DAILY LEGAL NEWS 15/14-10.2008

Cops told to update court on probe in BRTT case
http://www.expressbuzz.com/edition/story.aspx?Title=Cops+told+to+update+court+on+probe+in+BRTT+case&artid=YvosvZ8bP28=&SectionID=e7uPP4%7CpSiw=&MainSectionID=fyV9T2jIa4A=&SectionName=EH8HilNJ2uYAot5nzqumeA==&SEO=
HYDERABAD: Justice G Rohini of the Andhra Pradesh High Court today directed the State police to inform the court about the investigation done so far pertaining to the complaint lodged with the latter by the late NT Rama Rao’s wife Laxmi Parvati on the irregularities in Basava Rama Tarakam Trust (BRTT).
Laxmi Parvati had filed a writ petition before the AP High Court in which she had stated that she was the head of the trust and was not allowed to carry out her functions by members of the late NTR’s family and was threatened with dire consequences.
She told the court that she had lodged a complaint with the police for taking action against them, and alleged that the police did not take any initiative in probing the case.
Laxmi Parvati pleaded the court to direct the police to take action. On hearing the petition, Justice Rohini directed the police to inform the court about the action taken so far on the complaint and also directed that they should furnish the information within a month.
DISMISSAL
A Division Bench of the AP High Court comprising Chief Justice AR Dave and Justice Subhash Reddy today dismissed the writ petition filed by the Jana Vignana Vedika pleading that the screening of the film ‘Raksha’ be banned.
In the petition, the JVV stated that the film was propagating black magic and thereby it would have a bad influence on the viewers.
However, the bench dismissed the writ petition stating that the film was only a medium and was meant for entertainment and therefore it would not cause any harm.
Express News Service
First Published : 15 Oct 2008 05:44:00 AM IST
Last Updated : 15 Oct 2008 09:33:18 AM IST
www.expressbuzz.com

Religious texts cannot be ground to justify ban on homosex: HC
http://www.hindu.com/thehindu/holnus/002200810151432.htm
New Delhi (PTI) The Delhi High Court today pulled up the Centre for relying on religious texts to justify ban on homosex and asked it to come up with scientific reports to justify it.
The Court’s observation came while hearing a PIL filed by gay activists seeking to decriminalise gay sex among consenting adults.
Additional Solicitor General P P Malhotra, appearing for the Centre, cited an article which contained quotes from religious texts to justify the ban.
Not satisfied with the government contention, the bench, also comprising Justice S Muralidhar, asked the government to show scientific proof that gay sex is harmful to society.
“This is just one-sided version of a religious body which cannot be relied upon. This is part of religious doctrine. Show us some scientific report which says that gay sex should be criminalised,” a division bench headed by Chief Justice A P Shah said.
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
www.hindu.com

CBI probe sought into KPSC appointments
http://www.expressbuzz.com/edition/story.aspx?Title=CBI+probe+sought+into+KPSC+appointments&artid=BFN1YMUnBDc=&SectionID=7GUA38txp3s=&MainSectionID=oHSKVfNWYm0=&SectionName=zkvyRoWGpmWSxZV2TGM5XQ==&SEO=
BANGALORE: A writ petition was filed in the High Court on Tuesday regarding alleged irregularities and nepotism in the appointments made to Group A and B posts by the KPSC.
The KPSC had appointed 383 candidates in 1998, 191 candidates in 1999 and 152 candidates in 2004 as Group A and B officers.
The State Government constituted the K K Mishra Committee to inquire into the alleged large-scale irregularities in the appointments.
Kaleel Ahamed and 61 others have filed a writ petition alleging that the KPSC did not cooperate with the Mishra Committee and have sought a CBI inquiry into the issue.
HC seeks info
The HC allowed a PIL seeking a ban on quarrying in a land in Ramanagaram district.
The Mines and Geology Department had issued quarrying rights to A C Shivalinge Gowda in 12 acres and 19 guntas of land in Dhoddakoppa village on December 19, 2007.
The land included two temples and a tank with a 50-feet-high granite rock.
Venkatachala and others filed a PIL stating that the land was a heritage site
Express New Service
First Published : 15 Oct 2008 12:32:00 PM IST
Last Updated : 15 Oct 2008 02:29:30 PM IST
www.expressbuzz.com

High Court to LDA: What’s the need to close three roads?
http://www.expressindia.com/latest-news/high-court-to-lda-whats-the-need-to-close-three-roads/373483/
Lucknow, October 14 Police barrack, parking space For Ambedkar Sthal
A day after the Lucknow Development Authority (LDA) Board decided to change land use of 900 sq m area at Gomti embankment to make way for a police barrack, a Lucknow Bench of Allahabad High Court asked the body why three roads around Ambedkar Memorial were to be closed to provide for the barrack and the parking space.
Hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) challenging the closure of roads, the Bench, comprising Justices Pradeep Kant and Vedpal, expressed dissatisfaction over closure of roads for any construction work. The PIL was filed by Gomti Nagar Jankalyan Mahasamiti.
The state government has planned to block the roads to make way for parking space for visitors to the Ambedkar Memorial and a police barrack for security purposes.
In the previous hearing held on September 23, the Bench had asked the state government and LDA to review its decision to close roads. It had also asked the LDA to see if the barrack could be shifted to another place. On Tuesday, the LDA in an affidavit submitted that following a review, it has decided against any change in the plan.
Chief Standing Counsel Devendra Upadhyay, arguing for the LDA, apprised the court that the authority’s Board has decided to go ahead with a police barrack on the Gomti embankment and will give passage to commuters through Sahara Sahar.
B K Singh, the petitioner’s counsel, told The Indian Express: “The court has asked the LDA to submit a reply within the next week.”
On Monday, the LDA Board had approved the proposal for changing the land use of 900 sq m area — on which the police barrack is being constructed — from public utilities and services.
In its meeting held on September 6, LDA Board had also changed the land use of two other roads from “road transport” to “public utilities” to make way for development of parking slots.
Express News Service
Posted: Oct 15, 2008 at 0116 hrs IST
www.expressindia.com

Implement recommendations of Surat flood report: Gujarat told
http://www.zeenews.com/articles.asp?aid=476215&sid=REG
Ahmedabad, Oct 14: The Gujarat High Court today directed the State Government to implement the recommendations of the inquiry commission on 2006 Surat floods which had claimed several lives and caused large-scale destruction. A Division Bench of Chief Justice K S Radhakrishnan and Justice Akil Kureshi disposed of the public interest litigation filed (PIL) by Congress leader Hoshang Mirza, who had sought directions for the government to punish those responsible for causing floods in the Tapi river. The PIL had contended that floods in Surat were man-made as the authorities at the Ukai dam didn’t follow the Central Water Commission’s (CWC) guidelines in releasing water, resulting in calamity in the diamond city. Mirza had moved the court immediately after the floods in August 2006, contending that it was criminal negligence on part of the dam authorities for allowing water level to rise beyond permissible limits. The government had appointed an inquiry commission, headed by retired High Court Judge Suguna Bhatt. In its submitted, the panel said the dam authorities had allowed water level to rise by neglecting CWC guidelines, but did not name any officer responsible for the act. The report was tabled in the Assembly during its monsoon session last month. Bureau Report
www.zeenews.com

Sonia dares Maya, claims Rae Bareli as her turf
http://www.ibnlive.com/news/sonia-dares-maya-says-rae-bareli-belongs-to-gandhis/75805-3.html
Rae Bareli: Congress President Sonia Gandhi has dared Mayawati, saying she is ready to go to jail if the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister tried to stop her from entering her constituency, Rae Bareli.
Sonia declared that Rae Bareli belongs to the Gandhis and nobody can stop her from visiting the place.
“Rae Bareli is my karmabhoomi (work place). How can some one stop me from coming to my home? Rae Bareli and Amethi are the karmabhoomi of the Gandhis. Nobody can stop our entry into our karmabhoomi,” Sonia thundered at Lalganj on Tuesday where she had come to inaugurate the Lifeline Express.
“I am ready to go to jail,” she added.
Mayawati had raised the political temperature first by cancelling land allotted to a rail factory that Sonia was to inaugurate in Rae Bareli.
Then the Congress alleged that Rae Bareli district administration changed Sonia’s route and did allow the Congress President to go to the disputed rail coach factory site, which is unprecedented, since the route of an Special Protection Group (SPG) protectee is not decided by local authorities but by the SPG itself.
Sonia had to cancel her plans to address a rally and perform Bhoomi Pujan for the rail coach factory in her Lok Sabha constituency after Mayawati government clamped prohibitory orders in the area.
The orders were imposed under Section 144 of the Indian Criminal Procedure Code in Rae Bareli, which prevents the gathering of more than five people in the area.
The move came after the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad High Court stayed the state government’s decision cancelling the land allotment for a railway project in the area.
The court on Monday ordered status quo on the land while hearing a writ of Northern Railway (NR) and a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) by villagers of Rae Bareli. The court has given a week’s time to the state government to file a counter affidavit.
Railways moved the high court seeking a stay on the UP government’s decision to withdraw the land. Villagers and farmers of Lalganj also filed a PIL stating that the move of the state government would deprive the region of better development and job opportunities.
A division bench comprising Justice Pradeep Kant and Shabiul Hasnain, while ordering that status quo be maintained, listed the matter for further hearing October 22.
UP government had on Saturday night taken back the 400 acres it had allotted to the railways for the project.
(With inputs from Pallavi Ghosh)
CNN-IBN
Published on Tue, Oct 14, 2008 at 15:38, Updated on Tue, Oct 14, 2008 at 22:48 in Nation section
www.ibnlive.com

Another Sati: But can law prevail over tradition?
http://www.merinews.com/catFull.jsp?articleID=144538
Raipur police chief sees a temple for, and worship of, a ‘sati’ as ‘glorification’ of a banned practice. But, many officers opine that it would be futile to stop people from worshipping because a Sati temple already exists close to the site.

AT THE banks of river Shivnath in Kasdol development block in Raipur district of Chhattisgarh stands a Sati temple. It came up about 40 years ago in dedication of Jheek Bai. The wife of Maalikram Verma of Checher village had jumped into her husband’s funeral pyre. Hundreds of people, mostly women, worship Jheek Bai. Jheek Bai Temple is just one of the hundreds of Sati temples one sees across India, including in metros.
A woman who dies burning herself on her husband’s funeral fire is considered most virtuous according to tradition. She is believed to redeem all her forefathers rotting in hell. Every Sati goes directly to heaven and joins the pantheon of gods and goddesses for her ’meritorious’ act. Quite a few of the Sati temples attract ’devotees’ in their thousands. Most devotees have scant respect for the courts and other agencies ’enforcing’ the law that considers such devotion as a crime. A good number do not even know that the practice is legally banned.
Jheek Bai will soon get the company of Lalmati Verma of the same village. A Sati temple is sure to come up nearby in honour of Lalmati, whose 80-year-old husband died of illness last week. A first information report (FIR), lodged after a police team visited the village the next day recorded, “Lalmati Verma, 71, who belonged to Chechar village, jumped on her husband’s funeral pyre in the evening of October 11 after all the villagers had left the site.”
The latest ’Sati’ is from the Kurmi caste, categorised under the other backward classes (OBC). She had three sons, all living in the same house. But, the senior Vermas were living separately in a corner of the old house. No wonder, her sons had no idea of their mother’s going out to commit ’sati’, according to preliminary police investigations.
Prashant Thakur, additional superintendent of police said that further investigations were on to find out the circumstances that led to the incident. He refused to answer whether anyone in her family or villagers provoked her to commit suicide. As news spread, a large number of people thronged to the scene of the ’virtuous feat’ the next day to offer prayers. Amit Kumar, Raipur district superintendent of police banned the worship of woman ’as they see it as an act of glorification of the banned Hindu custom’.
Defying the ban, dozens of people from the neighbouring villages succeeded in offering prayers at the site. A police officer (desiring to remain anonymous) admitted: “It’s futile to stop people from worshipping woman, especially when a Sati temple for a woman of the same village is already existing close to the site.” However, Amit Kumar appears to have other ideas. He directed registering of a case against seven close relatives of the deceased woman under the Commission of Sati (Prevention) Act. He told the media, “The woman could definitely have been stopped by the relatives as they had no prior idea that she was planning to commit suicide.”
The government obviously does want a repeat of the big ruckus created in 1987 on the issue. That time, thousands of people watched in awe as a girl named Roop Kanwar, who was one quarter as old as Lalmati, jumped into her husband’s funeral pyre. It was a well documented case as community elders were keen to erect a temple in honour of the ’Sati goddess’. There was a huge outcry in other parts of the country to glorifying the ’meritorious act’. The state government was forced by national level protests to issue a ban on the glorification of sati. It was followed by the union government.
Actually, the Act of 1987 only tightened the provisions in an old law in the statutes since 1829. However, it is just on paper, except for some occasional news bites, like in case of Kanwar or Verma. The original ban was issued by British governor William Bentinck only for Bengal (inclusive of present-day Bangladesh) presidency. It gradually extended to other colonial territories. Death of wives, aged above 18 years, taking the risk of death or actually dying ’with her own consent’ did not, however, attract the provisions of the Act. Under the influence of Viceroys, princely states, not under British control, abolished the practice later.
Interestingly enough, the strongest crusader against the practice – who was successful in enforcing a blanket ban – was the much-maligned Mughal emperor, Aurangzeb. He issued an edict: “In all lands under Mughal control, never again should the officials allow a woman to be burnt.”
The inspiration for the original law was Rajaram Mohan Roy, who mounted a high-pressure campaign through his organisation Brahmo Samaj. Incidentally, Brahmo Samaj basically aimed to eradicate outdated, millenniums-old ’rich traditions’ of Hindus, like birth-placed stratification of society.
Abolition of Sati was just a symbolic gesture – like wearing khadi by Gandhi’s followers. Both achieved very limited success in the main aim. While khadi promotion only lets a few thousand people siphon off public funds, anti-Sati crusades have let dozens of ’activists’ writers make millions; they write fancily prized books like ’Widow Burning in India’ addressed at Western audiences!
The Commission of Sati (Prevention) Act makes it illegal to ’abet, glorify or attempt to commit Sati. While abetment – limited to coercion or use of force to compel someone to take her life – can justifiably invite death sentence or life imprisonment, the provision of jail-term ranging between one and seven years for ’glorifying Sati’ in the Act makes it a futility, worth laughing away.
There are thousands of shrines in the country for ’glorifying’ sati. Obviously, the law cannot be enforced with any consistency. Other traditional practices like ’jallikattu’ and animal sacrifice prevalent among some communities in the multi-ethnic country must be viewed in this context. Notably, nobody raises voice against numerous little girls becoming ‘victims of tradition’ in a wealthy sect – Jains. These girls are showered with all goodies like fine clothes and jewels for a few days and taken in a grand procession.

Then, they shed everything material, all hair is plucked off and are sent off to lead a monk’s life. The act is traditionally believed to redeem the family but can be said to kill the life in their living everyday, while a ‘Sati’ dies only once.
If persons in other communities perceive such practices as ‘unethical or barbaric’ and get outraged, they have every liberty to do so. They may try to convince the leaders of the concerned communities by propaganda at their own expense. But, authorities in a democratic federation have no business to impose their fancy opinions on others through law. That is possible only in (benevolent) dictatorships.
Tragically, there are any number of such bone-brained laws in the statute of the ‘largest democratic country’, which deserve to be dumped. They only let lawyers, corrupt cops and judges to make a neat side income and will get the contempt they deserve from people, notwithstanding any contempt law!
www.merinews.com

BMW sting: Court seeks unedited tapes
http://www.hindustantimes.com/StoryPage/StoryPage.aspx?sectionName=&id=0140ba7f-883d-45bd-afdb-8858c25eabf2&&Headline=BMW+sting%3a+Court+seeks+unedited+tapes
The Supreme Court on Tuesday asked NDTV to produce the original chip containing the unedited version of the sting operation against senior advocates R.K. Anand and I.U. Khan.
A bench comprising Justices B.N. Aggarwal, G.S. Singhvi and Aftab Alam, however, clarified that the direction to the television channel was not aimed at treating it as a contesting party in the case but as an assistant.
“We do not want it to become an adversarial litigation,” said the bench while asking NDTV to also produce the material used during the sting operation showing Anand and Khan in collusion with each other.
The direction was passed after senior counsel Altaf Ahmed, appearing for Anand, claimed the tapes were doctored and edited to implicate his client and Khan.
Ahmed argued the High Court did not grant any opportunity to the defence to cross-examine the reporter of the channel who conducted the sting operation. At this while one of the judges of the bench, Justice Singhvi said sting operation had become a business, his colleague Justice Alam said attempt to subvert judicial proceedings could not be condoned. Justice Alam added such incidents were on the rise and unpardonable.
The bench refused to accept Ahmed’s argument against the High Court for conducting the contempt proceedings in a “summary” manner, without giving adequate opportunity to the defence to put forth their views and cross-examine the TV crew. “The court can evolve its own procedure subject to fair play,” said the bench.
Anand’s grievance is that he was not given a copy of the unedited original chips that continued to be in the custody of NDTV. The High Court had declined to keep the chips with it but had sought its production for viewing.
On Ahmed’s argument related to admissibility of electronic evidence in the court, the bench appointed Additional Solicitor General Gopal Subramaniam and senior counsel Nageswara Rao as amicus curiaes to assist it in the matter.
The bench said the two counsels would also address arguments on the validity and admissibility of electronic material as a piece of evidence in court of law.
The sting operation was linked to the BMW hit-and-run accident involving Sanjeev Nanda in which Anand had appeared as the defence counsel and Khan was the public prosecutor.
Both Anand and Khan were accused of obstructing the administration of justice by influencing witness Sunil Kulkarni as claimed in the expose conducted by the channel.
During an earlier hearing, the SC bench had observed that the High Court had taken a lenient view by debarring Anand and Khan for four months from practicing in courts.
The High Court had on May 31 last year taken suo motu cognizance of the sting. Nanda stands convicted in the case.The court sentenced him to five years imprisonment. The High Court has admitted his appeal against the conviction.
HT Correspondent
New Delhi, October 14, 2008
www.hindustantimes.com

Producers move high court
http://www.hindustantimes.com/StoryPage/StoryPage.aspx?id=be54a0ad-320d-4640-b3ce-aaa5b9d47acb&ParentID=e99232a6-ce2f-4f76-a3bf-995382916ec0&&Headline=Producers+move+high+court
Producers of Bigg Boss have moved the Bombay High Court seeking quashing of the complaint filed against them for obscenity on the show. Endemol India Pvt Ltd moved the court after Sunil Ahire, president of Mumbai Pradesh Youth Congress Committee, filed a complaint against the producer, director, the channel and participants Rahul Mahajan, Payal Rohatgi and Sambhavana Seth. The court on Monday has asked the producers to amend the petition and also to make the participants party to the petition.
Endemol, in its application, said there was no evidence in the complaint to even remotely suspect that it was guilty of the charges.
It has pointed out that it was not co-incidental that Sanjay Nirupam, who was the first to be eliminated from the show, also belonged to the party to which the complainant belongs.
Endemol also said Ahire was playing a political game as the show also included Rahul Mahajan, son of late BJP leader Pramod Mahajan. “It is all hype created by the competitors of the channel,” the application said adding that they (competitors) are trying to “influence” the minds of the public.
Vignesh Iyer, Hindustan Times
Email Author
Mumbai, October 14, 2008
www.hindustantimes.com

Fill vacant OBC seats by Oct-end, says SC
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/Fill_vacant_OBC_seats_by_Oct-end_SC/articleshow/3596110.cms
NEW DELHI: General category students who missed admission to premier institutes like IIM by a whisker will get a fresh chance as the Supreme Court on Tuesday directed the filling up of vacant seats under 27% OBC quota in all central educational institutions (CEIs) by October-end. Trying hard to project the HRD ministry’s confusion before a constitution bench comprising Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan and Justices Arijit Pasayat, C K Thakker, R V Raveendran and Dalveer Bhandari, Solicitor General G E Vahanvati said filling the vacant seats in case of staggered implementation of the 27% OBC quota could cause a problem. There was no confusion in the minds of the judges, said senior advocate K K Venugopal appearing for petitioner educationist P V Indiresan. They were unanimous that the judgment was categoric that all vacant seats had to revert to general category, he said. The bench asked the SG: “Even if you implement the OBC quota in a staggered manner, how can you carry forward the vacant seats? Admission to each academic year is unique. Where is the question of backlog vacancy for backward classes?” “If you carry forward the vacancies, the infrastructure you have created along with the increase in the seats would go waste and that is definitely not the intention of the judgment,” it said. Realising that it was an uphill task to convince the bench, the SG immediately said that the government would not press further once the Bench has clarified the position leaving no room for confusion. When it came to filling the vacant seats, the SG said that it would be difficult to revert these back to the general category for this 2008-09 academic session. But the bench brushed aside the objection and directed filling up of the vacant OBC quota seats with eligible general category candidates by October end. To maintain the standards of the institutes and not to make merit a casualty, two SC judges had in their common judgment ordered that the cut-off for OBC students should not go below 5% of the cut-off for general category, while a third judge had said it should not be more than 10%.
15 Oct 2008, 0015 hrs IST,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Legality of raising creamy layer bar questioned in SC
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/Legality_of_raising_creamy_layer_bar_questioned_in_SC/articleshow/3596819.cms
NEW DELHI: Educationist P V Indiresan on Tuesday threw an open challenge in the Supreme Court questioning the legality of the UPA government’s recent decision to raise the creamy layer income limit from Rs 2.5 lakh to Rs 4.5 lakh for OBCs. But, the government told the apex court that it had done a reasonable job by fixing the creamy layer exclusion income limit at Rs 4.5 lakh at a time when many elected representatives had demanded raising it to Rs 25 lakh. Appearing for Indiresan, who had challenged the 27% OBC quota in Central educational institutions, senior advocate K K Venugopal told a 5-judge constitution bench headed by Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan that it was an election-eve vote bank politics to appease the rich among the OBCs, who could now gobble up the seats meant for the poorest among the backward. “You file a separate petition if you want to challenge the Centre’s decision,” said the bench, also comprising Justices Arijit Pasayat, C K Thakker, R V Raveendran and Dalveer Bhandari. While agreeing to file a separate petition, Venugopal pointed out that on February 23, 2007, the apex court had quashed a Kerala government decision to raise the creamy layer income limit to Rs 3 lakh terming it too high. The court had felt that those having Rs 3 lakh income could not be termed poor or backward, he said. “Has the inflation rate touched more than 80% for the Central government now to decide the income limit at Rs 4.5 lakh when just a year back the apex court had turned down Rs 3 lakh limit as unreasonable?” Venugopal asked. This is intended to widen the OBC net and allow the rich and influential among the backward classes to grab the seats meant for the poorest among them, he said. Disgreeing with him, Solicitor General G E Vahanvati said the government had fixed the income limit for exclusion of creamy layer at Rs 4.5 lakh after a lot of deliberations. Venugopal said during the arguments on the legality of 27% OBC quota, additional solicitor general Gopal Subramaniam had submitted figures indicating that 97.5% of the OBC population had a daily income of less than Rs 80.
15 Oct 2008, 0402 hrs IST, Dhananjay Mahapatra,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

SC seeks original of sting footage in BMW case
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Delhi/SC_seeks_original_of_sting_footage_in_BMW_case/articleshow/3595996.cms
NEW DELHI: The SC on Tuesday asked a news channel to submit the original footage of the sting operation it did on prominent lawyers R K Anand and I U Khan in the infamous BMW case that formed the basis of a Delhi HC order convicting them for contempt on the ground of influencing a witness. Appearing for Anand, senior advocate Altaf Ahmed launched a legal broadside against the order of the HC, which he said did not heed the repeated pleas of Anand and Khan for forensic examination of the sting operation tapes. The HC had breached the principle of natural justice which guarantees that no one would be convicted without being accorded a fair chance of putting forth his pleas, Ahmed said. The HC, in an unprecedented order, had convicted the two prominent lawyers, debarred them from practising in Delhi for four months and also imposed a fine of Rs 2,000 each for obstructing the course of justice by trying to influence the star witness, Sunil Kulkarni. It had also recommended to the HC full court to strip the duo of their senior advocate designation. While Anand appeared for the main accused in the BMW case, Sanjeev Nanda, Khan was engaged by the police as a special prosecutor. On Tuesday, an SC Bench comprising Justices B N Aggrawal, G S Singhvi and Aftab Alam asked the TV channel to submit the original tapes after Ahmed alleged that the sting footage was doctored and edited to frame the famed advocates. However, it clarified that asking for the original footage did not mean it was an `adversorial’ notice to the TV channel. Instead, it was an attempt to arrive at the truth. With the case getting complicated, possibly requiring the court to get into the technical domain of examining the authenticity of the sting footage, the Bench preferred to seek the assistance of additional solicitor general Gopal Subramaniam and senior advocate L Nageshwar Rao, both of whom were appointed as amicus curaie. The court posted the matter for further hearing on November 18.
15 Oct 2008, 0137 hrs IST,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Lay down norms for sharing probe info with media, HC tells cops
http://www.expressindia.com/latest-news/lay-down-norms-for-sharing-probe-info-with-media-hc-tells-cops/373619/
Mumbai, October 14 Court rejects Susairaj’s plea for a copy confessional statement The Bombay High Court on Tuesday suggested to the police department to lay down norms for its officers regarding sharing of information on investigation with the media. The suggestion came while rejecting Kannada actress Maria Monica Susairaj’s plea seeking a copy of her confessional statement.
“We would appreciate if the police department creates a system, by which a responsible police officer shares information, rather than each of the investigating officers, as we consider it also a duty of the police to inform the public of the progress in a crime investigation,” a division bench of Justice Bilal Nazki and Justice Ashutosh Kumbhakoni held.
The court has refused to set aside a June 2008 trial court order rejecting a similar application filed by the actress who is the main accused in the Neeraj Grover murder case.
The bench rejected the plea on the ground that copy of the confessional statement cannot be furnished to the accused before filing of the chargesheet. Susairaj’s lawyer Nitin Pradhan had contended that since a part of her confession had already been published in newspapers she is entitled to the same.
Meanwhile, the court directed the police to “issue appropriate clarification in regard to factually incorrect, if any, alleged confessional statement made by the petitioner, which if at all have appeared in the media, within two weeks.”
“We trust and hope that the media will publish appropriate clarification in this regard at the earliest,” the judgement states.
The judges observed that they believe that the press and the judiciary, both, should be independent and free. “Both should not have any fetters, but the more freedom you have, the more the responsibilities, and, therefore, both these institutions are required to have self-imposed restriction.”
The judgement observes that while reporting a crime or an investigation, the report should not be tilted as it creates a perception in the minds of the people and ultimate decision of the court going against such perceptions may affect the credibility of the courts.
The court has observed that it is only a “responsible press” which can claim not only freedom but also immunity from being compelled to divulge the source of its information. The court also observed that the police should not provide tailored information to the media which is factually incorrect.
The state had earlier told the court that confessional statement of an accused could be given in accordance with law, at a stage where it did not prejudice further investigation. The sessions court had rejected Susairaj’s application for the confession statement on June 19, following which she moved the High Court. Susairaj had given her confessional statement to the police on May 28. Susairaj and her naval officer fiance Emile Jerome Mathew were arrested in May this year for the alleged murder of Grover.
Express News Service
Posted: Oct 15, 2008 at 0409 hrs IST
www.expressindia.com

Aishwarya Rai’s 1996-97 IT assessment comes under HC scanner
http://www.ptinews.com/pti/ptisite.nsf/0/8F0135FBDB1A772C652574E200398421?OpenDocument
Mumbai, Oct 14 (PTI) The Bombay High Court has admitted an appeal filed by the Income Tax authorities, challenging relief granted to Bollywood star Aishwarya Rai Bachchan by Income Tax Appellate Tribunal (ITAT).A Division Bench headed by Justice S Radhakrishnan admitted the appeal by IT authorities over Aishwarya’s tax assessment for the financial year 1996-1997.The IT authorities moved to HC following ITAT’s last year decision quashing an IT department decision to reopen Aishwarya’s tax assessment.IT Department’s lawyer Benny Chatterjee argued that Aishwarya’s income is not being questioned, but her getting exemption under NRI category is questionable.The key issue is whether Aishwarya – who had won Miss World title just then – could claim to be a Non Resident Indian for that period, he added.Aishwarya had declared her taxable income for the the FY 1996-97 to be 2.14 lakh. But in 2003, the authorities decided to reopen the assessment, as her passport revealed that during the period she was not an NRI, as she had claimed to be.She was not outside the country for 186 days within that period, as required to qualify for income tax exemption under the NRI category, authorities said.Therefore, she was asked to pay tax on the income of around Rs 26 lakh which she had earned abroad-after winning the beauty pageant with interest, they added. PTI
www.ptinews.com

HC orders status quo on Rae Bareli land
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/HC-orders-status-quo-on-Rae-Bareli-land/373113
Lucknow, October 13 A day after the Uttar Pradesh Government decided to withdraw 189.25 hectares of land it had given for the proposed rail coach factory at Lalganj in Rae Bareli, the Lucknow Bench of the Allahabad High Court on Monday ordered status quo in the matter.
The Bench consisting of Justice Pradeep Kant and Justice S Hasnain passed the order on a petition filed by the Railway Ministry and a PIL filed by two villagers — Dinesh Chandra Mishra of Ahar village and Avindra Pandey of Balemau village.
The Bench, however, refused to stay the state government’s order of October 11, by which it had taken back the land from the Railways. Next hearing is fixed for October 22.
Interestingly, the opposing litigants had different takes on the issue. While counsel of the villagers, Mohammad Arif Khan claimed that the status quo meant the land would remain in the possession of the Railways, chief standing counsel of the state government, Devendra Upadhyay claimed the status quo meant that the land would remain with the Gram Sabha.
Express News Service Posted: Oct 14, 2008 at 0420 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

HC stay may delay Cenotaph flyover
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Chennai/HC_stay_may_delay_Cenotaph_flyover_/articleshow/3592766.cms
CHENNAI: In a development that could delay the proposed flyover project at Cenotaph Road, the Madras high court has restrained authorities from dispossessing two residents of their land. Justice K Kannan, holding a vacation sitting last week, passed the interim order on a writ petition filed by G V Ramakrishna of Srinivas Theatres (P) Limited. In his petition, Ramakrishna contended that though a flyover was scheduled to come up on Chamiers Road originally, the plan was changed for reasons best known to the authorities. The proposal to shift the project to the Cenotaph Road-Turnbulls Road came to light only after a resident obtained confirmation after making an application under the Right To Information Act. With a view to taking possession of identified lands expeditiously, the government issued two notifications – on September 9 and 24 – dispensing with the inquiry contemplated under Section 5A of the Land Acquisition Act. According to the petition filed by advocate Abbudu Kumar Rajarathinam, the authorities have already started preliminary activities such as ascertaining the ownership of the plots identified for acquisition . As the mandatory Section 5A inquiry and Section 6 declaration had been dispensed with, the petitioner apprehended that he would be dispossessed of his land by the second week of October. If that happened, he would be put to serious and irreparable loss, he said. Ramakrishna said if the proposal was implemented, a Vinayaka temple on Cenotaph Road too will be destroyed, hurting the sentiments of devotees.
14 Oct 2008, 0659 hrs IST,TNN
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IMG case: HC questions govt move
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Hyderabad/IMG_case_HC_questions_govt_move_/articleshow/3592384.cms
HYDERABAD: The AP High Court on Monday asked the state government to explain why its ordinance that resumed lands allotted to IMG-Bharata should not be described as a legislative judgment delivered without following due process of law. A division bench comprising justice Goda Raghuram and justice P V Sanjay Kumar posed this question to advocate general C V Mohan Reddy who said the ordinance was a legislative declaration and the courts can look into it. If the state felt that the terms of the contract entered into between IMG Bharata and the previous state government were not valid, the government can say so under sections 16 and 23 of the Indian Contracts Act, the bench said. But, the state government had determined the agreement as invalid without creating any norm or leaving any remedy for the petitioner, the bench noted. The arguments would continue on Thursday.
14 Oct 2008, 0446 hrs IST,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

HC bans manual clearing of sewerage lines in city
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Chennai/HC_bans_manual_clearing_of_sewerage_lines_in_city_/articleshow/3592753.cms
CHENNAI: Clearing blocked sewer lines manually is not legal anymore in the city. The Madras high court banned the practice on Monday and directed civic authorities to “employ mechanical devices” to clear sewer blocks. The first bench comprising chief justice A K Ganguly and justice F M Ibrahim Kalifulla passed the interim order after admitting a public interest writ petition by social worker A Narayanan of Virugambakkam. The bench has posted the matter to Wednesday for further hearing. In his petition, Narayanan submitted that civil society should not continue to be blind to the inhuman and abhorrent exploitation of deprived people. Though the government claims to have abolished manual scavenging in the state and has provided safety gadgets to sanitary workers, scores of such workers still enter drains to manually clear clogs, he said. These sanitary workers lacked pay, insurance and pension benefits, and many died “unsung like a stray dog,” he said. Persons from marginalised communities are pressed into the work and many of these workers were forced to drink alcohol to numb themselves before getting into the manholes, the petitioner said. Describing it as a “dangerous, immoral and exploitative practice,” Narayanan said: “If making sanitary workers carry human waste or handle them manually, whether voluntarily or through coercion, is illegal , then making workers get into manholes and septic tanks is also illegal.” Besides freeing these sanitary works from handling sewerage, the government is duty-bound to rehabilitate them, he said. Narayanan wanted the court to direct authorities to go for total modernisation and mechanisation of the sewer and septic tank maintenance works, and wanted the government to form a high-power technical committee to go into all aspects of urban sanitation, including preventive maintenance, modernisation, sensitisation and education. He wanted the court to direct the authorities to come out with a concrete time bound plan of action to abolish the practice of manual cleaning of manhole, sewer lines and septic tanks.
14 Oct 2008, 0708 hrs IST,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.co

HC fines NMC officials in recruitment scam
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Nagpur/HC_fines_NMC_officials_in_recruitment_scam_/articleshow/3592462.cms
Nagpur: The Nagpur bench of the Bombay high court on Monday, while hearing a petition of alleged recruitment scam in the Nagpur Municipal Corporation
(NMC), has directed the civic body to appoint four petitioners and pay Rs 10,000 to each. A division bench comprising justices Kishor Rohee and Bhushan Dharmadhikari also directed the civic body to recover this amount from “guilty” officials and if it’s not done within a stipulated time it would amount to “contempt of court” , the bench said in its verdict. In the process, the court has granted relief to four petitioners – Vijay Humne, Ashok Patil, Dipak Pittalwar and Pundlik Dhore. While the petitions of five others – Prashant Dandekar, Mangala Kukde, Rahul Kharabe, Vijay Ghiye and Rahul Rathod – were rejected. However, a petition of Kiran Meshram was given “in-principal ” approval for getting his job back. All the 11 petitioners had challenged the recruitment procedure of posts of ward officer, additional commissioner , junior engineer, assistant structural engineer, technical assistant, plumber, and wireman among others of NMC. A battery of lawyers including M G Bhangde, Bhanudas Kulkarni, and Sudhir Puranik among others represented the petitioners. According to the petitioners , the civic body had decided to fill up above posts through the examination comprising 70 marks theory and 25 marks oral test. The selection panel had five corporators and four NMC officials.
14 Oct 2008, 0532 hrs IST,TNN
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HC reprimands cop for not maintaining records
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Ahmedabad/HC_reprimands_cop_for_not_maintaining_records/articleshow/3592508.cms
AHMEDABAD: Gujarat HC on Monday rebuked Rajkot crime branch police inspector for not recording their decisions and not maintaining their personal weekly diaries. In connection with a petition filed by Hathubha Jadeja from Rajkot seeking anticipatory bail, Justice ZK Saiyed on two occasions directed police inspector Digvijaysinh Waghela to remain present in the court but instead he sent his subordinate. When the matter was called out on Monday, the PI along with ACP PK Chaudhary appeared before the court and stated that he could not remain present due to hectic schedule of police ‘bandobast’. Waghela could not produce his weekly as well as station diaries when the judge asked for it. They reasoned out that as the crime branch officials do not make entries of their movement at Pradhyuman Nagar police station, where Jadeja has been booked. The judge allowed the cops to go after a warning.
14 Oct 2008, 0536 hrs IST, Saeed Khan,TNN
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HC asks govt to justify jail for man who opened fire on gangster ashwin naik
http://www.mumbaimirror.com/net/mmpaper.aspx?page=article&sectid=35&contentid=20081014200810140302101089359283e
The state government was granted a last chance on Monday by the Bombay HC to justify setting a 30-year prison term for Ravindra Sawant, who had attempted to murder gangster Ashwin Naik 14 years ago. The attempt had left Naik paralysed.
Posted On Tuesday, October 14, 2008
www.mumbaimirror.com

Disclosure norms for short selling may be tightenedhttp://economictimes.indiatimes.com/Market_News/Short_selling_norms_may_be_tightened/articleshow/3596563.cms
NEW DELHI: The government and market regulator SEBI are keeping a close watch on short selling in stock exchanges. The finance ministry is understood to have sought data on short selling from SEBI. While there is no immediate move to ban short selling, both the regulator and the government are examining if there was a need to further improve disclosure norms. Short selling is a transaction wherein an investor sells securities such as shares without owning them. When an investor wants to short a share, for instance, he borrows that share from another entity. He sells the stock and meets the delivery obligation through the borrowed shares. He subsequently buys the share from the market and returns it to the entity he borrowed it from. This is a strategy used by investors to make profit when they expect prices to fall. However, there is no move to put a ban on short selling at this point. SEBI chairman C B Bhave had on October 1 ruled out any ban on short selling and had said that there was no violation of the regulations. The general view is that short selling contributes to price efficiency and adds liquidity to the markets and there was no need to toe the line taken by regulators in other countries. A number of countries, including the US, have banned short-selling in securities of financial institutions in the wake of current financial crisis. Short-selling was believed to have caused a downward spiral in prices of shares of financial sector companies when the crisis broke out. The emerging view is that while short selling has some role in the financial markets, it needs to be subject to more disclosures. It may be pointed out that the US Securities Exchange Commission is also reported to be crafting a permanent disclosure rule requiring big short sellers to report their trades and considering the reinstatement of the uptick rule. This rule required that every short sale transaction must be entered at a price higher than the price of the previous trade. This rule prevents short sellers from adding to the downward pressure when the price of an asset is already declining. In India, short selling was prevalent till 2001 but was banned after the stock crash. It was allowed again in December 2007 by SEBI but with some restrictions and only in select stocks. The current review will examine if there was a need to put in place additional disclosure requirements.
15 Oct, 2008, 0131 hrs IST,Deepshikha Sikarwar & Soma Banerjee, ET Bureau
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com

Land acquisition for flyover in Nandanam stayed http://www.expressbuzz.com/edition/story.aspx?Title=Land+acquisition+for+flyover+in+Nandanam+stayed&artid=LBHXVHGYq0k=&SectionID=lifojHIWDUU=&MainSectionID=XT7e3Zkr/lw=&SectionName=rSY%7C6QYp3kQ=&SEO=nandanam,%20city,
CHENNAI: The Madras High Court on Monday restrained the State Government from dispossessing land from the owners for constructing a flyover on Cenotaph Road- Turnbulls Road in Nandanam in the City.
Vacation judge K Kannan granted the injunction while passing interim orders on a batch of writ petitions from Srinivasa Theatres Private Limited, by its director G V Ramakrishnan and others. According to advocate Abudukumar Rajarathinam, the flyover was originally proposed on Chamiers Road from Adyar Gate Glub Road to Anna Salai. However, for reasons not known, the proposal had been changed. It was now stated that the flyover would come up on Cenotaph Road- Turnbulls Road with the starting point on Cenotaph Road at the junction of second street.
NO MANUAL CLEANING OF MANHOLES: The Madras High Court on Monday made it clear that no human being should be allowed to get inside drains for the purpose of clearing the block of sewage.
If any drainage was choked, it was the responsibility of the authorities to clear the same by employing mechanical devices, the First Bench comprising Chief Justice A K Ganguly and Justice F M Ibrahim Kalifulla said.
NOTICE AGAINST DMK MINISTER: The Madras High Court on Monday ordered a notice on a habeas corpus writ petition seeking to produce in court Raju, Salem district secretary of the Tamil Nadu Human Rights Movement and to set him at liberty.
A division bench comprising Justice Elipe Dharmarao and Justice S Tamilvanan ordered notices to State Home Secretary, Salem District Collector, Salem City Police Commissioner and Agriculture minister Veerapandi S Arumugam.
Express News Service
First Published : 14 Oct 2008 03:01:00 AM IST
Last Updated : 14 Oct 2008 07:04:37 AM IST
www.expressbuzz.com

Don’t let a builder run away with your money
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Mumbai/Dont_let_a_builder_run_away_with_your_money/articleshow/3591716.cms
Subject: Can interest be claimed by a flat buyer even after the amount is refunded by the builder?
Backdrop: When a builder abandons or delays a project, a consumer often asks for a refund of the amount paid. At times the builder is willing to refund the money, but without interest. The consumer is hesitant to file a complaint because he would like to secure the refund of his capital without antagonising the builder. Later, when the consumer demands the interest, the builder refuses to pay it on the ground that the contract has been voluntarily cancelled and refund accepted, so no interest can be claimed. Thus the builder pockets the interest. Is this permissible? Or can the consumer fight for the interest? Case Study: C S Mathkar had booked a flat in a building to be constructed at Vile Parle by Buildarch. He had paid over Rs 19 lakh in instalments from December 1991 to November 1998. Yet no flat was allotted to him. In 2005, after waiting for 14 years, Mathkar asked for a refund. The builder paid only Rs 1 lakh, and failed to refund the balance amount. Letters sent by Mathkar were ignored by the builder. He then approached Mumbai Grahak Panchayat, on whose intervention the builder refunded a part of the amount. Mathkar then filed a consumer complaint demanding a refund of the balance amount of about Rs 7 lakh, together with interest thereon. As soon as the complaint was filed, the builder refunded the remaining amount. So the dispute was now confined to the interest component. A M Mascarenhas, joint secretary of Consumers Welfare Association, who argued Mathkar’s case, claimed that the builder had utilised the complainant’s money for more than 17 years, yet had deprived him of a flat, and hence interest had to be paid at the rate of 9% per annum from the date of payment of each instalment to the date of refund. The builder contested the case, claiming that the fault lay with Mathkar who did not sign the agreement because of Vastu Shastra. The forum’s jurisdiction was also disputed on the ground that it was a money claim for interest; that there was no contract; and it was not a consumer dispute since the money had already been refunded. Buildarch also argued that the complaint was time-barred. In its judgement of August 29, 2008, the forum over-ruled these objections and held that: as the builder’s services had been availed by paying consideration, it was a consumer forum. Also, the onus to execute the agreement was with the builder, and the failure to do was a deficiency in service. The complaint was not time-barred because the cause of action was continuing and the last instalment of refund was made in February 2008. The forum relied on the judgement of the Supreme Court in the case of Alok Shankar Pandey v/s Union of India, wherein the principle of payment of interest has been explained by the Supreme Court, viz. that interest is not a penalty or punishment but the normal accreditation on capital. So equity demands that the principle amount must be refunded along with the interest thereon. Otherwise, the opponent will earn interest on the complainant’s money and will pocket it. J S Iyer, who gave the judgement on behalf of the Bench of the Central Mumbai Forum comprising herself and President S P Mahajan, observed that Mathkar was a senior citizen who had invested his retirement money aspiring for a house which is a dream in Mumbai, and he must have gone through tremendous mental agony and torture so much so that he was constrained to file a consumer complaint for redressal of his grievance. Hence he must be compensated to achieve the ends of justice. Accordingly, the builder was directed to pay interest amounting to Rs 19,33,789, plus Rs 50,000 as compensation and Rs 3,000 as costs. The forum directed that the order should be complied with in four weeks, otherwise further interest would have to be paid at the rate of 18% p.a. Impact: If the consumer had not fought for his rights, the builder would have pocketed the interest which exceeds the principal amount. Consumers must not let builders get away with such malpractice, and it is hoped that this judgement will help other consumers stand up for their rights. (The author has won the Govt. of India’s National Youth Award for Consumer Protection. His e-mail is jehangir_gai@indiatimes.com)
14 Oct 2008, 0040 hrs IST, Jehangir B Gai,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Panaji: Early Judgment Sought in Parliamentary Secretaries’ Appointment PIL
http://www.daijiworld.com/news/news_disp.asp?n_id=52280&n_tit=Panaji%3A+Early+Judgment+Sought+in+Parliamentary+Secretaries%92+Appointment+PIL
Panaji, Oct 13: Social activist Aires Rodrigues has prayed that the judgment in the public interest petition challenging the appointment of parliamentary secretaries and granting of cabinet status to them be passed expeditiously or that the petition be heard and disposed of expeditiously by another bench of the High Court. It may be recalled that on March 19 this year, the High Court reserved its judgment on the PIL filed by Rodrigues, challenging the appointments of Nilkanth Harlankar and Francisco Silveira as parliamentary secretaries and conferring of cabinet status to EDC chairman Agnelo Fernandes, deputy chairman of Goa Planning Board, Wilfred D’Souza and commissioner of NRI affairs Eduardo Faleiro. In a petition to the Chief Justice of the Mumbai High Court, Aires Rodrigues has pointed out that the judgment in the case has not yet been pronounced, even after a gap of over six months. He has drawn the Chief Justice’s attention to a judgment of the Supreme Court in Anil Rai v/s state of Bihar where it was observed, ” if the judgment for any reason, is not pronounced within a period of six months, any of the parties of the said litigation shall be entitled to move an application before the Chief Justice of the High Court with a prayer to withdraw the said case and to make it over to any other bench for fresh arguments. It is open to the Chief Justice to grant the said prayer or to pass any order as he deems fit in the circumstances.” Rodrigues has stated that there is urgency in the matter, as the appointments challenged are a huge unnecessary burden to the state exchequer, as they were done for political expediency. He has further stated that the appointment of parliamentary secretaries and conferring of rank of a cabinet minister to others was a fraud on the Constitution of India and in violation of the 91st Amendment, which was meant to restrict the size of the cabinet and to prevent jumbo-size cabinets that cause huge financial burden to the state exchequer. The petition was initially heard by a bench of the High Court, comprising of Justice R M S Khandeparkar and Justice R S Mohite on August 22, 2007 and the matter was reserved for judgment. However, on August 24, the Court did not pass any judgment but adjourned the matter, stating that it would not be appropriate to deal with the matter as a similar case relating to the validity of the appointment of parliamentary secretaries and conferment of the status of cabinet ministers in the state of Assam was pending before the Supreme Court. On September 11, 2007, the High Court bench comprising of Justice R S Mohite and Justice N A Britto granted Rodrigues liberty to move a transfer petition before the Supreme Court, so that his PIL could be heard along with the Assam petition. Rodrigues then moved the Supreme Court through a petition under Article 139-A (1) of the Constitution of India, seeking transfer of the PIL for hearing along with the Assam case. On October 12, a division bench of the Supreme Court comprising of Justice S H Kapadia and Justice B Sudershan Reddy directed that it was the Mumbai High Court bench at Goa that should hear and decide the public interest litigation (PIL) filed by Rodrigues. The PIL was finally heard on March 19, 2008 by Chief Justice Swatanter Kumar and Justice N A Britto and the judgment was reserved. The advocate general of Goa was also directed to produce the original government files pertaining to the appointments of parliamentary secretaries and conferring of cabinet status to them.
Monday, October 13, 2008 5:22:48 PM (IST)
from Rubiya Shaikh – Panaji GoaDaijiworld Media Network – Panaji (SP)
www.daijiworld.com

Minority’ Stephen’s has right to select own head, says apex court
http://www.expressindia.com/latest-news/minority-stephens-has-right-to-select-own-head-says-apex-court/373004/
New Delhi, October 13 Upholding the power of St Stephen’s College to appoint its own principal, the Supreme Court on Monday dismissed a petition filed by Delhi University and ruled that minority educational institutions have a constitutional right to appoint heads of their institutions.
The government cannot encroach upon this right of an institution, the apex court observed while dismissing Delhi University’s appeal challenging the High Court’s recent order that allowed Stephen’s to “select a qualified person as its principal”.
In a reprieve for the college locked in a legal battle over the process of selection of its principal, the Supreme Court bench of Justices R V Raveendran and J M Panchal today approved its status as a “minority institution”.
“It’s a valuable right guaranteed under Article 30, otherwise you are encroaching into it,” the Bench warned as senior advocate P P Rao pressed hard, challenging the High Court’s decision.
Rao submitted that the university had the right to frame regulations for prescribing standards of education and uniformity “in national interest”. But the argument did not convince the apex court. The Bench observed, “You show us one minority college not maintaining the (educational) standards. Otherwise we will be making minority institutions only a farce.”
The apex court upheld the High Court’s ruling that the right of a minority educational institution to appoint its head cannot be taken away by any rule, regulation or any enactment made by state even if the institute is receiving 100 per cent government aid. Delhi University had appealed against the High Court order on the ground that Article 30, which grants minorities the right to establish and administer their own institutions, was “not an absolute right”.
On August 21, the High Court quashed Clause 7 (2) of the Delhi University’s Ordinance XVIII, which gave the varsity the power to appoint principals of all colleges under its jurisdiction. Allowing the college’s petition, the Division Bench of Chief Justice A P Shah and Justice S Muralidhar made it clear that the pertinent clause would not be applicable for Stephen’s, which is a minority institution.
Express News Service
Posted: Oct 14, 2008 at 0106 hrs IST
www.expressindia.com

NGO plea against land acquisition annoys SC
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/NGO-plea-against-land-acquisition-annoys-SC/372947
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday took exception to a petition filed by an NGO — Association for Protection of Democratic Rights (APDR) — regarding the Nano project in Singur.
The three-member Bench, headed by Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan, took strong exception to the petition filed by the organisation, represented by advocate Prashant Bhushan. However, it agreed to hear the case along with other petitions pending before it.
A visibly annoyed Bench made observations like, “It’s a personal property right, how can an NGO challenge it,” and “how can an association challenge a land allotment for public purpose?”
The advocate representing the association persisted and alleged that a separate procedure is required to be followed in cases where land is to be allotted to a company and in this case it was not followed.
Express news service Posted: Oct 14, 2008 at 0029 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

Rizwanur case: SC asks High Court to complete hearing; family appeals against bail to cops
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/Rizwanur-case–SC-asks-High-Court-to-complete-hearing–family-appeals-against-bail-to-cops/373099
Kolkata, October 13 The Supreme Court directed the Calcutta High Court on Monday to complete the hearing in the Rizwanur Rehman case as early as possible. An appeal against the HC order, filed by the accused in the case, is pending before a Division Bench headed by the Chief Justice of the Calcutta High Court.
The apex court also ordered that trial in the sessions court should not start during the pendency of the appeal.
Kalyan Banerjee, counsel of the Rehman family, told The Indian Express, “The Supreme Court had earlier refused to stay the CBI probe. After Monday’s order, apart from the trial, other proceedings can take place.”
Justice Dipankar Dutta had directed the CBI on August 14 to file a chargesheet against the accused policemen and members of Todi family and observed that the police officers had acted in unconstitutional and illegal manner. The order was challenged by Ashok Todi and the police officers before a Division Bench headed by Chief Justice S S Nijjar.
Express News Service Posted: Oct 14, 2008 at 0339 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

No review of Venugopal judgment, says SC
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Delhi/No_review_of_Venugopal_judgment_says_SC/articleshow/3591464.cms
NEW DELHI: Health minister Anbumani Ramadoss’s attempt to salvage lost pride from the legal defeat of the `oust Venugopal’ legislation has come a cropper in the Supreme Court. The apex court dismissed the Centre’s petition seeking open court hearing of its plea for review of the May 9, 2008 judgment, which had lashed out at the Parliament-approved and Ramadoss-initiated legislation to oust Dr P Venugopal from the post of AIIMS director, terming it as an act of “naked discrimination” against the eminent cardiologist. The legislation had amended AIIMS Act to fix upper age limit for the director at 65 years and applied it retrospectively with a view to curtail Venugopal’s five-year tenure. A Bench comprising Justices Tarun Chatterjee and H S Bedi had quashed the legislation terming it as “one-man centric” and laced the judgment with stinging observation much to the embarrassment of the UPA government which had gone along with the health minister to settle the latter’s long running feud with Venugopal. Seeking an oral hearing of its review petition was an unusual request from the Centre as all review petitions are heard by the same Bench in the chambers without the presence of lawyers. “The application for oral hearing is rejected. The review petition is dismissed,” said the Bench curtly in its short order putting paid to Ramadoss’s hopes for a open court hearing and review of the decision that allowed Venugopal to complete his five-year tenure at AIIMS and retire. Holding the AIIMS Amendment Act to be “ultra vires and unconstitutional” before striking it down, the court had said, “Venugopal shall serve the nation for some more period, that is, upto July 2, 2008.” The restoration of the director’s post to Venugopal came with arrears of salary and emoluments. “We direct the authorities to restore Venugopal in his office as director of AIIMS till his term comes to an end on July 2, 2008. Venugopal is also entitled to his pay and other emoluments as he was getting before premature termination of his office from the date of his order of termination,” the Bench had directed. With the dismissal of the review petition, the Centre is left with only one option curative petition to challenge the judgment of the apex court. But, given that almost all curative petitions are dismissed, that step is also not without the risk of further loss of face. dhananjay.mahapatra@timesgroup.com
14 Oct 2008, 2339 hrs IST, Dhananjay Mahapatra,TNN
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After SC decision, BU to reinstate Mylarappa
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Bangalore/After_SC_decision_BU_to_reinstate_Mylarappa_/articleshow/3592625.cms
BANGALORE: B C Mylarappa will return to the sociology department of Bangalore University (BU) after the Supreme Court passed an order to reinstate him, higher education minister Aravind Limbavali said on Monday. “All accusations against him have been found to be false and there is no need for a CoD investigation. I have directed BU to take Mylarappa back and the vice-chancellor will get the order in a few days,” he explained. Limbavali will look also into a case of fraud filed with Ulsoor police station against Mylarappa on charges of misappropriation of funds. toiblr.reporter@timesgroup.com
14 Oct 2008, 0613 hrs IST,TNN
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Nanavati report: SC says can’t stop release of partial findings
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/Nanavati-report–SC-says-can-t-stop-release-of-partial-findings/372909
NEW DELHI, OCTOBER 13 The Supreme Court on Monday refused to stay the implementation or circulation of the Nanavati Commission report on the Godhra fire and the subsequent communal riots in 2002 in Gujarat, saying there was no legal bar under the Commission of Inquiries Act to prevent a panel from releasing partial findings.
At the same time, it observed it would have been more appropriate if one entire report had come out.
The three-member bench headed by Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan was hearing submissions by a senior advocate on behalf of NGO Citizens for Justice and Peace.
Its counsel contended that the Nanavati Commission was not authorised to give its report in parts, recalling that in an earlier case, the interim report of the U C Banerjee Commission had been stayed.
Tannu Sharma Posted: Oct 14, 2008
www.indianexpress.com

SC to hear petition on Orissa killings on Oct 16
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/News/PoliticsNation/SC_to_hear_petition_on_Orissa_killings_on_Oct_16/articleshow/3591808.cms
NEW DELHI : The Supreme Court on October 16 will hear the plea seeking direction to find out which organisations are behind the recent killings of Christians in Orissa. The court will also hear the plea seeking a CBI probe into the communal violence in Kandhamal district. A bench comprising Chief Justice KG Balakrishnan, Justice P Sathasivam and Justice Aftab Alam on Monday has fixed October 16 to hear the matter. Senior Counsel Collin Gonsalves appearing for petitioner Archbishop, Raphael Cheenath of Cuttack said, the situation in the state has again turned grim which requires immediate intervention of the court. Mr Gonsalves sought intervention of the court to find out the truth behind the organised killings of the Christian community in the state. It is essential to find out which organisations are behind such killings, said Mr Gonsalves. Mr Gonsalves sought permission of the court to file an additional ap-plication seeking such plea. The court granting permission posted the matter for hearing on Thurs-day. The Archbishop in his petition claimed that the attack on churches and other properties belonging to the community was a well orchestrated conspiracy and pleaded that the National Human Rights Commission be asked to conduct a probe to find out which organisation was behind the Kandhamal violence. Giving details of the damage and loss of property, the petition said Orissa government has failed to protect the life and property of the community and the measures taken by it, including the compensation announced for the affected families, were not enough. The petition also sought a compensation of Rs 5 lakh for the families of those killed in the violence, Rs 4 lakh for those whose houses were destroyed, Rs 2 lakh for those whose houses were damaged partially and Rs 1 lakh for those injured. It also sought Rs 3 crore as compensation for the damage caused to churches.
14 Oct, 2008, 0020 hrs IST, ET Bureau
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com

HC extends stay on privatisation
http://www.business-standard.com/india/storypage.php?autono=337233
The Allahabad High Court today extended the stay on privatisation of about 33 Uttar Pradesh Sugar Corporation mills till the next date of hearing on October 20.
Hearing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by Rajeev Kumar Mishra of Maharajganj district, a division bench comprising Justices Ashok Bhushan and Vinit Saran adjourned the hearing to October 20 on the plea of the state government counsel.
The court ordered that the third-party right shall not be created till the next date of hearing.
The PIL had contended that the disinvestment move of the UP government was against several central and state laws.
Meanwhile, Mishra also filed the amended petition today challenging the September 29, Ordinance by UP in respect of the sale of the equity shares of the sugar mills, which he claimed was meant to legalise the illegal sale.
The petitioner contended that the privatisation move would finish off the sugarcane area in UP and affect farmers.
In an earlier hearing on September 12, the court had struck down the name of Chief Minister Mayawati from the list of the respondents.
The state government wants to privatise the sugar sector to bring about operational efficiency.
Gammon India, Uflex and Chaddha group have submitted their financial bids for the mills, which were opened on September 30.
Official sources told Business Standard that the state government had also put the privatisation process on the back burner following the fresh litigation.
BS Reporter / Lucknow October 14, 2008, 0:30 IST
www.business-standard.com

HC defers verdict on scrapping notified SEZs
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/News/PoliticsNation/HC_defers_verdict_on_scrapping_notified_SEZs/articleshow/3591659.cms
MUMBAI: The Goa bench of the Bombay High Court on Monday deferred its decision on the state government’s move to scrap three notified special economic zones (SEZs). This means the legality of the state government’s decision to revoke sanctions given to three SEZs, K Raheja Corporation, Meditab Specialties and Peninsula Land would be decided only after a month. Meanwhile, efforts are on to find an out-of-court settlement on the issue. Observing that it did not have all necessary documents for taking a final decision, the HC granted time up to November 17 for all parties to respond. “We have filed affidavits, now the other party has to respond to our submission,” said Mihir Desai, advocate for SEZ Virodh Manch (SVM), which is spearheading campaign against SEZs. The company representatives refused to react. SVM, an umbrella of anti-SEZ organisations, has filed a public interest litigation (PIL) against the Goa State Industrial Development Corporation for making allegedly fraudulent deals with real estate majors. This is being heard before the high court along with other cases challenging the state government’s move to scrap approved economic zones. According to Mr Desai, ‘affected parties’ like K Raheja are yet to respond to the government’s affidavit, thereby making it impossible for the high court to take a decision. Agrees state advocate general Subodh Kantak: “Many companies have filed their replies very late and some are yet to file. The high court cannot decide on the matter before hearing all sides.” The issue of developing SEZs in Goa is being debated for more than a year now. Having axed by the state government, the three SEZs, along with other promoted by Paradigm Logistics and Distribution, Planetview Mercantile Company and Inox Mercantile, challenged the government’s move. Their contention is that an SEZ, once approved, cannot be rolled back; hence the government’s decision to scrap the projects was unlawful. So, even while the matter is still pending before the HC, efforts are on for an out-of-court settlement. The government is toying with an option that offers alternative land to developers for setting up industrial projects out of the purview of SEZs. Chief minister Digambar Kamat is likely to hold separate meetings with petitioners in the coming week.
14 Oct, 2008, 0000 hrs IST, ET Bureau
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com

HC closes 20-yr case, brings relief to former SBI staffer
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/hc-closes-20yr-case-brings-relief-to-former…/373091/
New Delhi, October 13 For 37 years of his life, R N Bhargava worked for his bank and an “unblemished” service record. The next 21 years saw him engage in courtroom battles against the same bank. Now at the end of the “long torture”, all the 81-year-old wants is to be left alone to “die in peace”.
The State Bank of India (SBI) had in June 1988 unceremoniously removed R N Bhargava, then assistant general manager, for drawing an excess amount of Rs 8,400 towards travel allowance. Though Bhargava returned the amount to the bank and even went on to draw a pension, the “blot” on his service record continued to bother him enough to file a case against his employer in 1989, least expecting the case to drag on for over two decades.
Now at 81, he has finally won the long sought reprieve from prolonged litigation with Delhi High Court willing to bury the “lingering controversy” between him and his bank.
The Division Bench led by Justice Madan B Lokur, however, is careful to term their decision on the octogenarian’s case as an exception based on the “peculiar facts of this matter” rather than as a precedent.
Krishnadas Rajagopal Posted: Oct 14, 2008 at 0241 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

HC notice to nine MLA’s in caste case
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Mumbai/HC_notice_to_nine_MLAs_in_caste_case/articleshow/3591855.cms
MUMBAI: The Bombay high court on Monday issued contempt notices to nine MLAs in Maharashtra in connection with a caste-scrutiny case.
The contempt notices were issued after a geneologist, S Bhat, who had appeared in court following court orders stated that he was misled by the MLAs in getting his signature on an affidavit supporting their court application in a caste-scrutiny matter. The MLAs had sought to intervene in the hearing of a bunch of petitions regarding scheduled tribe status of persons who belong to the Thakur caste. A full bench of the high court, headed by Chief Justice Swatanter Kumar was hearing the matter. The MLAs, who mostly hail from tribal areas of the state, alleged that in many cases persons belonging high-caste thakur clans from north India claim benefits of reservations by obtaining caste certificates in the state. In support of their claim, they had attached an affidavit by Bhat, who maintains geneologies of these clans. High court did not allow them to intervene, but directed that the affidavit be taken on record, so that caste scrutiny committee may use the information. Bhat, however disowned some parts of the affidavit. He claimed that he did maintain geneologies, but could not comment on whether these families were high-caste or not. The matter will be heard further on October 23.
14 Oct 2008, 0037 hrs IST,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Susairaj moves HC for bail
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Mumbai/Susairaj_moves_HC_for_bail/articleshow/3591752.cms
Kannada actress Maria Susairaj, on Monday moved the Bombay high court seeking bail in the Neeraj Grover murder case.
According to the police Susairaj and her fiance Emile Jerome Mathew, an officer in the Indian Navy, had on May 7 this year allegedly stabbed to death television executive Grover, chopped the body into pieces and later burnt it at Manor. The bail application contends that Susairaj in her confession had said it was Matthew who had stabbed grover and cut his body into pieces. Mathew had also allegedly raped Susairaj twice after the incident at knife point. Susairaj could therefore only be charged for destruction of evidence, said the application. The sessions court had earlier rejected the bail application observing that there was prima facie evidence to prove Susairaj’s involvement in the murder. The bail petition is scheduled to come up for hearing on October 18.
14 Oct 2008, 0001 hrs IST,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Tamil Nadu advocates’ association plea to CJI
http://www.hindu.com/2008/10/14/stories/2008101454530800.htm
New Delhi: The Tamil Nadu Advocates Association on Monday urged Chief Justice of India K.G. Balakrishnan to request Madras High Court Chief Justice A.K. Ganguly to have wider consultations in the matter of appointment of 14 persons as High Court judges.
The association said, “The Chief Justice of the Madras High Court had recently sent a list of 14 names for appointment as Judges of the Madras High Court. It is well known that the Chief Justice of the Madras High Court and his immediate two senior-most Judges, who formed the collegium, are Judges who are functioning on transfer from their parent High Courts. Thus, the present list of names of 14 candidates have been finalised by the collegium of judges who may not be fully conversant with the affairs of the Madras High Court.”
The memorandum sent by association president S. Prabhakaran said, “It is no doubt true that in the matter of appointment of Judges of the Supreme Court, the Chief Justice of India is expected to ascertain the views of his colleagues in the Supreme Court who are likely to be conversant with the affairs of the concerned High Court by reason of the fact that such a Judge (whose view is ascertained by him) comes from the same High Court or otherwise.”
“In case if the two immediate senior judges are functioning on transfer, it would only mean the two senior most judges who have the Madras High Court as their parent High Court.
In the said circumstances, the requirement would be satisfied only when the views of the 4th and 5th Judge in seniority (whose parent High Court is Madras High Court) are also obtained by the Chief Justice of the Madras High Court.”
While welcoming the 25-point pro forma sent by the CJI to the prospective candidates, the memorandum expressed the hope that there would be strict scrutiny of names by adopting the pro forma.
The memorandum said, “We also request the CJI, the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the Chief Justice of the Madras High Court and the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, M. Karunanidhi to re-circulate the 14 names to the 4th and 5th senior most judges of the Madras High Court, whose parent High Court is Madras High Court for fresh consideration of these names.”
Tuesday, Oct 14, 2008
Legal Correspondent
www.hindu.com

Larger SC bench to hear SIMI ban case
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/Larger-SC-bench-to-hear-SIMI-ban-case/372931
NEW DELHI, OCTOBER 13 Chief Justice of India K G Balakrishnan will constitute “an appropriate bench” to take up the Government’s appeal against a Special Tribunal decision lifting the ban on SIMI (Students’ Islamic Movement of India SIMI). Till then, the interim stay on the decision of the Special Tribunal will be continued.
A two-judge Bench of Justices S B Sinha and Cyriac Joseph, before whom the matter was placed on Monday, refused to hear it contending that earlier two notifications banning the outfit were already pending for consideration before a three-member bench. The Bench, therefore, referred the matter to the CJI for setting up of an appropriate Bench, in other words, a three-judge bench.
On August 5, the Special Tribunal — headed by Delhi High Court judge Geeta Mittal — had lifted the ban imposed on SIMI by the most recent notification of the Government. It said there was no new evidence to justify the ban.
The Centre had rushed to the apex court against the tribunal order, and the bench headed by Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan had stayed it. It had issued a notice to SIMI and asked the Centre to place before it all documents pertaining to the justification of the ban.
Express news service Posted: Oct 14, 2008 at 0019 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

Nanavati or not, the state apparatus in Gujarat cannot be absolved
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/Nanavati-or-not–the-state-apparatus-in-Gujarat-cannot-be-absolved/372858
With the kind of evidence that I saw as Chief Justice of India, I would never have exonerated the Government of its responsibility during the 2002 riots, if I was responsible for the Commission.
As CJI, I heard a large number of cases from the riot-stricken of Gujarat in 2002. I don’t see a case for absolving the state government or of saying that all responsibilities were fulfilled. There are three primary responsibilities of the state. The first, is the protection of lives of people, all people, and especially the weaker sections, who may not have the necessary voice and strength to look after themselves. Second comes the duty to prosecute those who violate the law. The third is the duty to provide relief to victims of violence. It is important for governments to educate people, build roads etc. but all of that is predicated on their being able to first protect lives.
On the three crucial aspects, the police and the state in
Gujarat during the riots was an utter failure. The state, after being unable to protect lives also carried out shoddy investigations. I got the sense that investigations were done to help the accused, rather than the victims.
V.N. Khare Posted: Oct 14, 2008 at 2331 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

Daily Legal News 8/9.10.2008

CM’s statement amounts to obstructing justice: Khaidem Mani
http://www.kanglaonline.com/index.php?template=headline&newsid=43623&typeid=1
IMPHAL, Oct 8: The statement of state chief minister O Ibobi Singh on the floor of the state Assembly on October 6 on the matter of the inquiry report on Maibam Naobi Chanu case amounts to obstructions of justice said advocate Khaidem Mani counsel of case.Speaking at a press conference Mani said the statement given by the chief minister in the house while replying to the question raised by the opposition member RK Anand of MPP on October 6 was a very unfortunate.There can be no questions of subjudice or prejudice indiscussing the report by the state government as court cases in connection had already been concluded after they were withdrawn by the petitioner on May 17 last year.Mention may be made that chief minister had said that the inquiry reports of Maibam Naobi Chanu has already been submitted to the state government but the report could not be considered for discussion ascases on the matter are pending in several courts of law.He also observed that discussing the report would amount to subjudice as there are pending cases in Guwahati High Court and District Judge, Manipur East Advocate Mani reacting to the statement observed the chief minister should only said the report had been submitted by concerned officials of law department and home department. He should not have misled the House by citing the possibility of subjudice.This deliberate misleading of the House should have serious consequences.Citing the chronology of events in teh case Mani said, she was arrested by a team of Thoubal police commandos led by ASI Laishram Chaoba Singh in the afternoon of February 21, 2006 from Kahngabok areas on suspect.She was later produced before Chief Judicial Magistrate CJM, Thoubal and remanded to police custody till March 3, 2006. She was again produced before the same court on March 2, 2006 by the police and she was released by the court from the case.In the meantime, Naobi alleged of excessive torture and physical harassment including molestation while she was in the police custody lodged a complaint with the Manipur Human Rights Commission MHRC, he recounted.MHRC, on March 3 of the same year directed for medical examinations of the victim and same has been done on the same day, the spokesman said.Within the short period of time there were pressures from various womenfolk, human rights activists and students bodies to conduct a judicial enquiry. As a result the state government on March 17, 2006 instituted a commission of enquiry head by retired justice Rajkhowa to inquire into the facts and circumstances leading to the detention and brutal torture of Naobi by the Thoubal police while she was in the police custody.The advocate further recalled that when the commission of enquiry was active the secretary Nongpok Leingak Nupi Lup, Phanjoubam Sakhi Devi with one Y Mema Devi, a of the member of the same body filed a PIL to the Guwahati High Court Imphal bench on March 27 for prosecution of the alleged police personnel involved in the inhuman torture and disregarding treatment towards Naobi Chanu with a demand for payment of compensation to her.By the time, the commission of enquiry submitted its reports to the state government on August 5, 2006 but the Guwahati High Court, Imphal bench as per the PIL filed by Sakhi Devi and Y Mema Devi has directed the district judge, Manipur east to conduct an enquiry into the matter but the directive of the High Court did not give any restrictions to the state government to consider the inquiry reports submitted by the commission of inquiry, he added.Apart from this the two petitioners on April 4, last year filed a writ petition with a misc. application to Guwahati High Court, Imphal Bench withdrawing the PIL . As a result of it, the court passed an order dismissing the case. The order was passed in the presence of the government advocate, Mani added.Mani further said despite of having proper status of the court case in connection with the Naobi issue, deliberations of blunder statement by the state chief minister in the House of the Assembly should not be taken lightly by the people of the state and the questions of privilege of house for his misinformation.
The Imphal Free Press
www.kanglaonline.com

Maharashtra’s DGP appointment quashed
http://www.hindustantimes.com/StoryPage/StoryPage.aspx?sectionName=&id=148d3242-f063-4f08-8657-51cab7c9e663&MatchID1=4813&TeamID1=6&TeamID2=1&MatchType1=1&SeriesID1=1212&PrimaryID=4813&Headline=Maharashtra%e2%80%99s+DGP+appointment+quashed
The Central Administrative Tribunal on Wednesday quashed the appointment of AN Roy as Maharashtra’s Director General of Police on the ground that he had superseded three IPS officers.
A division bench of CAT ruled that the state government was bound to consider the three officers — S.S. Virk, J.D. Virkar and Suprakash Chakravarti — who were senior to Roy, a 1974 batch officer, for the DGP’s post.
“The whole process of selection and appointment of Roy is untenable in law and on facts,” said bench members Sudhakar Mishra and Jog Singh.
The bench directed the state to hold a review selection process/department promotion committee within a month by taking into consideration the three senior officers who were eligible as on February 29 this year and taking a fresh decision to appoint one of them as the DGP.
Until then, the four incumbents may be continued in their respective posts, the bench ruled.
In another development, the Bombay High Court, hearing a PIL filed by journalist R.R. Tripathi on same issue, dismissed it, holding that it was not a subject fit for PIL.
Chakravarti, Director General (Home), had filed an application before the tribunal challenging Roy’s appointment on March 1 before the CAT.
He contended that as per Supreme Court’s directions in earlier judgment, the three senior-most officers should have been considered for state DGP post, and Roy being junior to Chakravarti (1972), Virk (1970) or Virkar (1972), should not have been considered.
As per the CAT’s order, state erred in not considering Virk among the three senior-most officers.
Sunil Shivdasani, Hindustan Times
Mumbai, October 08, 2008
www.hindustantimes.com

High Court has powers to review acquittal orders, says SC
http://www.ptinews.com/pti/ptisite.nsf/0/E6CE521135321619652574DD0019C792?OpenDocument
New Delhi, Oct 9 (PTI) The Supreme Court has ruled that the High Court dealing with an appeal has full powers to re-appreciate, review and reconsider the evidence against an acquittal order passed by the trial court.”When such an appeal is filed, the High Court has full power to re-appreciate, review and reconsider the evidence at large, the material on which the order of acquittal is founded and to reach its own conclusions on such evidence,” a bench of Justices Arijit Pasayat and Mukundakam Sharma observed.The apex court said that both questions of fact and of law are open to scrutiny by the High Court in an appeal against an order of acquittal.”It cannot, however, be forgotten that in case of acquittal, there is a double presumption in favour of the accused,” the bench said.It explained that firstly the presumption of innocence is available to him/her under the fundamental principle of criminal jurisprudence that every person should be presumed to be innocent unless he is proved to be guilty by a competent court of law.”Secondly, the accused having secured an acquittal, the presumption of his innocence is certainly not weakened but reinforced, reaffirmed and strengthened by the trial court,” the bench said.The bench passed the ruling and observations while dismissing the appeal by Murgan and another accused in an attempt to murder case. PTI
www.ptinews.com

De-reservation of SC/ST jobs ends
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/Govt_moves_to_enforce_SCST_job_quota/articleshow/3575613.cms
NEW DELHI: In a bid to discourage undermining of quotas for the underprivileged, the Cabinet on Wednesday decided to end de-reservation of posts meant for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in central government jobs. At a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the Cabinet approved enactment of a law to enforce job reservation for SCs/STs by stipulating penalties on offices which did not implement them effectively. Finance minister P Chidambaram said the Cabinet approved the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Reservation in Posts and Services) Bill 2008. ”Posts reserved for SCs and STs will not be de-reserved and they (vacancies) will be carried over,” he said, adding that the proposed bill would contain provisions for penalties on offices which did not implement the job quota. Chidambaram said the proposed legislation would contain provisions to impart training to SCs and STs to enable them to compete for jobs. The bill also proposed that those candidates who qualify on merit would not be considered under the quota, he said. ”The proposed law will create an unambiguous, coherent and authentic framework for implementing reservation for SCs and STs in central government services,” Chidambaram said. The proposed law would bring in ”interpretative clarity about various facets of the policy on reservation in central government jobs and infuse greater confidence in the minds of the SCs and STs,” he added.
9 Oct 2008, 0234 hrs IST
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

New Bill for SC/ST reservations
http://www.business-standard.com/india/storypage.php?autono=336866
The Union Cabinet today approved new legislation that would seek imposition of penalty on officers who are found guilty of not filling the quota for the scheduled tribes and scheduled castes in the central government. The Cabinet approved the introduction of a new Bill in Parliament to his effect.
This Bill is aimed at helping the SC and ST communities in a major way as the proposed law would seek to create “unambiguous, coherent and authentic framework for the implementation of reservations for the SC and ST” in the central government services.
The Bill approved by the Union Cabinet in its meeting today, comes after shocking revelations that a large chunk of reserved jobs for the two communities were lying vacant for years together.
The Cabinet also decided to withdraw an earlier Bill that was placed in the Rajya Sabha in 2007.
BS Reporter / New Delhi October 09, 2008, 1:26 IST
www.business-standard.com

Amended Bill to deal with cases of corruption in higher judiciary
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/Amended-Bill-to-deal-with-cases-of-corruption-in-higher-judiciary/371090
New Delhi, October 8 A newer version of Judges (Inquiry) Bill would be tabled in the coming session of Parliament. The Cabinet meeting on Wednesday decided to introduce the Judges (Inquiry) Amendment Bill, 2008 and withdraw the Judges (Inquiry) Bill, 2006, which was introduced in Lok Sabha on December 19, 2006.
The 2006 Bill had drawn criticism from the Parliamentary committee and many retired jurists for lacking the teeth to to deal with cases of corruption in higher judiciary.
The new Bill provides for establishing a National Judicial Council (NJC) to undertake investigation and inquire into allegations of misbehaviour or incapacity of a judge of the Supreme Court or of a High Court as well as regulate the procedure for investigation and inquiry in such cases.
The NJC can also recommend suitable action after following the prescribed procedure. Sources, however, informed that under the new law, removal of a judge would be through impeachment by Parliament. Sources also added that the Cabinet decision was taken on the basis of a note submitted by the Ministry of Law and Justice on the issue. A similar note on the proposed law had been placed before the Cabinet earlier too but no decision could be taken owing to opposition by some ministers.
Express news service Posted: Oct 09, 2008 at 0026 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

RNRL files part of family MoU in HC
http://www.business-standard.com/india/storypage.php?autono=336819
Anil Ambani-controlled Reliance Natural Resources (RNRL) today submitted a copy of the relevant parts of the memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed between the two brothers.
Reliance Industries’ counsel Harish Salve opposed the court taking the MoU on record and stated that he was reserving his right to cross examine. Ram Jethmalani, counsel for RNRL, read out the contents of the affidavit and said that the portions of the MoU submitted were only to enable the court to effectively deal with the frivolous grievances argued by RIL on non-production of MoU.
Still, the two counsels united in saying that the contents of the documents should not be made public. The MoU records the arrangement between the two brothers as part of the demerger scheme and also notes what needs to be done in future. The court has adjourned the hearing of the case till October 15. According to ADAG, RIL had contracted to supply 12 mmscmd of gas per day to state-run NTPC at $2.34 per unit , and it was agreed that if the gas was not supplied, it would be sold to RNRL.
Jethmalani will continue his submissions in the next hearing on 15 October. Justice JN Patel, who is hearing the case, announced that the court would sit on Saturday (October 18), as it would like to complete the hearing before the Diwali vacation and use the Diwali vacation for drafting the judgement.
BS Reporter / Mumbai October 09, 2008, 0:56 IST
www.business-standard.com

Sexual dysfunction: Denied job, woman moves Delhi HC
http://www.expressindia.com/latest-news/Sexual-dysfunction–Denied-job–woman-moves-Delhi-HC/370935/
New Delhi, October 8: A woman who aspires to join Sashastra Seema Suraksha Bal (SSSB) but suffers from congenital anomaly, has approached the Delhi High Court alleging that she was denied employment on the basis of sexual dysfunction.
Admitting the plea of Noorie (name changed) recently, a Division Bench of Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Justice Mool Chand Garg observed ‘one cannot be refused opportunity of employment on the basis of sexual dysfunction unless a reasonable nexus is proven between the requirement of the job and the inability of the candidate due to the sexual disability’.
Appearing for 22 year-old Noorie, her counsel Geeta Luthra contended that she fulfilled mandatory requirements and qualified all the requisite examinations, however, she was declared medically unfit by a medical panel on the ground that Noorie suffers from Pseudo hermaphroditism (person born with secondary sex characteristics) which is a congenital anomaly.
Terming the medical panel’s report as arbitrary and discriminatory, the counsel argued that the decision is against her fundamental right to equal employment.
Stating that the people who suffer from pseudo hermaphroditism some time are subjected to public harassment, sexual abuse and even violence, the lawyer submitted before the Bench that five years ago Noorie had undergone a surgery known as gonadectomy which is surgical removal of an ovary or testis.
“Independent doctors have declared Noorie as medically fit and said she is physically, emotionally and psychologically a woman. Though she cannot conceive a baby, she is capable of a successful married life,” the lawyer claimed.
Citing the Gender Recognition Act (GRA) of UK, Noorie’s counsel sought a direction to the Central government for an appropriate law. He said that the English law provides such people a legal recognition in their acquired gender but there is no legislation on these lines in our country.
Following the counsel’s submissions, the High Court Bench sought the Central government’s response and directed the lawyer to furnish all the medical reports by the next date of hearing of the matter.
Agencies
Posted: Oct 08, 2008 at 1524 hrs IST
www.expressindia.com

HC issues notice to state
http://www.dnaindia.com/report.asp?newsid=1196436
BANGALORE: The Karnataka High Court has issued an emergent notice to the state government regarding the handing over of Gokarna Mahabaleshwar temple to Ramachandrapura mutt.
After hearing a public interest litigation filed by a city resident MS Muralidhar and others, a vocation bench headed by Justice Ashok B. Hinchigeri has issued the notice to revenue secretary, Commissioner of Religious and Charitable Endowment, and District Commissioner of Dakshina Kannada. After the submission of the petitioners’ counsels, the Court adjourned the matter to October 10 and directed all the respondents to file objections if there be any.
The petitioners’ counsel appealed to the court that the Government’s order on August 12 related to the handover of the temple was illegal. After handing over the temple, it was shown in revenue records that the temple was an ancient property of Ramachandrapura Mutt. The government action was contrary to law and arbitrary. Hence a CBI inquiry was needed, the petitioners’ counsel said.
DNA Correspondent
Wednesday, October 08, 2008 14:41 IST
www.dnaindia.com

HC reprieve for Prakasam kiln owners
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Hyderabad/HC_reprieve_for_Prakasam_kiln_owners_/articleshow/3572083.cms
HYDERABAD: About 150 brick kiln owners in Prakasam district on whom the state slapped notices of evacuation have obtained a reprieve from the Andhra Pradesh High Court. Following objections from the residents and the subsequent notice from the tahsildar and a resultant legal battle, nearly 150 owners of brick kilns in Addanki village expressed their readiness to shift their units to a far away place if given some time to do so. The kilns were set up there about 10 years ago much before residential houses came up. A division bench of the high court comprising Chief Justice Anil R Dave and Justice R Subhash Reddy, which heard a batch of petitions was convinced of the intentions of the kiln owners and allowed them the time they sought to shift to a distant place. The HC chief justice made an arrangement following the averments made by the kiln owners. “Since they do not manufacture bricks till December 2008, they will be given six months time from then till June 2009 to shift to a new place on their own,” he said. On its part, the bench pronounced a safeguard to the kiln owners that since their industry is not a pollutant industry, the pollution control board has no business or control over them. The bench also found fault with the Tahsildar of Addanki who straight away served an ultimatum on the kiln owners to remove their kilns from there without giving any prior show cause notice to them and said this method is not proper on his part.
8 Oct 2008, 0725 hrs IST,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

HC directs ED to return Pune builder’s passport
http://www.ptinews.com/pti/ptisite.nsf/0/FB084CDEF9AAE477652574DC00253C68?OpenDocument
Mumbai, Oct 8 (PTI) Bombay High Court today directed the Enforcement Directorate (ED) to return the passport of a Pune-based builder.Avinash Bhosale’s passport had been confiscated by the Customs authorities last year after he was arrested at the international airport here for not declaring certain dutiable goods.A Division Bench of Chief Justice Swatanter Kumar and Justice A P Deshpande directed that the builder’s passport be returned in 15 days on the condition that Bhosale would furnish information regarding all his bank accounts.Subsequent to Bhosale’s arrest by Customs, ED had launched its own investigation into his foreign bank accounts and took possession of his passport. PTI
www.ptinews.com

Three-judge panel arrives to probe cash-at-judge’s door scam http://www.hindu.com/thehindu/holnus/002200809281968.htm
Chandigarh (PTI): A three-judge panel set up by the Chief Justice of India K G Balakrishnan arrived here on Sunday to look into the alleged involvement of a judge of the Punjab and Haryana High Court in the cash-at-judge’s door scam.
The panel consisting of Allahabad High Court’s Justice Hemant Laxman Gokhale, Jammu and Kashmir High Court’s Justice K S Radhakrishnan and Delhi High Court’s Justice Madan B Lokur was set up by the CJI on August 26 this year.
However, Justice Gokhale who heads the committee refused to reply to a volley of questions by mediapersons in connection with the case saying, “Please leave us alone.”
The Chandigarh administration had last month referred the Rs 15 lakh cash-at-judge’s door scandal to the CBI on the ground that it may have inter-state ramifications.
The scandal jolted the judicial fraternity as it “involved” Haryana’s former Additional Advocate General (AAG) Sanjeev Bansal and four others.
While the prime accused a Delhi-based businessman Ravinder Singh Bhasin is in CBI custody till September 30 in this case, four others including Bansal, property dealer Rajeev Gupta, Bansal’s clerk Parkash Ram and a homeguard jawan Nirmal Singh are in judicial lock up.
Both the CBI probe and the inquiry by the judge’s panel will run simultaneously.
The cash-at-judge’s door scam is related to the alleged delivery of Rs 15 lakh at the house of Justice Nirmaljit Kaur of the Punjab and Haryana high court.
Sunday, September 28, 2008
www.hindu.com

OCCASIONAL DIGEST
http://lawandotherthings.blogspot.com/2008/10/occasional-digest.html
1. NHRC’s report on Salwa Judum presented to the Supreme Court. The report, contrary to what the CJI observed during the last hearing, defends Salwa Judum, even while making certain recommendations on the anti-Naxal strategy.2.Supreme Court’s judgment in Divisional Manager, New India Assurance Co. Ltd. vs. A.Sankaralingam: At a time when the SC has referred to a larger Bench reconsideration of the landmark Bangalore Water Supply judgment, to reconsdier a host of issues settled in that judgment, this one by a two-Judge Bench (delivered on October 3 can be accessed on the judis site, if the link is not working)is a bolt from the blue. The Bench held in this case that a part-time employee is covered under the Industrial Disputes Act. 3.A.G.Noorani on lawless lawyers in the latest EPW4.Andre Beteille on Constitutional Morality in EPW5.Vinod Bhanu on right to recall legislators: the Chhattisgarh experiment in EPW6. Sharad Joshi on how S.138 N.I.Act leads to farmers’ suicides in Maharashtra.7.M.J.Antony on the latest Supreme Court judgment in Pareena Swarup vs. Union of India, declaring its contempt for Babu-friendly tribunals.
Posted by V.Venkatesan at 11:13 AM
http://lawandotherthings.blogspot.com

M J Antony: Babu-friendly tribunals
http://www.business-standard.com/india/storypage.php?autono=336688
Yet another special forum devised by the executive takes a knock from the Supreme Court.
The propensity of bureaucrats to encroach upon judicial powers is matched only by that of the judiciary to prevent it. This drama has been going on in the Supreme Court for over a decade. It started with the administrative tribunals in L Chandra Kumar vs Union of India (1997) case. The more prominent and recent cases involved the Competition Commission of India, the National Company Law Tribunal and its appellate forum. Last week, the Supreme Court asserted the primacy of judiciary in the case of tribunals to be set up under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act 2002. Thus, another tribunal is stuck in litigative quicksand.
The challenge in this public interest petition, Pareena Swarup vs Union of India, had a familiar ring. It questioned the constitutional validity of the provisions dealing with the composition and powers of the adjudicating authorities, the qualifications for appointment of the chairperson and members of the appellate tribunal and the procedures for their resignation and removal.
The law was passed to prevent money laundering and punish those who indulged in it. In 2007, the government passed rules for the appointment and conditions of service of the members of the appellate tribunal. The members and the chairperson are to be selected by a committee headed by the Revenue Secretary. This was one glaring intrusion in the judicial territory. Normally the selection is done after consulting the Chief Justice.
There were several other improprieties. The 2007 rules did not explicitly specify the qualifications of the members from the field of finance and accountancy. The tenure of the panel was not secure. The chairman could be a person who is “qualified to be a judge of a high court” but need not be one who is or has been a judge of the Supreme Court or the high court. The legal member of the tribunal, similarly, could be one who is qualified to be a district judge, but need not be one who is or has been a district judge. These and several other defects violated the independence of the judiciary. A bench headed by the Chief Justice himself stated that these fears were well founded.
The remarks of the court in this context are worth quoting: “It is necessary that the court may draw a line which the executive may not cross in their misguided desire to take over bit by bit judicial functions and powers of the state exercised by the duly constituted courts. While creating a new avenue of judicial forums, it is the duty of the government to see that they are not in breach of the basic constitutional scheme of separation of powers and independence of the judicial function.”
More strong words from the apex court: “The Constitution guarantees free and independent judiciary and the constitutional scheme of separation of powers can be easily and seriously undermined if the legislature were to divest the regular courts of their jurisdiction in all matters, entrust the same to the newly-created tribunals which are not entitled to protection similar to the constitutional protection afforded to the regular courts. Independence and impartiality are to be secured not only for the courts but also for tribunals and their members, though they do not belong to the judicial service. The safeguards that ensure independence and impartiality are not for promoting personal prestige of the functionary but for preserving and protecting the rights of the citizens. A judiciary free from the control of the executive and the legislature is essential if there is a right to have claims decided by judges who are free from potential domination by other branches of the government.”
In the end, the court, with the assistance of senior counsel and law officers, chalked out some amendments to the rules and the government accepted them. Now it is for the government to change the rules of the game.
The experience of the past tells us that once the court intervenes and clips the wings of the bureaucrats, they lose interest in setting up the tribunals. In some states, administrative tribunals are starved of funds and are dysfunctional. The Competition Commission idea has also lost its steam once the court stepped in and shed the unconstitutional imbalance of power between the babus and the judges. The tax tribunals proposed by an amendment to the Companies Act in 2002 is also in the doldrums, as a Constitution bench has to examine the validity of some provisions offending the independence of the judiciary.
The common argument of the executive in these cases is that the world economy has become more complicated and the judges do not have adequate grasp of international corporate transactions; the questions should be left to experts in the field. The judges maintain that they have been dealing with varied cases for centuries and the existing institutions are capable of handling them well if only they are given enough funds and facilities. But the executive holds the purse strings. That is why the infrastructure of courts and tribunals is pathetic, the judges are low-paid and arrears are mounting.
OUT OF COURT
M J Antony / New Delhi October 08, 2008, 0:00 IST
www.business-standard.com

HC upholds buyout of notice period
http://www.dnaindia.com/report.asp?newsid=1196417
An employer cannot compel an employee, who has resigned, to serve the entire notice period when he is willing to compensate the company, the Bombay high court has ruled. Vivek Phadnis (name changed) and his colleague (name withheld) can finally bid adieu to their long-time employer Rashtriya Chemicals and Fertilisers (RCF) and proceed to their new jobs after buying out their notice period.
The court directed the RCF to accept the buying out amount paid by the two and let them to take up their new jobs.
Both employees had better-paying job offers from Qatar and offered to pay the salaries for their notice period. However, they were in a fix after the company insisted that they serve the full three-month notice period. Delaying their move to Qatar would have cost them their new job. They then decided to move court against their erstwhile employer. Advocates for the duo, Jamshed Mistry and Amit Karkhanis, contended that denying their client the opportunity for a better job amounted to violation of his fundamental right.
The RCF, on the other hand, had taken a stand that being a government undertaking it was in public interest that Phadnis serves his entire notice period allowing the company the time to find a replacement.
However, even at a prior hearing, the court had observed that the RCF, a government undertaking, was “doing something very wrong”.
DNA Correspondent
Wednesday, October 08, 2008 03:25 IST
www.dnaindia.com

HC seeks timeframe from CS for Dal Lake restoration
http://www.risingkashmir.com/?option=com_content&task=view&id=7316
Srinagar, Oct 07: The High Court Tuesday sought a timeframe from Chief Secretary S S Kapur for completion of different works relating to restoration of Dal Lake to its ‘original position’.The double bench comprising of Justice Nissar Ahmed Kakroo and Justice Hakim Imtiyaz Hussain said: “We propose to specify a time bound schedule for completion of works. We would like to know the views of chief secretary as to what would be the reasonable time period to be spelt out for implementation of court’s directions.”The judges also asked the Chief Secretary S S Kapur to explain the particulars of the officers who in his estimation were responsible for lapses in implementation of the court’s directions.The chief secretary who was present said that if the court reposes confidence in him, he will live up to its expectations. Kapur attributed his non-appearance on two earlier hearings to “communication gap”.The judges said his explanations satisfied them saying they think the chief secretary believes in the rule of law.“The amount of sincerity with which he made the submissions, we have no reluctance to appreciate his concern. His non appearance was neither willful nor deliberate,” they said.The court restored the past practice empowering him to scrutinize reports being filed by the functionaries of the State in the court. He has been authorized to pass directions to officials for implementation of the court directions from time to time for retrieving the ‘lost glory’ of the lake.IGP Traffic who was missing from the court received a stern disapproval for his non-presence.“He has assumed unto himself the power of exemption,” the judges remarked. The official had been exempted from personal appearance under the exigency of law and order. “The cause shown by him has no relevance with law and order requirement and he is directed to appear personally before the court on future hearing,” the judges said.All officers concerned with the implementation of the orders of the court have been asked to submit their reports on affidavits with copies to the chief secretary. However, the Pollution Control Board has been asked to deal with the violators as per the decree governing its activities.The court in its previous hearing had expressed anguish at non-presence of the advocate general and chief secretary and had remarked that the court was not subservient to the meetings in the secretariat.
Rashid Paul
www.risingkashmir.com

SC slams Himachal HC for casual approach http://www.zeenews.com/articles.asp?aid=474652&sid=NAT
New Delhi, Oct 07: The Supreme Court has slammed the Himachal Pradesh High Court for the casual manner in which it dismissed the State government’s plea seeking permission to appeal against the acquittal of a rape accused. A bench of Justices Arijit Pasayat and Mukundakam Sharma regretted that the High Court did not pass any reasoned order while dismissing the Government’s plea to appeal against the order of acquittal passed by the trial court. “The trial court was required to carefully appraise the entire evidence and then come to a conclusion. If the trial Court was at a lapse in this regard, the High Court was obliged to undertake such an exercise by entertaining the appeal,” the apex court said in a judgement. The State Government had filed the SLP in the apex court after a division bench of the High Court dismissed the application filed by the Government under Section 378(3) CrPC, for permission to appeal against the acquittal order passed by a trial court in the case of Manoj Kumar alias Chhotu. Manoj, who was facing charges under IPC sections 376 (rape) and 511 (criminal intimidation), was acquitted by the trial court against which the State had sought permission to file the appeal in the high court which was turned down by the latter in a terse order stating “Dismissed”. Upholding the State’s contention, the apex court said the trial Court on the facts of the case did not perform its duties, as was enjoined on it by law. “The High Court ought to have in such circumstances granted leave and thereafter as a first court of appeal, re-appreciated the entire evidence on the record independently and returned its findings objectively as regards guilt or otherwise of the accused,” the court said. “It has failed to do so. The questions involved were not trivial. The High Court has not given any reasons for refusing to grant leave to file appeal against acquittal, and seems to have been completely oblivious to the fact that by such refusal, a close scrutiny of the order of acquittal by the appellate forum, has been lost once and for all,” the apex court observed. According to the apex court the manner in which the appeal against acquittal has been dealt with by the High Court leaves much to be desired. “Reasons introduce clarity in an order. On plainest consideration of justice, the High Court ought to have set forth its reasons, howsoever brief, in its order indicative of an application of its mind,” the bench said. The apex court recalled that in a number of its earlier rulings it had clearly stated that courts should give proper reasons for its decision. “The absence of reasons has rendered the High Court order not sustainable. Judicial discipline to abide by declaration of law by this Court, cannot be forsaken, under any pretext by any authority or Court, be it even the Highest Court in a State,” the bench observed. The apex court said that the right to reason is an indispensable part of a sound judicial system. Reasons indicate an application of mind to the matter before Court. Hence, the apex court said, the High Court order was unsustainable. “The High Court shall entertain the appeal and after formal notice to the respondent hear the appeal and dispose it off in accordance with law, uninfluenced by any observation made in the present appeal,” the apex court said while allowing the appeal. Bureau Report
www.zeenews.com

Nandy’s plea seeking quashing of FIR not maintainable, HC told
http://www.hindu.com/thehindu/holnus/002200810071654.htm
New Delhi (PTI): A complainant, who had lodged an FIR in Gujarat against political analyst Ashis Nandy for writing an article in a national daily allegedly portraying the state in bad light, has asked the Delhi High Court not to interfere in the proceeding at this stage.
Filing a response on Nandy’s petition seeking quashing of proceeding against him, the complainant, V K Saxena, said in his affidavit that court’s interference in the probe at this stage would amount to prejudging the case.
“This petition is premature in as much as the investigation is sought to be challenged at a very nascent stage and in view of the catena of decision of the Supreme Court, when the investigation is in process, Courts should loathe in exercising discretion,” Saxena said in the affidavit.
“When prima facie the ingredient of offence are disclosed and found in the contents of the FIR, the court at this stage cannot embark upon an inquiry into meticulous examination of the material, much less, into the grounds of defence,” he said.
Saxena was responding to the notice issued to him by the High Court on June 25 on Nandy’s plea.
Earlier, Nandy had approached the Supreme Court after the High Court refused to pass any order restraining the Gujarat police from arresting him.
The apex court on July 1 had restrained the police from arresting him.
In the FIR filed in Ahmedabad by Saxena, it has been alleged that the article related to assembly election results promoted communal disharmony between Hindus and Muslims.
However, Nandy’s counsel V K Kanth had contended that the FIR was registered out of malafide intention and was aimed at penalising and depriving him of expressing his sincere and bonafide views.
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
www.hindu.com

Bombay HC adjourns Fiona matter to Oct 10
http://www.indlawnews.com/Newsdisplay.aspx?e0176972-a3cc-422f-aef7-c0b51ac52953
Public Prosecutor C A Ferreira informed the Bombay High Court at Panaji that Goa Police were investigating the complaint filed by a city-based voluntary organisation against Fiona Mackeown, a British national and mother of slain teenager Scarlett Keeling.Following which, Justice A P Lavande directed the public prosecutor to file a written statement to this effect and adjourned the matter to October 10.Utt Genkara spokesman Adv Aires Rodriges has filed the complaint against Ms Mackeown for negligently leaving behind Ms Keeling in the custody of a stranger a day prior to the rape and murder of her minor daughter in February. Adv Rodriges has in his petition submitted that Ms Mackeown was fully aware that her daughter, Scarlett, was a minor and that the law mandates that all children within the state be provided a safe environment. It is the responsibility of the parents to ensure that the child is not abused.Mr Rodriges further submitted that the conduct of Fiona, who left her daughter in the custody of an adult stranger before leaving for Gokarn in neighbouring Karnataka on holiday was in violation of sections 8(1)(2) and section 8(12) of the Goa Children’s Act 2003 and needs to be investigated.Earlier, on August 11, the president of the Children’s Court Desmond D Costa had disallowed the complaint filed by Adv Rodriges on the ground that as per section 20 of the Children’s Act, cognizance of any offence under the act could be taken only on a complaint filed by the child, her parents, guardians, close relatives, police or a competent authority.UNI
10/7/2008
www.indlawnews.com

J and K HC quashes Public Safety Act of militants aide in Jammu
http://www.indlawnews.com/Newsdisplay.aspx?f7de01e4-9790-4ad7-b71e-a414dcde2d0a
Detention of a militant group’s over ground worker (OGW) under Public Safety Act (PSA) was quashed by the Jammu and Kashmir High Court (Jammu Bench).The Court did not find any material on record to support the impugned detention order passed by the District Magistrate, Jammu, on June 30 last year, whereby the accused Mohd Taj Gujjar was detained under the PSA. Gujjar (code Dilawar Tariq) of tehsil Mendhar in Poonch district, was an OGW of various banned militant outfits, namely Hizbul Mujahideen, Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT), al-Badr, actively operating in the state, indulging in anti-national and disruptive activities including killing and terrorising innocent people. Gujjar was arrested on March 10, 2007 along with associates Feroz Ahmed and two Pakistani militants of the LeT and was detained under the PSA by the order of District Magistrate, Jammu passed on June 30, 2007.The court allowed the petition against detention and quashed the order passed by DM, Jammu, on June 30, 2007, with the direction that accused, who is presently lodged in District Jail Jammu should be released from custody forthwith if not required in any other case.UNI
10/6/2008
www.indlawnews.com

CJI met NSA, sought extra security for higher judiciary
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/CJI-met-NSA–sought-extra-security-for-higher-judiciary/370591
New Delhi, October 7 The UPA Government is considering a proposal to enhance the security cover provided to top judicial brass in the country.
According to sources, this follows a recent meeting which Chief Justice of India K G Balakrishnan had with National Security Advisor M K Narayanan in which he made a case for reviewing the current security cover available to the judges in the higher judiciary.
At the meeting specially called for the purpose last week, Justice Balakrishnan is learnt to have conveyed his reservations about what he feels is an ‘inadequate’ security cover for the sitting judges, including the chief justices of various high courts.
“Generally, the judges have two security personnel: a PSO and an armed guard. The CJI just wanted to apprise the Government of the present security cover offered to the judges and, if possible, re-consider it in view of the present situation,” said a senior official of the apex court, not revealing whether there was any threat to any of the sitting judges.
Tannu Sharma Posted: Oct 08, 2008 at 0028 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

Judges bill may be delayed a year
http://www.khabrein.info/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=17431&Itemid=88
NEW DELHI, Oct. 7: The Judges Inquiry Bill 2006 to enquire into complaints and take action against judiciary is likely to be delayed at least for a year.
The law and justice ministry appearing before the parliamentary standing committee said that the bill is with the Union Cabinet for consideration and more “in-depth study” was required as it was a “sensitive” matter.The bill was recommended to the parliamentary standing committee in 2006. The committee, after taking views from all sides, submitted the bill to the law and justice ministry in 2007 for the introduction in Parliament after the Cabinet nod.In September, an unhappy committee had asked the law and justice ministry to submit an “action-taken report” on the issue pending for more than a year. Urging it to list the matter in the Cabinet as soon as possible, the committee had asked the department to spell out its stand on the issue.The justice department officials who appeared in front of the committee on Tuesday has promised to expedite the issue but will have to discuss it further as it is a “sensitive” issue.With the next Parliament session scheduled on October 17, it is unlikely that the Cabinet will give its nod before that.The bill envisages to bring accountability to the justice department at a time when CJI K.G. Balakrishnan has recommended impeachment of Justice Soumitra Sen of Calcutta high court for “misconduct” and an inquiry into the “cash at judge’s door” scam in Chandigarh.
www.khabrein.info

Apex Court Directs Compulsory Registration Of Marriages http://way2freshers.com/law/law-newsline/law-newsline.html
In a ruling, having far reaching consequences, the Supreme Court has directed that all the marriages, irrespective of religion, will be compulsorily registered. The Court gave a time of three months to the centre and the state governments to frame and notify the rules in this regard.
The Court gave clear directions to incorporate the ‘consequences of non-registration’ in such rules. The Court also directed all such laws to be placed before the Court for scrutiny to ensure that the objective is not diluted at any stage.
Section 8 of the Hindu Marriage Act enables the state government to make rules with regard to the compulsory registration of marriages. At present, only four states viz. Maharashtra, Gujrat, Karnataka and Himachal Pradesh have rules providing for compulsory registration of marriages.
The Court accepted the contention of the National Commission for Women (NCW) that non-registration of marriages affected women the most. Enumerating the benefits of the registration, NCW submitted that it would help prevent child marriages, check bigamy/polygamy, help women exercise their matrimonial rights, enable widows to claim inheritance and deter men from deserting their wives.
Solicitor General G E Vahnavati, who assisted the Court as ‘amicus curiae’ received appreciation from the Court for providing valuable data regarding the laws relating to Hindu, Muslim, Christian and Parsi marriages.
No Reply to SC Notice, says Speaker
The Loksabha Speaker Sh. Somnath Chatterji has categorically stated that he would neither accept a notice from Supreme Court nor would appear before the Court to explain the expulsion of some MPs, found guilty in the cash-for-query scandal.
The Speaker said this after an all-party meeting urged him to ignore the notices. The speaker expressed his highest regard for the Court, but opined that the Apex Court should have examined if it had any authority to look into a matter belonging to the exclusive domain of Lok Sabha. The Speaker also referred to the observations of the Apex Court in the JMM case that no court could take away the right of the House to decide on the conduct of the members.
105:- Powers, privileges, etc. of the Houses of Parliament and of the members and committees thereof:
(1) Subject to the provisions of this constitution and the rules and standing orders, regulating the procedure of Parliament, there shall be freedom of speech in Parliament.
(2) No member of the Parliament shall be liable to any proceedings in any court in respect of anything said or any vote given by him in the Parliament or any committee thereof, and no person shall be so liable in respect of the publication by or under the authority of either House of the Parliament of any report, paper, votes or proceedings.
(3) In other respects, the powers, privileges and immunities of each House of the Parliament, and of the members and the committees of each house, shall be such as may from time to time be defined by the Parliament by law, and, until so defined shall be those of that House and of its members and committees immediately before the coming into the force of Section 15 of the Constitution (Forty-fourth Amendment) Act 1978.
(4) The provisions of clauses (1), (2) and (3) shall apply in relation to the persons, who by the virtue of this constitution have the right to speak in and otherwise to take part in the proceedings of, a House of Parliament or any committee thereof, as they apply in relation to members of Parliament.
Specifically, it is the sub-section 2 of the Article-105 that provides complete protection to any thing said or the vote given in the Parliament or to any committee thereof.
The speaker said that as the Parliament had decided the expulsion of the members by vote, Article-105(2) would specifically exclude any intervention of the Court.
It may be recalled that the punishment of expulsion was given to the MPs caught in cash-for-query scam .The speaker had received thousands of letters and e-mails, hailing the decision, to take tough stand against the corrupt MPs.
Free Ship For single Child put on hold
The Delhi High Court granted a stay on the CBSE circular for granting free education to the single girl child.
The circular made it compulsory for all the affiliated schools to provide free education, from class VI onwards, to every single child. The circular was issued at the direction of the Human Resource Development Ministry. The circular was objected to by many Principals, as they felt that this would put a lot of financial burden on the schools, which would be ultimately passed on to the other students.
The petition said that as the schools were not receiving any aid from the government, it would be extremely difficult for them to bear this burden. The Court issued notices to the centre, CBSE and the Director of Education, Delhi. The case would come up for next hearing on March 27.
“AMU – not a minority institution” HC
The Allahabad High Court has termed granting of minority status to Aligarh Muslim University as unconstitutional. The court, therefore, declared the reservation of the seats for Muslims and 50% quota, approved by the AMU medical council in the Post- Graduate medical courses, as illegal. However, the court allowed the students, already admitted on the basis of reservation, to continue.
The High Court referred to the judgment of the Supreme Court in the Aziz Basha case in 1968 holding that AMU was not a minority institution, and hence, could not claim the benefit of Article-30 of the Constitution.
Art – 30 of the Constitution is reproduced below:
“30. Right of minorities to establish and administer educational institutions.-
(1)All minorities, whether based on religion or language, shall have the right to establish and administer educational institutions of their choice.
(1A) In making any law, providing for the compulsory acquisition of any property of an educational institution established and administered by a minority, referred to in clause (1), the State shall ensure that the amount fixed by or determined under such law, for the acquisition of such property, is such as would not restrict or abrogate the right guaranteed under that clause.
(2) The state shall not, in granting aid to educational institutions, discriminate against any educational institution on the ground that it is under the management of a minority, based on religion or language”.This article in Fundamental Rights ensures the freedom to a minority institution to administer its affairs.
SC quashes UP government order
The Apex Court, in a severe blow to the UP govt., quashed its order for the withdrawal of POTA charges against the controversial minister Raghuraj Pratap Singh, alias Raja Bhaiya.
The Court further directed that the case against him will be transferred to the neighbouring Madhya Pradesh. The Court also directed the minister to surrender before the special court within 7 days. The order also applied to his father and his cousin. The Court, however, gave liberty to all the accused to file fresh bail application before the special Court.
The direction of the Court to transfer the case outside UP made amply clear the opinion that the Apex Court has about the fairness of trial in UP.
Following the order, Raja Bhaiya resigned from the Mulayam Singh Ministry. However, he said that he did not have a guilty conscience and was resigning to uphold the democratic values.
Strictures passed against petitioner on PIL(Public Interest Litigation)
The Panjab and Haryana HC on 10th November came down heavily on a petitioner, who had filed a PIL, seeking a CBI enquiry into the alleged encroachment of public land. Not only did the Court dismiss the PIL, but also directed registry not to entertain any PIL filed by the petitioner in the future.
The petitioner had sent a letter, saying that he ‘lacked confidence’ in Mr. Justice Hemant Gupta and hence, he must not hear the case.
The petitioner was dubbed as “busybody” and a “masked phantom working for the personal gains and meddling in the judicial process.”
The Bench said that it was refraining from initiating the contempt proceedings against the petitioner, so as not to give him the publicity that he assiduously seeks.
Reiterating the view of the Supreme Court with regard to the PILs, the Bench held that there must be a genuine public interest involved in the litigation.
Justice Y K Sabharwal —The New Chief Justice of India
Justice Yogesh Kumar Sabharwal took over as the new Chief Justice of India on the Diwali Day, 1st November, 2005. Expressing sympathy for the Delhi blast victims, he said that it would be the endeavour of the judiciary to expeditiously try such cases, despite the large noumber of witnesses involved.
Justice Sabharwal, after his appointment as CJI, favoured abolition of the death penalty. He said that as a judge of the apex court he was not against the capital sentence in rarest of rare cases, but personally he wanted the capital punishment to be erased from the penal code. However, he emphasized that it was upto the legislature to decide whether to retain the death penalty on the statute book or not. He sounded very optimistic when he attributed the delay in the cases to the high filing rate, rather than the slower disposal.
Born on January 14, 1942 Justice Sabharwal mainly practised in civil and constitutional cases and was elevated as an additional judge of the Delhi High Court on November 17, 1986 and became its permanent judge on April 29, 1987.
He was elevated as the judge of the Apex Court on January 28, 2000, the golden jubilee day of the Supreme Court. As a judge of the Apex Court, Justice Sabharwal delivered several important judgements dealing with the constitutional matters, including the recent verdict on the dissolution of Bihar Assembly, holding the dissolution unconstitutional. Justice Sabharwal dealt with the politically-sensitive JMM bribery case, medical scam and unauthorised constructions in the capital.His 14 months term would expire on January 14, 2007, on the attainment of 65 years of age.
Law Newsline
By admin on October 7th, 2008
http://way2freshers.com

Now, legal eagles make net gains
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Mumbai/Now_legal_eagles_make_net_gains/articleshow/3567930.cms
MUMBAI: Generations of lawyers have posed for portraits in front of bookshelves lined with leatherbound legal tomes.
The books being testimony to the fact that the greying counsel had put in decades of legal research to turn into someone his clients could trust. This picture though does not hold true anymore. Thanks to the advent of online legal databases, the legal brains in the country are not only getting younger but they have rarely felt the need to open a book. “As a junior lawyer, I had to sift through hundreds of volumes of reported cases to find orders that supported my case. It was a long and tedious process that took months but now a youngster gets it all on his computer within seconds,” says Nilima Chandiramani, principal of K C Law College. The Indian legal system is based on the common law principle which is notable for its inclusion of extensive non-statutory law in form of precedents set by court orders. It reflects a consensus of centuries of judgments by working jurists. “A lawyer while arguing his side in court is expected to quote extensively from past judgments which support his own case,” Chandiramani says. It is this knowledge of case laws that juniors had to gain through years of research work under the watchful gaze of senior counsels. Something that they now get by simply subscribing to an online case finder. “You just have to enter the right search term to get the all the relevant case laws immediately,” explains Sanyogita Saini, a customer care manager with manupatra.com, an online legal database. “Locating the right cases is infinitely simpler now,” says Raghunandan Malik, director of Supreme Court Cases Online, another popular search engine. Thus a lawyer seeking bail for a murder accused can get access to all the cases decided on the issue by the apex court and various high courts since 1950 at the click of a mouse. He no longer needs to spend months in a library. “Since internet penetration is low in our country we give all the cases on a CD-ROM,” says Malik. And it’s not just texts of court orders that the lawyers can get. Refined search options can be used to find judgments according to catch words, high court orders which were later reversed by the Supreme Court, find related orders given by government tribunals and commissions and even circulars issued by various government departments upon an issue. The change is acknowledged not just by practising advocates but by professors of law as well as well. “I have seen a clearly perceptible improvement in academic papers and thesis material submitted by students in the last few years. They cite latest case laws with a lot more ease now because everything is so up-to-date online,” said S S Singh, the director of the National Law Institute University (NLIU) at Bhopal. The real benefits of technology are being reaped none more than by young advocates like Satyan Israni who at 31 years of age runs his own law firm. “These days we want everything faster and are not ready to spend years as a junior,” said Israni, giving a large portion of credit for his success to online databases. “I find it so easy to prepare good arguments and advice my clients because all the decided cases are there in front of me,” Israni says. Both Saini and Malik refused to part with the exact number of subscribers they had but admitted that it was a rapidly expanding business. “We started in 2001 and have offices in 13 cities already so from that you can decipher how fast the growth is,” Saini says. When pressed for a ballpark figure she adds, “Our subscriber base is upward of 50,000″. Popularity of online legal research can also be found in the fact that helps demystify an otherwise complex world of legal jurisprudence. “I have always maintained that the basic of all law is pure logic and common sense,” says Chandiramani. “You may not even know what the hull of a ship is but can still frame perfectly valid arguments on shipping laws if you grasp the concept behind them by reading online court orders,” she adds. Experts say that in the long term access to online case laws will help hone skills of lawyers in India, which with over eight lakh practising advocates is second only to the US in strength of the legal profession. Law colleges all over the country are now installing computer systems so that lawyers get access to online databases. As Israni explains, “Good libraries are hard to find but a CD-ROM can be carried anywhere”.
7 Oct 2008, 0303 hrs IST, Kartikeya,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Daily Legal News 8/9.10.2008

CM’s statement amounts to obstructing justice: Khaidem Mani
http://www.kanglaonline.com/index.php?template=headline&newsid=43623&typeid=1
IMPHAL, Oct 8: The statement of state chief minister O Ibobi Singh on the floor of the state Assembly on October 6 on the matter of the inquiry report on Maibam Naobi Chanu case amounts to obstructions of justice said advocate Khaidem Mani counsel of case.Speaking at a press conference Mani said the statement given by the chief minister in the house while replying to the question raised by the opposition member RK Anand of MPP on October 6 was a very unfortunate.There can be no questions of subjudice or prejudice indiscussing the report by the state government as court cases in connection had already been concluded after they were withdrawn by the petitioner on May 17 last year.Mention may be made that chief minister had said that the inquiry reports of Maibam Naobi Chanu has already been submitted to the state government but the report could not be considered for discussion ascases on the matter are pending in several courts of law.He also observed that discussing the report would amount to subjudice as there are pending cases in Guwahati High Court and District Judge, Manipur East Advocate Mani reacting to the statement observed the chief minister should only said the report had been submitted by concerned officials of law department and home department. He should not have misled the House by citing the possibility of subjudice.This deliberate misleading of the House should have serious consequences.Citing the chronology of events in teh case Mani said, she was arrested by a team of Thoubal police commandos led by ASI Laishram Chaoba Singh in the afternoon of February 21, 2006 from Kahngabok areas on suspect.She was later produced before Chief Judicial Magistrate CJM, Thoubal and remanded to police custody till March 3, 2006. She was again produced before the same court on March 2, 2006 by the police and she was released by the court from the case.In the meantime, Naobi alleged of excessive torture and physical harassment including molestation while she was in the police custody lodged a complaint with the Manipur Human Rights Commission MHRC, he recounted.MHRC, on March 3 of the same year directed for medical examinations of the victim and same has been done on the same day, the spokesman said.Within the short period of time there were pressures from various womenfolk, human rights activists and students bodies to conduct a judicial enquiry. As a result the state government on March 17, 2006 instituted a commission of enquiry head by retired justice Rajkhowa to inquire into the facts and circumstances leading to the detention and brutal torture of Naobi by the Thoubal police while she was in the police custody.The advocate further recalled that when the commission of enquiry was active the secretary Nongpok Leingak Nupi Lup, Phanjoubam Sakhi Devi with one Y Mema Devi, a of the member of the same body filed a PIL to the Guwahati High Court Imphal bench on March 27 for prosecution of the alleged police personnel involved in the inhuman torture and disregarding treatment towards Naobi Chanu with a demand for payment of compensation to her.By the time, the commission of enquiry submitted its reports to the state government on August 5, 2006 but the Guwahati High Court, Imphal bench as per the PIL filed by Sakhi Devi and Y Mema Devi has directed the district judge, Manipur east to conduct an enquiry into the matter but the directive of the High Court did not give any restrictions to the state government to consider the inquiry reports submitted by the commission of inquiry, he added.Apart from this the two petitioners on April 4, last year filed a writ petition with a misc. application to Guwahati High Court, Imphal Bench withdrawing the PIL . As a result of it, the court passed an order dismissing the case. The order was passed in the presence of the government advocate, Mani added.Mani further said despite of having proper status of the court case in connection with the Naobi issue, deliberations of blunder statement by the state chief minister in the House of the Assembly should not be taken lightly by the people of the state and the questions of privilege of house for his misinformation.
The Imphal Free Press
www.kanglaonline.com

Maharashtra’s DGP appointment quashed
http://www.hindustantimes.com/StoryPage/StoryPage.aspx?sectionName=&id=148d3242-f063-4f08-8657-51cab7c9e663&MatchID1=4813&TeamID1=6&TeamID2=1&MatchType1=1&SeriesID1=1212&PrimaryID=4813&Headline=Maharashtra%e2%80%99s+DGP+appointment+quashed
The Central Administrative Tribunal on Wednesday quashed the appointment of AN Roy as Maharashtra’s Director General of Police on the ground that he had superseded three IPS officers.
A division bench of CAT ruled that the state government was bound to consider the three officers — S.S. Virk, J.D. Virkar and Suprakash Chakravarti — who were senior to Roy, a 1974 batch officer, for the DGP’s post.
“The whole process of selection and appointment of Roy is untenable in law and on facts,” said bench members Sudhakar Mishra and Jog Singh.
The bench directed the state to hold a review selection process/department promotion committee within a month by taking into consideration the three senior officers who were eligible as on February 29 this year and taking a fresh decision to appoint one of them as the DGP.
Until then, the four incumbents may be continued in their respective posts, the bench ruled.
In another development, the Bombay High Court, hearing a PIL filed by journalist R.R. Tripathi on same issue, dismissed it, holding that it was not a subject fit for PIL.
Chakravarti, Director General (Home), had filed an application before the tribunal challenging Roy’s appointment on March 1 before the CAT.
He contended that as per Supreme Court’s directions in earlier judgment, the three senior-most officers should have been considered for state DGP post, and Roy being junior to Chakravarti (1972), Virk (1970) or Virkar (1972), should not have been considered.
As per the CAT’s order, state erred in not considering Virk among the three senior-most officers.
Sunil Shivdasani, Hindustan Times
Mumbai, October 08, 2008
www.hindustantimes.com

High Court has powers to review acquittal orders, says SC
http://www.ptinews.com/pti/ptisite.nsf/0/E6CE521135321619652574DD0019C792?OpenDocument
New Delhi, Oct 9 (PTI) The Supreme Court has ruled that the High Court dealing with an appeal has full powers to re-appreciate, review and reconsider the evidence against an acquittal order passed by the trial court.”When such an appeal is filed, the High Court has full power to re-appreciate, review and reconsider the evidence at large, the material on which the order of acquittal is founded and to reach its own conclusions on such evidence,” a bench of Justices Arijit Pasayat and Mukundakam Sharma observed.The apex court said that both questions of fact and of law are open to scrutiny by the High Court in an appeal against an order of acquittal.”It cannot, however, be forgotten that in case of acquittal, there is a double presumption in favour of the accused,” the bench said.It explained that firstly the presumption of innocence is available to him/her under the fundamental principle of criminal jurisprudence that every person should be presumed to be innocent unless he is proved to be guilty by a competent court of law.”Secondly, the accused having secured an acquittal, the presumption of his innocence is certainly not weakened but reinforced, reaffirmed and strengthened by the trial court,” the bench said.The bench passed the ruling and observations while dismissing the appeal by Murgan and another accused in an attempt to murder case. PTI
www.ptinews.com

De-reservation of SC/ST jobs ends
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/Govt_moves_to_enforce_SCST_job_quota/articleshow/3575613.cms
NEW DELHI: In a bid to discourage undermining of quotas for the underprivileged, the Cabinet on Wednesday decided to end de-reservation of posts meant for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in central government jobs. At a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the Cabinet approved enactment of a law to enforce job reservation for SCs/STs by stipulating penalties on offices which did not implement them effectively. Finance minister P Chidambaram said the Cabinet approved the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Reservation in Posts and Services) Bill 2008. ”Posts reserved for SCs and STs will not be de-reserved and they (vacancies) will be carried over,” he said, adding that the proposed bill would contain provisions for penalties on offices which did not implement the job quota. Chidambaram said the proposed legislation would contain provisions to impart training to SCs and STs to enable them to compete for jobs. The bill also proposed that those candidates who qualify on merit would not be considered under the quota, he said. ”The proposed law will create an unambiguous, coherent and authentic framework for implementing reservation for SCs and STs in central government services,” Chidambaram said. The proposed law would bring in ”interpretative clarity about various facets of the policy on reservation in central government jobs and infuse greater confidence in the minds of the SCs and STs,” he added.
9 Oct 2008, 0234 hrs IST
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

New Bill for SC/ST reservations
http://www.business-standard.com/india/storypage.php?autono=336866
The Union Cabinet today approved new legislation that would seek imposition of penalty on officers who are found guilty of not filling the quota for the scheduled tribes and scheduled castes in the central government. The Cabinet approved the introduction of a new Bill in Parliament to his effect.
This Bill is aimed at helping the SC and ST communities in a major way as the proposed law would seek to create “unambiguous, coherent and authentic framework for the implementation of reservations for the SC and ST” in the central government services.
The Bill approved by the Union Cabinet in its meeting today, comes after shocking revelations that a large chunk of reserved jobs for the two communities were lying vacant for years together.
The Cabinet also decided to withdraw an earlier Bill that was placed in the Rajya Sabha in 2007.
BS Reporter / New Delhi October 09, 2008, 1:26 IST
www.business-standard.com

Amended Bill to deal with cases of corruption in higher judiciary
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/Amended-Bill-to-deal-with-cases-of-corruption-in-higher-judiciary/371090
New Delhi, October 8 A newer version of Judges (Inquiry) Bill would be tabled in the coming session of Parliament. The Cabinet meeting on Wednesday decided to introduce the Judges (Inquiry) Amendment Bill, 2008 and withdraw the Judges (Inquiry) Bill, 2006, which was introduced in Lok Sabha on December 19, 2006.
The 2006 Bill had drawn criticism from the Parliamentary committee and many retired jurists for lacking the teeth to to deal with cases of corruption in higher judiciary.
The new Bill provides for establishing a National Judicial Council (NJC) to undertake investigation and inquire into allegations of misbehaviour or incapacity of a judge of the Supreme Court or of a High Court as well as regulate the procedure for investigation and inquiry in such cases.
The NJC can also recommend suitable action after following the prescribed procedure. Sources, however, informed that under the new law, removal of a judge would be through impeachment by Parliament. Sources also added that the Cabinet decision was taken on the basis of a note submitted by the Ministry of Law and Justice on the issue. A similar note on the proposed law had been placed before the Cabinet earlier too but no decision could be taken owing to opposition by some ministers.
Express news service Posted: Oct 09, 2008 at 0026 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

RNRL files part of family MoU in HC
http://www.business-standard.com/india/storypage.php?autono=336819
Anil Ambani-controlled Reliance Natural Resources (RNRL) today submitted a copy of the relevant parts of the memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed between the two brothers.
Reliance Industries’ counsel Harish Salve opposed the court taking the MoU on record and stated that he was reserving his right to cross examine. Ram Jethmalani, counsel for RNRL, read out the contents of the affidavit and said that the portions of the MoU submitted were only to enable the court to effectively deal with the frivolous grievances argued by RIL on non-production of MoU.
Still, the two counsels united in saying that the contents of the documents should not be made public. The MoU records the arrangement between the two brothers as part of the demerger scheme and also notes what needs to be done in future. The court has adjourned the hearing of the case till October 15. According to ADAG, RIL had contracted to supply 12 mmscmd of gas per day to state-run NTPC at $2.34 per unit , and it was agreed that if the gas was not supplied, it would be sold to RNRL.
Jethmalani will continue his submissions in the next hearing on 15 October. Justice JN Patel, who is hearing the case, announced that the court would sit on Saturday (October 18), as it would like to complete the hearing before the Diwali vacation and use the Diwali vacation for drafting the judgement.
BS Reporter / Mumbai October 09, 2008, 0:56 IST
www.business-standard.com

Sexual dysfunction: Denied job, woman moves Delhi HC
http://www.expressindia.com/latest-news/Sexual-dysfunction–Denied-job–woman-moves-Delhi-HC/370935/
New Delhi, October 8: A woman who aspires to join Sashastra Seema Suraksha Bal (SSSB) but suffers from congenital anomaly, has approached the Delhi High Court alleging that she was denied employment on the basis of sexual dysfunction.
Admitting the plea of Noorie (name changed) recently, a Division Bench of Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Justice Mool Chand Garg observed ‘one cannot be refused opportunity of employment on the basis of sexual dysfunction unless a reasonable nexus is proven between the requirement of the job and the inability of the candidate due to the sexual disability’.
Appearing for 22 year-old Noorie, her counsel Geeta Luthra contended that she fulfilled mandatory requirements and qualified all the requisite examinations, however, she was declared medically unfit by a medical panel on the ground that Noorie suffers from Pseudo hermaphroditism (person born with secondary sex characteristics) which is a congenital anomaly.
Terming the medical panel’s report as arbitrary and discriminatory, the counsel argued that the decision is against her fundamental right to equal employment.
Stating that the people who suffer from pseudo hermaphroditism some time are subjected to public harassment, sexual abuse and even violence, the lawyer submitted before the Bench that five years ago Noorie had undergone a surgery known as gonadectomy which is surgical removal of an ovary or testis.
“Independent doctors have declared Noorie as medically fit and said she is physically, emotionally and psychologically a woman. Though she cannot conceive a baby, she is capable of a successful married life,” the lawyer claimed.
Citing the Gender Recognition Act (GRA) of UK, Noorie’s counsel sought a direction to the Central government for an appropriate law. He said that the English law provides such people a legal recognition in their acquired gender but there is no legislation on these lines in our country.
Following the counsel’s submissions, the High Court Bench sought the Central government’s response and directed the lawyer to furnish all the medical reports by the next date of hearing of the matter.
Agencies
Posted: Oct 08, 2008 at 1524 hrs IST
www.expressindia.com

HC issues notice to state
http://www.dnaindia.com/report.asp?newsid=1196436
BANGALORE: The Karnataka High Court has issued an emergent notice to the state government regarding the handing over of Gokarna Mahabaleshwar temple to Ramachandrapura mutt.
After hearing a public interest litigation filed by a city resident MS Muralidhar and others, a vocation bench headed by Justice Ashok B. Hinchigeri has issued the notice to revenue secretary, Commissioner of Religious and Charitable Endowment, and District Commissioner of Dakshina Kannada. After the submission of the petitioners’ counsels, the Court adjourned the matter to October 10 and directed all the respondents to file objections if there be any.
The petitioners’ counsel appealed to the court that the Government’s order on August 12 related to the handover of the temple was illegal. After handing over the temple, it was shown in revenue records that the temple was an ancient property of Ramachandrapura Mutt. The government action was contrary to law and arbitrary. Hence a CBI inquiry was needed, the petitioners’ counsel said.
DNA Correspondent
Wednesday, October 08, 2008 14:41 IST
www.dnaindia.com

HC reprieve for Prakasam kiln owners
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Hyderabad/HC_reprieve_for_Prakasam_kiln_owners_/articleshow/3572083.cms
HYDERABAD: About 150 brick kiln owners in Prakasam district on whom the state slapped notices of evacuation have obtained a reprieve from the Andhra Pradesh High Court. Following objections from the residents and the subsequent notice from the tahsildar and a resultant legal battle, nearly 150 owners of brick kilns in Addanki village expressed their readiness to shift their units to a far away place if given some time to do so. The kilns were set up there about 10 years ago much before residential houses came up. A division bench of the high court comprising Chief Justice Anil R Dave and Justice R Subhash Reddy, which heard a batch of petitions was convinced of the intentions of the kiln owners and allowed them the time they sought to shift to a distant place. The HC chief justice made an arrangement following the averments made by the kiln owners. “Since they do not manufacture bricks till December 2008, they will be given six months time from then till June 2009 to shift to a new place on their own,” he said. On its part, the bench pronounced a safeguard to the kiln owners that since their industry is not a pollutant industry, the pollution control board has no business or control over them. The bench also found fault with the Tahsildar of Addanki who straight away served an ultimatum on the kiln owners to remove their kilns from there without giving any prior show cause notice to them and said this method is not proper on his part.
8 Oct 2008, 0725 hrs IST,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

HC directs ED to return Pune builder’s passport
http://www.ptinews.com/pti/ptisite.nsf/0/FB084CDEF9AAE477652574DC00253C68?OpenDocument
Mumbai, Oct 8 (PTI) Bombay High Court today directed the Enforcement Directorate (ED) to return the passport of a Pune-based builder.Avinash Bhosale’s passport had been confiscated by the Customs authorities last year after he was arrested at the international airport here for not declaring certain dutiable goods.A Division Bench of Chief Justice Swatanter Kumar and Justice A P Deshpande directed that the builder’s passport be returned in 15 days on the condition that Bhosale would furnish information regarding all his bank accounts.Subsequent to Bhosale’s arrest by Customs, ED had launched its own investigation into his foreign bank accounts and took possession of his passport. PTI
www.ptinews.com

Three-judge panel arrives to probe cash-at-judge’s door scam http://www.hindu.com/thehindu/holnus/002200809281968.htm
Chandigarh (PTI): A three-judge panel set up by the Chief Justice of India K G Balakrishnan arrived here on Sunday to look into the alleged involvement of a judge of the Punjab and Haryana High Court in the cash-at-judge’s door scam.
The panel consisting of Allahabad High Court’s Justice Hemant Laxman Gokhale, Jammu and Kashmir High Court’s Justice K S Radhakrishnan and Delhi High Court’s Justice Madan B Lokur was set up by the CJI on August 26 this year.
However, Justice Gokhale who heads the committee refused to reply to a volley of questions by mediapersons in connection with the case saying, “Please leave us alone.”
The Chandigarh administration had last month referred the Rs 15 lakh cash-at-judge’s door scandal to the CBI on the ground that it may have inter-state ramifications.
The scandal jolted the judicial fraternity as it “involved” Haryana’s former Additional Advocate General (AAG) Sanjeev Bansal and four others.
While the prime accused a Delhi-based businessman Ravinder Singh Bhasin is in CBI custody till September 30 in this case, four others including Bansal, property dealer Rajeev Gupta, Bansal’s clerk Parkash Ram and a homeguard jawan Nirmal Singh are in judicial lock up.
Both the CBI probe and the inquiry by the judge’s panel will run simultaneously.
The cash-at-judge’s door scam is related to the alleged delivery of Rs 15 lakh at the house of Justice Nirmaljit Kaur of the Punjab and Haryana high court.
Sunday, September 28, 2008
www.hindu.com

OCCASIONAL DIGEST
http://lawandotherthings.blogspot.com/2008/10/occasional-digest.html
1. NHRC’s report on Salwa Judum presented to the Supreme Court. The report, contrary to what the CJI observed during the last hearing, defends Salwa Judum, even while making certain recommendations on the anti-Naxal strategy.2.Supreme Court’s judgment in Divisional Manager, New India Assurance Co. Ltd. vs. A.Sankaralingam: At a time when the SC has referred to a larger Bench reconsideration of the landmark Bangalore Water Supply judgment, to reconsdier a host of issues settled in that judgment, this one by a two-Judge Bench (delivered on October 3 can be accessed on the judis site, if the link is not working)is a bolt from the blue. The Bench held in this case that a part-time employee is covered under the Industrial Disputes Act. 3.A.G.Noorani on lawless lawyers in the latest EPW4.Andre Beteille on Constitutional Morality in EPW5.Vinod Bhanu on right to recall legislators: the Chhattisgarh experiment in EPW6. Sharad Joshi on how S.138 N.I.Act leads to farmers’ suicides in Maharashtra.7.M.J.Antony on the latest Supreme Court judgment in Pareena Swarup vs. Union of India, declaring its contempt for Babu-friendly tribunals.
Posted by V.Venkatesan at 11:13 AM
http://lawandotherthings.blogspot.com

M J Antony: Babu-friendly tribunals
http://www.business-standard.com/india/storypage.php?autono=336688
Yet another special forum devised by the executive takes a knock from the Supreme Court.
The propensity of bureaucrats to encroach upon judicial powers is matched only by that of the judiciary to prevent it. This drama has been going on in the Supreme Court for over a decade. It started with the administrative tribunals in L Chandra Kumar vs Union of India (1997) case. The more prominent and recent cases involved the Competition Commission of India, the National Company Law Tribunal and its appellate forum. Last week, the Supreme Court asserted the primacy of judiciary in the case of tribunals to be set up under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act 2002. Thus, another tribunal is stuck in litigative quicksand.
The challenge in this public interest petition, Pareena Swarup vs Union of India, had a familiar ring. It questioned the constitutional validity of the provisions dealing with the composition and powers of the adjudicating authorities, the qualifications for appointment of the chairperson and members of the appellate tribunal and the procedures for their resignation and removal.
The law was passed to prevent money laundering and punish those who indulged in it. In 2007, the government passed rules for the appointment and conditions of service of the members of the appellate tribunal. The members and the chairperson are to be selected by a committee headed by the Revenue Secretary. This was one glaring intrusion in the judicial territory. Normally the selection is done after consulting the Chief Justice.
There were several other improprieties. The 2007 rules did not explicitly specify the qualifications of the members from the field of finance and accountancy. The tenure of the panel was not secure. The chairman could be a person who is “qualified to be a judge of a high court” but need not be one who is or has been a judge of the Supreme Court or the high court. The legal member of the tribunal, similarly, could be one who is qualified to be a district judge, but need not be one who is or has been a district judge. These and several other defects violated the independence of the judiciary. A bench headed by the Chief Justice himself stated that these fears were well founded.
The remarks of the court in this context are worth quoting: “It is necessary that the court may draw a line which the executive may not cross in their misguided desire to take over bit by bit judicial functions and powers of the state exercised by the duly constituted courts. While creating a new avenue of judicial forums, it is the duty of the government to see that they are not in breach of the basic constitutional scheme of separation of powers and independence of the judicial function.”
More strong words from the apex court: “The Constitution guarantees free and independent judiciary and the constitutional scheme of separation of powers can be easily and seriously undermined if the legislature were to divest the regular courts of their jurisdiction in all matters, entrust the same to the newly-created tribunals which are not entitled to protection similar to the constitutional protection afforded to the regular courts. Independence and impartiality are to be secured not only for the courts but also for tribunals and their members, though they do not belong to the judicial service. The safeguards that ensure independence and impartiality are not for promoting personal prestige of the functionary but for preserving and protecting the rights of the citizens. A judiciary free from the control of the executive and the legislature is essential if there is a right to have claims decided by judges who are free from potential domination by other branches of the government.”
In the end, the court, with the assistance of senior counsel and law officers, chalked out some amendments to the rules and the government accepted them. Now it is for the government to change the rules of the game.
The experience of the past tells us that once the court intervenes and clips the wings of the bureaucrats, they lose interest in setting up the tribunals. In some states, administrative tribunals are starved of funds and are dysfunctional. The Competition Commission idea has also lost its steam once the court stepped in and shed the unconstitutional imbalance of power between the babus and the judges. The tax tribunals proposed by an amendment to the Companies Act in 2002 is also in the doldrums, as a Constitution bench has to examine the validity of some provisions offending the independence of the judiciary.
The common argument of the executive in these cases is that the world economy has become more complicated and the judges do not have adequate grasp of international corporate transactions; the questions should be left to experts in the field. The judges maintain that they have been dealing with varied cases for centuries and the existing institutions are capable of handling them well if only they are given enough funds and facilities. But the executive holds the purse strings. That is why the infrastructure of courts and tribunals is pathetic, the judges are low-paid and arrears are mounting.
OUT OF COURT
M J Antony / New Delhi October 08, 2008, 0:00 IST
www.business-standard.com

HC upholds buyout of notice period
http://www.dnaindia.com/report.asp?newsid=1196417
An employer cannot compel an employee, who has resigned, to serve the entire notice period when he is willing to compensate the company, the Bombay high court has ruled. Vivek Phadnis (name changed) and his colleague (name withheld) can finally bid adieu to their long-time employer Rashtriya Chemicals and Fertilisers (RCF) and proceed to their new jobs after buying out their notice period.
The court directed the RCF to accept the buying out amount paid by the two and let them to take up their new jobs.
Both employees had better-paying job offers from Qatar and offered to pay the salaries for their notice period. However, they were in a fix after the company insisted that they serve the full three-month notice period. Delaying their move to Qatar would have cost them their new job. They then decided to move court against their erstwhile employer. Advocates for the duo, Jamshed Mistry and Amit Karkhanis, contended that denying their client the opportunity for a better job amounted to violation of his fundamental right.
The RCF, on the other hand, had taken a stand that being a government undertaking it was in public interest that Phadnis serves his entire notice period allowing the company the time to find a replacement.
However, even at a prior hearing, the court had observed that the RCF, a government undertaking, was “doing something very wrong”.
DNA Correspondent
Wednesday, October 08, 2008 03:25 IST
www.dnaindia.com

HC seeks timeframe from CS for Dal Lake restoration
http://www.risingkashmir.com/?option=com_content&task=view&id=7316
Srinagar, Oct 07: The High Court Tuesday sought a timeframe from Chief Secretary S S Kapur for completion of different works relating to restoration of Dal Lake to its ‘original position’.The double bench comprising of Justice Nissar Ahmed Kakroo and Justice Hakim Imtiyaz Hussain said: “We propose to specify a time bound schedule for completion of works. We would like to know the views of chief secretary as to what would be the reasonable time period to be spelt out for implementation of court’s directions.”The judges also asked the Chief Secretary S S Kapur to explain the particulars of the officers who in his estimation were responsible for lapses in implementation of the court’s directions.The chief secretary who was present said that if the court reposes confidence in him, he will live up to its expectations. Kapur attributed his non-appearance on two earlier hearings to “communication gap”.The judges said his explanations satisfied them saying they think the chief secretary believes in the rule of law.“The amount of sincerity with which he made the submissions, we have no reluctance to appreciate his concern. His non appearance was neither willful nor deliberate,” they said.The court restored the past practice empowering him to scrutinize reports being filed by the functionaries of the State in the court. He has been authorized to pass directions to officials for implementation of the court directions from time to time for retrieving the ‘lost glory’ of the lake.IGP Traffic who was missing from the court received a stern disapproval for his non-presence.“He has assumed unto himself the power of exemption,” the judges remarked. The official had been exempted from personal appearance under the exigency of law and order. “The cause shown by him has no relevance with law and order requirement and he is directed to appear personally before the court on future hearing,” the judges said.All officers concerned with the implementation of the orders of the court have been asked to submit their reports on affidavits with copies to the chief secretary. However, the Pollution Control Board has been asked to deal with the violators as per the decree governing its activities.The court in its previous hearing had expressed anguish at non-presence of the advocate general and chief secretary and had remarked that the court was not subservient to the meetings in the secretariat.
Rashid Paul
www.risingkashmir.com

SC slams Himachal HC for casual approach http://www.zeenews.com/articles.asp?aid=474652&sid=NAT
New Delhi, Oct 07: The Supreme Court has slammed the Himachal Pradesh High Court for the casual manner in which it dismissed the State government’s plea seeking permission to appeal against the acquittal of a rape accused. A bench of Justices Arijit Pasayat and Mukundakam Sharma regretted that the High Court did not pass any reasoned order while dismissing the Government’s plea to appeal against the order of acquittal passed by the trial court. “The trial court was required to carefully appraise the entire evidence and then come to a conclusion. If the trial Court was at a lapse in this regard, the High Court was obliged to undertake such an exercise by entertaining the appeal,” the apex court said in a judgement. The State Government had filed the SLP in the apex court after a division bench of the High Court dismissed the application filed by the Government under Section 378(3) CrPC, for permission to appeal against the acquittal order passed by a trial court in the case of Manoj Kumar alias Chhotu. Manoj, who was facing charges under IPC sections 376 (rape) and 511 (criminal intimidation), was acquitted by the trial court against which the State had sought permission to file the appeal in the high court which was turned down by the latter in a terse order stating “Dismissed”. Upholding the State’s contention, the apex court said the trial Court on the facts of the case did not perform its duties, as was enjoined on it by law. “The High Court ought to have in such circumstances granted leave and thereafter as a first court of appeal, re-appreciated the entire evidence on the record independently and returned its findings objectively as regards guilt or otherwise of the accused,” the court said. “It has failed to do so. The questions involved were not trivial. The High Court has not given any reasons for refusing to grant leave to file appeal against acquittal, and seems to have been completely oblivious to the fact that by such refusal, a close scrutiny of the order of acquittal by the appellate forum, has been lost once and for all,” the apex court observed. According to the apex court the manner in which the appeal against acquittal has been dealt with by the High Court leaves much to be desired. “Reasons introduce clarity in an order. On plainest consideration of justice, the High Court ought to have set forth its reasons, howsoever brief, in its order indicative of an application of its mind,” the bench said. The apex court recalled that in a number of its earlier rulings it had clearly stated that courts should give proper reasons for its decision. “The absence of reasons has rendered the High Court order not sustainable. Judicial discipline to abide by declaration of law by this Court, cannot be forsaken, under any pretext by any authority or Court, be it even the Highest Court in a State,” the bench observed. The apex court said that the right to reason is an indispensable part of a sound judicial system. Reasons indicate an application of mind to the matter before Court. Hence, the apex court said, the High Court order was unsustainable. “The High Court shall entertain the appeal and after formal notice to the respondent hear the appeal and dispose it off in accordance with law, uninfluenced by any observation made in the present appeal,” the apex court said while allowing the appeal. Bureau Report
www.zeenews.com

Nandy’s plea seeking quashing of FIR not maintainable, HC told
http://www.hindu.com/thehindu/holnus/002200810071654.htm
New Delhi (PTI): A complainant, who had lodged an FIR in Gujarat against political analyst Ashis Nandy for writing an article in a national daily allegedly portraying the state in bad light, has asked the Delhi High Court not to interfere in the proceeding at this stage.
Filing a response on Nandy’s petition seeking quashing of proceeding against him, the complainant, V K Saxena, said in his affidavit that court’s interference in the probe at this stage would amount to prejudging the case.
“This petition is premature in as much as the investigation is sought to be challenged at a very nascent stage and in view of the catena of decision of the Supreme Court, when the investigation is in process, Courts should loathe in exercising discretion,” Saxena said in the affidavit.
“When prima facie the ingredient of offence are disclosed and found in the contents of the FIR, the court at this stage cannot embark upon an inquiry into meticulous examination of the material, much less, into the grounds of defence,” he said.
Saxena was responding to the notice issued to him by the High Court on June 25 on Nandy’s plea.
Earlier, Nandy had approached the Supreme Court after the High Court refused to pass any order restraining the Gujarat police from arresting him.
The apex court on July 1 had restrained the police from arresting him.
In the FIR filed in Ahmedabad by Saxena, it has been alleged that the article related to assembly election results promoted communal disharmony between Hindus and Muslims.
However, Nandy’s counsel V K Kanth had contended that the FIR was registered out of malafide intention and was aimed at penalising and depriving him of expressing his sincere and bonafide views.
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
www.hindu.com

Bombay HC adjourns Fiona matter to Oct 10
http://www.indlawnews.com/Newsdisplay.aspx?e0176972-a3cc-422f-aef7-c0b51ac52953
Public Prosecutor C A Ferreira informed the Bombay High Court at Panaji that Goa Police were investigating the complaint filed by a city-based voluntary organisation against Fiona Mackeown, a British national and mother of slain teenager Scarlett Keeling.Following which, Justice A P Lavande directed the public prosecutor to file a written statement to this effect and adjourned the matter to October 10.Utt Genkara spokesman Adv Aires Rodriges has filed the complaint against Ms Mackeown for negligently leaving behind Ms Keeling in the custody of a stranger a day prior to the rape and murder of her minor daughter in February. Adv Rodriges has in his petition submitted that Ms Mackeown was fully aware that her daughter, Scarlett, was a minor and that the law mandates that all children within the state be provided a safe environment. It is the responsibility of the parents to ensure that the child is not abused.Mr Rodriges further submitted that the conduct of Fiona, who left her daughter in the custody of an adult stranger before leaving for Gokarn in neighbouring Karnataka on holiday was in violation of sections 8(1)(2) and section 8(12) of the Goa Children’s Act 2003 and needs to be investigated.Earlier, on August 11, the president of the Children’s Court Desmond D Costa had disallowed the complaint filed by Adv Rodriges on the ground that as per section 20 of the Children’s Act, cognizance of any offence under the act could be taken only on a complaint filed by the child, her parents, guardians, close relatives, police or a competent authority.UNI
10/7/2008
www.indlawnews.com

J and K HC quashes Public Safety Act of militants aide in Jammu
http://www.indlawnews.com/Newsdisplay.aspx?f7de01e4-9790-4ad7-b71e-a414dcde2d0a
Detention of a militant group’s over ground worker (OGW) under Public Safety Act (PSA) was quashed by the Jammu and Kashmir High Court (Jammu Bench).The Court did not find any material on record to support the impugned detention order passed by the District Magistrate, Jammu, on June 30 last year, whereby the accused Mohd Taj Gujjar was detained under the PSA. Gujjar (code Dilawar Tariq) of tehsil Mendhar in Poonch district, was an OGW of various banned militant outfits, namely Hizbul Mujahideen, Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT), al-Badr, actively operating in the state, indulging in anti-national and disruptive activities including killing and terrorising innocent people. Gujjar was arrested on March 10, 2007 along with associates Feroz Ahmed and two Pakistani militants of the LeT and was detained under the PSA by the order of District Magistrate, Jammu passed on June 30, 2007.The court allowed the petition against detention and quashed the order passed by DM, Jammu, on June 30, 2007, with the direction that accused, who is presently lodged in District Jail Jammu should be released from custody forthwith if not required in any other case.UNI
10/6/2008
www.indlawnews.com

CJI met NSA, sought extra security for higher judiciary
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/CJI-met-NSA–sought-extra-security-for-higher-judiciary/370591
New Delhi, October 7 The UPA Government is considering a proposal to enhance the security cover provided to top judicial brass in the country.
According to sources, this follows a recent meeting which Chief Justice of India K G Balakrishnan had with National Security Advisor M K Narayanan in which he made a case for reviewing the current security cover available to the judges in the higher judiciary.
At the meeting specially called for the purpose last week, Justice Balakrishnan is learnt to have conveyed his reservations about what he feels is an ‘inadequate’ security cover for the sitting judges, including the chief justices of various high courts.
“Generally, the judges have two security personnel: a PSO and an armed guard. The CJI just wanted to apprise the Government of the present security cover offered to the judges and, if possible, re-consider it in view of the present situation,” said a senior official of the apex court, not revealing whether there was any threat to any of the sitting judges.
Tannu Sharma Posted: Oct 08, 2008 at 0028 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

Judges bill may be delayed a year
http://www.khabrein.info/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=17431&Itemid=88
NEW DELHI, Oct. 7: The Judges Inquiry Bill 2006 to enquire into complaints and take action against judiciary is likely to be delayed at least for a year.
The law and justice ministry appearing before the parliamentary standing committee said that the bill is with the Union Cabinet for consideration and more “in-depth study” was required as it was a “sensitive” matter.The bill was recommended to the parliamentary standing committee in 2006. The committee, after taking views from all sides, submitted the bill to the law and justice ministry in 2007 for the introduction in Parliament after the Cabinet nod.In September, an unhappy committee had asked the law and justice ministry to submit an “action-taken report” on the issue pending for more than a year. Urging it to list the matter in the Cabinet as soon as possible, the committee had asked the department to spell out its stand on the issue.The justice department officials who appeared in front of the committee on Tuesday has promised to expedite the issue but will have to discuss it further as it is a “sensitive” issue.With the next Parliament session scheduled on October 17, it is unlikely that the Cabinet will give its nod before that.The bill envisages to bring accountability to the justice department at a time when CJI K.G. Balakrishnan has recommended impeachment of Justice Soumitra Sen of Calcutta high court for “misconduct” and an inquiry into the “cash at judge’s door” scam in Chandigarh.
www.khabrein.info

Apex Court Directs Compulsory Registration Of Marriages http://way2freshers.com/law/law-newsline/law-newsline.html
In a ruling, having far reaching consequences, the Supreme Court has directed that all the marriages, irrespective of religion, will be compulsorily registered. The Court gave a time of three months to the centre and the state governments to frame and notify the rules in this regard.
The Court gave clear directions to incorporate the ‘consequences of non-registration’ in such rules. The Court also directed all such laws to be placed before the Court for scrutiny to ensure that the objective is not diluted at any stage.
Section 8 of the Hindu Marriage Act enables the state government to make rules with regard to the compulsory registration of marriages. At present, only four states viz. Maharashtra, Gujrat, Karnataka and Himachal Pradesh have rules providing for compulsory registration of marriages.
The Court accepted the contention of the National Commission for Women (NCW) that non-registration of marriages affected women the most. Enumerating the benefits of the registration, NCW submitted that it would help prevent child marriages, check bigamy/polygamy, help women exercise their matrimonial rights, enable widows to claim inheritance and deter men from deserting their wives.
Solicitor General G E Vahnavati, who assisted the Court as ‘amicus curiae’ received appreciation from the Court for providing valuable data regarding the laws relating to Hindu, Muslim, Christian and Parsi marriages.
No Reply to SC Notice, says Speaker
The Loksabha Speaker Sh. Somnath Chatterji has categorically stated that he would neither accept a notice from Supreme Court nor would appear before the Court to explain the expulsion of some MPs, found guilty in the cash-for-query scandal.
The Speaker said this after an all-party meeting urged him to ignore the notices. The speaker expressed his highest regard for the Court, but opined that the Apex Court should have examined if it had any authority to look into a matter belonging to the exclusive domain of Lok Sabha. The Speaker also referred to the observations of the Apex Court in the JMM case that no court could take away the right of the House to decide on the conduct of the members.
105:- Powers, privileges, etc. of the Houses of Parliament and of the members and committees thereof:
(1) Subject to the provisions of this constitution and the rules and standing orders, regulating the procedure of Parliament, there shall be freedom of speech in Parliament.
(2) No member of the Parliament shall be liable to any proceedings in any court in respect of anything said or any vote given by him in the Parliament or any committee thereof, and no person shall be so liable in respect of the publication by or under the authority of either House of the Parliament of any report, paper, votes or proceedings.
(3) In other respects, the powers, privileges and immunities of each House of the Parliament, and of the members and the committees of each house, shall be such as may from time to time be defined by the Parliament by law, and, until so defined shall be those of that House and of its members and committees immediately before the coming into the force of Section 15 of the Constitution (Forty-fourth Amendment) Act 1978.
(4) The provisions of clauses (1), (2) and (3) shall apply in relation to the persons, who by the virtue of this constitution have the right to speak in and otherwise to take part in the proceedings of, a House of Parliament or any committee thereof, as they apply in relation to members of Parliament.
Specifically, it is the sub-section 2 of the Article-105 that provides complete protection to any thing said or the vote given in the Parliament or to any committee thereof.
The speaker said that as the Parliament had decided the expulsion of the members by vote, Article-105(2) would specifically exclude any intervention of the Court.
It may be recalled that the punishment of expulsion was given to the MPs caught in cash-for-query scam .The speaker had received thousands of letters and e-mails, hailing the decision, to take tough stand against the corrupt MPs.
Free Ship For single Child put on hold
The Delhi High Court granted a stay on the CBSE circular for granting free education to the single girl child.
The circular made it compulsory for all the affiliated schools to provide free education, from class VI onwards, to every single child. The circular was issued at the direction of the Human Resource Development Ministry. The circular was objected to by many Principals, as they felt that this would put a lot of financial burden on the schools, which would be ultimately passed on to the other students.
The petition said that as the schools were not receiving any aid from the government, it would be extremely difficult for them to bear this burden. The Court issued notices to the centre, CBSE and the Director of Education, Delhi. The case would come up for next hearing on March 27.
“AMU – not a minority institution” HC
The Allahabad High Court has termed granting of minority status to Aligarh Muslim University as unconstitutional. The court, therefore, declared the reservation of the seats for Muslims and 50% quota, approved by the AMU medical council in the Post- Graduate medical courses, as illegal. However, the court allowed the students, already admitted on the basis of reservation, to continue.
The High Court referred to the judgment of the Supreme Court in the Aziz Basha case in 1968 holding that AMU was not a minority institution, and hence, could not claim the benefit of Article-30 of the Constitution.
Art – 30 of the Constitution is reproduced below:
“30. Right of minorities to establish and administer educational institutions.-
(1)All minorities, whether based on religion or language, shall have the right to establish and administer educational institutions of their choice.
(1A) In making any law, providing for the compulsory acquisition of any property of an educational institution established and administered by a minority, referred to in clause (1), the State shall ensure that the amount fixed by or determined under such law, for the acquisition of such property, is such as would not restrict or abrogate the right guaranteed under that clause.
(2) The state shall not, in granting aid to educational institutions, discriminate against any educational institution on the ground that it is under the management of a minority, based on religion or language”.This article in Fundamental Rights ensures the freedom to a minority institution to administer its affairs.
SC quashes UP government order
The Apex Court, in a severe blow to the UP govt., quashed its order for the withdrawal of POTA charges against the controversial minister Raghuraj Pratap Singh, alias Raja Bhaiya.
The Court further directed that the case against him will be transferred to the neighbouring Madhya Pradesh. The Court also directed the minister to surrender before the special court within 7 days. The order also applied to his father and his cousin. The Court, however, gave liberty to all the accused to file fresh bail application before the special Court.
The direction of the Court to transfer the case outside UP made amply clear the opinion that the Apex Court has about the fairness of trial in UP.
Following the order, Raja Bhaiya resigned from the Mulayam Singh Ministry. However, he said that he did not have a guilty conscience and was resigning to uphold the democratic values.
Strictures passed against petitioner on PIL(Public Interest Litigation)
The Panjab and Haryana HC on 10th November came down heavily on a petitioner, who had filed a PIL, seeking a CBI enquiry into the alleged encroachment of public land. Not only did the Court dismiss the PIL, but also directed registry not to entertain any PIL filed by the petitioner in the future.
The petitioner had sent a letter, saying that he ‘lacked confidence’ in Mr. Justice Hemant Gupta and hence, he must not hear the case.
The petitioner was dubbed as “busybody” and a “masked phantom working for the personal gains and meddling in the judicial process.”
The Bench said that it was refraining from initiating the contempt proceedings against the petitioner, so as not to give him the publicity that he assiduously seeks.
Reiterating the view of the Supreme Court with regard to the PILs, the Bench held that there must be a genuine public interest involved in the litigation.
Justice Y K Sabharwal —The New Chief Justice of India
Justice Yogesh Kumar Sabharwal took over as the new Chief Justice of India on the Diwali Day, 1st November, 2005. Expressing sympathy for the Delhi blast victims, he said that it would be the endeavour of the judiciary to expeditiously try such cases, despite the large noumber of witnesses involved.
Justice Sabharwal, after his appointment as CJI, favoured abolition of the death penalty. He said that as a judge of the apex court he was not against the capital sentence in rarest of rare cases, but personally he wanted the capital punishment to be erased from the penal code. However, he emphasized that it was upto the legislature to decide whether to retain the death penalty on the statute book or not. He sounded very optimistic when he attributed the delay in the cases to the high filing rate, rather than the slower disposal.
Born on January 14, 1942 Justice Sabharwal mainly practised in civil and constitutional cases and was elevated as an additional judge of the Delhi High Court on November 17, 1986 and became its permanent judge on April 29, 1987.
He was elevated as the judge of the Apex Court on January 28, 2000, the golden jubilee day of the Supreme Court. As a judge of the Apex Court, Justice Sabharwal delivered several important judgements dealing with the constitutional matters, including the recent verdict on the dissolution of Bihar Assembly, holding the dissolution unconstitutional. Justice Sabharwal dealt with the politically-sensitive JMM bribery case, medical scam and unauthorised constructions in the capital.His 14 months term would expire on January 14, 2007, on the attainment of 65 years of age.
Law Newsline
By admin on October 7th, 2008
http://way2freshers.com

Now, legal eagles make net gains
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Mumbai/Now_legal_eagles_make_net_gains/articleshow/3567930.cms
MUMBAI: Generations of lawyers have posed for portraits in front of bookshelves lined with leatherbound legal tomes.
The books being testimony to the fact that the greying counsel had put in decades of legal research to turn into someone his clients could trust. This picture though does not hold true anymore. Thanks to the advent of online legal databases, the legal brains in the country are not only getting younger but they have rarely felt the need to open a book. “As a junior lawyer, I had to sift through hundreds of volumes of reported cases to find orders that supported my case. It was a long and tedious process that took months but now a youngster gets it all on his computer within seconds,” says Nilima Chandiramani, principal of K C Law College. The Indian legal system is based on the common law principle which is notable for its inclusion of extensive non-statutory law in form of precedents set by court orders. It reflects a consensus of centuries of judgments by working jurists. “A lawyer while arguing his side in court is expected to quote extensively from past judgments which support his own case,” Chandiramani says. It is this knowledge of case laws that juniors had to gain through years of research work under the watchful gaze of senior counsels. Something that they now get by simply subscribing to an online case finder. “You just have to enter the right search term to get the all the relevant case laws immediately,” explains Sanyogita Saini, a customer care manager with manupatra.com, an online legal database. “Locating the right cases is infinitely simpler now,” says Raghunandan Malik, director of Supreme Court Cases Online, another popular search engine. Thus a lawyer seeking bail for a murder accused can get access to all the cases decided on the issue by the apex court and various high courts since 1950 at the click of a mouse. He no longer needs to spend months in a library. “Since internet penetration is low in our country we give all the cases on a CD-ROM,” says Malik. And it’s not just texts of court orders that the lawyers can get. Refined search options can be used to find judgments according to catch words, high court orders which were later reversed by the Supreme Court, find related orders given by government tribunals and commissions and even circulars issued by various government departments upon an issue. The change is acknowledged not just by practising advocates but by professors of law as well as well. “I have seen a clearly perceptible improvement in academic papers and thesis material submitted by students in the last few years. They cite latest case laws with a lot more ease now because everything is so up-to-date online,” said S S Singh, the director of the National Law Institute University (NLIU) at Bhopal. The real benefits of technology are being reaped none more than by young advocates like Satyan Israni who at 31 years of age runs his own law firm. “These days we want everything faster and are not ready to spend years as a junior,” said Israni, giving a large portion of credit for his success to online databases. “I find it so easy to prepare good arguments and advice my clients because all the decided cases are there in front of me,” Israni says. Both Saini and Malik refused to part with the exact number of subscribers they had but admitted that it was a rapidly expanding business. “We started in 2001 and have offices in 13 cities already so from that you can decipher how fast the growth is,” Saini says. When pressed for a ballpark figure she adds, “Our subscriber base is upward of 50,000″. Popularity of online legal research can also be found in the fact that helps demystify an otherwise complex world of legal jurisprudence. “I have always maintained that the basic of all law is pure logic and common sense,” says Chandiramani. “You may not even know what the hull of a ship is but can still frame perfectly valid arguments on shipping laws if you grasp the concept behind them by reading online court orders,” she adds. Experts say that in the long term access to online case laws will help hone skills of lawyers in India, which with over eight lakh practising advocates is second only to the US in strength of the legal profession. Law colleges all over the country are now installing computer systems so that lawyers get access to online databases. As Israni explains, “Good libraries are hard to find but a CD-ROM can be carried anywhere”.
7 Oct 2008, 0303 hrs IST, Kartikeya,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Daily Legal News 07.10.2008

Court dismisses suit against tabling part of Nanavati report
http://www.freshnews.in/court-dismisses-suit-against-tabling-part-of-nanavati-report-75079
The Gujarat High Court Tuesday dismissed a suit seeking direction to quash a part of the report of the Nanavati Commission on the 2002 Sabarmati Express train burning at Godhra and the riots that followed in Gujarat in which at least 1,100 people were killed.
A division bench comprising Chief Justice K.S. Radhakrishnan and Justice M.S. Shah observed that Section 3 of the Commissions of Inquiry Act did not prevent the Nanavati Commission from releasing a part of the report nor did it say whether a part report could be filed in the state assembly.
The PIL was filed by the Citizens for Justice and Peace and the Peoples Union for Civil Liberties seeking direction to stop the Gujarat government from tabling part of the report in the forthcoming assembly session commencing Thursday.
The Justice G.T. Nanavati panel on Sep 18 Thursday submitted the first part of its report. The commission’s final report is yet to come. The details of the report are not known.
The two-member Nanavati Commission investigated the February 2002 Godhra train burning that killed 59 Hindus and the subsequent communal riots that swept the state. It examined over 1,000 witnesses over six years.
Petitioner advocate M.M. Tirmizi contended that the Commission was set up to probe the Godhra and the post-Godhra riots in totality and hence could not be split into two parts. He pleaded that it should be an overall report of the complete inquiry.
The first part of the report dealt with the Godhra incidents and did not reflect the role of the chief minister, others ministers and government officials in the ensuing riots, he said.
“A comprehensive report after full inquiry of the Godhra and post-Godhra incidents ought to be submitted to the state government and then tabled in the assembly,” Tirmizi contended.
Tirmizi said that placing a part report of the inquiry is not in tune with Supreme Court judgments. “The prejudicial role of the state government had been exposed following the Supreme Court order of a re-trial into the Best Bakery and Bilkis Bano cases outside Gujarat” wherein the apex court had also directed the Gujarat government to appoint another public prosecutor for the two cases on a request by the victims. He also quoted from the affidavits filed by former Additional Director General of police R.B. Sreekumar about the role of the state in the post-Godhra riots.
Tabling one part of the report was detrimental to public interest and would mean splitting the terms of reference of the Nanavati panel into two, violating the terms of reference of the Commission as it was asked to look into the Godhra and post-Godhra incidents in totality, he said.
Therefore the government should not be allowed to place part of the report in the house on Sep 25, he contended.
By Indo-Asian News Service on Tuesday, September 23, 2008
www.freshnews.in

Karnataka HC issues notice to govt. on minority community petition http://www.indlawnews.com/Newsdisplay.aspx?c630bc38-79c4-46fc-b463-7361c49521c3
Karnataka High Court issued a notice to the State Government on a petition filed by various minority organisations from Mangalore and Mysore, seeking a direction from the State and the Union Government to prevent atrocities against the community.The Division bench of High Court comprising Chief Justice P D Dinakaran and Justice Mohana Shantanagowdar ordered the issuance of the notice.The petitioners sought an inquiry under the Commissions of Inquiry Act 1952 to either by a sitting judge of the High Court or by a retired Supreme Court Judge, directing the Election Commission to consider the banning or de-recognition of political parties, having affiliation with religious fundamental organisations. They also sought the Court to direct a CBI probe into the attack on places of washing from September 14 in the State.The Advocate General, who was present in the Court, was asked to take the notice on behalf of the State Government. UNI
10/6/2008
www.indlawnews.com

Delhi HC recalls closure order against builder co. after finding fraud http://www.indlawnews.com/Newsdisplay.aspx?2880ffeb-9b76-476e-b73d-f3742b987981
The Delhi High Court withdrew its preliminary order concerning winding up of a building firm and directed police to investigate the case for the fraud committed by it.Directing the crime branch to investigate the matter, Justice Gita Mittal recalled its preliminary winding up orders against Durga builders as it was found that it had procured a Court order by concealing facts in a fraudulent manner. Justice Mittal recalled(reversed) the order passed by the High Court on January 18 by which it had directed that the company be allowed to wind up as it has no resources.Eleven petitioners who had put in their money in the company for purchase of plots along with an investor named Arun Mehra who had invested nearly Rs Five crores in the company moved Delhi High Court seeking stay on the January 18 order.Arun Mehra’s counsel Rakesh Makhija contended that his client had purchased the share holding assets and liabilities of the company but it was found that R K Nanda, the director of Durga Builders, was selling the properties without his knowledge, so much so that he took money from the buyers and sold one plot to three different companies.The court observed that one Manjit Kaur of M/s Kumar Security Services of Ghaziabad filed a petition seeking Rs 6 lacs from Durga Builders as for the security provided by her.The directors of Durga Builders, R K Nanda and Promila Nanda told the Court that their company was not in a position to pay as it had no funds and sought courts permission for winding up the company.The High Court gave preliminary orders and allowed its winding up and appointed an official liquidator, Rajive Bahl to dispose off the assets of the company and pay the debts.Hundreds of people who are waiting for their des were told by the liquidator that a meagre amount of Rs 1,33,473 was in the company’s bank account. Neither was there any account book for the expenses of Rs 5 crore which was collected from the prospective buyers nor any account books or bank accounts were submitted in the Court.UNI
10/6/2008
www.indlawnews.com

Bombay HC to hear dispute between Ambani brother’s today http://www.indlawnews.com/Newsdisplay.aspx?1143991e-d900-4bec-ae61-8a1e07fe6f5b
The Bombay High Court will hear today the dispute between the Ambani brothers, Mukesh and Anil, over the supply of natural gas from the formers eastern offshore Krishna-Godavari gas fields. On October 1, the matter was listed before the division bench of Justice J N Patel and Justice K K Tated for hearing, but it was adjourned till October 6.The court had earlier restrained Mukesh’s Reliance Industries from entering into gas sales contracts with parties other than Anil Ambani Group’s Reliance Natural Resources and state-run NTPC, but it had agreed with the government’s set price of USD 4.20 per million British thermal unit for KG-D6 gas. Reliance Industries was set to begin gas production from KG-D6 from September, at an initial rate of 25 million standard cubic meters per day, climbing up to 40 mmscmd by March 2009. However, after the court’s restraining order, it was not able to enter into sales contracts. RNRL claims right over 28 mmscmd of gas from KG-D6 at USD 2.34 per mmBtu, the price at which RIL had bid in a tender floated by NTPC for sourcing gas. The NTPC contract was not honoured, as the two firms are in courts over certain clauses in the contract. The Anil Ambani Group, citing family de-merger agreement, claims right over the 12 mmscmd gas RIL had committed to NTPC if its deal with the state-run firm falls. Reliance, which sees peak output from KG-D6 at 80 mmscmd, wants the initial 40 mmscmd freed for sale to customers other than RNRL and NTPC. The Bombay High Court is likely to adjudicate over the claims made by the two parties. Meanwhile, the Centre has impleaded in the case, saying natural gas was a national resource and it cannot be locked over family disputes. UNI
10/6/2008
www.indlawnews.com

Industry body can resolve RIL-RNRL tussle: Bombay HC
http://news.moneycontrol.com/india/news/business/industry-body-can-resolve-ril-rnrl-tussle-bombay-hc/19/17/359795
On the RIL-RNRL KG Basin gas tussle, the Bombay High Court suggested the RIL counsel to approach an industry body for suitable arrangement if it is agreed by both parties, reports CNBC-TV18.

The RIL counsel said that since the suit is on the Memorandum of Understanding, it had to be placed before the Court to be pleaded.

Earlier, the government had moved a Notice of Motion in the case. The Notice of Motion had requested the Bombay High Court to vacate the interim stay on RIL, which was restraining it from creating any third-party interest or rights on the 40 mmscmd of natural gas to be produced from the KG Basin.

Today’s case hearing will continue on October 7.
Published on Mon, Oct 06, 2008 at 12:26 , Updated at Tue, Oct 07, 2008 at 16:45 Source : CNBC-TV18
http://news.moneycontrol.com

Delhi HC: Lawyers, sister can meet Delhi serial blasts accusedhttp://www.indlawnews.com/Newsdisplay.aspx?d63cbf72-f03a-44f3-be15-9c1fa44606cf
The Delhi High Court directed the police to allow lawyers and a sister of accused Zia-Ur-Rehman, who was arrested along with four others after a series of bomb blasts rocked the capital on September 13, leaving at least 24 people dead and nearly 100 injured, to meet him.A bench comprising Chief Justice A P Shah and Justice S Muralidhar directed the Delhi Police to allow two lawyers, including Prashant Bhushan, and sister of the accused to meet him in the presence of a senior police officer at 1900 hrs.Accepting the court order, police counsel Mukta Gupta said besides allowing this meeting, the Court also permitted another accused Saquib Nissar to meet his lawyer. Both the accused will be allowed to meet their respective lawyers for one hour each in the presence of ACP Sanjiv Yadav.Zia’s sister will be meeting her brother along with Mr Bhushan.The court issued the direction on a writ petition filed by senior lawyer Shanti Bhushan and Prashant Bhushan. They had charged the police with having violated the basic principles, as laid down by the Supreme Court in the D K Basu case, by not informing the kin of the accused, after arresting him, within a stipulated time frame. They also alleged the police of not allowing the lawyers of the accused to meet them.Asking the police to ensure no detainee was denied his rights, the Court directed them to allow the lawyers to meet all the five accused arrested in the case so far.UNI
10/6/2008
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Kerala HC appoints observer for Sabarimala melsanthi selection http://www.indlawnews.com/Newsdisplay.aspx?48c8d2ae-3ba9-4339-9e5e-6e431e9eef54
The Kerala High Court appointed retired judge K Padmanabhan Nair as an observer for the selection of the Melsanthis (chief priests) of the Sabarimala and Malikappuram temples. A Division Bench comprising Justices P R Raman and T R Ramachandran Nair also directed Justice Padmanabhan Nair to file a report before it about the selection process.The court also raised the strength of the selection committee from five to eight. Earlier, the selection committee was consisting of members from the Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB) and two Tantris of the Thazhaman Illam. The bench directed to include two experts — one from ten renowned Tantris suggested by the High Court and one from the Melsanthis of the previous five years of the two temples. The court, however, gave the right to nominate those persons to the senior Tantri of the Thazhaman Illam.The court also directed to include the Devaswom Commissioner in the selection committee.The bench observed that the selection of Melsanthis shall be conducted as per the schedule already decided. It also clarified that the re-constitution of the selection committee was for this year only and the TDB would have to make comprehensive guidelines to be formulated in accordance with the recommendations of the Justice Paripoornan Commission.The court issued this order while considering a report filed by Devaswom Ombudsman Justice R Bhaskaran, seeking a direction to make the selection for the post of Melsanthis as per the Justice Paripoornan Commission recommendations. Meanwhile, the Kerala Government and the TDB have informed the bench that they are ready to set up a high-powered committee for the smooth conduct of the Sabarimala mandala season this year.The government informed that the committee will be constituted under Additional Chief Secretary K Jayakumar. It will also have Director-General of Police, ADGP (South Zone) V R Rajeevan and various department heads as its members.It will have the powers to make regulations and take action in all matters related to the Sabarimala festival this year.The bench, however, directed them to file draft guidelines about the functions and powers of the committee. UNI
10/6/2008
www.indlawnews.com

Despite HC rap, I-T dept to file more old appeals
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Mumbai/Despite_HC_rap_I-T_dept_to_file_more_old_appeals_/articleshow/3564279.cms
MUMBAI: The Bombay high court recently pulled up the income-tax department for excessive delay in filing appeals, but it appears that the ruling has not had any impact. The department is gearing up to file nearly 300 appeals, some of which have been gathering dust for over six years. The HC is the next forum to challenge Income Tax Appellate Tribunal (ITAT) orders. The HC last month rejected 19 appeals on the grounds that the delay in filing the same was not explained. The court also observed that the officers had not been attaching importance to filing appeals within a specified time-frame. It is learnt that the current initiative to file appeals has been mooted by the chief commissioner of I-T , Debabrata Das. According to sources, in most of these cases, his predecessor Taranand (who retired two months ago) had advised against going in appeal as there was an inordinate delay. An I-T official said Taranand felt it was a waste of government expenditure. “The department has to pay a court fee of a minimum Rs 10,000. It is directly proportional to the sum involved,” an official said. Sources said Das had, however, decided to reverse this decision except in the case of Reliance Port and Terminal. The company is developing ports in Gujarat on land owned by the state maritime board. The department reportedly has decided not to go in appeal in this case. The significant appeals currently being scrutinised by the department-to challenge in the high court-include those of Tata Power, Central Bank, L&T , Otis Elevators, Mahindra & Mahindra and Indian Hotels. Sources said that in most of the cases, ITAT passed the orders 5-6 years ago and the high court was unlikely to entertain the same. Das told TOI that he was reviewing the cases but refused to elaborate.
unnikrishnan.chathrattil@timesgroup.com
6 Oct 2008, 0608 hrs IST, C Unnikrishnan,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Relief for Singareni SE as HC sets aside firing order
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Hyderabad/Relief_for_Singareni_SE_as_HC_sets_aside_firing_order_/articleshow/3564560.cms
Hyderabad: Justice L Narasimha Reddy of the AP High Court, has set aside the removal order and the consequential forfeiture of gratuity pertaining to a superintendent engineer of Singareni Collieries on the ground that the management of the company was selective in punishing him in a fraud case in which he was neither the beneficiary nor the sanctioning authority . The SE D Komaraiah was removed from the service in October 2006 after a fraud on the company in respect of payment of terminal benefits of a mazdoor, B Mallaiah, working under him and the sanctioning of monthly monetary compensation (MMC) to the mazdoor’s wife came to light. Though Mallaiah was alive, his wife approached the authorities in April 1998 and produced a death certificate of her husband issued by municipal commissioner of Kothagudem in Khammam district and availed all the terminal benefits and also MMC accorded to the dependents of a deceased employee. Following a petition filed by the SE who challenged the action of the authorities, the judge studied the whole issue and wondered as to why the company did not choose to take any action against the employee Mallaiah or his wife who were instrumental in making the claim. He also pointed out the role of one Hussain, a clerk who was found to be guilty of hatching the entire plan. Interestingly, the judge said, the employee Mallaiah himself appeared before the vigilance and the departmental enquiries and admitted his guilt. Any sensible agency would have taken steps to recover the money and file a complaint against the those who committed the fraud, the judge said. The vigilance cell created by the company was selective for obvious reasons , he said in a recent judgement. The general manager who sanctioned the amount and another half a dozen officers who assisted him in evolving the things have either been totally let off or were permitted to retire honourably, the judge said. The SE, who is, neither an appointing authority nor the disciplinary authority was targeted and the legal and factual pleas taken by him were ignored, he said.
6 Oct 2008, 0731 hrs IST,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Daily News 06.10.2008

If States fail, Centre should act: Minorities Commission
http://www.hindu.com/2008/10/06/stories/2008100659971200.htm
Christians said their return was predicated on acceptance of Hindu religion’
The situation has worsened in Kandhamal
Not a single case of forced conversion registered
NEW DELHI: The ground reality in Orissa, according to the National Commission for Minorities (NCM), is such that it holds out little hope of the latest round of communal violence in the State being the last.
Meanwhile, in separate reports on attacks on the Christian community in Orissa and Karnataka, the NCM has recommended that “if the State governments are unable to restore normality and a sense of confidence among Christians, the Centre should consider an appropriate response in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution.”
Based on the visit of NCM Vice-Chairperson Michael Pinto to the Kandhamal district of Orissa in mid-September, the report, the third on the State in less than a year, takes note of the fact that far from improving, the situation has worsened with trouble spreading to other districts. “The communal divide appears to be as strong as before and there has been little success in reining in the extreme fringe that has encouraged and fostered the spread of intolerance.”
Rise in Christian population
Dwelling at length on the charge of conversion against the Christian community, the NCM concedes that the Christian population in Kandhamal has registered a larger increase than the Hindu population. But it points out that not a single case of forced conversion has been registered under the Freedom of Religion Act which has been in place in the State for about 40 years.
“If indeed conversions by force or fraud were responsible for the feelings against Christians, it is absolutely amazing that the provisions of an Act designed precisely to address such conversions have never been invoked. It gives rise to the suspicion that conversion had really very little to do with the problem,” the report states.
According to NCM, practically every Christian living in the relief camps — at the time of the visit, an estimated 20,000 people were living in 14 relief camps set up by the State — complained of threats that their “return to their homes was predicated on their acceptance of the Hindu religion.”
Though secular quarters have reservations about such legislations, the NCM said that since the Act was now on the statue book, its provisions must be used against the pernicious threats to Christians to convert forcibly to Hinduism.
Remedial action in Karnataka
In its Karnataka report, the Commission has said remedial action, “including a ban and prosecution” should be initiated against all organisations which have contributed to the breakdown of communal harmony.
While the NCM has not named any one organisation in its recommendation, the report makes repeated references to the Bajrang Dal and its involvement in the attacks on Christians and their institutions.
During a three-day visit to Karnataka beginning September 16, the NCM team raised the issue with the State administration and asked why the head of the Karnataka unit of Bajrang Dal was not arrested despite him issuing press statements acknowledging his role in damaging prayer halls in the State.
Monday, Oct 06, 2008
Special Correspondent
www.hindu.com

NHRC gives clean chit to Salwa Judum
http://week.manoramaonline.com/cgi-bin/MMOnline.dll/portal/ep/contentView.do?contentId=4594311&programId=1073754912&pageTypeId=1073754893&contentType=EDITORIAL
New Delhi: The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), in a report submitted to the Supreme Court, has held naxals responsible for violence by the activists of Salwa Judum in self defence.In the 118-page report, the three-member NHRC panel has said, ” The tribals can not be denied the right to defend themeselves against the atrocities perpetrated especially when the law enforcers are themselves ineffective or not present.” The three-member team headed by DIG Sudhir Chaudhary has given a clean chit to the Chhattisgarh government for arming tribals to tackle the meance of naxalism.According to the report, out of around 550 complaints of alleged excesses being committed by Salwa Judum activists, the team investigated 168 such incidents and found the allegations false as many of the villagers, who were alleged to have been killed under Salwa Judum movement or by security forces, were actually killed by the naxalites.Under Salwa Judum movement, the state government has been giving arms to private individuals, mainly tribals to defend themselves against the violence by naxalites. The NHRC panel, in its report, has also blamed naxalites for forcing the non-violent Salwa Judum movement into a violent one.Salwa Judum activists have been subjected to selective killings by naxalites and the rallies of Judum leaders have also been attacked.According to the reports, in many FIRs registered in most of the cases it has been found that the victims, who were said to had been killed are still alive and some villagers, who have died natural death have also been reported to have been murdered by Salwa Judum activists.The apex court had taken a serious view of the allegations made in the PIL alleging that the Salwa Judum activists were killing and torturing innocent people and were also indulging in extortions.The NHRC has suggested that the problem of naxalite violence has its roots in socio-economic deprivation resulting from large-scale unemployment in the state.To tackle the menace ”multi pronged strategy” is required as this is not purely an law and order problem.The panel has by and large refuted the allegations made in the PIL.The district of Bastar is the main area affected by naxalite violence.The three-member panel was also attacked thrice by naxalites.
Monday,6 October 2008 17:28 hrs IST
Article 4 of 29 in TheWeek LATEST NEWS
http://week.manoramaonline.com

SC extends time for states to respond to NHRC safeguard guidelines http://www.indlawnews.com/Newsdisplay.aspx?31687642-7176-462f-9fd9-4e98f51dbdca
The Supreme Court granted eight weeks further time to those states who have not responded to the show-cause notice issued by the apex court on a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) seeking directions to all states and Union Territories in the country to follow safeguard guidelines in case of police encounter.A bench comprising Justices K G Balakrishnan, V S Sirpurkar and P Sathasivam granted time when it was informed by petitioner Ramesh Reddy’s counsel that only eight states have filed their response till now out of 37 respondents. According to the petitioner, there are eight Human Rights Commission only in 17 states of the country, while other states are without Human Rights Commission.The petitioner has alleged that state authorities and Union Territories were not adhering to the guidelines and safeguards laid down by National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) as well as this honourable Court.He has also sought directions from the apex court to all the states and Union Territories to submit the reports of all killings in encounter as well as custodial death to NHRC for a proper follow-up action against the police officials found indulging in killing of innocent people in such encounter to get quick promotions and also to win galantry awards.The petitioner, who is an advocate, has also pleaded that no policeman should be rewarded unless and until it is proved beyond all reasonable doubts that the encounter was genuine and not fake.The petition also cited the case of Sohrabuddin fake encounter in which Gujarat police officials allegedly killed Sohrabuddin Sheikh and his wife Kausar Bi in a fake encounter.UNI
10/6/2008
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No link between Godhra & post-Godhra’
http://www.morungexpress.com/national/4624.html
AHMEDABAD, September 27 (Agencies): The submission of the Nanavati report in parts had led to an outcry from activists who claimed that the state government would use it to gain political mileage.However, the commission states that it found no connection between the Godhra train arson incident and the subsequent riots and, consequently, decided to submit the first part of the report pertaining to the Godhra incident. The Citizens for Justice and Peace (CJP) and People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) had filed a petition against the Nanavati commission releasing only the first part of its report. It said the state government would take advantage of the first part of the report by implicating the minority community for the Godhra incident.On its part, the commission has said that the inquiry in respect of Godhra incident and post-Godhra incidents was conducted together to get an overall view and avoid delay. The delay could have arisen as a result of many factors including non-availability of a witness on a day fixed for recording his evidence. It says a submission was also made on behalf of Jan Sangharsh Manch (JSM) that the Godhra incident should not be considered in isolation particularly in view of widening of the terms of reference. The JSM had also asked the commission to include within its scope of inquiry the role and conduct of ministers, police officers, other individuals and organisations in respect of the Godhra and post-Godhra incidents.According to the report, it was also submitted that the commission should consider the evidence regarding telephone calls made from Godhra to other places on and before February 27, 2002, as contained in the CD produced by JSM, to see what role Mohammad Hussain Kalota had played. As late as on April 4, 2007, an application was made for recalling an officer of the Forensic Science Laboratory. “For these reasons, the report regarding Godhra incident was not submitted earlier. We have now completed scrutiny of the material in respect of the post-Godhra incidents. Even after consideration thereof, we do not find anything therein establishing any connection between them and burning of coach S-6 of the Sabarmati Express train at Godhra. Therefore, we have thought it fit to submit our report in respect of the Godhra incident now, without waiting for completion of the report regarding post-Godhra incidents.” Earlier, the high court dismissed CJP and PUCL’s PIL on the grounds that it could not interfere in the affairs of the state assembly and that it was part of the commission’s work to submit a report on its inquiries. The high court further stated that it was beyond the ambit of its powers to direct the assembly not to table the report.
Agencies September 28, 2008 10:04:00
www.morungexpress.com

Editorial:Rescue package rescued
http://www.business-standard.com/india/storypage.php?autono=336471
As was widely expected, the US House of Representatives passed the legislation activating the $700 billion bail-out of the financial system, last Friday. The passage came after some features were added to the original version, which had been rejected a few days before, but the main reason for the swing in favour of the Bill was the dramatic response of global markets to the rejection. It became quite clear that, whether the programme would succeed or not was no longer the issue. Rather, without a government-backed rescue, the US and global financial systems would almost certainly collapse. The ‘moral hazard’ implications of the bail-out and its fiscal implications will continue to be debated. However, for Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and the organisations and people he ropes in, in his efforts to save the system, that is all academic for the moment. The immediate and over-riding goal is to act. Deciding on what assets will be bought with the initial infusion of $250 billion is the first priority. There is a widespread belief that the total value of the so-called toxic assets far exceeds the $700 billion provided in the package. Given this, its ability to extract maximum leverage by focusing on assets which are dragging down the system the most, is absolutely critical to its success. The margins for error are extremely small. Buying up assets that do not provide ballast to others, thus boosting the entire system in the process, will make matters worse, while exhausting the limited resources of the package and its capacity to achieve its goals.
Reports suggest that Mr Paulson has been quick off the blocks, beginning to put in place the resources that he needs within hours of the legislation being signed into law. But, even with this commitment and speed of action, which has been facilitated by certain exemptions from the procedural requirements for government procurement, it will be at least a few weeks before the money starts flowing into markets. The urgency has been heightened by bad news coming in about the US economy, which, judging by auto sales and unemployment numbers, is slowing considerably after an unexpectedly buoyant second quarter. Further flows of bad news will put more pressure on financial markets, making Mr Paulson’s task that much more difficult, with every further setback reducing the probability of the bail-out succeeding.
Under the circumstances it is imperative that the US effort is supported by other governments and central banks. With concerns about the integrity of the European financial system deepening, the Paris meeting of European leaders seems to be finding it difficult to put together an acceptable package. If this stalemate persists, more bank failures in the region could spill over to the US, undermining rescue efforts. All said and done, even as the discussion on how to minimise the negative fall-out of the package goes on, there is now little question about its necessity. Whether it will work, though, depends on the confluence of a number of factors, many out of Mr Paulson’s control.
Business Standard / New Delhi October 6, 2008, 0:02 IST
www.business-standard.com

Judges’ educational records not available with SC, HC
http://www.ibnlive.com/news/judges-educational-records-not-available-with-sc-hc/75079-3.html
New Delhi: The answers to a new query put under the Right to Information (RTI) act has shocked everyone. The application under RTI sought to know ‘How learned are our Supreme Court and High Court Judges?’
These shocking details have been revealed in an RTI application filed by RTI activist Debashis Bhattacharya.
The RTI activist alleges that no one seems to have any record of the educational qualifications of the judges, neither the Supreme Court nor the Law Ministry.
Recently, there have been a few alleged instances of individual corruption and also a few reportedly shocking lapses of the entire judiciary.
The judges are the men to give the verdict literally, every day.
If the RTI activist is to be believed, no one seems to have any record of the educational qualifications of the judges serving in the High Courts or in the Supreme Courts of India.
It is said that there is no updated data available, no certificates or mark-sheets, no details of marks obtained from matriculation to their mandatory degree in Law.
Allegedly, the Supreme Court has no record, the Delhi High Court has no record and shockingly even the Ministry of Law and justice has no record.
Bhattacharya also feels it might lead to a scam. “All this has happened despite Law Minister Hansraj Bharadwaj’s written reply in the Parliament in March this year that judges are selected on several parameters, first of which was their education qualification,” said Bhattacharya.
While questions have already been raised whether judges are appointed on the basis of their political affiliations, the search for their educational certificates could prove to more embarrassing for the government than an already embattled judiciary.
Sumon K Chakrabarti / CNN-IBN
Published on Sun, Oct 05, 2008 at 10:53, Updated on Sun, Oct 05, 2008 at 14:40 in Nation section
www.ibnlive.com

BMW case: HC rejects bail to Nanda
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Delhi/BMW_case_HC_rejects_bail_to_Nanda/articleshow/3560790.cms
NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court on Saturday refused to grant bail to Sanjeev Nanda, convicted for mowing down six persons while driving his BMW in a drunken state almost a decade ago. “The drunkard driver not only risks his life but endangers the lives of others as well. Such a driver is no less than a live human bomb prepared to blast himself along with innocent people on roads and pavements,” noted Justice Kailash Gambhir in an unusually strongly worded bail plea order. Relying on visual report recorded in the police document of the BMW accident, HC said the incident could have easily been mistaken as a site of a bomb blast. “Six persons were being killed and their bodies ripped apart with blood all around. The scene was horrendous, gruesome, macabre and heart rending,” said HC. The judge also took note of allegations against the convict of him being drunk while driving and obstructing justice during trial, to make it clear that under these circumstances no case for bail was made out. He pointed out that Nanda’s was a crime in which two noted lawyers were hauled up before court for obstructing justice, HC said in the light of such “serious allegations against Nanda indulging in winning over witnesses and tampering with process of investigation” his plea was being rejected. “It may be true that the appellant was not directly involved in the contempt case but it cannot lose sight of all the efforts that were being made to save the appellant (Nanda) from the rigours of law by adopting devious and murkier methods,” the court remarked, also citing the similar recent order of the Supreme Court cancelling the bail of the Ansal brothers in Uphaar fire tragedy case. Looking into all these factors plus the fact that Sanjeev Nanda was drunk while driving his car, Justice Gambhir maintained that for all his exemplary and commendable behaviour (his act of granting quick compensation to the victims family) his crime can’t be countenanced. “In totality of the circumstances, I am of the view that personal liberty of the appellant does not outweigh the gravity of the offence where the precious lives of six innocent people were lost.” The court, however, was of the opinion that Nanda’s appeal challenging his conviction and quantum of sentence be heard on a day-to-day basis for early disposal of the case and therefore fixed his appeal’s hearing on December one this year. While dismissing Nanda’s bail plea, Justice Gambhir also dwelt upon the problem of drunk driving leading to traffic offences and suggested changes in law to curb driving under the influence of liquor. Noting that a “drunkard driver not only risks his life but endangers the lives of others as well” HC added, “This court is of the view that it’s high time that legislature takes a second opinion at the present law in order to prevent drunken driving which is taking a toll of precious human lives.” “Alcohol has been found to play a major role in social ills in almost all countries across the world but foremost amongst the ills produced by alcohol is its role in traffic crashes,” the court further observed.
5 Oct 2008, 0141 hrs IST,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Brinda for legal action against Parivar outfits
http://www.hindu.com/2008/10/05/stories/2008100555370800.htm
“Centre did nothing more than send advisories to Orissa”
Thrissur: Communist Party of India (Marxist) Polit Bureau member Brinda Karat has said the Centre should immediately take legal action against Sangh Parivar outfits for the violence against Christians in Orissa and other parts of the country.
Addressing a State women’s convention of the Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI) here on Saturday, she wondered why the Centre did nothing more than dash off advisories to the Orissa government.
“The United Progressive Alliance government is pursuing a soft policy on communal violence. Why is the Centre a silent spectator to the developments? The Bajrang Dal has owned responsibility for the attacks.”
She termed as falsehood the UPA government’s claim that the proposed Indo-U.S. nuclear deal would help to provide electricity at low cost and lift the nuclear apartheid that India had faced. “What price will India pay for the so-called benefits? Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will shamelessly surrender India’s sovereign rights. The deal does not guarantee permanent nuclear fuel supply. India may also not get nuclear reprocessing or enrichment technology.”
Later, delivering a lecture on ‘International developments and the Indian context,’ held as part of the observance of the birth centenary of Marxist leader E.M.S. Namboodiripad, she said the UPA government had lessons to learn from the global financial crisis.
“Inequality between nations, classes and genders constitutes the core feature of the Wall Street model of economy. In 1999, the U.S. Congress adopted the Financial Services Modernisation Act, which removed all regulations on financial services. The U.S. has imposed on other countries this model of financial deregulation. Economic disparity between people in the U.S. is gaping. One per cent of wealthy Americans hold 22 per cent of national income. About 50 per cent of the U. S. population control only 12.8 per cent of the nation’s income. The $700 billion financial bailout will not help the common people. The transfer of wealth at the expense of taxpayers will only help the fatcats and the speculators,” she said.
Referring to the decision of Tatas to pull out from Singur, she alleged that the Opposition in West Bengal was the least concerned about the State’s development.
Sunday, Oct 05, 2008
Staff Reporter
www.hindu.com

Left, allies observe ‘Black Day’
http://www.hindu.com/2008/10/05/stories/2008100555350800.htm
Stage protest march in the capital against nuclear deal with United States
NEW DELHI: A large number of activists of the Left parties and their allies, led by CPI (M) Polit Bureau member Sitaram Yechury and CPI national secretary D. Raja, on Saturday staged a protest march against the India-U.S. nuclear deal from Mandi House to Hyderabad House.
U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was scheduled to hold discussions at the Hyderabad House on the issue with External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee.
Observing “Black Day” to protest against the United Progressive Alliance government’s decisions to move ahead with the nuclear deal, activists of the CPI(M), the CPI, the All-India Forward Bloc and the Revolutionary Socialist Party, along with those from the Janata Dal (Secular) and the Telugu Desam Party, began their protest march from the Mandi House. However, they were stopped mid-way by the police and not allowed to go all the way to the Hyderabad House.
“Impacts sovereignty”
Addressing the protesters, Mr. Yechury warned the UPA government against moving forward on the deal as it went against the interests of the country and impacted its sovereignty and independence of foreign policy.
Noting that U.S. President George W. Bush was still to sign the deal, Mr. Yechury pointed out that it would be good for India if he did not sign it at all.
The gathering was also addressed by Mr. Raja; AIFB secretary G. Devarajan; TDP spokesperson M.V. Mysoorareddy; and RSP leader Shatrujit Singh.
While Mr. Devarajan expressed apprehensions that the retrograde provisions of the Hyde Act would put more constraints on full civilian nuclear cooperation, the other leaders also pointed out how the U.S. Congress had adopted an Act to approve the 123 Agreement which had key provisions of the Hyde Act and a lot more.
The speakers said the Manmohan Singh government had been claiming that the Hyde Act would be overridden by the last Act passed by the U.S. Congress as per that country’s jurisprudence. But now that the last Act contained all the Hyde Act restrictions and they were made more explicit, they demanded that the Indian government not to sign the deal.
“The Act passed by the Congress spells out clearly that India does not have fuel supply assurance; there is no assurance regarding building a strategic fuel reserve for the life time of the reactors and whatever corrective measures it takes regarding fuel supply failure does not permit taking the reactors out of safeguards,” the leaders said.
They also noted with concern that the consent to reprocess was only notional and the U.S. would also work to prevent other countries from providing nuclear supplies to India if it decided to terminate the 123 Agreement.
It was pointed out that Ms. Rice had further assured Congress that India would be barred from enrichment and reprocessing technology in the next NSG meeting to be held in November.
The leaders said it was also worrisome that India was committing itself to buying a minimum of 10,000 MW worth of reactors from the “dying” U.S. nuclear industry that had not received any new orders for the last 30 years.
Staff Reporter
www.hindu.com

Goa talks with SEZ promoters an attempt of backdoor entry: SVM
http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/blnus/27061320.htm
PANAJI: The anti Special Economic Zone (SEZ) activists on Monday alleged that Goa government’s move to hold talks with SEZ promoters for giving them alternate land to set up industry is “an attempt of backdoor entry.”
“This is an attempt of backdoor entry. We will not tolerate this. We warn the Central and State Government that they should not cheat people of Goa,” said SEZ Virodhi Manch (SVM).
The group had put up their strong resentment against K Raheja corp’s project at Verna industrial estate, 20 kms away from here. The reaction stems from recent statement by senior Congress leader Mr Shantaram Naik disclosing that the Chief Minister Mr Dig amber Kamat will meet three SEZ promoters to discuss alternate land proposal to set up industry (not SEZ).
Mr Naik had quoted a meeting with Union Commerce Minister Mr Kamal Nath in which the minister had said that Mr Kamat will discuss the proposal with them. Three notified SEZ developers, which are pending de-notification, participated in the meeting.
“We strongly condemn the statements of the Union Commerce Minister, Mr Kamal Nath who wants Goa government to allow developers of three notified SEZs to set up some other industry on the land allotted to them,” said SVM’s convenor Mr Charles Fernandes. – PTI
www.thehindubusinessline.com

Water dispute: No change in legal team
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Bangalore/Water_dispute_No_change_in_legal_team/articleshow/3564413.cms
Bangalore: Water resources minister Basavaraj Bommai has brushed aside speculation that the Karnataka government was contemplating to change the legal team which is handling the state’s case before the second Krishna Water Disputes Tribunal (KWDT). Speculation arose following a letter written by Supreme Court’s senior counsel Anil Divan in this regard . The KWDT is set to hear the final arguments of the riparian states from October 20, but the state government had reportedly not replied to him. The three basin states of Karnataka , Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra have filed petitions seeking a clarification on the allocation of surplus waters under Scheme B of the Bachawat award on sharing of Krishna waters by them. Bommai told The Times of India that the same team which is led by Supreme Court jurist Fali S Nariman, Divan and Karnataka advocate-general Uday Holla has been continued. History of the river dispute Under the Bachawat award, the allocation for Karnataka was 700 tmc, 500 tmc to Maharashtra and 800 tmc to Andhra Pradesh from the dependable yield of 2069 tmc at 75% dependability. It was constituted in 1969; final report was given in May 1976. The award evolved two schemes: Scheme A and B. Under Scheme A it allocated 2060 tmc of water amongst the basin states. Under Scheme B, surplus was to be allocated on percentage basis, but was not made part of the final order. Based on a series of petitions from the three riparian states on sharing of surplus water, the tribunal was finally constituted.
6 Oct 2008, 0635 hrs IST
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Making offences easy to prove is counter-productive
http://www.business-standard.com/india/storypage.php?autono=336446
We are living in a reign of terror. In Delhi last month, serial blasts in crowded areas on a single day resulted in material damage and spread of terror. Within days, the police claimed to have cracked the case, to have zeroed in on the “masterminds” and gunned them down.
The media response was mostly laudatory — most carried the police line and did not even refer to those killed by the police as “alleged” terrorists. The real masterminds behind the terror apparently wanted to call the bluff. Another blast followed shortly. This time, the police was more hesitant in reacting with a claim of success.
A significant component of political society has started clamouring for “stringent” anti-terror laws that would make proving a crime of terror easier. This is quite similar to the areas of business and economics. Occurrence of gross crimes has always evoked a clamour for more stringent powers. Be it acts of terrorism or economic offences such as insider trading and price manipulation, in India more stringency necessarily has to mean lowering the standard of proof for a conviction.
It can have no other meaning because India has very severe punishments for such crimes in its substantive law. It is popular to argue in favour of lowering the standard of proof— such measures result in a greater number of convictions. More convictions, it is argued, will have a “deterrent” effect on society.
Nothing can be farther from the truth. Making it easy to prove a crime can only create a record of a higher percentage of convictions, and will not necessarily act as a deterrent. Such an approach would be similar to making examinations easier to pass for students so that we have a highly learned society.
Indeed, the number of students that scores over 95 per cent marks in public examinations today is exponentially greater than say 20 years ago. Yet, the employability of the average Indian graduate today is starkly lower than those who graduated over 20 years ago.
If the object of the law is to make it clear to society that crime does not pay, it will never help to enable the law-enforcers to have an easier task proving a crime. Making it easy to prove a crime will empower enforcement agencies to provide a false sense of security that crime has been detected.
A more plastic standard of proof would result in more innocents being convicted for crimes, and enable the enforcers to claim better statistical performance.
The role of judicial attitude too has to be judged on a similar barometer. It is becoming increasingly difficult for those accused of serious crimes to get a fair trial, thanks to media management by the men in uniform.
Be it enforcers of economic laws or criminal laws, obedient media coverage has made it easier for enforcement agencies to conduct trials by media, impacting the ability of any reasonable judge to conduct an uninfluenced trial.
Many of the high-profile trials one reads about in India today could be regarded as mistrials in other jurisdictions. Judges, but human, conscious of working under the glare of the media, are bound to be intimidated. It is not uncommon for judges to find reasons to reject challenges to regulatory action, when troubled by the morality quotient of the alleged offence. Such an effect can be felt across courts.
Increasingly, the jurisdiction of courts is being ousted by Parliament, which is setting up tribunals to hear appeals against regulatory actions. Be it securities laws or electricity laws, or then laws governing banning of alleged terrorist organisations, tribunals are where proceedings are fought.
Although Parliament has conferred a statutory right to appeal in higher courts — for instance, appeals on questions of law from the Securities Appellate Tribunal lie in the Supreme Court as a matter of statutory right — the Supreme Court is known to deal with statutory appeals as if they were “special leave petitions”, where the court has the discretion to decide whether it is worthwhile expending time and energy on the appeal. Many appeals from tribunal decisions are not even entertained, thereby eroding the effectiveness of the appeal process.
Depending on the mindset of the judge — some can be extremely liberal while others can be extremely pro-conviction — either the regulators or the accused would lose out on an effective appeal.
A more plastic standard for convicting crime does not further the cause of effective regulation and enforcement. Even while a greater percentage of convictions may provide a statistical comfort of well-being, grave crime, be it terrorism or insider trading, tends to continue unabated. The only real response to such crime is meticulous work to bring about convictions.
The author is a partner of JSA, Advocates & Solicitors. The views expressed herein are his own
somasekhar@jsalaw.com
Correction:
In last fortnight’s column, an inadvertent error suggested that US had not yet effectively banned short-selling. The US had announced a comprehensive ban on all short sales in stocks of financial institutions.
Somasekhar Sunderasan / New Delhi October 06, 2008, 0:18 IST
www.business-standard.com

Why do we need a National Commission for Minorities ?
http://offstumped.nationalinterest.in/2008/10/05/why-do-we-need-a-national-commission-for-minorities/
That tax payer funded conscience keeper is at its mischief mongering once again. This time playing to the vote-bank politics of the UPA.
“The attacks on Christians and their institutions appear to have been well-planned. The state (Karnataka) must keep a close watch on the activities of all such organisations that have contributed to the breakdown of communal harmony. Remedial action, including a ban and prosecution, should be initiated. Communal harmony should be maintained at all costs,” the commission has said in a report to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
So what facts does the NCM have to offer for a well-planned conspiracy ?
the District Magistrate and the Senior Superintendent of Police of Udupi have told the commission that all 17 people arrested in the district for violence against Christians belong to Bajrang Dal.
Authorities in Bangalore told the commission that 36 of the 83 people in judicial custody in connection with communal clashes belonged to the Bajrang Dal
That is it. On the basis of this flimsy evidence that less than half of the people involved in incidents of mob violence belonged to one organisation in one part of one state, the NCM would like that organisation to be banned nationwide.
That is the degree of responsibility and judgement exercised by the NCM.
Offstumped had on multiple occassions questioned the need for a tax payer funded conscience keeper. It is time to revisit that question once again in light of continued partisanship in the conduct and recommendations of the National Commission for Minorities.
Originally appeared on 9th Sept 2007
In 2002-2003, The National Commission for Minorities spent 2.21 crores, 1.28 of which on full time staff. By 2007-2008 the budgeted estimate has doubled at 4.4 crores with 2.35 crores on full time staff. But that was not all office expenses doubled too from 73 Lakhs to 1.4 crores. For a non Executive Body it has 4 full time civil servants at the Secretary level amongst others. For a body that states as its objectives the safeguarding of the Constitutional and Legal Rights of Minorities the NCM has not exactly redeemed itself by publishing an annual report to account for how effective it has been in achieving its objective. It however lists amongst its major initiatives its activisim in furthering issues related to Minority Educational Institutions apart from 2 odd cases related to police highhandedness. Where the Commission talks of its initiatives in redressing educational problems of Minorities it actually only talks about redressing the problems of “Minority Educational Institutions” and rewriting Text Books.
That is only half of the story.
The Commission then goes on to list its recent achievements in solving educational problems of Minorities. Well so what “educational problems” did the Commission solve:
– Helped obtain clearance for a Minority Educational Institution in Rajasthan
– Restored aid for a Minority Educational Institution in Maharashtra
– Exempted aid reduction for a Minority Educational Institution in MP
– Minority status to an Insitution in AP
– Text Book rewriting in Delhi, UP
– Land for a Minority Educational Institution in Maharashtra
– School Holidays during Xmas
– More land for Minority Educational Institutions
– a couple of odd entitlement concessions for Parsis and Sikhs
Why is Offstumped laboring to detail the achievements of the National Minorities Commission ?
Two reasons.
First is obvious from the facts above on how the NCM has perversely interpreted “solving educational problems of Minorities” to mean “solving problems or rather going out of its way to further the cause of Minority Educational Institutions”.
It is no wonder that 60 years after Independence the Ghetto continues to remain well preserved as before on the one hand while the Government of the day cries hoarse on Minority Issues.
The second reason is the hue and cry over the Sachar Report and the politics of Communal Socialism that Manmohan Singh and Sonia Gandhi are hell bent on playing. In yesterday’s post Offstumped had critiqued the recent move by the Congress lead UPA Government to setup an Equal Opportunities Commission. The ostensible reason – Discrimination of Muslims ?
So if there is such overwhelming discrimination of Muslims it is but logical that the National Commission for Minorities must be seized of this issue. So let us see what exactly the NCM has to say about Discrimination of Muslims and what initiatives it took up to address them.
Now for starters we have already examined the list of major initiatives and recent achievements of the NCM which seem replete with addressing issues of “Minority Educational Insitutions” and not issues of “Minority Education”.
So what discrimination of Muslims are we talking about here, unless of course the contention of the Government is that Mulsims are being discriminated in Minority Educational Insitutions ?
Well let us give the NCM the benefit of doubt and dig further beyond the “major initiatives” and “recent achievements”.
The NCM also lists important recommendations it has made in recent times to the Government. In all it lists 42 major recommendations. The first two are about holidays. Next 3 are about issues related to Sikhs. The 6th is about Interest Subsidy for riot hit, 7th about Urdu, 8th on Kashmiri Pandits, the next 4 are Kashmir related as well, 13 is about violence in Rajasthan the next 3 are on assorted issues from wakf to urdu to targets for lending to Minorities. In the 20s there is more on Haj, Wakf, hiring targets for Minorities in Police. More on expanding the NCM staff before wrapping up with Malegaon and Gujarat riots.
The word “Discrimination” does not even occur once in the entire list of “important recommendations”.
Offstumped next takes a look at the NCM’s annual programme of action. Again not a single reference to the word “Discrimination”.
In fact giving even greater benefit of doubt Offstumped undertook an extensive search of all publicly listed material of the NCM.
The results are even more astounding. Just 3 references to Muslim Discrimination.
The first in the description of profiles of current Commission Members.
The second in a 2001 report on the purpose for Constituting the Commission.
The third in the NCM Manual released under the RTI Act.
So Offstumped poses the question – if discrimination against Muslims is so overwhelming a problem that it calls for yet another tax payer funded Commission for National Conscience Keeping,
how is it that an existing National Conscience Keeper that has “Discrimination” in its Charter has neither bothered to cite “Discrimination” nor bothered to act on ‘Discrimination”.
There is no “secular” political challenge to this subterfuge at the tax payer’s expense that keeps the communal Muslim Appeasement Politicis of the Congress in business. If the BJP raises these questions it is branded anti-Muslim and communal.
But where are the “secular” liberals in calling into question this fraud in the name of National Conscience Keeping.
Offstumped Bottomline: Tax Payer Funded Consicence Keepers reflect our Nation’s lack of faith on our own values and Institutions. By misusing them to further politics of Muslim Appeasement neither helps the average Muslim feel secure enough to discard the Ghetto in favor of mainstream inclusion nor does it help safeguard the Constitution and Secular Values.
The case for an Equal Opportunity Commission must be made on secular reasons of discrimination and not to appease Muslims.
05 Oct 2008
http://offstumped.nationalinterest.in

Govt. to train trainers to promote pre-trial mediation in cases
http://www.hindu.com/thehindu/holnus/002200810051660.htm
New Delhi (PTI): “Train the trainer” appears to be the magic mantra for the Law Ministry which is struggling to arrange enough trainers to build a pool of mediators who could promote pre-trial settlement of matters and help ease the burden of over 2.75 crore cases on subordinate courts.
The government has cited shortage of trainers for imparting conciliation skills to prospective mediators as a major stumbling block in popularising Alternative Dispute Redressal (ADR) System but is hoping to overcome the problem by training the future trainers in High Courts.
“There are not many trained mediators and conciliators to whom the cases can be referred to for pre-trial settlement,” said a ministry official.
It has been decided to start a training programme in all the High Courts of the country to impart “training to the trainers” who shall further impart training to other persons to act as mediators, said a ministry official.
The shortage of trained mediators is also one of the major reasons why people do not accept this mode of pre-trial settlement as an alternative to the regular courts of law, the official said.
Involving NGOs, as suggested by experts from a Parliamentary Standing Committee, in popularising ADR among litigants is also being studied by the government. MORE PTI RAH
Sunday, October 5, 2008
www.hindu.com

Jumbo legislation’ coming to set up 12 Central varsities
http://www.hindu.com/2008/10/05/stories/2008100555631000.htm
Move is to ensure that every State has a Central university
Rs. 325-crore scheme to provide quality education in madrasas
NEW DELHI: The Union Cabinet on Friday cleared a Human Resource Development Ministry proposal to introduce a “jumbo legislation” to set up 12 new central universities and take over four State universities.
The move is aimed at ensuring that there is a central university in every State. The central universities will come up in Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Jammu & Kashmir, Haryana, Bihar, Orissa and Jharkhand.
The State universities to be upgraded central universities are Hemwati Nandan Bahuguna Garhwal University, Srinagar in Uttarakhand; Dr. Harisingh Gour University, Sagar in Madhya Pradesh; Guru Ghasidas University, Bilaspur in Chhattisgarh, and Goa University, Goa.
Of the 11th Plan budgetary allocation of Rs. 3,280 crore, Rs. 2,700 crore will be for setting up the new central universities and Rs. 580 crore will be pumped into the four State universities to help them with the upgrade.
Girls’ hostels
This apart, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) approved the revision of the centrally sponsored scheme for construction and running of girls’ hostels for students of secondary and higher secondary schools in each of the Educationally Backward Blocks (EBB) of the country during the Plan period. The Centre will incur an expenditure of Rs. 2,000 crore, picking up 90 per cent of the bill. This will facilitate the construction of 3,500 hostels through State governments in all EBBs and also provide for a recurring grant to meet the residents’ needs.
The CCEA also gave its nod for a Rs. 325-crore scheme, ‘Providing Quality Education in Madrasas’. It is aimed at encouraging traditional institutions such as madrasas, maktabs, Dar-ul-Ulooms to introduce science, mathematics, languages and English in their curriculum from Classes I to XII.
Sunday, Oct 05, 2008
Special Correspondent
www.hindu.com

Daily News 3-5.10.2008

Brothers get lifer for muder of 3 shepherds, robbery http://www.risingkashmir.com/?option=com_content&task=view&id=7251
Srinagar, Oct 04: The Principal district and sessions judge Saturday awarded life imprisonment to two brothers for brutally murdering three shepherds and stealing their flock of sheep in the forests of Kangan, Ganderbal eight years ago.An air of sombreness filled the courtroom as Judge Hasnain Masoodi pronounced the sentence convicting Abdul Latif and Abdul Gani of Wangath of murder. “There were two options available with the court- capital punishment and life imprisonment. A lenient view had to be taken as the guilty have already spent eight years in jail,” the judge said, adding, “The sentence had to be awarded because the fruits of crime were recovered from their possession”. Solemn looking Kaniza, wife of Latif was present with her two minor children Rafaqat and Tazima at the time of the announcement of the judgement. Defending counsels G M Dariyal and B A Jalu told Rising Kashmir that the case would be appealed for in the high court. “We will study the judgement and accordingly plead the case,” they said. Syed Maqbool, the state attorney welcomed the judgement and said that the sentence will prove to be a deterrent to “strayed minds.”The guilty brothers murdered three shepherds, Javid Iqbal and Mehboob Khatana of Rajouri and Gulam Mustafa Bajran of Wangath Kangan in the intervening night of October 18 and 19, 2000 in the forests of Kangan. The trio bore marks of torture and were later strangulated to death according to investigators. Their bodies were concealed under rocks and could hardly be recognised. The deceased were entrusted a flock of 49 sheep by a mutton dealer of Srinagar city. The convicts colluded with four other burglars of the area including Muhammad Ashraf Khatana, Abdul Aziz Pakhtoon, Younis Bajran and Muhammad Latif Pakhtoon, all hailing from Wangath. They made a surprise attack on the victims and killed them near Behak Kati Nallah in the thick of Wangath forests. Their flock was stolen and dead bodies hidden under boulders. The news of the crime spread within hours of its perpetuation. The flock was recognised by a butcher near Kangan town. The butcher instantly informed the city wholesaler that his drove was in strange hands. The later informed the police which arrested the two brothers. The stolen sheep were recovered from their possession and an investigation was taken up. The two were charged under Sections 302 (murder), 392 (robbery), 120B conspiracy and 201of RPC (destruction of evidence).After a prolonged trial, the two brothers were found guilty while their four accomplices exonerated because of feeble evidence against them. Rashid Paul
www.risingkashmir.com

Ban likely on spitting, hookahs in Rajasthan
http://www.merinews.com/catFull.jsp?articleID=143685
Ban on smoking has been enforced. An NGO has sought a ban on paan and gutka spitting in public places and hookah smoking in Rajasthan. The NGO had filed a PIL in 1994 against those who indulge in such misconduct at public places..

ON THE heels of the enforcement of ban on smoking in public and work places, the pitch is rising for the implementation of tobacco ban in Jaipur. A local NGO in the city, Asthma Care Society, had filed a public interest litigation (PIL) in the Rajasthan High Court in 1994 for ban on spitting in public places. Now, it has demanded the ban to be enforced strictly.

Paan and gutka spitting on walls is common in Rajasthan. It has defiled public buildings and turned those into ugly sights. Consequent to the PIL in 1994, a report from the Central government was sought by the court and the Tobacco Control Act, 1994 was formulated. Despite the Act, no efforts have been made to implement the ban.

A study by the doctors of Swai Man Singh Medical College on the deadly effects of hookah smoking has been highlighted in local newspapers. One drag of hookah leads to inhalation of 100 to 200 times more carbon monoxide as compared to a single drag of a cigarette. Of late, a craze for hookah smoking among teens and youth has emerging in local hookah cafes. They think that the practice is safer than cigarette smoking.

The NGO has mounted pressure on the state government to implement the anti-tobacco Act. The demands of the NGO are: A well-monitored ban on the use of gutkas in public and work places, a ban on spitting and provision of challans on doing so.

If the efforts of the NGO lead to a public outcry and media support, it will be possible to implement the Tobacco Control Act and the no-smoking Act, simultaneously.
www.merinews.com

Know the facts about homosexuality and make up your mind on gay rights
http://www.mynews.in/fullstory.aspx?storyid=10952
A PIL was filed by the gay rights activists sometime ago in the Delhi high court to decriminalize homosexuality and accord the gay rights. The court has pulled up the Goverment of India (GOI) for two of its ministries filing contradictory affidavits.

The present provisions of the laws of the land treat homosexuality as a criminal offence.

Fast facts on current legal provisions

IPC position: Homosexuality is a criminal offence
Operative IPC section: 377
Punishment provisions: Up to life imprisonment
Contending view holders: Health ministry and home ministry
Bases: Creates breach of peace and causes health hazards due to the spread of HIV-AIDS
Gay: A more respectful word

Gay is now accepted as sobriquet for a homosexual. The word gay has become a part of scientific vocabulary is being used regularly in various journals and textbooks.

Views and counterviews

In various debates and reports, the following views and counter-views are often reported.

Views against homosexuality

Homosexuality is an unnatural act and needs to be banned. If granted as a right it would break the social fabric of the society.
It amounts to role reversal and would give a jolt to the feminist traits which need to be respected and honoured.
It adds to the risk of spreading HIV-AIDS to a great extent.
Homosexuality is an outcome of a mental disorder called ‘gender dysphoria’ in which a person feels a mental discomfort and distress with the people of opposite sex.

It is a deviation from ones normal state of gender identity and requires medical and clinical care for rehabilitation rather than giving a license to behave in an abnormal way.
Views in favour of homosexuality

The diversity in sexual preferences needs to be respected

The denial of the gay rights is the perpetuation of an antisocial bias that has been made prevalent for ages by the dominant groups for their vested interests.
Homosexuality is a harmless manifestation of sexual preference of a person and requires an equity status with the heterosexual preference.

Homosexuality is a choice of freedom and should be treated as an equitable social skill of forging relationships.

In many countries the gay rights have been accorded and have strengthened the social fabric and made the society more colorful.Publication Date 4/10/2008 2:19:52 PM(IST
(Dr. Lalit Kishore)
© 2008 mynews.in
www.mynews.in

High Court issues showcause notices to Bindra’s father
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/High-Court-issues-showcause-notices-to-Bindra-s-father/369611
Chandigarh, October 04 Dr A S Bindra, the managing director of the Punjab Meats Limited (PML) Industries, is in thick soup. The Punjab and Haryana High Court has issued showcause notices to Dr A S Bindra, father of ace shooter Abhinav Bindra, asking him to explain as to why contempt of court proceedings cannot be initiated against him.
The directions have been passed by Justice Permod Kohli on a petition filed by one Dr Joseph K Masih, a resident of Mohali. Masih, who was working with the PML Industries, moved the High Court demanding contempt of court proceedings against Bindra.
Due to certain reasons, Masih was dismissed from service. Aggrieved of this, Masih moved the court of Labour Commissioner, who passed the order in 2001 in favour of Masih and directed the company to reinstate him.
Challenging the order, the PML Industry moved the High Court which stayed the order of Labour Commissioner with the condition that the company will comply with Section 17-B of the Industrial Disputes Act.
Express News Service Posted: Oct 05, 2008 at 0233 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

Retrieve land from encroachers in 6 months: High Court tells MC
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/Retrieve-land-from-encroachers-in-6-months–High-Court-tells-MC/369494
Chandigarh, October 4 Taking strong note of the perennial problem of encroachments in Ludhiana, the Punjab and Haryana High Court today passed detailed directions to the Punjab Government and Municipal Corporation, Ludhiana, to remove the encroachments within six months and take stern action against encroachers.
A division Bench comprising of Chief Justice Tirath Singh Thakur and Justice Surya Kant today passed the judgment arising out of a suo moto notice taken by the High Court in relation with encroachments in Ludhiana.
A survey was conducted by the Punjab government and Municipal Corporation, Ludhiana, after the High Court had ordered them to do so.
On December 6, 2003, the MC informed that in a large number of cases, encroachments could not be removed due to restraint orders passed in about 200 cases pending in different civil courts at Ludhiana.
Express News Service Posted: Oct 05, 2008 at 0032 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

SC teachers face caste abuse in Mumbai
http://www.hindu.com/2008/10/05/stories/2008100555270700.htm
Despite police inaction and harassment, they continue to fight for justice
Mumbai: For over a year, Asha Chimedia, a Mumbai teacher, went knocking at the doors of State-run Mahila Ayog, the National Human Rights Commission and the Maharashtra State SC/ST Commission, in vain. Now she has decided to go on a hunger strike against State authorities.
Chimedia, a former teacher from Hindi School Ramnagar, Dombivli, Thane district, is a victim of caste abuse and sexual harassment. She has filed two cases in a local court in Kalyan, Thane district, against each offence.
‘Chamar,’ ‘bhangi’ (both Scheduled Castes), ‘neech jaati ke log (lower caste people) were the abusive words used against me by the principal Chandrajeet Singh,” she alleges.
Following a police complaint two years ago, Chimedia lost her job promptly. “The police have not even recorded the witness’ statement,” she said.
Despite police inaction, Chimedia continued her fight for justice. She took recourse in law, met State authorities and sent countless number of letters to top Ministers, including Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh and Deputy Chief Minister and Home Minister R.R. Patil.
However, all her hard work has been lost on an unheeding State machinery.
‘Dual discrimination’
Many Dalit teachers in the metropolis, haunted by dual discrimination, share Chimedia’s plight. Chetna Birje, a lawyer from India Centre for Human Rights and Law (ICHRL), in charge of Chimedia’s case is currently looking into five other cases of caste and sexual harassment of Dalit teachers.
Abusive, sexually explicit language, ogling and sexual innuendoes form part of their work environment by and large. Many keep mum out of fear of losing their jobs. Belonging to the “lower castes,” these women are stripped of their social and personal dignity and space. “Are you an upper caste woman?” This is what Maruti Narayan Mhatre, principal of Amarkar Vidyalay, Mumbai had allegedly said to Sunita Kamble, another teacher, when she resisted his advances. This has been recorded in Kamble’s FIR. She too lost her job. Her case is in the Bombay High Court.
“Who would have thought that after years one would suddenly lose one’s job one day? I am sitting at home because I have followed the law, because I have self respect and choose not to bear injustice like other women,” proclaims Kamble, former teacher at Amarkar Vidyalay, Mumbai.
Verbal attack
For 17 years, she dodged several attempts of the school authorities to expel her from office. These include forged resignations, unlawful suspension and a continual onslaught of caste abuse and sexual harassment. One day, Kamble just collapsed after she was verbally attacked for two-and-a-half hours at a stretch. Both Chimedia and Kamble belonged to private-aided schools. The principals there are also the owners. Their authority is final, they have autonomy in management, they are not accountable to the government and there is always an autocratic environment in such schools.
“The offenders are working even after being proven guilty, but I am the one who is sitting at home,” says Kamble. Instead of taking action, authorities have told the teachers to take back the cases if they want their jobs again.
The Rashtriya Mahila Ayog, in Mumbai, meant to look into crimes against women has been of no help. Chimedia has made many futile trips to meet IAS officer Vijayalakshmi Bidari Prasanna, head of the Ayog. “Every time the attendant says, ‘Madam has gone to court,’” says Chimedia. This correspondent filed an application for data on abuse cases at the Ayog. It has been pending since July.
With all paths caving in, the teachers feel they are fighting a losing battle. Financial troubles compound their woes.
Sunday, Oct 05, 2008
Rahi Gaikwad
www.hindu.com

Women’s groups move Bombay HC against 9.30pm deadline
http://www.hindustantimes.com/StoryPage/StoryPage.aspx?sectionName=&id=6a48ff7e-0e6d-450e-935e-182921102ab0&&Headline=Move+against+9%3a30pm+deadline
Womanist Organisation of India and Bharatiya Bar Girls Union have submitted a petition in the Bombay High Court seeking the abolition of the 9.30 pm deadline on women working in bars and restaurants.
“Women are now working round the clock in airlines, hospitals, call centres, MTNL and other government and semi-government establishments,” the petition said.
“The deadline is absurd. In all offices women are seen working till late and call centres have night shifts,” said Veena Thadani, the organisations’ counsel.
The two organisations have also challenged the Bombay Prohibition Act, 1949, which prohibits women from working in permit rooms after 8.30 pm.
After the ban on dance bars came into effect, women working in restaurants and bars are not allowed in the establishments after 9.30 pm. The petition said the women “are harassed and arrested and falsely charged for indecent behaviour”. Women singing in live orchestras are also not allowed to perform after 9.30 pm.
The petition alleged that false cases are lodged against restaurant owners if they protests against police action.
The union has been actively involved in helping women against contracting sexually transmitted diseases like Aids and living a life of dignity.
Urvi Mahajani, Hindustan Times
Email Author
Mumbai, October 04, 2008
www.hindustantimes.com

Drunkard driver is like a ‘human bomb’: HC
http://www.expressindia.com/latest-news/Drunkard-driver-is-like-a–human-bomb—HC/369428/
New Delhi, October 4: A drunkard driver is like a ‘human bomb’ which can explode and kill innocent people along with himself, the Delhi High Court said on Saturday and suggested changes in law to curb driving under the influence of liquor.
“A drunkard driver not only risks his life but endangers the lives of others as well. Such a drunkard driver is no less than a live human bomb prepared to blast himself and innocent people on roads and pavements including friends and relatives riding in his vehicle,” Justice Kailash Gambhir said.
The HC’s observation came while dismissing the bail plea of Sanjeev Nanda, grandson of ex-Naval Chief S M Nanda, who is undergoing five years of rigorous imprisonment for mowing down six persons in 1999 while driving a BMW car in an inebriated condition.
“This court is of the view that it is high time that legislature undertakes a re-look at the present law so as to prevent drunken driving which is taking a toll of precious human lives,” the court said adding that alcohol plays a major role in social ills in the society.
“Alcohol has been found to play a major role in social ills in almost all countries across the world but foremost amongst the ills produced by alcohol is its role in traffic crashes,” Justice Gambhir said.
“The spectacular increase in the number of motor vehicles has created a major social problem more particularly when large number of road accidents take place due to excessive intake of alcohol endangering the precious lives of citizens mostly belonging to poor strata of society,” he said while dismissing the bail plea of Nanda.
Agencies
Posted: Oct 04, 2008 at 1915 hrs IST
www.expressindia.com

BMW hit-and-run case: HC rejects bail plea of Sanjeev Nanda http://www.ptinews.com/pti/ptisite.nsf/0/362E92407A632618652574D8003B709E?OpenDocument
New Delhi, Oct 4 (PTI) The Delhi High Court today rejected the bail plea of Sanjeev Nanda, son of former naval chief S M Nanda, who was sentenced to five years’ rigorous imprisonment for mowing down six persons in BMW hit-and-run case of 1999.”I am of the view that the applicant (Nanda) does not deserve suspension of sentence during the pendency of the case,” Justice Kailash Gambhir said.The Court, however, was of the opinion that Nanda’s appeal challenging his conviction and quantum of sentence be heard on a day-to-day basis for early disposal of the case.Nanda filed the bail plea in the High Court along with an appeal following his conviction by the trial court on September 5. PTI
www.ptinews.com

Delhi HC dismisses bail plea of Sanjeev Nanda
http://howrah.org/india_news/32508.html
The Delhi High Court on Saturday rejected the bail plea of Sanjiv Nanda in the BMW hit-and-run case. He was sentenced to five years jail term by a city court for mowing down six persons with his BMW car in 1999.Earlier, the Delhi High Court issued a notice to the city police on a petition filed by Nanda challenging a lower court’s decision to sentence him to five years.
04 October, 2008 07:30:13
http://howrah.org

HC bench upholds rejection of pension plea
http://www.chennaionline.com/colnews/newsitem.asp?NEWSID=%7BCA8B4959-4A44-44BE-A806-6E50A96F648C%7D&CATEGORYNAME=CHN
Madurai,Oct3: The Madurai Bench of the Madras High Court today upheld the rejection of “Mozhi Por tyagi”(Tamil language martyr) Pension,for a petitioner,based on the recommendation of the High power committee which held that remaining in prison for just one day was not sufficient and cannot be said to be suffering within the meaning of the Act for grant of pension.
Justice K.Chandru pointed out that that one factor for sanctioning the pension was the nature of suffering either by way of suffering or otherwise undergone by the applicant.
Only if the Government was satisfied about the eligibility of the person,it could consider sanction of pension grant or scholarship. The government had also constituted a high power committee(HPC) and it had decided that those who were convicted and imprisoned in various jails for more than 14 days alone shall be considered for sanction of pension.
The Petitioner had not denied the averment that he was in jail only for one day,though in the “type set” it had been shown that he was in jail for a month as an Undertrial.
Though it was argued that HPC could not lay down guidelines by prescribing a minmum number of days of conviction and imprisonment,the said issue was not relevant in this case. If the petitioner felt that he was put to suffering it was for him to convince the government about it by placing material facts.He suggested that the petitioner,T.Mahadevan,could give fresh application,and set out the circumstances for grant of pension,he said. – Agencies
Published: Friday, October 03, 2008
www.chennaionline.com

Bombay HC sets aside FDA order against Subhiksha warehouse
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/News_by_Industry/FDA_order_against_Subhiksha_scrapped/articleshow/3559814.cms
NEW DELHI: Bombay High Court on Friday set aside all the orders of the FDA in respect of the Bhiwandi Mumbai Warehouse of Subhiksha.
FDA had in August this year passed orders of cancellation of license against 3 of Subhiksha’s Vendors and a 20 day suspension order on Subhiksha itself. The orders of FDA were originally stayed by the High court on 15th Aug and subsequent to the hearings the Court yesterday set aside the FDA orders against all 4 companies as bad in law. Further in respect of Subhiksha the Court was of the view that though the order passed by Commissioner could not be sustained, it remanded the matter to the Commissioner with the direction to decide the matter in accordance with law. Welcoming the judgement, R Subramaniam, MD Subhiksha said, “Subhiksha’s stance that there was nothing wrong with its warehouse operations or the hygiene of the products sold by it and that justice would be done by the High Court has been vindicated by these orders of the High court. As the country’s largest supermarket chain we remains committed, as always, to providing only the best quality products at the lowest prices.”
4 Oct, 2008, 1415 hrs IST, ECONOMICTIMES.COM
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com

B’lore: Attack on Churches – HC Issues Notices to State, Centre Govts
http://www.daijiworld.com/news/news_disp.asp?n_id=51917&n_tit=B’lore%3A+Attack+on+Churches+-+HC+Issues+Notices+to+State%2C+Centre+Govts
Bangalore, Oct 4: The divisional bench of the state High Court, which took up the petitions filed by several Catholic Christian organizations, demanding to hand over the probe relating to the incidents of attacks on churches to the Central Bureau of Investigation, ordered issuance of notices to the state and the union governments on Friday October 3.
Seven organizations including The Catholic Sabha of Diocese of Mangalore, The Catholic Sabha of Diocese of Mysore and others had filed public interest petitions in the High Court, demanding for handing over the cases of attacks on churches to the CBI.
The divisional bench headed by Chief Justice P D Dinakaran asked both the central and the state governments, to file complete details of the incidents. In addition, notices have also been issued to the state chief secretary, state director general of police and the state home department.
Daijiworld Media Network – Bangalore (SP)
Saturday, October 04, 2008 11:47:20 AM (IST
www.daijiworld.com

HC notice to Centre, State http://www.expressbuzz.com/edition/story.aspx?artid=EJuGptkdd1A=&Title=HC+notice+to++Centre,+State&SectionID=7GUA38txp3s=&MainSectionID=oHSKVfNWYm0=&SectionName=zkvyRoWGpmWSxZV2TGM5XQ==&SEO=
BANGALORE: The High Court has issued notice to the Central and State Governments regarding a petition seeking a CBI inquiry into the recent attacks on churches in Karnataka.
Hearing the Public Interest Litigation filed by the Catholic Sabha of the Diocese of Mangalore, Chief Justice P D Dinakaran and Justice Mohan Shantan Gowder orally suggested to the authorities not to precipitate the matter.
“The Judiciary does not want to politicise the issue, but it cannot be a mute spectator when democracy is targetted. It is the duty of the State to ensure the security of every one,” the Chief Justice said. “The State Government has failed to protect the rights of the Christian minorities. The Karnataka Government led by the BJP has failed to prevent such attacks and allowed further precipitation. BJP has a religion-based hidden agenda, which is violative of the Government’s Constitutional obligations,” the petitioner argued.
The State Government has appointed a Commission of Inquiry headed by a retired High Court judge of Andhra Pradesh. But, he hails from Shimoga district, from where the Chief Minister was elected, the petitioner contended.
The petitioner has pressed for a CBI inquiry in to the matter or a judicial inquiry by a sitting High Court or Supreme Court judge. The petitioner has also sought direction to the Election Commission to consider either banning or derecognising national parties having affinity with religious fundamentalist organisations.
Express News Service
04 Oct 2008 10:09:00 AM IST
www.expressbuzz.com

Justice for Soumya Vishwanathan launched
http://www.hindu.com/thehindu/holnus/000200810041773.htm
New Delhi (PTI): Journalists and colleagues of TV producer Soumya Vishwanathan on Saturday launched a campaign to protest her killing and bring the culprits to book.
They will submit petitions before Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Home Minister Shivraj Patil and Congress President Sonia Gandhi, demanding justice for Soumya who was shot dead in the wee hours on September 30 while returning home from work.
Soumya’s colleagues condoled the death of the young journalist by lighting candles. Former classmates from Kamala Nehru College, teachers, close friends and journalists from different organisations also participated to show their solidarity with her family members.
As part of the campaign, ‘Justice for Soumya’, an on-line networking forum has also been launched to mobilise civil support for her.
The journalists also criticised Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit for her comments that “one should not be adventurous”.
“We have not been able to come to terms with the tragedy of Soumya’s death. There is an eerie silence in the newsroom. We will continue our crusade for her and urge the whole journalist community to support us,” said Rahul Kanwal, Editor of the Headlines Today.
“Her death is just not another story. It is about someone who was one of us,” he added.
“Please keep the campaign alive. Let this incident not go down as just another tragic incident,” said Vidisha, a journalist and classmate of Soumya.
Senior journalist Jyoti Malhotra demanded that the government should ensure safety of working women.
www.hindu.com

Rice comes but deal still not on table
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/Bush_will_sign_the_nuclear_deal_very_soon_Rice/articleshow/3560397.cms
NEW DELHI: US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice travelled across the world for a celebration that was not to be. She was denied the last hurrah on the Indo-US nuclear deal because of some 11th-hour muscle-flexing by India. On Saturday, after a day of otherwise unremarkable talks between foreign minister Pranab Mukherjee and Rice, India stopped short of signing the 123 agreement, indicating that it preferred to wait for US president George Bush to sign it into law first. Sources said Rice was disappointed, especially because the US state department had been saying that the president’s signature was not a pre-requisite for Rice to do the honours in Delhi. Saturday’s event could have been managed with more grace to avoid the “underwhelming” experience of a deal that both governments consider a triumph. To make Rice’s last visit a little more memorable, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh invited her to dinner, an honour normally reserved for heads of government. Sources said it was Singh’s way of thanking Rice for all the heavy lifting she has done for the deal, particularly before approval from the NSG and the US Congress. India is holding out for the presidential signature because it expects him to address the riders that have been introduced into the new Bill. There has been much disquiet about Washington’s new line that fuel supply assurances were “political” not “legal” commitments, which seemed to make them less than cast iron. India is jittery about this, because it appears to undermine the very basis of the deal. Rice addressed this issue briefly, saying, “The US intends to honour all its commitments.” Earlier, at a lunch for Rice, Mukherjee was fulsome in his praise for her. Mukherjee will probably have to travel to the US once again to sign the document after it bears the president’s signature. At a joint press conference after the talks, Mukherjee said, “After the signing by the (US) president (of the legislation into law), the process will be complete. And after the process is complete, we will be in a position to sign (the 123 agreement).” Rice also spoke along similar lines. “Let me be clear, the 123 agreement is done. It is a matter of signing and so I don’t want anyone to think that we have open issues. We, in fact, don’t have open issues. We have administrative matters of signing agreement.” She added, “The president is looking forward to signing it very soon.” In response to a question, she said, “The Hyde Act is completely consistent with 123 agreement…. 123 agreement is consistent with the Hyde Act. The US will keep its commitments to both.” Mukherjee said, “No secretary of state of the United States has done more for this relationship than you have. You had conceptualized it even before taking office, and have seen your ideas implemented in action. This is a rare achievement in practical politics…. This outcome would not have been possible without the personal commitment of President Bush and your unremitting efforts. We are now in the last lap. We look forward to cooperating with the US in signing and bringing the 123 Agreement into effect, and moving on to the commercial arrangements.” In the normal course of things, the deal could have gone through without the amendments, which are a source of concern for India. The deal would have gone through an up-down vote, leaving no room for the insertion of amendments. But the long delay by India, with the government taking its own time to decide when to defy Left, meant that everybody else had to jump through hoops to clear the deal in virtually record time. This also required the US Congress to introduce a new law to waive the 30-day mandatory standing period that had been agreed upon, opening the door for amendments. Though the amendments did not touch the negotiated text of the 123 agreement, a couple of other riders introduced discomfort in India long touched by mistrust. The Bush administration assured the visiting prime ministerial delegation in Washington DC last week that these issues would be dealt with. With Parliament opening here later this month, government here decided to play safe and wait for the presidential signature, to avoid criticism that it was in a “desperate” hurry to sign the According to the terms of the new law in the US Congress, the Bush signing of the authorizing legislation will be accompanied by two presidential certifications — that the agreement is consistent with US obligations of the NPT and that it is the US policy to cooperate with international efforts to further restrict transfer of technology related to uranium enrichment and the reprocessing of spent nuclear fuel, a commitment made to Howard Berman to secure his consent for the law. But while the caution may have been justified, it is being felt that the no-show on Saturday could have been avoided. Sources in the government also concede that the celebrations could have easily been been put off by another week, particularly as both Rice and Mukherjee, having painstakingly worked for the deal, deserved that moment of popping flashbulbs in India. In an interview to American journalists aboard her aircraft, Rice reportedly said: “This is a relationship that has now a firm foundation to reach its full potential. It removes for India a barrier to full integration on a whole range of technologies, and it opens the way for closer US-India cooperation in other areas such as defence, agriculture and education.”
5 Oct 2008, 0054 hrs IST, Indrani Bagchi,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Hyde Act to come into play if India tests again’
http://sify.com/news/fullstory.php?id=14770662
Washington: Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has indicated that while the US would honour its commitments to India regarding their civil nuclear deal, the contentious Hyde Act would come into play if India tests again.
“I think we’ve been very clear about US views on this issue,” she told reporters Friday on way to New Delhi following Congressional approval of the implementing 123 agreement when asked if it was part of her mission to deliver a warning message about not testing.
“The Indians have a lot at stake here,” said Rice without explicitly saying how would the US react in the event of an Indian test. ” And they have made very clear that what they want to do is they want to move on to civil nuclear cooperation. And I think they understand the grounds on which we’ve done this.
N-deal may not be inked during Rice’s visit
“The United States is going to remain true to its commitments under the Hyde Act (the US enabling law) and true to the commitments that President (George W) Bush has made to Prime Minister (Manmohan) Singh,” she said. “And I know that the Indians will do the same.”
Asked if the India deal would in any sense serve as a model for other countries seeking a similar deal, Rice said: “I think India is really ‘sui generis’ (of its own kind). It is a state that has had – really, very good proliferation record.
“Obviously, it posed some challenges because of its strategic nuclear programmes,” she said but believed that approval of the deal by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Nuclear Suppliers Group, and ultimately, the US Congress, was a recognition of what the nuclear watchdog agency’s head had said.
Rice cited IAEA Director General Mohamed ElBaradei to suggest that “bringing India and Indian civil nuclear programmes and facilities and their future into the IAEA framework is a win for the proliferation regime as a whole.” “I think India is, in many ways, sui generis in that regard,” she added.
N-deal, defence sales different channels: Rice
Rice said she was “very much looking forward to going to India, really to just affirm the extraordinary progress that we’ve made in US-Indian relations under the visionary leadership of” Bush and Manmohan Singh.
“I think this is a relationship that has now a firm foundation to reach its full potential,” said America’s top diplomat who is considered as the prime architect and driving force behind the nuclear deal.
“In bilateral terms, of course, the Civil Nuclear Agreement is important, but I think we can now draw a line under that and talk about the breadth of this relationship,” she said noting the areas of cooperation.
“And really, in everything from defence cooperation to educational cooperation to agricultural and economic cooperation, this is a relationship that is very strong and broad and deep.
“And it’s, of course, a relationship that’s based first and foremost on values; the Indian and American democracies, both great multiethnic democracies,” she said. “With all of the excitement and cacophony that comes with that, it is really an extraordinary moment for US-Indian relations.”
The two countries can now move from this foundation to global issues, Rice said noting, “We are working together on Afghanistan. We’ve worked together on humanitarian relief, as evidenced in what we did at the time of the Indonesia events. And there is much more that the United States and India can do together.”
“So I look forward to going and spending, unfortunately, a short time in India. But I think it does show that the relationship is now ready to move to this new level and to exploit all the things that we can do together,” Rice added.
“I think India is, in many ways, ‘sui generis’ in that regard,” she added.
Saturday, 04 October , 2008, 15:06
Last Updated: Saturday, 04 October , 2008, 15:10
http://sify.com

Allahabad HC moves SC against its own order
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/HC_moves_SC_against_its_own_order/articleshow/3558043.cms
NEW DELHI: A red-faced Allahabad High Court rushed to the Supreme Court on Friday seeking a stay on the proceedings before its two-judge bench entertaining a PIL challenging the elevation of Satish Chandra as a judge of the HC. What put the HC in a piquant situation is that the bench not only entertained the PIL filed by M C Gupta but also embarked on a judicial scrutiny of the allegation — that Chandra was not qualified to be elevated as a judge — by asking the HC to place in a sealed cover details of the consultation process that preceded the appointment. Appearing for the HC, senior advocate Harish Salve, said the bench clearly exceeded the jurisdiction as details of the collegium consultations — which involve top judges of the HC and the SC including the CJI — could not be made public and be made a part of judicial record. The SC bench comprising Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan and Justices V S Sirpurkar and P Sathasivam stayed the HC bench’s order seeking details of collegium consultations and issued notices to the PIL petitioner. The SC order may have averted an embarrassing incident but is bound to shrill the demand for transparency in judicial appointments.
4 Oct 2008, 0225 hrs IST, Dhananjay Mahapatra ,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Ministry bats for stronger SC/ST Act
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/Ministry-bats-for-stronger-SC-ST-Act/369231
New Delhi: Aggrieved over the acquittal of 8 accused in the 2006 Khairlanji massacre under the SC and ST Act, Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment Meira Kumar has proposed amendments to the existing Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act with a view to making it more stringent.
Sources in the Ministry said that the proposal for amendments to the 1989 Act had been forwarded to the National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC) and the National Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST) for their views. The Ministry is trying to table a bill in this regard during the forthcoming session of Parliament, sources said. The Ministry has learnt to have proposed amendments in Sections 14 (1) and 21 of the Prevention of Atrocities Act by inclusion of one sub section in each. While Section 14 deals with Special Courts under the Act, Section 21 is regarding the duty of the Government to implement the provisions of the Act.
Taking strong note of the acquittal in the Khairlanji case, Kumar had written separate letters to Home Minister Shivraj Patil and MOS for Personnel, Prithviraj Chavan demanding a “review” of the case with a view to filing an appeal. Kumar had also shot off a letter to Maharashtra CM Vilasrao Deshmukh urging action against police officers found guilty of dereliction of duty.
Express news service Posted: Oct 04, 2008 at 0102 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

SC stays HC order on judge’s appointment
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/SC-stays-HC-order-on-judge-s-appointment/369239
New Delhi, October 3 The Supreme Court on Friday ordered an interim stay on the proceedings in Allahabad High Court related to a petition challenging the appointment of Dr Satish Chandra as judge of the High Court.
While perusing the petition, the Bench, headed by Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan, also issued notices to the Centre and advocate Mahesh Chandra Gupta, who has challenged the appointment of Chandra as the judge contending that he lacks the essential qualification. The apex court has also sought response from Chandra, who is now the sitting judge of the High Court.
Chandra was appointed as the judge of the High Court on August 6.
The Allahabad High Court has challenged the order of its judicial side contending that its Division Bench has exceeded its jurisdiction.
www.indianexpress.com

HC raps PU: ‘Why is the university ignoring meritorious students?’
http://www.expressindia.com/latest-news/hc-raps-pu-why-is-the-university-ignoring-meritorious-students/369133/
Chandigarh, October 03 The Punjab and Haryana High Court today expressed its surprise and despair over the Panjab University “favouring” certain individuals while ignoring meritorious students at the time of admissions. “What is wrong with the university? Shall we impose a fine now?” the division bench questioned.
The division bench, headed by Justice Hemant Gupta, made the observations while pronouncing orders on a few petitions filed by students. The admissions in question were cleared by Dean University Instructions (DUI) S K Kulkarni.
In the first case, the High Court allowed a petition filed by Gursimran Sekhon, a resident of Mohali, against PU and chairman of the Department of BPharmacy.
Sekhon (who placed third in the sports category list) was demanding admission against the two reserved seats for the sports category. The petitioner had sought permission for reconsidering her candidature after one of the seats fell vacant.
The petitioner alleged that someone else was granted admission even though she had higher merit.
In the second case, Hina Gupta, a resident of Sector 7, Panchkula, filed a petition against the chairperson of the joint admission committee, demanding that the admission of Piyush Jand in a BPharma course be quashed.
The petitioner submitted that she placed higher in merit than Piyush, “who was granted admission only on the basis of his Class XII marks”. The High Court allowed the petition and expressed shock over the admissions granted by the university.
Express News Service
Posted: Oct 04, 2008 at 0014 hrs IST
www.expressindia.com

HC directs police to let lawyers, relatives visit blast accused
http://www.expressindia.com/latest-news/hc-directs-police-to-let-lawyers-relatives-visit-blast-accused/369114/
New delhi, October 3 The Delhi High Court on Friday directed the police to grant access to lawyers representing five suspects arrested in the September 13 serial blasts.
A Bench of Chief Justice A P Shah and Justice S Muralidhar passed the order while hearing a petition filed by Zia-ur-Rahman, one of the five persons arrested by the Special Cell in connection with the blasts last month, through his counsel Shanti Bhushan and Prashant Bhushan.
Listing the case for hearing on October 15, the court provided “liberty” to any of the persons concerned to approach the High Court any time before the scheduled date of hearing. The court allowed the suspect’s sister and two lawyers to meet him for an hour at 7 pm on Friday at the office of Assistant Commissioner of Police Sanjeev Kumar Yadav on Lodhi Road. The court observed that if a “similar request is made on behalf of any other arrested person, the person shall have access to two lawyers as well as one relative on similar lines.”
The court has also agreed to allow the same right of access to another of the five accused, Saqib Nissar, who had filed a criminal petition in this regard before the High Court. In his petition, Rahman said lawyers and relatives who approached the police on October 1 and 2 were denied access.
“It is stated that the police on October 1, 2008 asked the sister of Zia (Rahman) to come to the police station on October 2 at noon. However, when she went along with her lawyer, she was denied access,” the Bench quoted from the petition.
Defending the police, counsel Mukta Gupta said Rahman was taken for “investigation” at the time of the lawyers’ visit on October 1. The counsel submitted that no one had turned up for the meeting on the next day despite the police informing the family.
“Though his (Rahman’s) relations were informed that they could visit him at 5 pm on October 2, none visited him on that day,” Gupta contended. She submitted on record that the police had no objection about today’s meeting. Both accused were arrested on September 21. They have been suspected of providing logistics support for the serial blasts which claimed over 20 lives.
NEW DELHI: Relatives of Zia-ur-Rehman and Saqib, arrested for their alleged involvement in Delhi blasts, had come to meet the duo at the Special Cell office in Lodhi Colony on different occasions, their lawyers said. While Saqib’s relatives arrived to meet him at about 6 pm, Zia-ur-Rehman’s sister and maternal uncle arrived at 7.05 pm — the time given to them by the court. Both families remained inside the police station for about half-an-hour today.
Zia-ur-Rehman’s advocate Prashant Bhushan said, “The family members have met him and he seems to be fine.” Asked whether Zia was tortured, he said, “There were no such signs and he looked fine.”
Bhushan added that his family members didn’t even know that Zia has been kept in the Cell’s office and they came to know it through the media. “The relatives didn’t know about their rights that they could meet him in custody,” he said. “We filed a petition in High Court and got the order to meet him.”
Zia’s relatives did not want to talk to the media.
Express News Service
Posted: Oct 04, 2008 at 2358 hrs IST
www.expressindia.com

HC raps govt over crunch in human rights panel
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/HC-raps-govt-over-crunch-in-human-rights-panel/369217
Chandigarh, October 03 The Punjab State Human Rights Commission, which receives around 15,000 complaints on human rights violations every year, and hears around 80 complaints daily, is running with only two members (instead of five), comprising a Chairman (Retd Chief Justice R S Mongia) and a non-judicial Member (K K Bhatnagar).
The Commission decides on matters like custodial deaths, custodial torture, custodial rape and illegal detention, among others in division benches. In case the Commission decides to make any recommendation to the state Government on any matter, it has to constitute a larger bench (of at least three members). One post of a member fell vacant in August 2007, and two more posts fell vacant on May 4, 2008, leaving only two members in the panel. Recently from July 31 to August 15, the working in the panel came to a halt as under the rules, a single member cannot take cognisance of new matters. All new cases had to be adjourned.
The petitioner had sought directions to the state government to fill up the vacant posts and the PIL came up for a resumed hearing today. The chief justice repeatedly asked the Additional Advocate General as to what steps had been taken by the Government for filling up the three vacant posts, but the response could not satisfy the Bench.
The law officer informed the Bench that the Government has initiated a proposal before the Cabinet for reducing the strength of members from existing five to three. At this, the Chief Justice asked the law officer: “Then why the third post has been kept vacant so far?”
Express News Service Posted: Oct 04, 2008 at 0055 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

Haryana govt to HC: No attempts to tap judges’ phones
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/Haryana-govt-to-HC–No-attempts-to-tap-judges–phones/369220
Chandigarh, October 03 The Haryana Government submitted in the Punjab and Haryana High Court today that none of its agency or officer has ever attempted to tap mobile phones of judges.
The government’s reply was filed in wake of a suo moto notice taken by the Punjab and Haryana High Court on a news item in an English daily. The reply filed by S K Joshi, IAS, Special Secretary to Government of Haryana, stated: “The state government is fully aware of the constitutional position of the judges of the superior judiciary. It is an article of faith with Haryana government that the dignity of institution be maintained at all costs. The state holds the institution in high esteem and accords it the highest respect.”
Similar replies have already been filed by the Punjab government and the UT Administration denying allegations of tapping mobile phones of any of the High Court judges. Taking on record the replies of Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh, a division bench comprising Chief Justice Tirath Singh Thakur and Justice Surya Kant disposed of the petition.
The news item had claimed that after the judge-bribery case, a few judges suspected that their mobile phones were being tapped and that someone was eavesdropping on them.
Express News Service Posted: Oct 04, 2008 at 0056 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

HC seeks reply on illegal admission in dental colleges
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/HC-seeks-reply-on-illegal-admission-in-dental-colleges/369192
Chandigarh, October 03 The Punjab and Haryana High Court has given four weeks’ time to the Dental Council of India (DCI) and MD University, Rohtak, to file an affidavit regarding the action taken against dental colleges in Haryana giving back door admissions to students.
The directions were passed in wake of a petition pending in the High Court. The petitioner had made the allegations against certain dental colleges in Haryana after which the High Court had constituted a committee to look into the matter.
The committed, after an inquiry, stated that the DCI be approached to take a strong action against the institute and trust, Sri Guru Govind Singh Tercentenary Dental College and Research Institute, Budhera and Dasmesh Educational Charitable Trust, New Delhi. It further called for de-recognition of the institute. The colleges were directed to deposit Rs 1 lakh per student within 10 days, an order that has not been compiled with till date.
Express News Service Posted: Oct 04, 2008 at 0043 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

HC appoints observer for chief priests selection
http://www.hindu.com/thehindu/holnus/004200810031975.htm
Kochi (PTI): The Kerala High court on Friday appointed former judge K S Padmanabhan Nair as observer to oversee selection process of Chief Priests of the Sabarimala Lord Ayappa temple and Maligapura temples even as the state government expressed willingness to appoint a high power committee for the smooth conduct of the coming pilgrimage season.
A Division bench, comprising justices P R Raman and T R Ramachadnran Nair, directed the observer to file a report regarding the selection proceedings. The court also re-constituted the selection committee consisting of eight members, by including former ‘Melsanthi,’ Vedic experts, TDB President and members.
The appointment was made while considering a Sept 29 report of Devaswom Ombudsman by which court was informed that the committee constituted for selection of Melsanthi in Sabarimala was not in accordance with report of the justice K S Paripoornan commission recommendation.
Melsanthi interviews have been slated for Oct 6, 7 and 10.
The court said at the conclusion of the interview a panel of nine names among the person qualified for each post– Sabarimala and Maligapura melsanthis– should be prepared and lots taken to be drawn in front of the sanctum sanctorum.
The government committee headed by additional chief secretary, includes DGP, Additional DGP and senior officers of various departments. Court directed the board, government and devaswom ombudsman to submit their suggestions regarding the functioning of the high power committee.
Friday, October 3, 2008
http://www.hindu.com

Private news broadcasters set up redress authority
http://www.hindu.com/2008/10/03/stories/2008100361841300.htm
As a measure of self-regulation
Authority to be headed by former CJI J.S. Verma
All nine members will hold office for two years
NEW DELHI: Under pressure from various quarters, the News Broadcasters Association (NBA) – a collective of 14 private broadcasters representing 30 news channels – on Thursday set up the News Broadcasting Standards Disputes Redressal Authority as a measure of self-regulation.
The nine-member authority will be headed by the former Chief Justice of India (CJI), J.S. Verma. Four of the other members will be editors from different news channels and the remaining four from a category titled ‘eminent persons’ drawn from different walks of life. All nine members will hold office for two years.
The four members who make up the ‘eminent persons’ category are historian Ramachandra Guha, the former NASSCOM president, Kiran Karnik, sociologist Dipankar Gupta and economist Nitin Desai. The four editors included in this self-regulation mechanism are Vinod Kapri of India TV, B.V. Rao of Zee News, Milin Khandekar of Star News and Arnab Goswami of Times Now.
Ahead of setting up the authority, the NBA had adopted a Code of Ethics & Broadcasting Standards for itself. This code also came into effect from Thursday.
Briefing mediapersons, Mr. Justice Verma was optimistic of television channels abiding by the code. “Since the television channels have agreed to the code, I am assuming that everyone will follow it. If not, I will leave,” he said, when asked how he was optimistic of self-regulation working in India when it failed in most parts of the world. “Just because self-regulation has not succeeded in other places, it does not mean that we should not try it,” the former CJI said. In his view, social sanction and peer pressure are more effective than legal sanction.
Asked whether the fee of Rs. 1,000 per complaint would not act as a deterrent, Mr. Justice Verma said it was important to keep away frivolous complaints. The News Broadcasting Standards (Disputes Redressal) Regulations mandate that every complainant should pay Rs. 1,000 towards the functioning of the authority, which has the power to impose costs of up to Rs. 10,000 in favour of or against complainants.
The complainant has to first seek redress from the broadcaster. Once with the authority, the attempt will be to address a complaint within three months. If the complaint pertains to a channel which has its representation on the authority among the four editor members, then that individual will have to step aside for that particular case. All cases can be decided only if five members including the chairman are present. And, among the members, both categories have to be equally represented.
The authority has been set up in response to renewed efforts by the government to put in place a regulatory framework for broadcasters through legislation. This was stiffly resisted by the media in general and television channels in particular. In turn, the NBA – set up over a year ago – offered to come up with its own self-regulation guidelines to ensure broadcasting standards.
Friday, Oct 03, 2008
Special Correspondent
www.hindu.com

Wireless Laws in India: The Expert Speaks
http://legalnewsandviews.blogspot.com/2008/10/wireless-laws-in-india-expert-speaks.html
Wireless connectivity has become a big cause of concern for the Indian Government. The Government is not only conscious but also worried about the way wireless communications operate. India needs good Crisis Management Strategies to deal with emergency situations like terrorist attacks and their use of wireless connections. Mr. Praveen Dalal of Perry4Law has contacted the Prime Minister’s Office, President of India, Ministry of Science and Technology (MST), Ministry of Information Technology (MIT), etc in this regard. Fortunately, his suggestions regarding bringing suitable amendments in the Information Technology Act, 2000 (IT Act, 2000) and securing Wireless Networks have been accepted by the Indian Government and they are planning to amend the IT Act, 2000 and introducing rules, regulations and provisions to ensure a safe and secure wireless connectivity and its use.Information technology (IT) has changed the way we behave and work in the present society. However, it has also raised certain law enforcement problems. Though India has enacted the IT Act, 2000 as the sole cyber law of India yet its effect is far from satisfactory. Similarly, the telecommunication laws in India are also deficient when it comes to IT security in India.The frequent use of wireless networks by the terrorists and cyber criminals has forced the Indian Government to give a relook to the present cyber security condition of India. The Department of Telecommunications (DOT), Department of Information and Technology (DIT) and Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) are jointly working in the direction of providing safe and secure wireless norms and regulations in India.Further electronic surveillance has also been enhanced by India to curb the menace of cyber terrorism and cyber crimes in India. Senior officials in New Delhi who are aware of the Government’s policy regarding cyber terrorism are of the opinion that effective mechanisms have been put in place to sniff and monitor the domestic Internet traffic at various points for suspected terror emails and other communication.[1]According to Praveen Dalal, the Leading Techno-Legal Specialist of India, “There is inadequate cyber security in India particularly for the wireless networks. This makes “wireless hacking” possible and that is often used for committing cyber crimes and other purposes. Wireless hacking is, generally, a four step process that includes wardriving, victim identification, passwords and encryption keys sniffing and finally hacking. If MAC filtering is in place the offender may go for the MAC address spoofing to trick the authentication process”.This means that we must pay more attention towards issues like cyber security and wireless security where India needs to work effectively and constructively. We must pay special attention towards securing the wireless networks and connections. Suitable provisions must also be incorporated in the IT Act, 2000 as well.
“Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) was the first security option for 802.11 WLANs. However, it allows a hacker to crack the WEP key by exploiting the WEP vulnerability. Although a hacker can attempt to crack WEP by brute force, other “soft techniques” are also available. WPA employs the Temporal Key Integrity Protocol (TKIP)—which is a safer RC4 implementation for data encryption and authentication. TKIP rotates the data encryption key to prevent the vulnerabilities of WEP and, consequently, cracking attacks. WPA2 is similar to 802.11i and uses the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) to encrypt the data payload. AES is considered an uncrackable encryption algorithm. WPA2 also allows for the use of TKIP during a transitional period called mixed mode security” suggests Praveen Dalal.Because of its numerous weaknesses, WEP shouldn’t be used as the sole security mechanism for a WLAN. An early security solution in WLAN technology used MAC address filters. However, as per Praveen Dalal “If MAC filtering is in place the offender may go for the MAC address spoofing to trick the authentication process. Even an access point (AP) can be spoofed and a rouge AP may pretend to be a legitimate one by using the same configurations, SSID settings or network name. However, it is always advisable to use these security mechanisms as they reduce the chances of vulnerability exploitation to minimum”.India must concentrate upon stringent cyber law, robust cyber security, capable cyber forensics workforce and sound and stringent crisis management strategies to tackle terrorist attacks with an iron hand. A stringent law with educated and aware public is the safest bet against misuse of insecure wireless networks in India.
About Mr. Praveen Dalal- Mr. Praveen Dalal is the Managing Partner of Perry4Law and heading its PTLB, PTLITC, and other Techno-Legal Divisions that are providing Cyber Law, Cyber Security and Cyber Forensics Assistances and Services. Perry4Law is the First and Exclusive Techno-Legal and ICT Law Firm in India and is in operation since 2002. It deals with legal issues associated with ICT and use of ICT for legal purposes. PTLB and PTLITC are few of the Techno-Legal ICT initiatives of Perry4Law and are in the process of upgradation and formalisation. Mr. Praveen Dalal’s specialisations include areas like Cyber Law, Cyber Security, Cyber Forensics, Digital Evidencing, Corporate ICT Compliances, etc.
[1] http://www.dnaindia.com/report.asp?newsid=1192217&pageid=0
Friday, October 3, 2008
http://legalnewsandviews.blogspot.com

Tamil Nadu told to dispose PIL on unregulated cable TV
http://www.televisionpoint.com/news2008/newsfullstory.php?id=1223010180
In Tamil Nadu state, the issue of unregulated local cable television networks that telecast films, news and advertisements in various districts, came to the notice of the Madras high court when a public interest writ petition asked for such networks to be streamlined. Passing orders on the petition filed by Voice Consumer Care Council, the first bench comprising chief justice A K Ganguly and justice F M Ibrahim Kalifulla said the state and central government authorities must dispose of a representation given to them on September 5. They shall give reasons while disposing of the representation, it added. In his petition, the trustee of Voice Consumer Care Council, R Sureshkumar, submitted that several cable operators were telecasting entertainment and news programmes in many districts in violation of the provisions of the Cable Television Network Act. Claiming that they were not duly registered under the Act, he said the guideline required a licence from the Union Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. As per the guidelines, these operators must pay Rs 1.5 crore to the ministry as deposit, and they shall pay additional sum of Rs 1 crore for every additional channel. After the first five years, these operators must pay Rs 1 lakh for each channel, besides Rs 5 lakh as registration. The guidelines also stipulate advertisement codes and penal consequences for violation of the rules. But in Tamil Nadu “some operators, who have only a registration with the postmaster-general, indulge in private channel business without proper licence.”The Act provides for seizure and confiscation of materials used for telecasting such information in districts, he said, adding that inaction on the part of the competent authorities had rendered the provisions meaningless. He named nine cable operators in Kancheepuram, Puducherry, Cuddalore and Chidambaram areas, and wanted action against these unregulated ventures.
Friday – Oct 03, 2008
Meher Khanna – Televisionpoint.com
www.televisionpoint.com

High Court reprimands govt for doing away with fishing tenders
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/High-Court-reprimands-govt-for-doing-away-with-fishing-tenders/368855
Ahmedabad, October 2 For the first time in July, the govt did away with its policy on tenders and awarded fishing contracts for 54 reservoirs
The Gujarat High Court has reprimanded state Fisheries Minister Purshottam Solanki’s practice of doing away with floating tenders for fishing rights contracts in the state reservoirs. The High Court said the move was illegal and was being done on extraneous ground.
Fishing contracts for 54 reservoirs were allotted to different individuals and groups in July, for the first time, doing away with the Government Leasing Policy for Reservoirs of Inland Fisheries — 2004, which insists on tenders. The contracts were instead fixed on the basis of upset prices.
Hiral Dave Posted: Oct 03, 2008 at 0045 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

Commercial surrogacy legal and industry in India: SC
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/Commercial_surrogacy_legal_and_industry_in_India_SC/articleshow/3554106.cms
NEW DELHI: Japanese surrogate baby Manji may have thrown up a huge debate between purists and the needy about the ethicality of surrogacy, but the Supreme Court not only validated “commercial surrogacy” but also termed it a virtual industry in India. In its judgment in the Manji case on Monday, the apex court allowed the child’s biological grandmother to approach the Centre for travel documents to take the baby to Japan, but at the same time put its stamp of approval on ‘commercial surrogacy’. A bench comprising Justices Arijit Pasayat and Mukundakam Sharma said in ‘commercial surrogacy’ a gestational carrier was paid to carry the child to maturity in her womb and was usually resorted to by well off infertile couples who could afford the cost involved or people who save and borrow in order to complete their dream of being parents. “This medical procedure is legal in several countries including India where due to excellent medical infrastructure, high international demand and ready availability of poor surrogates, it is reaching industry proportions,” said Justice Pasayat, writing the judgment for the bench. And this is precisely the apprehension expressed by NGO ‘Satya’, which through advocate Abhinav Sharma, argued that the absence of law has left such an important social and emotional field open to abuse by middlemen, who are increasingly being approached by rich foreign couples to arrange for poor surrogates.
3 Oct 2008, 0413 hrs IST, Dhananjay Mahapatra,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Baby lifting: HC asks Govt, GTB hospital to pay Rs 5L to woman
http://www.ptinews.com/pti/ptisite.nsf/0/772F3333A1208DF6652574D6004C209F?OpenDocument
New Delhi, Oct 2 (PTI) A woman, whose new born baby went missing from a bed in GTB hospital within hours of its birth in 2003, has been awarded Rs five lakh compensation by the Delhi High Court.”The pain and suffering of the parents whose child is dead would be less than the pain and suffering of the parents whose child is lost and not found,” observed the court.Directing the NCT government and the GTB hospital to pay the money jointly, a Division Bench of Justice Pradeep Nandrajog and Justice J R Midha dismissed an appeal filed by the city government challenging a civil court’s October 2007 order awarding the compensation to the woman.”The government of NCT, Delhi and the GTB hospital are held jointly and severally liable to pay Rs five lakh to Sudha Devi, the mother. They shall additionally pay her the cost incurred in the appeal,” the court said in a judgement on Wednesday.The court allowed the appeal filed by the Central government seeking deletion of its name in the case and set aside the suit filed by the woman against Union of India.”The human mind finds solace in death by believing that the body is free from troubles of life and the soul has found comfortable abode in some other form. But where a child is lost but is in the world of living, the trauma of well-being of the child is suffered by the parents each year of their life,” the court said.”Every joyous occasion, festival and holiday brings back the memory of the missing child,” the court said. PTI
www.ptinews.com

HC order on kids with ‘disabilities’
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Delhi/HC_order_on_kids_with_disabilities/articleshow/3551487.cms
NEW DELHI: Taare Zameen Par might have highlighted the plight of kids with learning disabilities, but here is an intervention which promises to address issues concerning them and others who are differently abled. A concerned Delhi High Court on Wednesday demanded a detailed schoolwise and classwise census of kids enrolled in MCD and Delhi government schools who suffer from such disabilities. The government has two weeks time to table the data before a bench comprising Justice A P Shah and Justice S Muralidhar. The bench also sought information on the kind of disability a child suffers from, and how the school takes care of him/her to ensure education is imparted in a sensitive manner. HC was hearing a PIL filed by an NGO alleging there had been little or no efforts on the part of government authorities to bring such children to mainstream school system or to provide them with requisite educational environment so that they can study. Appearing for the NGO, advocate Ashok Aggarwal argued before the court saying, “there are no qualified teachers in schools for such kids and by denying them special facilities, the government was denying them right to education.” The bench wanted to know if there is any commission established to look into disability related grievances. Standing counsel for Delhi government Najmi Waziri informed court that a disability commissioner is incharge of examining all complaints and is aided by five major NGO’s. Waziri also said that as part of governments efforts, training was being imparted to teachers of government schools to sensitize them on teaching students with disabilities. “We will be more than happy to place all the information before the court. The state government is already implementing a policy effected by the central government in this regard,” Waziri said.
Oct 2008, 0507 hrs IST,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

HC listens to kid, grandma wins custody battle
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Kolkata_/HC_listens_to_kid_grandma_wins_custody_battle/articleshow/3551266.cms
KOLKATA: Listening to five-year-old Abhishek Chatterjee, Calcutta High Court on Wednesday awarded his custody to his grandmother – and not his mother. The court allowed the child’s grandmother Rina Chatterjee of Serampore to take charge of Abhishek on the grounds that the child refused to stay with his mother Dipali. Justice Sadhan Gupta quashed criminal proceedings moved by Dipali against Rina and brother-in-law Iman. However, the judge granted Dipali the liberty to approach the appropriate forum to claim custody of her child as his natural guardian. Dipali had complained before the judicial magistrate of Serampore, Hooghly, that Rina and Iman had wrongfully and illegally confined her son. The case is still pending in a Serampore court. Dipali, a resident of Howrah, had married Kalyan Chatterjee of Sheoraphuli in August 2001. Abhishek, their only son, was born in June 2002. On June 6, 2007, Kalyan committed suicide by hanging himself at his residence. Complaining of abetment to suicide, Kalyan’s mother Rina lodged an FIR with Serampore police station, holding Dipali responsible for her son’s death. After the FIR, Dipali was arrested and later released on bail. She countered her mother-in-law by moving the Serampore judicial magistrate’s court, accusing her and Iman of wrongful and illegal confinement of her minor son. The magistrate passed an order on August 16, 2007, in Rina’s favour, allowing her to have interim custody of the child. While granting custody to Rina, the court considered the child’s willingness and desire as he had, in open court, refused to stay with his mother. The judge observed that in the best interests of the child, the court was inclined to hold that the child should be handed over to his grandmother. Aggrieved with the order, Dipali moved high court praying for setting aside the lower court’s order. On the other hand, through advocate Pushpal Satpathi, Rina, too, approached the high court seeking the quashing of criminal proceedings pending against her in a Serampore court. The high court, while quashing the proceedings against Rina, held that there was no illegality in the Serampore court’s August 16, 2007, order.
2 Oct 2008, 0349 hrs IST,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

NREG finest social security scheme, says CJI
http://www.hindu.com/thehindu/holnus/002200810022002.htm
New Delhi (PTI): Chief Justice of India K G Balakrishnan on Thursday said the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) was one of the finest social security measures for the poor and asked the legal fraternity to spread awareness about it.
“We have tried to fight poverty by various means, but have met with little success. So what India needs is something more lasting than patchwork policies to help its millions of poverty-stricken people. The NREG Act is one of the means which can solve the problem, given that it has the potential to provide livelihood to millions,” the Chief Justice said.
In his presidential address at the inauguration of “Initiative on supporting the NREGS through the State Legal Services Authorities,” attended by the Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh, the Chief Justice of India said the scheme bridges the gap between the country’s rich and the poor.
“The National Rural Employment Guarantee Act is no doubt one of the finest social welfare enactments, with the aim of improving the purchasing power of rural people, primarily semi or un-skilled people living below poverty in rural India,” he said.
He said the success of any scheme depends upon its implementation and awareness among the beneficiaries and it was here the State Legal Services Authorities (SLSAs) should step in to create awareness among the rural poor.
Thursday, October 2, 2008
www.hindu.com

Primary health centres defunct: Supreme Court
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/Primary_health_centres_defunct_Supreme_Court/articleshow/3550950.cms
NEW DELHI: In a strong indictment of the country’s rural healthcare infrastructure, the Supreme Court on Wednesday said that primary health centres (PHCs), conceived as the pillar of the system providing medical care in the countryside, had become totally defunct. ”In rural areas, there are no doctors. They (PHCs) are functioning only on paper. There is no facility at PHCs. Hospitals function without any doctor,” a bench comprising Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan and Justices Ashok Bhan and P Sathasivam, said. The remarks came as the bench was approving plans of the health ministry headed by Anbumani Ramadoss for fresh initiatives on AIDS. The new AIDS control programme, largely authored by additional solicitor general Gopal Subramaniam and adopted by National Aids Control Organisation (NACO), was cleared after the ASG himself gave a power-point presentation. The programme would go a long way in containing AIDS. But the government’s satisfaction was marred by the bench’s observations on the poor state of India’s the healthcare system. As Subramaniam pointed out that PHCs in rural areas would be linked with the ART (anti-retroviral treatment) centres so as to widen the net of the AIDS combat programme, the bench asked the health ministry to carry out a reality check on facilities available at PHCs. Interrupting Subramaniam as he offered an explanation, the bench asked: ”What to talk of PHCs, the state of affairs in government hospitals in the cities is no better. Go to Delhi’s Safadarjung Hospital. What is happening there and what is the status of healthcare facilities there?” The bench added: ”If you want to get a real picture of the rural healthcare system, go to Bihar and Uttar Pradesh. You will realise the ground reality. Now you are linking this scheme with PHCs. But have you noticed that certain areas of the country have more people living with HIV/AIDS compared to others. You should focus your attention to those areas.” Sensing an exit route from a sticky situation, Subramaniam grabbed it and said the government had precisely done that and established more ART centres in areas where there were higher rates of HIV/AIDS prevalence. Though the health ministry has already issued an office memorandum to all players concerned, the ASG urged the bench to put the apex court’s stamp of approval so that it could be effectively enforced. The court directed the states and Union territories to implement the 14-point scheme for ”Comprehensive Care for People Living With HIV/AIDS (PLAHAs) at Anti-Retroviral Therapy (ART) Centres” and asked National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO) to submit status reports on the implementation every four months.

2 Oct 2008, 0046 hrs IST, Dhananjay Mahapatra,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Tribunal declines to stay removal of ADC to BSNL
http://www.business-standard.com/india/storypage.php?autono=336255
In a setback to state-owned telecom giant BSNL, telecom tribunal Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) has declined to stay the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India’s (Trai’s) directive to remove levy paid by private telecom operators to the PSU on incoming international calls in rural areas.
The TDSAT said since the main petition, in which the telecom PSU had challenged the phased reduction of levy known as Access Deficit Charge (ADC), was still pending, there was no urgent need to stay Trai’s decision to do away with ADC at this stage.
Meanwhile, the tribunal also pointed out that if it ruled in favour of BSNL, the private telecom operators would have to pay the ADC on incoming international calls in retrospect, as mandated in the main petition.
“…Application is disposed of with a direction that the parties will abide by the decision of the main Appeal and will be bound by the same,” said TDSAT.
Access Deficit Charge is a levy paid by private telecom operators to BSNL for meeting the cost of unprofitable operations in rural areas for below the cost wire line and mobile services.
In the application, BSNL has submitted that as per the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India guidelines, ADC payable to it was ending from September 30, 2009 and this was hampering its revenues.
“Trai has reduced ADC payable on international incoming calls from Rs 1 to Rs 0.50 and this would phase out the same from October 1, 2008. Even ADC payable to BSNL on incoming calls would be completely stopped,” said BSNL in its application.
Terming it as ‘irrational and arbitrary decision’ of Trai, the PSU giant further submitted that to fund its rural obligations and to compensate the incurred losses, ADC should be allowed.
Press Trust Of India / New Delhi October 3, 2008, 0:15 IST
http://www.business-standard.com


Daily Legal News 02.10.2008

V P Singh wants land acquisition Act changed
http://www.hindu.com/thehindu/holnus/002200810021503.htm
New Delhi (PTI): In the backdrop of a series of farmers’ protests over land acquisition for setting up industrial units in different parts of the country, former prime minister V P Singh on Thursday advocated change in the existing land acquisition Act.
“I want the Land Acquisition Act 1894 changed in this Parliament session commencing shortly as it was detrimental to the interest of the farmers,” he told farmers of Kisan Manch at his home.
He claimed that the Act, of late, has started giving benefits to industrialists at the cost of interest of the poor farmers.
“People did not protest when the land acquired under the Act were used for setting up schools, hospital and canals, but nowadays the legislation is being misused to benefit industrial houses,” he remarked.
Thursday, October 2, 2008
www.hindu.com

HC to govt: How come you appointed SEC?
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Cities/Patna/HC_to_govt_How_come_you_appointed_SEC/articleshow/3551344.cms
PATNA: The Patna High Court on Wednesday sought a reply from the state government and the State Election Commissioner (SEC) J K Dutta as to how the CM, instead of the governor, appointed the SEC. A division bench comprising CJ R M Lodha and Justice K K Mandal issued the directive after hearing the PIL of Servers of Society whose lawyer, Ashutosh Ranjan Pandey, submitted that as per the provisions of the Constitution and Bihar Panchayati Raj Act, only the governor can appoint the SEC. He said the petitioner has the information, procured under the provisions of Right to Information Act, that the CM appointed the SEC in 2006. He sought the removal of SEC J K Dutta on this ground.
2 Oct 2008, 0416 hrs IST,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Court hears PIL against Parsi poll malpractice
http://parsikhabar.net/court-hears-pil-against-parsi-poll-malpractice/#comment-15474
Hundreds Of Names Appear More Than Once In BPP’s Register
Mumbai: With barely a week left for the elections to the Bombay Parsi Punchayat (BPP) — the largest private landlord in the city — the Bombay high court on Thursday heard a public interest litigation (PIL), alleging electoral malpractices.
For the first time in the history of the over 350-year-old BPP, 25,000-odd Parsis will be able cast their vote to elect seven trustees, who will control a corpus of Rs 120 crore, 5,000 flats and the sprawling Towers of Silence at Malabar Hill.
The elections will be held over three weekends starting October 3 in different parts of the city. On Thursday, two community members, Jamshed Irani and Hormazd Dhaneshwar, told a division bench the names of hundreds of voters had been mentioned twice or thrice in the BPP’s general register.
The bench, comprising chief justice Swatanter Kumar and justice A P Deshpande, gave the BPP a fortnight to file its reply and said its final order would be binding on the punchayat.
The two petitioners said the electoral roles prepared by the existing punchayat trustees (two of whom are recontesting) show a “deliberate duplication” of voters. In many cases, individual voters’ names have repeated thrice in the rolls, but they bear different addresses and electoral roll numbers.
The petition cited the case of one Dhun Baria, a resident of Gilder Lane, whose name appears under roll number 1557 showing her address as Tardeo and under roll number 1578 with the address as Lamington Road.
The petitioners said the manner in which the outgoing trustees are conducting the elections “causes reasonable apprehensions in the mind of the Parsee community that the election will not be free and fair…” The petition said this would be akin to “fake elections conducted in certain tinpot republics.”
The PIL stated that with the BPP elections spread over 21 days and the fingermarking ink lasting for not more than five days, the electorate fears that the duplication was deliberately done by the trustees, whose intentions were mala fide. The PIL further said that some builders, who are standing as candidates, seeking a piece of plum property that the BPP controls. “Some of them have openly declared their intentions to exploit trust property if elected,” it said.
The petition stated that unless the court gives proper directions regarding security of ballot papers and ballot boxes in safe custody of a court-appointed officer, the trustees are likely to rig the elections.
The PIL has asked the court to order the BPP trustees to remove the duplicate and triplicate names from the electoral rolls, appoint an officer to supervise the elections and place the ballot boxes under police security until the results are declared.
NO ELECTION RULES
The World Alliance of Parsi Irani Zarthoshtis (WAPIZ), which has nominated four candidates, has said there are no rules of conduct for the forthcoming elections. “The BPP chairman most surprisingly stated that there was no need to have any rules of conduct for the elections and all parties should act in the ’spirit of the election’. This is an amazing contention for any trustee to make. The chairman said it was not the responsibility of the trustees or election president to stop any malpractice and the candidates should act as vigilantes,” said Wapiz, in a letter to the BPP on September 15. “With bizarre statements such as these, it is clear that you, the trustees, being on your last legs have no intention of holding a poll that is even perceivably fair. We reiterate that the absence of rules of conduct will leave the doors open for poll malpractices. We call upon the trustees to frame rules and circulate them to all candidates,” said the letter. TNN
By arzan sam wadia September 27, 2008
Nauzer Bharucha I TNN
http://parsikhabar.net

Constitutional Law : SC notice to states on human rights commissions
http://www.lawyersclubindia.com/news/2008/9/sc_notice_to_states_on_human_rights_commissions.asp
The Supreme Court on Monday sought response from 13 States and the Union Territories on a PIL which complained that had not set up any human rights panels.The petition filed through post by an NGO, Citizen Forum on Human Rights, had alleged that these States/UTs have not established any State Human Rights Commission or even human rights cells to protect the rights of the citizens.The States which have not constituted the Human Rights Commissions are Delhi, Haryana, Jharkhand, Uttaranchal, Bihar, Pondicherry, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Mizoram, Tripurar, Sikkim and Goa.The petition lamented that it was shameful that in the world’s biggest democracy even 15 years after the formation of Protection of Human Rights Act 1993, the said States have failed to set up the human rights commissions.It also blamed the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) for failing to ensure that the States set up the panels.The PIL urged the court to seek explanation from the NHRC and the States on the issue and ensure that the SHRCs were constituted within six months.SC notice to Centre, LS Secretariat on disqualified MP’s pleaThe Supreme Court issued notice to the Centre and the Lok Sabha secretariat on a petition file by Mohammad Shahid Akhlaq, former BSP Member of Parliament, challenging his disqualification from the House by the Speaker under the anti-defection law.Akhlaq, who was elected as an MP of the BSP from the Nauchandi Lok Sabha Constituency, Meerut was disqualified for having defected in December, 2006 to the Samajwadi Party headed by the then Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav.On the basis of the disqualification application filed by the BSP, the Speaker after conducting an inquiry through the committee of privileges, had disqualified Akhlaq under the anti-defection law on 27th January 2008.The aggrieved MP, filed a writ petition in the Allahabad High Court challenging his disqualification but it was dismissed following which he appealed in the apex court.In the apex court, the disqualified MP has argued that his disqualification was illegal and erroneous as there was no documentary or other admissible piece of evidence to substantiate the charge that he had defected to the Samajwadi Party.According to him, the disqualification was allegedly based on newspaper reports and electronic media reports purportedly showing his meeting with the then Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav during a public meeting when the latter visited the Nauchandi constituency.The aggrieved MP has claimed that the media reports were distorted and the action of the Speaker by relying on the said media reports was illegal and erroneous and hence his disqualification should be set aside.
Posted on : 29 September 2008 by Y.Prakash
www.lawyersclubindia.com

High court rejects Shahabu bail plea
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Cities/Patna/High_court_rejects_Shahabu_bail_plea/articleshow/3551330.cms
PATNA: The Patna High Court on Wednesday dismissed the bail petition of Siwan MP Mohd Shahabuddin, who is accused in a case under Wildlife Protection
Act for keeping in his house a live deer, a Royal Bengal Tiger skin and two deer skins. A single bench presided by Justice Radha Mohan Prasad dismissed for default the bail petition on non-appearance of any lawyer for Shahabuddin. Additional public prosecutor Shyameshwar Dayal referred to the provisions of Wildlife Protection Act which prohibits keeping a deer tied and keeping skins of tiger and deer. Writ petition allowed: A single bench presided by Justice R K Datta has allowed a writ petition seeking quashing of the proceedings of a special meeting of Barhat Banchayar Samiti in Jamui district which was convened to pass a no-confidence motion against block pramukh Renu Devi.
2 Oct 2008, 0411 hrs IST,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Public service panel moves High Court against ‘malafide inquiry’ by govt
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/Public-service-panel-moves-High-Court-against–malafide-inquiry–by-govt/368477
Allahabad, October 1 The chairman of the Uttar Pradesh Public Service Commission (UPPSC), Ram Sewak Yadav, and three other members have moved Allahabad High Court against a vigilance inquiry ordered against them.
Their writ petition alleges that the “inquiry is illegal” and motivated by the “malafide intention” of the state government.
In the petition, the chairman also mentioned: “On August 28, Cabinet Secretary Shashank Shekhar Singh warned me of punitive actions if I and the other members do not resign. I informed the Governor about the incident the next day.”
On August 27, the Government had ordered the vigilance inquiry against the UPPSC chairman and members Somesh Yadav, C N Singh, Zahid Khan, Dr Pankaj and A K Chaturvedi for alleged irregularity in the selection of Provincial Civil Services (Judiciary) 2003 and Women Medical Officers (Allopathy), 2005. The inquiry also sought to know the assets of a few of them.
Vijay Pratap Singh Posted: Oct 02, 2008 at 0102 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

SC stays trial in Sohrabuddin case
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/SC-stays-trial-in-Sohrabuddin-case/368455
New Delhi, October 1 The Supreme Court on Tuesday ordered an interim stay on trial proceedings in the alleged fake encounter killing of Sohrabuddin Sheikh by the Gujarat Police. It posted the matter for further directions to the second week of November.
While ordering the stay, a bench of Justices Tarun Chatterjee and Aftab Alam took note of how Rubabuddin Sheikh, Sohrabuddin’s brother, and his family are under constant fear. The court, responding to a petition by Rubabuddin, directed the Madhya Pradesh Police to provide necessary protection to his family.
The bench, after a five-hour-long hearing, also ordered the secretary general of the apex court to seal all records pertaining to the proceedings pending before the City Sessions Court, Ahmedabad.
The directions followed submissions by Additional Solicitor General Gopal Subramaniam, who’s the amicus curiae in the case. He criticised the Gujarat Government for its attempts to scuttle the probe. Subramaniam blamed Inspector General of Police Geeta Johri for misleading the investigations to protect accused police officers.
Express news service Posted: Oct 02, 2008 at 0041 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

As SC raps, Centre says doctors can’t deny care to HIV+
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/As-SC-raps–Centre-says-doctors-can-t-deny-care-to-HIV-/368474
New Delhi, October 1 Doctors who refuse to treat HIV/ AIDS patients will be sternly dealt with, the Centre told the Supreme Court on Wednesday. However, during the hearing on a PIL related to the matter, the court observed that the Government is not doing enough to improve the public healthcare system.
During the hearing of a PIL highlighting apathetic treatment and lack of facilities for HIV/ AIDS patients across the country, the three-member Bench, headed by Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan, on Wednesday remarked, “In rural India, there are hardly any doctors. Even in a 50-bed hospital not a single doctor is available. It’s only on paper.”
As Additional Solicitor General Gopal Subramanium informed the court that the Government has recently asked all the state governments to improve healthcare facilities, and that primary health centres were working satisfactorily in rural areas of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu, the court shot back, “Go and check in any Government hospital in Delhi, Bihar and UP.”
Trying to convince the Bench about the ‘remedial’ measures taken at the highest level to deal with instances of refusal to persons living with HIV/ AIDS (PLHA) or non-availability of basic medicines or treatment for them, the Government counsel said all the states have been asked to implement the office memorandum sent to them recently. According to the office memorandum, “All doctors, nurses and hospital staff, whether in the public or private sector shall treat PLHAs in a professional and humane manner, treating them always with dignity and care. No doctor or nurse shall refuse to treat a PLHA on account of his/her positive status. In treating a PLHA there shall be no discrimination or stigma whatsoever.” It also suggested taking stringent steps against any doctor who refuses to treat any HIV/ AIDS patient.
Express news service Posted: Oct 02, 2008
www.indianexpress.com

SC appoints new technical member for Glivec case
http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/2008/10/02/stories/2008100252480100.htm
Mumbai, Oct. 1 All decks seem to have been finally cleared for the review of the rejection of Novartis’ patent on its cancer drug Glivec. The Supreme Court has appointed Dr P.C. Chakraborty, of the Patent Office in Kolkata, as technical member on the Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB) for the review of this case.
The appointment of the IPAB’s technical member had itself become a point of litigation between Novartis and Natco (also party to the case), side-tracking the actual review of the rejected Glivec patent.
The reason for Novartis’ concern was that the earlier technical member appointed to the IPAB, Mr S. Chandrasekaran, was the former Patent Controller under whom Novartis’ patent on Glivec had been rejected in the first place, in January 2006.
The new technical member Dr Chakraborty is Deputy Controller of Patents and Designs at the Kolkata Patent Office, and his name was selected from a list of 20 patent attorneys and 22 patent controllers that the Centre submitted to the apex court, a legal source handling the case told Business Line.
The court has also directed the IPAB to hear the issue on November 3, to decide other modalities of the case.
Thursday, Oct 02, 2008
P.T. Jyothi Datta
www.thehindubusinessline.com

Somalia hijacking: SC seeks report on steps taken by Centre
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/Somalia_hijacking_SC_seeks_report_on_steps_taken_by_Centre/articleshow/3551099.cms
NEW DELHI: A ray of hope has emerged for the kin of the Indian crew on foreign vessels — MT Stolt Valor hijacked by Somali pirates on September 15 and ‘Jupiter 6’ that went missing off the Namibian coast in 2005 — who have been complaining about the Centre’s inaction and indifference to their pleas. Relatives of the Indian crew of these two vessels alleged that they have been stonewalled by the Centre, which has all along refused to divulge whether or not steps were being taken to collect information about the whereabouts of the missing crew. No more. For, the SC has given a four-week deadline to Centre to answer the queries of the relatives, in addition to others framed by it. The searching queries include the action taken by the Centre against recruiters of Indian seamen and the steps taken to safeguard their interests. The SC said this question assumes significance since the Director General of Shipping (DGS) admitted to having received complaints about the failure of shipping companies and recruiting agents of Indian seafarers in reporting marine casualties involving them to the government and their family members. MT Stolt Valor, a chemical tanker with 18 Indian crew aboard, was hijacked by Somali pirates in the Gulf of Aden immediately after it crossed the Suez Canal on its way to Mumbai. ‘Jupiter 6’, a trawler with 13 crew, of which 10 were Indians, had disappeared after leaving Port Elizabeth on September 5, 2005. It was on the petition filed by the family members of Indian crew on ‘Jupiter 6’ that made SC embark on a inquiry about the state of alertness of Centre to meet exigencies arising from marine casualty situations.
2 Oct 2008, 0204 hrs IST, Dhananjay Mahapatra,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Gout, civic body get HC rap for ‘not caring’ for dyslexic students in their schools
http://www.expressindia.com/latest-news/gout-civic-body-get-hc-rap-for-not-caring-for-dyslexic-students-in-their-schools/368432/
New delhi, October 1 Bawa Aditya Singh, 27, is a manager with a restaurant. He is dyslexic. Singh is what he is today to a large extent because of the foresight of his mother Anjuli Bawa, who runs the country’s first online website ‘Action Dyslexia Delhi — Beyond Education’ to help parents of children with learning disability. But Singh is lucky that his mother probed deep enough to learn more about her son’s “fear of reading” — he was also the first student to get concessions from CBSE during his Board exams over a decade ago. But this is not the case for 22 lakh children in schools run by the Municipal Corporation of Delhi and the Delhi government.
On Wednesday, the government and MCD were left looking for answers when a High Court division bench of Chief Justice A P Shah and Justice S Muralidhar asked them if there was a prevalent mechanism to identify dyslexic children in government-run schools. The court found that the schools hardly kept any medical records of students.
“Dyslexia is difficult to identify unlike other disorders. Why are there no special or trained doctors to identify or help dyslexic students?” the Bench asked. “Imagine the state of these children if they are unable to cope with the mainstream.”
MCD runs 1,800 schools; the state government runs approximately another 1,000.
“MCD has 67 full-time doctors plus nurses and assistants available for its schools; what are they doing?” the Bench asked. The court directed both MCD and the government to submit a detailed report on various disabilities detected among students — “class-wise, school-wise”.
“One to two per cent children in every school in Delhi is severely dyslexic. Four to five per cent in every school has other learning disability,” Dr Roma Kumar, senior consultant and clinical psychologist with Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, said.
But she said it would be impossible to spot a dyslexic child before the age of six or seven.
Defending the government, counsel Najimi Waziri said, “We do have specially trained teachers focussed on integrating special children into the mainstream. There is also a Disability Commission for Delhi to devise special schemes for such children.”
Common symptoms of dyslexia* Seeing words in ‘mirror image’, or reverse image — C as D * Poor writing, spelling and numbering skills— 72 as 27* Introvert nature* Intolerant to critcism* Preference for company of younger children * Easily distracted and temperamental* IQ usually average or above-average
Krishnadas Rajagopal
Posted: Oct 02, 2008 at 0028 hrs IST
www.expressindia.com

HC raps Centre, says gays living in fear of prosecution
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/India/Gays_living_in_fear_of_prosecution_HC/articleshow/3550414.cms
NEW DELHI: Countering the Union government’s claim that homosexuality was against the order of nature, Delhi High Court on Wednesday posed some tough
questions to the Centre. Joining issue with the government for justifying retention of the penal provisions against homosexuality, HC demanded to know what material evidence it had for maintaining the ban. ‘‘What is that compelling state interest to continue with such a provision like Section 377 (carrying a punishment of up to life sentence),’’ a bench comprising Chief Justice A P Shah and Justice S Muralidhar asked, adding ‘‘Such people suffer from indignity and discrimination in the society.’’ The bench said that due to the penal provision, it is difficult for homosexuals to come out and seek treatment for HIV, which affects 8% of their population. ‘‘If there is a stringent law prescribing punishment up to life imprisonment, how do you expect MSMs (man having sex with man) to come forward and get treatment for HIV?’’ the bench asked. ‘‘People (gays) are living under fear of being prosecuted.’’ The government has argued that “gay sex is against the order of nature” and in such compelling circumstances, the state has to take the help of the law to maintain public morality.
2 Oct 2008, 0110 hrs IST,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Now Centre tells HC gay sex against nature’s order
http://www.indianexpress.com/news/Now-Centre-tells-HC-gay-sex-against–nature-s-order/368468
New Delhi, October 1 Even as the Health Minister vows to take up gay rights with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the Centre is still hanging strong in the Delhi High Court arguing that “homosexual sex is against the order of nature”. Additional Solicitor General P P Malhotra, who earlier told the court to “ignore” statements made by Union Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss, submitted in court that Section 377 of the IPC ought to prevail to “protect the human race”.
“The act such as intercourse between men, whether it causes harm or not to the public, is against nature. The legal provision should not be interfered with in order to protect the human order,” the ASG urged a Bench of Chief Justice A P Shah and Justice S Muralidhar.
Justice Muralidhar retorted to this with a question as to whether the Centre is sending a “wrong message” to the public against such people (men-having sex-with men). “You have widely made it known… your arguments have been widely reported that the Union of India finds MSMs against the order of nature. So, what message are you sending? Is your message to the public that not to co-exist with these people?” asked Justice Muralidhar.
Adding a word to his fellow judge’s comments, the Chief Justice, putting it more succinctly across to the ASG, told the latter that public morality is not enough to prove the “compelling interest” the Government has against decriminalising homosexuality.
Krishnadas Rajagopal Posted: Oct 02, 2008 at 0056 hrs IST
www.indianexpress.com

HC stays privatisation of 33 UP mills
http://www.business-standard.com/india/storypage.php?autono=336053
PIL says disinvestment is against several central and state laws.
The Allahabad High Court has stayed the privatisation of about 33 Uttar Pradesh Sugar Corporation mills till October 13, 2008.
Hearing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by Rajeev Kumar Mishra of Maharajganj district, a Division Bench comprising Justices Ashok Bhushan and Vinit Saran ordered that the third party right shall not be created till the next date of hearing on October 13.
The PIL had contended that the disinvestment move of the UP government was against several central and state laws. The petitioner also informed the court about the September 29 ordinance by the state in respect of the sale of the equity share of the sugar mills, which he termed was to legalise the illegal sale.
The petitioner contended that the privatisation move would finish off the sugarcane area in UP. He said agriculture should instead be promoted in the state. The court also allowed Mishra to amend his petition in the meantime to challenge the ordinance.
Further, the bench rejected the state argument that the petitioner had filed a ‘proxy petition’ on behalf of vested interests noting that he had a 100 acre holding and the local villagers had authorised him to file the petition on their behalf. In an earlier hearing on September 12, the court had struck down the name of UP Chief Minister Mayawati from the list of respondents.
The state government wants to private the sugar sector to bring about operational efficiency. Gammon India, Uflex and Chaddha group have submitted their financial bids for the mills, which were opened last evening.
Now, a committee headed but the chief secretary would decide on the fate of the bid. This would entail studying the valuation report of the consultants and taking into consideration other aspects.
“This process will take 3-4 days,” official sources on Wednesday Business Standard. Of the total 33 sugar corporation mills, 22 are in working condition, while only 17 of them had participated in the 2007-08 crushing season.
Besides, four of these sick units are under the purview of Board for Industrial and Financial Reconstruction (BIFR).
Virendra Singh Rawat / Lucknow October 02, 2008, 0:04 IST
www.business-standard.com

Centre faces tough questions in HC on homosexuality law http://www.ptinews.com/pti/ptisite.nsf/0/083ED8BA242F4C1F652574D500510366?OpenDocument
New Delhi, Oct 1 (PTI) The Centre today faced tough questions from the Delhi High Court for justifying retention of the penal provisions against homosexuality that allegedly subject gays to discrimination in society.”What is that compelling State interest to continue with such a provision like Section 377 (carrying a punishment of upto life sentence),” a bench comprising Chief Justice A P Shah and Justice S Muralidhar said adding “Such people suffer from indignity and discrimination in the society”.The Bench said that due to the penal provision, homosexuals are not coming out openly in the society for treatment of HIV which comprises 8 percent of their community.”If there is a stringent law prescribing punishment upto life imprisonment do you expect MSMs (man having sex with man) would come forward for their treatment of HIV,” the Bench observed adding “People (gays) are living under constant fear of being prosecuted.” The Government, however, contended that these problems could be easily tackled by educating these people and there is no need to scrap the provisions against gay sex.”Demand for legalising such acts is not the answer. People indulging in such acts do not come forward because of shyness but blame the government,” Additional Solicitor General P P Malhotra argued.Reacting sharply to Centre’s submission, the bench said “Why don’t you educate those people who go to prostitutes to prevent spread of HIV.” “How are you educating people to co-exist with people who are not like them. Are you telling them to view these people as doing things which are against the order of the nature,” it said, questioning the government on its mechanism to deal with health problems of gays. PTI
www.ptinews.com

HC raps Centre, says gays living in fear of prosecution
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Delhi_HC_to_Centre_Protect_gay_rights/articleshow/3550414.cms
NEW DELHI: Countering the Union government’s claim that homosexuality was against the order of nature, Delhi High Court on Wednesday posed some tough questions to the Centre. Joining issue with the government for justifying retention of the penal provisions against homosexuality, HC demanded to know what material evidence it had for maintaining the ban. ‘‘What is that compelling state interest to continue with such a provision like Section 377 (carrying a punishment of up to life sentence),’’ a bench comprising Chief Justice A P Shah and Justice S Muralidhar asked, adding ‘‘Such people suffer from indignity and discrimination in the society.’’ The bench said that due to the penal provision, it is difficult for homosexuals to come out and seek treatment for HIV, which affects 8% of their population. ‘‘If there is a stringent law prescribing punishment up to life imprisonment, how do you expect MSMs (man having sex with man) to come forward and get treatment for HIV?’’ the bench asked. ‘‘People (gays) are living under fear of being prosecuted.’’ The government has argued that “gay sex is against the order of nature” and in such compelling circumstances, the state has to take the help of the law to maintain public morality.
2 Oct 2008, 0110 hrs IST,TNN
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com

CJI for strict scrutiny of names for post of High Court judges
http://www.hindu.com/2008/10/01/stories/2008100159310100.htm
NEW DELHI: With a view to ensuring strict scrutiny of the 14 names sent by the Madras High Court for appointment of judges in the existing vacancies, Chief Justice of India K.G. Balakrishnan has called for more details in respect of each of them on a 25-point pro forma.
Following the CJI’s recommendation to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to initiate proceedings for the removal of Justice Soumitra Sen, Calcultta High Court Judge, a question arose as to how Mr. Sen was recommended for judgeship.
Subsequently, the CJI made it clear that in future there would be strict scrutiny of candidates. According to him, the search process should identify good practising lawyers, who had been meticulous and who displayed exemplary behaviour and dignified conduct in their profession.
The 25-point pro forma sent to each of the 14 candidates is a sequel to the CJI’s commitment to ensure that the selection process is not vitiated in any manner.
They 14 names are: R. Mala, Aruna Jagadeesan, G.M. Akbar Ali, T.S. Sivagnanam, Raja Elango, C.T. Selvam, T. Raja, M.M. Sundaresan, C.S. Karnan, Hari Paramanandam, N. Kirubakaran, R.S. Ramanathan, B. Rajendran and Doraiswamy.
Details sought in the pro forma include: number of years of practice indicating the places and courts of practice; field of specialisation – civil, criminal, constitutional, taxation, labour, company, services etc – with reported and unreported judgments of the Supreme Court and High Courts for the last five years in which he had argued independently; his/her association with any political party; position held in the bar association or Bar Council or in the government; whether member of any club; whether any case pending against him/her and whether there was prosecution or conviction; whether spouse or any blood relation is practising in the High Court; if so whether he/she can give consent for transfer to another High Court for two years; whether related to any of the High Court or Supreme Court judge and any proceeding pending in the Bar Council.
Wednesday, Oct 01, 2008
J. Venkatesan
www.hindu.com

Federal agency need of the hour, says CJI
http://news.in.msn.com/national/article.aspx?cp-documentid=1671814
New Delhi: As the country comes under frequent terror attacks, Chief Justice of India (CJI) K.G. Balakrishnan on Saturday too favoured setting up of a federal agency to deal with such organised crimes.
He suggested that states should sit together to sort out their differences on the issue.Speaking to reporters after inaugurating an exhibition The Trial of Bhagat Singh at the Supreme Court Museum, the CJI said it would help in better investigation of terror-related cases.“A federal agency would be good as in the inter-state crimes like terrorism one investigating agency could do a better work,” he said.Noting that state police faced problems in probing such cases, justice Balakrishnan pointed out that the CBI could not take over the investigation without consent of the state concerned.The CJI’s suggestion comes close on the heels of the M. Veerappa Moily headed Administrative Reforms Commission (ARC) report that recommended creation of a specialised division in the CBI to investigate terror offences.On introducing tough anti-terror law, he said it could be helpful in tackling terrorist activities but added: “A tough anti-terror law would only be successful if it embodies a mechanism to prevent its misuse.”Pointing out that India is signatories to various human rights conventions, the CJI said: “The problem with such laws are at the implementation level vis-a-vis human rights violations. A draconian law is likely to be misused.” He, however, said it was for Parliament to decide what type of law the country needed.
© Copyright 2008 HT Media Ltd. All rights reserved.
Sunday, September 28, 2008
http://news.in.msn.com

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