Top Quotes From The Top Court - From Supreme Court Judgments Of 2022 [Part II]

Awstika Das

31 Dec 2022 2:26 PM GMT

  • Top Quotes From The Top Court - From Supreme Court Judgments Of 2022 [Part II]

    Our top picks from the memorable observations made by the Supreme Court in 2022.

    Many momentous decisions have been delivered and memorable observations made by the Supreme Court in 2022. This is the second part of collection of the top quotes. The first part can be read here.1. Widow and daughter has right to inherit self-acquired property of Hindu male “Right of a widow or daughter to inherit the self-acquired property or share received in partition of...

    Many momentous decisions have been delivered and memorable observations made by the Supreme Court in 2022. This is the second part of collection of the top quotes. The first part can be read here.

    1. Widow and daughter has right to inherit self-acquired property of Hindu male

    Right of a widow or daughter to inherit the self-acquired property or share received in partition of a coparcenary property of a Hindu male dying intestate is well recognized not only under the old customary Hindu Law but also by various judicial pronouncements…It is clear that ancient text as also the Smritis, the Commentaries written by various renowned learned persons and even judicial pronouncements have recognized the rights of several female heirs, the wives and the daughter's being the foremost of them. The rights of women in the family to maintenance were in every case very substantial rights and on whole, it would seem that some of the commentators erred in drawing adverse inferences from the vague references to women's succession in the earlier Smritis. The views of the Mitakshara on the matter are unmistakable. Vijneshwara also nowhere endorses the view that women are incompetent to inherit.” [Justice Krishna Murari in Arunachala Gounder (Dead) v. Ponnusamy, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 71]

    2. Women face persistent discrimination even after gaining access to a workplace

    Women are subject to a patriarchal mindset that regards them as primary caregivers and homemakers and thus, they are burdened with an unequal share of family responsibilities. Measures to ensure substantive equality for women factor in not only those disadvantages which operate to restrict access to the workplace but equally those which continue to operate once a woman has gained access to the workplace. The impact of gender in producing unequal outcomes continues to operate beyond the point of access. The true aim of achieving substantive equality must be fulfilled by the State in recognizing the persistent patterns of discrimination against women once they are in the workplace… The manner in which a special provision should be adopted by the State is a policy choice which has to be exercised after balancing out constitutional values and the needs of the administration. But there can be no manner of doubt that the State, both in its role as a model employer as well as an institution which is subject to constitutional norms, must bear in mind the fundamental right to substantive equality when it crafts the policy even for its own employees.” [Justice D.Y. Chandrachud (as he was then) in SK Naushad Rahman v. Union of India, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 266]

    3. Family life of employees an important factor in state policy

    The State while formulating a policy for its own employees has to give due consideration to the importance of protecting family life as an element of the dignity of the person and a postulate of privacy. How a particular policy should be modulated to take into account the necessities of maintaining family life may be left at the threshold to be determined by the State. In crafting its policy however, the State cannot be heard to say that it will be oblivious to basic constitutional values, including the preservation of family life which is an incident of Article 21.” [Justice D.Y. Chandrachud (as he was then) in SK Naushad Rahman v. Union of India, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 266]

    4. Right of the disabled to live with dignity important factor in state policy

    The formulation of a policy therefore, must take into account the mandate which Parliament imposes as an intrinsic element of the right of the disabled to live with dignity…In considering whether any modification of the policy is necessary, they must bear in mind the need for a proportional relationship between the objects of the policy and the means which are adopted to implement it. Hence while we uphold the judgment of the Division Bench of the Kerala High Court, we leave it open to the respondents to revisit the policy to accommodate posting of spouses, the needs of the disabled and compassionate grounds.” [Justice D.Y. Chandrachud (as he was then) in SK Naushad Rahman v. Union of India, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 266]

    5. Judges require sufficient experience to enter the fold of higher judicial services

    “The Constitution has prescribed the requirement to the effect that a person shall be eligible for appointment as the district judge subject to only if he has been an advocate or a pleader for at least seven years. The Constitution does not preclude the exercise of the rule making power by the High Court to regulate the conditions of service for appointment. The Constitution being silent in regard to the prescription of minimum age, the High Courts in exercise of the rule making authority are entitled to prescribe such a requirement. It must be remembered that direct recruitment to the higher judicial services is intended to be from members of the bar who have sufficient experience. In fact, that is the reason why the Constitution stipulated at least seven years of practice as an advocate or a pleader. The High Court would be well within their domain in prescribing a requirement which ensures that candidates with sufficient maturity enter the fold of the higher judicial services. The requirement that a candidate should be at least 35 years of age is intended to subserve this.” [Justice D.Y. Chandrachud (as he was then) in High Court of Delhi v. Devina Sharma, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 286]

    6. Service conditions of Anganwadi workers need to be improved

    Anganwadi workers/helpers are the key facilitators of child nutrition initiatives at the ground level and involved in performing the work of dissemination, publicity, building awareness, and implementation of various schemes of the Government. No wonder, the strength of Anganwadi Centres has increased manifold by passage of time in the country…The time has come when the Central Government/State Governments has to collectively consider as to whether looking to the nature of work and exponential increase in the Anganwadi centres and to ensure quality in the delivery of services and community participation and calling upon Anganwadi workers/helpers to perform multiple tasks ranging from delivery of vital services to the effective convergence of various sectoral services, the existing working conditions of Anganwadi workers/helpers coupled with lack of job security which albeit results in lack of motivation to serve in disadvantaged areas with limited sensitivity towards the delivery of services to such underprivileged groups, still being the backbone of the scheme introduced by Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS), time has come to find out modalities in providing better service conditions of the voiceless commensurate to the nature of job discharged by them.” [Concurring opinion by Justice Ajay Rastogi in Maniben Maganbhai Bhariya v. District Development Officer Dahod, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 408]

    7. Art is non-conformist in nature and should accommodate colour-blindness

    The art is non-conformist in character! We are reminded of Edgar Degas’ poignant observation that “Art is not what you see, but what you make others see.” The respondent Institute is a premier Institute, and one would expect it to encourage a liberal thought process and not put courses connected with films in any conformists’ box. It is this thought process which made us pass an order dealing with the aspect of colour blindness. We had sketched out that the colour blindness is not a form of blindness at all but a deficiency in the way you see colour. This medical condition makes it difficult to distinguish certain colours such as blue and yellow or red and green, and an estimated eight percent of the male population and less than one percent of the female population have red and green colour deficiency, being the most common form of colour blindness. The lis which has arisen before us is from a fundamental question where a person who is colour blind is excluded from pursuing a course for Diploma in Editing in the Films and Television Institute of India…The aforesaid conclusions clearly show that all individuals with colour blindness should be permitted to enrol for all courses offered by FTII and any limitation can be overcome. The FTII should make accommodation in their curriculum for candidates with colour blindness and the 20 minutes obstructive element of colour grading module in the existing Diploma in Film Editing course curriculum should be excluded or made elective.” [Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul in Ashutosh Kumar v. The Film and Television Institute of India, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 429]

    8. Punishment not meant to be eye for an eye but have to be commensurate

    “While a disproportionately severe sentence ought not to be passed, simultaneously it also does not clothe the law courts to award a sentence which would be manifestly inadequate, having due regard to the nature of the offence, since an inadequate sentence would fail to produce a deterrent effect on the society at large. Punishments are awarded not because of the fact that it has to be an eye for an eye or a tooth for a tooth, rather having its due impact on the society; while undue harshness is not required but inadequate punishment may lead to sufferance of the community at largeA disproportionately light punishment humiliates and frustrates a victim of crime when the offender goes unpunished or is let off with a relatively minor punishment as the system pays no attention to the injured's feelings. Indifference to the rights of the victim of crime is fast eroding the faith of the society in general and the victim of crime in particular in the criminal justice system.” [Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul in Jaswinder Singh (Dead) Through Legal Representatives v. Navjot Singh Sidhu, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 498]

    9. Role of public prosecutor dedicated to fair trial and not conviction

    The role of the public prosecutor, and trial court, in arriving at the truth by way of fair disclosure and scrutiny by inquiry, respectively. A public prosecutor occupies a statutory office of high regard. Rather than a part of the investigating agency, they are instead, an independent statutory authority who serve as officers to the court. The role of the public prosecutor is intrinsically dedicated to conducting a fair trial, and not for a ‘thirst to reach the case in conviction’.” [Justice S. Ravindra Bhat in Manoj v. State of Madhya Pradesh, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 510]

    10. Need for comprehensive law dealing with granting of bail

    The Bail Act of United Kingdom takes into consideration various factors. It is an attempt to have a comprehensive law dealing with bails by following a simple procedure. The Act takes into consideration clogging of the prisons with the undertrial prisoners, cases involving the issuance of warrants, granting of bail both before and after conviction, exercise of the power by the investigating agency and the court, violation of the bail conditions, execution of bond and sureties on the unassailable principle of presumption and right to get bail. Exceptions have been carved out as mentioned in Schedule I dealing with different contingencies and factors including the nature and continuity of offence. They also include Special Acts as well. We believe there is a pressing need for a similar enactment in our country. We do not wish to say anything beyond the observation made, except to call on the Government of India to consider the introduction of an Act specifically meant for granting of bail as done in various other countries like the United Kingdom. Our belief is also for the reason that the Code as it exists today is a continuation of the pre-Independence one with its modifications. We hope and trust that the Government of India would look into the suggestion made in right earnest” [Justice M.M. Sundresh in Satender Kumar Antil v. Central Bureau of Investigation, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 577]

    11. Mother being the natural guardian has the right to decide child’s surname

    Name is important as a child derives his identity from it and a difference in name from his family would act as a constant reminder of the factum of adoption and expose the child to unnecessary questions hindering a smooth, natural relationship between him and his parents. We, therefore, see nothing unusual in Appellant mother, upon remarriage having given the child the surname of her husband or even giving the child in adoption to her husband…When such child takes on to be a kosher member of the adoptive family it is only logical that he takes the surname of the adoptive family and it is thus befuddling to see judicial intervention in such a matter. While the main object of adoption in the past has been to secure the performance of one's funeral rights and to preserve the continuance of one's lineage, in recent times, the modern adoption theory aims to restore family life to a child deprived of his or her biological family…To obviate any uncertainty it is reiterated that the mother being the only natural guardian of the child has the right to decide the surname of the child. She also has the right to give the child in adoption. The Court may have the power to intervene but only when a prayer specific to that effect is made and such prayer must be centered on the premise that child's interest is the primary consideration, and it outweighs all other considerations.” [Justice Krishna Murari in Akella Lalita v. Sri Konda Hanumantha Rao, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 638]

    12. Courts to ensure the justice system is not onerous for sexual assault survivors

    It is important for all courts to remain cognizant of the fact that the legal process tends to be even more onerous for complainants who are potentially dealing with trauma and societal shame due to the unwarranted stigma attached to victims of sexual harassment and assault. At this juncture, especially in cases where the police fails to address the grievance of such complainants, the Courts have an important responsibility…As the Delhi High Court held in Virender v. State of NCT of Delhi, 2009 SCC OnLine Del 3083, courts have to remain alive to both treating the victim sensitively while also discharging the onerous task of ensuring that the complete truth is brought on record so as to facilitate adjudication and answering the basic question regarding the complicity of the accused in the commission of the offence. While the Delhi High Court made these observations while dealing with a case of rape, courts must remain alive to their duty to treat victims sensitively in cases alleging all forms of sexual harassment and sexual assault. The Courts must try to ensure that the process of attempting to bring alleged perpetrators to justice is not onerous for the victims. Aggrieved persons should not have to run from pillar to post for the mere registration of a complaint and initiation of investigation especially when a cognizable offence is prima facie made out in their complaint.” [Justice D.Y. Chandrachud (as he was then) in XYZ v. State of Madhya Pradesh, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 676]

    13. Police ought not to create hindrances for sexual assault survivors

    “It is every police officer’s bounden duty to carry out his or her functions in a public-spirited manner. The police must be cognizant of the fact that they are usually the first point of contact for a victim of a crime or a complainant. They must abide by the law and enable the smooth registration of an FIR. Needless to say, they must treat all members of the public in a fair and impartial manner. This is all the more essential in cases of sexual harassment or violence, where victims (who are usually women) face great societal stigma when they attempt to file a complaint. It is no secret that women’s families often do not approve of initiating criminal proceedings in cases of sexual harassment. Various quarters of society attempt to persuade the survivor not to register a complaint or initiate other formal proceedings, and they often succeed. Finally, visiting the police station and interacting with police officers can be an intimidating experience for many. This discomfort is often compounded if the reason for visiting the police station is to complain of a sexual offence. This being the case, the police ought not to create yet another obstacle by declining to register an FIR despite receiving a complaint regarding sexual harassment. Rather, they should put the complainant at ease and try to create an atmosphere free from fear. They ought to be sensitive to her mental state and the fact that she may have recently been subjected to a traumatic experience.” [Justice D.Y. Chandrachud (as he was then) in XYZ v. State of Madhya Pradesh, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 676]

    14. Conditions cannot be imposed on disability benefits that would render it otiose

    “Human rights are rights inherent in civilized society, from the very inception of civilization, even though such rights may have been identified and enumerated in international instruments such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations on 10th December 1948, or other international conventions and instruments including United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disability. Furthermore, the disabled are entitled to the fundamental right of equality enshrined in Articles 14 to 16 of the Constitution of India, the fundamental freedoms guaranteed under Article 19 including the right to carry out any occupation, profession, the right to life under Article 21, which has now been interpreted to mean the right to live with dignity, which has to be interpreted liberally in relation to the disabled…The benefit which has been given to the disabled through the circular/government order cannot be taken away by subjecting the exercise of the right to avail of the benefit on such terms and conditions, as would render the benefit otiose.” [Justice Indira Banerjee in Net Ram Yadav v. The State of Rajasthan, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 684]

    15. Meaning of written word in judgements should not be lost

    “Judgments are primarily meant for those whose cases are decided by judges. Judgments of the High Courts and the Supreme Court also serve as precedents to guide future benches. A judgment must make sense to those whose lives and affairs are affected by the outcome of the case. While a judgment is read by those as well who have training in the law, they do not represent the entire universe of discourse. Confidence in the judicial process is predicated on the trust which its written word generates. If the meaning of the written word is lost in language, the ability of the adjudicator to retain the trust of the reader is severely eroded.” [Justice D.Y. Chandrachud (as he was then) in State Bank of India v. Ajay Kumar Sood, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 710]

    16. Work of a judge cannot be reduced to a statistic about disposal

    Amidst an overburdened judicial docket, a view is sometimes voiced that parties are concerned with the outcome and little else. This view proceeds on the basis that parties value the outcome and not the reasoning which constitutes the foundation. This view undervalues the importance of the judicial function and of the reasons which are critical to it. The work of a judge cannot be reduced to a statistic about the disposal of a case. Every judgment is an incremental step towards consolidation and change. In adhering to precedent, the judgment reflects a commitment to protecting legal principle. This imparts certainty to the law. Each judgment is hence a brick in the consolidation of the fundamental precepts on which a legal order is based. But in incremental steps a judgment addresses the need to evolve and to transform by addressing critical issues which confront human existence. Courts are as much engaged in the slow yet not so silent process of bringing about a social transformation. How good or deficient they are in that quest is tested by the quality of the reasons as much as by the manner in which the judicial process is structured.” [Justice D.Y. Chandrachud (as he was then) in State Bank of India v. Ajay Kumar Sood, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 710]

    17. Judgement writing critical in fostering rule of law and curbing rule by law

    “A judgment culminates in a conclusion. But its content represents the basis for the conclusion. A judgment is hence a manifestation of reason. The reasons provide the basis of the view which the decision maker has espoused, of the balances which have been drawn. That is why reasons are crucial to the legitimacy of a judge's work. They provide an insight into judicial analysis, explaining to the reader why what is written has been written. The reasons, as much as the final conclusion, are open to scrutiny. A judgment is written primarily for the parties in a forensic contest. The scrutiny is first and foremost by the person for whom the decision is meant - the conflicting parties before the court. At a secondary level, reasons furnish the basis for challenging a judicial outcome in a higher forum. The validity of the decision is tested by the underlying content and reasons. But there is more. Equally significant is the fact that a judgment speaks to the present and to the future. Judicial outcomes taken singularly or in combination have an impact upon human lives. Hence, a judgment is amenable to wider critique and scrutiny, going beyond the immediate contest in a courtroom. Citizens, researchers and journalists continuously evaluate the work of courts as public institutions committed to governance under law. Judgment writing is hence a critical instrument in fostering the rule of law and in curbing rule by the law…Many judgments do decide complex questions of law and of fact. Brevity is an unwitting victim of an overburdened judiciary. It is also becoming a victim of the cut-copy-paste convenience afforded by software developers. This Court has been providing headings and sub-headings to assist the reader in providing a structured sequence. Introduced and popularized in judgment writing by Lord Denning, this development has been replicated across jurisdictions…It is also useful for all judgments to carry paragraph numbers as it allows for ease of reference and enhances the structure, improving the readability and accessibility of the judgments. A Table of Contents in a longer version assists access to the reader…While we have laid down some broad guidelines, individual judges can indeed have different ways of writing judgments and continue to have variations in their styles of expression. The expression of a judge is an unfolding of the recesses of the mind. However, while recesses of the mind may be inscrutable, the reasoning in judgment cannot be. While judges may have their own style of judgment writing, they must ensure lucidity in writing across these styles.” [Justice D.Y. Chandrachud (as he was then) in State Bank of India v. Ajay Kumar Sood, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 710]

    18. Judgements must be accessible to persons with disability

    On the note of accessibility, the importance of making judgments accessible to persons from all sections of society, especially persons with disability needs emphasis. All judicial institutions must ensure that the judgments and orders being published by them do not carry improperly placed watermarks as they end up making the documents inaccessible for persons with visual disability who use screen readers to access them. On the same note, courts and tribunals must also ensure that the version of the judgments and orders uploaded is accessible and signed using digital signatures. They should not be scanned versions of printed copies. The practice of printing and scanning documents is a futile and time-consuming process which does not serve any purpose. The practice should be eradicated from the litigation process as it tends to make documents as well as the process inaccessible for an entire gamut of citizens.” [Justice D.Y. Chandrachud (as he was then) in State Bank of India v. Ajay Kumar Sood, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 710]

    19. Childbirth does not detract from the purpose of employment

    The grant of maternity leave is to encourage women to join and continue employment in the workplace. It is a matter of harsh reality that without these provisions the women would have been compelled to leave the workplace on the birth of a child, if they were not granted leave or other facilitative measures. Childbirth cannot be regarded as something that detracts from the purpose of employment. Childbirth has to be construed in the context of employment as a natural aspect of life of every woman and hence provisions which have been made have to be construed in that sense… The fact that [the spouse] had two biological children from prior marriage would not impinge upon the statutory entitlement for grant of maternity leave for her sole biological child in the present case…Unless such an interpretation is adopted, the object and intent of the grant of maternity leave would be defeated. These rules are formulated in terms of the provision of Article 15 of the Constitution under which the State is to adopt beneficial provisions for the protection of interest of women.” [Justice D.Y. Chandrachud (as he then was) in Deepika Singh v. Central Administrative Tribunal, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 718]

    20. Constitutional right to live a dignified life available to the dead

    The right to live a dignified life as enshrined under Article 21 of the Constitution is not only available to a living person but also to the ‘dead’. Even a dead person has the right of treatment to his body with respect and dignity which he would have deserved had he been alive, subject to his tradition, culture and religion which he professed. These rights are not only for the deceased but, his family members also have a right to perform the last rites in accordance with the religious traditions…After a body has been buried, it is considered to be in the custody of the law; therefore, disinterment is not a matter of right. The disturbance or removal of an interred body is subject to the control and direction of the court. The law does not favour disinterment, based on the public policy that the sanctity of the grave should be maintained. Once buried, a body should not be disturbed. A court will not ordinarily order or permit a body to be disinterred unless there is a strong showing of necessity that disinterment is within the interests of justice. Each case is individually decided, based on its own particular facts and circumstances.” [Justice J.B. Pardiwala in Mohammed Latif Magrey v. Union Territory Of Jammu and Kashmir, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 756]

    21. Patriarchal and sexist to suggest that a sexually active woman cannot be raped

    “This court has time and again deprecated the use of two finger test in cases alleging rape and sexual assault. The so-called test has no scientific basis. It instead re-victimises and re-traumatises women. The two-finger test must not be conducted…Whether a woman is “habituated to sexual intercourse” or “habitual to sexual intercourse” is irrelevant for the purposes of determining whether the ingredients of Section 375 of the Indian Penal Code are present in a particular case. The so-called test is based on the incorrect assumption that a sexually active woman cannot be raped. Nothing could be further from the truth – a woman’s sexual history is wholly immaterial while adjudicating whether the accused raped her. Further, the probative value of a woman’s testimony does not depend upon her sexual history. It is patriarchal and sexist to suggest that a woman cannot be believed when she states that she was raped, merely for the reason that she is sexually active. Although the two-finger test in this case was conducted over a decade ago, it is a regrettable fact that it continues to be conducted even today.” [Justice D.Y. Chandrachud (as he then was) in State of Jharkhand v. Shailendra Kumar Rai @ Pandav Rai, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 890]

    22. Atmosphere of communal tension affect the citizens’ right to life

    If the citizens are forced to live in an atmosphere of communal tension, it affects their right to life guaranteed by Article 21. The violence witnessed by Mumbai in December 1992 and January 1993 adversely affected the right of the residents of the affected areas to lead dignified and meaningful life. 900 persons died and more than 2000 persons were injured. The houses, places of business and properties of the citizens were destroyed. These are all violations of their rights guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution of India…We hope and trust that after 75 years of independence, riot­like situations will never arise.” [Justice Abhay S. Oka in Shakeel Ahmed vs Union of India, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 910]

    23. Education is not business to earn profit

    “Once the State Government enacted the rules which provides determination and fixation and the review of the tuition fees, the State Government was bound by the rules and could not have enhanced the fee during the review. To enhance the fee unilaterally would be contrary to the objects and purpose of Andhra Pradesh Educational Institutions (Regulation of Admissions and Prohibition of Capitation Fee) Act, 1983 as well as the rules…To enhance the fee to Rs. 24 lakhs per annum i.e., seven times more than the fee fixed earlier was not justifiable at all. The education is not the business to earn profit. The tuition fee shall always be affordable.” [Justice M.R. Shah in Narayana Medical College v. State of Andhra Pradesh, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 929]

    24. Keeping names recommended pending by SC collegium not acceptable

    “The critical position of vacancies in the High Courts and the delay in appointment of Judges constrained three Judges Bench of this Court to pass orders seeking to lay down broad timeline within which the appointment process should be completed. With the expanding opportunities to prominent lawyers, it is as it is a challenge to persuade persons of eminence to be invited to the Bench. On top of that if the process takes ages, there is a further discouragement to them to accept the invitation and this is undoubtedly weighing with the members of the Bar in accepting the invitation to adorn the Bench. The Bench had endeavoured to lay down timeline taking into consideration the process for appointment of Judges as also the fact that the time period of sending names six months in advance, prior to the vacancies, was conceived on a principle that the said time period would be enough to process the names with the Government…Keeping names pending is not acceptable. We find the method of keeping the names on hold whether duly recommended or reiterated is becoming some sort of a device to compel these persons to withdraw their names as has happened.” [Order by Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Abhay S. Oka in The Advocates' Association Bengaluru v. Shri Barun Mitra, Secretary (Justice), 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 949]

    25. Scheduled Tribe women should be entitled to equal share in father’s property

    When the daughter belonging to the non­tribal is entitled to the equal share in the property of the father, there is no reason to deny such right to the daughter of the Tribal community. Female tribal is entitled to parity with male tribal in intestate succession. To deny the equal right to the daughter belonging to the tribal even after a period of 70 years of the Constitution of India under which right to equality is guaranteed, it is high time for the Central Government to look into the matter and if required, to amend the provisions of the Hindu Succession Act by which the Hindu Succession Act is not made applicable to the members of the Scheduled Tribe…Therefore, though we dismiss the present appeal, it is directed to examine the question by the Central Government to consider it just and necessary to withdraw the exemptions provided under the Hindu Succession Act in so far as the applicability of the provisions of the Hindu Succession Act to the Scheduled Tribes and whether to bring a suitable amendment or not. We hope and trust that the Central Government will look into the matter and take an appropriate decision taking into consideration the right to equality guaranteed under Articles 14 and 21 of the Constitution of India.” [Justice M.R. Shah in Kamla Neti (D) v. Special Land Acquisition Officer, 2022 LiveLaw (SC) 1014]

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