuine; Onus To Prove Otherwise Is On Person Who Challenges It, Reiterates Supreme Court [Rattan Singh V. Nirmal Gill]

    The Supreme Court has reiterated that a document is presumed to be genuine if the same is registered and the onus to prove otherwise is on the person who challenged the stated registered document. In appeal, the issue arose before the Apex Court was was whether a General power of Attorney and sale deeds purported to have been executed by the plaintiff in the year 1900 is a result of fraud and forgery? While examining this question, the bench noted the dictum in Prem Singh and Ors. v. Birbal 8 (2006) 5 SCC 353 that there is a presumption that a registered document is validly executed. The court also noted the decision in Anil Rishi v. Gurbaksh Singh (2006) 5 SCC 558, wherein it was held that for shifting the burden of proof, it would require more than merely pleading that the relationship is a fiduciary one and it must be proved by producing tangible evidence.

    Also Read: To Invoke Section 17 Limitation Act, Existence & Discovery Of Fraud Have To Be Pleaded & Proved : Supreme Court

    17. When Death Takes Place Inside Privacy Of House, Onus Is On Residents To Give Explanation: Supreme Court [Jayantilal Verma V. State of MP]

    The Supreme Court has upheld the conviction of a husband for the murder of his wife after noting that he had not offered an explanation for the death which took place within the privacy of the home. The Court said that in such situations of incidnet happening within the privacy of the house, the accused is "under an obligation to give a plausible explanation regarding the cause of the death in the statement recorded under Section 313 of the Cr.P.C. and mere denial could not be the answer in such a situation".

    18. Any Creditor Of A Company In Liquidation Can Seek Transfer Of Winding Up Proceedings In HC To NCLT: Supreme Court [M/s Kaledonia Jute & Fibres Pvt. Ltd V. M/s Axis Nirman & Industries Ltd.]

    The Supreme Court has held that any creditor of a company can seek transfer of winding up proceeding pending before a High court to a National Company Law Tribunal. The words "party or parties" appearing in the 5th proviso to Clause (c) of Sub­section (1) of Section 434 of the Companies would take within its fold any creditor of the company in liquidation, the bench comprising the Chief Justice of India SA Bobde, Justices AS Bopanna and V. Ramasubramanian observed while allowing an appeal filed by a Financial Creditor against an order of the High court which refused to transfer the winding up proceedings from the Company Court to the NCLT.

    19. High Court Not Required To Frame Substantial Question Of Law While Dismissing Second Appeal: Supreme Court [Kirpa Ram V. Surendra Deo Gaur]

    The Supreme Court has observed that a High Court is not required to frame substantial question of law while dismissing a second appeal. The formulation of substantial question of law or reformulation of the same arises only if there are some questions of law and not in the absence of any substantial question of law, the bench comprising Justices L. Nageswara Rao, Hemant Gupta and Ajay Rastogi observed.

    20. Supreme Court Issues Notice To Income Tax Dept In 2018 Tax Evasion Case Against Karti Chidambaram & Wife [Srinidhi Karti Chidambaram V. The Deputy Director of IT]

    The Supreme Court on Monday issued notice to the Income Tax Department in the 2018 tax evasion case against Congress MP Karti Chidambaram & his wife. The bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan and R. Subhash Reddy were hearing the SLP against the May 12 judgment of the Madras High Court, dismissing the petitions filed by Chidambaram and his wife Srinidhi to quash two criminal complaints under the Income Tax Act and the trial proceedings in respect of them in the Special Courts for MPs/MLAs.

    21. SC Refuses To Entertain Plea Seeking Ban On Persons With Criminal Antecedents From Contesting Elections; Cites Separation of Powers [Lok Prahari V. UOI]

    The Supreme Court on Monday refused to entertain a plea seeking a bar on persons with criminal antecedents from contesting elections. A bench of Justices L. Nageswara Rao, Hemant Gupta & Ajay Rastogi said that the issue in the instant petition was the domain of the parliament and that it was open to the petitioner to pursue any remedy available for effectuating implementing directions issued by the Court earlier in this regard.

    22. Anticipatory Bail Application Not Maintainable By A Person Who Apprehends Arrest After Cancellation Of Regular Bail: Supreme Court [Manish Jain V. Haryana State Pollution Control Board]

    The Supreme Court has held that a person cannot file an anticipatory bail application apprehending arrest following the cancellation of his regular bail. This is because a person released on bail remains under the 'constructive custody' of law and a person in custody cannot seek anticipatory bail, explained the top court. The Supreme Court made this observation while refusing anticipatory bail to a person who was apprehending arrest pursuant to cancellation of his regular bail.

    23. "Liberty of a Citizen Cannot Be Taken Away In this Manner":SC Sets Aside HC Order Dismissing Criminal Revision Due To Absence Of Lawyer [Parveen V. State of Haryana]

    While setting aside an order of the the Punjab and Haryana High Court dismissing the plea of a man on account of absence of his counsel, the Supreme Court has observed that "liberty of a citizen cannot be taken away in this manner". A bench of Justices DY Chandrachud, Indu Malhotra and Indira Banerjee has observed that the high court was was manifestly in error in rejecting the revision order of conviction under the Arms Act in default, on the ground that the appellant's advocate had remained absent on the previous four occasions.

    Other Important Updates:

    1. Rajiv Gandhi Assassination- Perarivalan Unaffected By Probe Into 'Larger Conspiracy'; TN Governor Can Take Call On Remission: CBI Tells Supreme Court 

    The CBI has informed the Supreme Court that convict A.G. Perarivalan has nothing to do with the further investigation conducted by its Multi-Disciplinary Monitoring Agency (MDMA) into the "larger conspiracy" behind the assassination of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1991. The Central probe agency was replying to the intervention application filed by the mother of the petitioner and life convict A. G. Perarivalan for a direction to release Perarivalan.

    2. Tablighi Jamaat- Supreme Court Grants 1 Wk Time To Centre To Respond On Departure Of 8 Discharged Foreigners To Home Country 

    The Centre on Friday sought one week time before the Supreme Court as regards facilitating departure of the 8 foreigners, accused in connection with the Tablighi Jamaat, to their home country in light of the order passed by the Revisional Court. The bench of Justices A. M. Khanwilkar and B. R. Gavai were informed by Senior Advocate Menaka Guruswamy that the eight petitioners who were discharged by the Trial Court, as of today, are free to leave India and return to their home country as the revision against the discharge order filed by the State stands dismissed on 19.11.2020.

    3. 'Trial Court Can't Be A Bystander' : Supreme Court Affirms Uttarakhand HC Direction For Re-Trial In Custodial Death Case 

    The Supreme Court on Thursday affirmed a judgment of the Uttarakhand High Court which ordered a re-trial in a 2005 case of custodial death. A bench headed by Justice D Y Chandrachud dismissed the special leave petition filed by the accused persons against the judgment delivered by the High Court. The case relates to the murder of one Raju Ram in 2005 allegedly at the hands of the revenue police officers of Uttarakhand.

    4. Supreme Court Allows Uttarakhand Govt. To Demolish 4 Illegal Religious Structures On Public Land By May 31, 2021

    The Supreme Court on Thursday allowed the state of Uttarakhand to demolish four illegal religious structures on public land in Haridwar by the extended deadline of May 31, 2021. "Out of 793 illegal structures, 5 are left. In respect of 1, there is a stay...this was a suo motu matter (before the Uttarakhand High Court) so there is no-one on the other side", began SG Tushar Mehta.

    5. Supreme Court Issues Notice To Kerala Govt On Plea To Fix Retirement Age As 60 For All Govt Servants 

    The Supreme Court on Thursday issued notice to the State of Kerala on a plea seeking to fix the retirement age of government servants in Kerala as 60 years. A bench led by Justice D Y Chandrachud issued notice on the special leave petition Saju Nambadan and another v State of Kerala and others which challenged the amendments brought to the Kerala Service Rules to raise the retirement age as 60 years from 56 years only for those employees who joined service after 01.04.2013.

    6. Supreme Court Restores and Keeps For Admission ML Sharma's Plea Challenging The Three Farm Laws 

    The Supreme Court on Thursday restored for admission the petition filed by Advocate Manohar Lal Sharma which challenges the three farm laws that have been enacted by the Parliament recently and have attracted intense opposition from several farmers' groups across the country. In today's hearing, a Bench headed by Chief Justice of India SA Bobde informed Sharma that there was no cause of action in the present case and that he had previously withdrawn his plea.

    7. Supreme Court Asks MoEF To Issue Appointment Letters To Incumbent Members Of NGT In 4 Wks, Who May Join Office Immediately Thereafter 

    The Supreme Court on Wednesday directed that appointment orders be issued to the incumbent judicial and technical members of the National Green Tribunal without further delay, who may join office immediately thereafter. The bench headed by Justice A. M. Khanwilkar noted the submission of ASG N. Venkataraman that pursuant to the orders of July 23 and August 14 of the court, the proposal regarding the appointment of the members has been forwarded to the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) with due compliances for final decision.

    8. Balwant Singh Multani Murder : Supreme Court Reserves Order On Former Punjab DGP Sumedh Singh Saini's Anticipatory Bail Plea

    The Supreme Court on Tuesday reserved orders in the plea by former Director General of Police (DGP), Punjab, Sumedh Singh Saini seeking anticipatory bail in relation to the 1991 Balwant Singh Multani murder case. A bench comprising Justices Ashok Bhushan, R Subhash Reddy & MR Shah heard the plea where Senior Advocate Mukul Rohatgi appeared for Saini.

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