LEGAL NEWS 18.04.2009

HC seeks reply from Union, state govts
17 Apr 2009, 2320 hrs IST, TNN
PATNA: The Patna High Court on Friday directed the Union and state governments to file counter-affidavits to a PIL which alleged that they had not yet formulated national, state and district-level plans for disaster management as per provisions of the Disaster Management Act, 2005, a central Act. A division bench comprising Chief Justice J B Koshy and Justice Ravi Ranjan issued the directive while hearing the PIL of Chhaya Sarkar, an NGO. Petitioner’s counsel M P Gupta and Brajesh Kumar submitted that after the enactment of the Act, the state government constituted a Disaster Management Authority headed by the chief minister in 2007, and the authority held its first meeting only after 10 months when the worst ever Kosi floods struck five districts of the state wreaking havoc. The PIL had been filed after the Kosi floods in 2008.

HC relief for 67 hawkers displaced by DDA
18 Apr 2009, 0335 hrs IST, TNN
NEW DELHI: In a relief to a group of hawkers at the Nehru Place district centre, the Delhi High Court on Friday asked the DDA to allow 67 hawkers, who were displaced by the authority during work for beautification of the area, to operate their business. HC pulled up the agency for evicting them without proper notice. A division bench of chief justice A P Shah and justice Sanjiv Khanna noted that “there was no need for such haste and hurry on the part of DDA.” At the same time, HC left it open to DDA to go ahead with the project for development of the Nehru Centre saying “DDA is directed to continue with the pilot project. 67 hawkers will be permitted to hawk in the area which was demarcated by DDA prior to their removal on April 19, 2008.” The court said it was open to the agency to declare Nehru Place as a “no hawker area” and demarcate vending and non-vending areas. The court order came on a PIL filed by NGO Manushi Sansthan contending that DDA had allowed the 67 pavement sellers to operate after giving them the approval. Their lawyer Geeta Luthra said the DDA removed them in April last year without any notice or relocating them to alternative sites on the ground of developmental work for beautification of Nehru Place. The NGO had argued before HC that hawking was allowed in Nehru Place district centre as per the Master Plan of Delhi 2010. It opposed the contention of DDA that MCD has identified Nehru Place as non-hawkers’ zone in its list due to which the housing body has cleared the encroachment to decongest the area.

Supreme Court rejects plea to make voting compulsory
18 Apr 2009, 0107 hrs IST, Dhananjay Mahapatra, TNN
NEW DELHI: How seriously a voter takes his statutory right to exercise his franchise, so vital to choose the government, is best left to him, said the Supreme Court on Friday refusing a plea to making voting compulsory. The strenuous attempt of Atul Sarode, a cardiologist by profession, failed to convince a Bench comprising Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan and Justice P Sathasivam that the low percentage of voting recorded during polls in the recent past meant that the elected government did not represent the majority. “Each voter must be forced to vote,” his counsel argued. “But how do you enforce compulsory voting by voters? asked the Bench probably hearing such a plea for the first time, though a pending PIL is seeking a right for the voter to cast a negative vote saying none of the candidates in the fray were worth his vote. The response shocked the Bench, for the counsel suggested that those who do not vote could face disconnection of their electricity and water supplies or be even saddled with a fine. The Bench said: “We are not agreeable to your suggestion that electricity and water connection should be cut if anyone does not vote. These are inhuman methods to make a voter go to the polling booth.” Having failed to convince the Bench about the modus operandi to make compulsory voting workable, the petitioner said there were as many as 32 countries where adults must cast their vote. But, even in most of the countries where voting is compulsory, it is not mandatory for persons over the age of 70 years. However, he could not produce any data — either the constitution or the statute — relating to the concerned countries where voting is compulsory. The petitioner said unless such a measure was employed in India, the country would continue to be governed by those getting elected without even securing majority support of the electorate. The Bench said the voting percentage in elections in the recent past has registered a healthy increase and cited the case of Kerala and other states where more than 80% voting had been recorded.

PIL challenges steep hike in fees of private schools across UP
17 Apr 2009, 2043 hrs IST, PTI
ALLAHABAD: A Noida-based organization has filed a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the Allahabad High Court against steep hike in fees of private schools affiliated with CBSE or ICSE across Uttar Pradesh. A Division Bench comprising Chief Justice Chandramauli Kumar Prasad and Justice Dilip deferred hearing on the PIL filed by Noida Guardians’ Association till May 08 next. The PIL has alleged the hike in fees was “arbitrary” and deprived children of their fundamental right to education

HC dismisses PIL on Indian money stashed in “tax havens”
Published: April 17,2009

Allahabad , April 17 The Allahabad High Court today dismissed a Public Interest Litigation seeking directions to the government of India for doing the needful with regard to the unaccounted money allegedly stashed in Swiss Banks and other”tax havens”abroad.
A Division Bench comprising Chief Justice Chandramauli Kumar Prasad and Justice Dilip Gupta, while dismissing the PIL filed by two city-based organisations People&aposs Political Front and Azadi Bachao Andolan, also slapped the petitioners with a cost of Rs 5,000 for”wasting the court&aposs time with frivolous litigations”.
The PIL had also demanded that the correspondence BJP leader L K Advani recently claimed to have had with the Prime Minister in the matter be made public and that once it was ascertained who were the people to have deposited unaccounted money in the foreign banks, they be penalised in accordance with law.
Source: PTI

Allahabad HC asks EC to file counter affidavit
The Allahabad High Court asked the Election Commission (EC) and its Uttar Pradesh unit to seek information and if necessary file a counter affidavit in a PIL on deployment of teachers of primary and other schools on poll duty.The counsel, appearing for the EC, stated before the Court that the Commission will abide by the Supreme Court ruling in EC vs St. Mary school, where it had directed that all teaching staff shall be put on duties of roll revision and election work only on holidays and non-teaching days.The counsel, who appeared in the High Court, gave an undertaking that the Supreme Court decision will be complied with in the election. The SC had also directed that teachers should not ordinarily be put on duty on teaching days and within teaching hours. The apex court had held that putting non-teaching staff on duty, however, is permissible in law.The PIL had been filed by Shikshadaan Diksha Foundation. The order was passed by the Addition Bench comprising Justices S R Alam and Rajesh Kumar. The Court will hear this case on April 17. UNI

Indians worried as Britain drags its feet on court orders
Hasan Suroor
‘Insensitivity to plight of skilled migrants’
Honour commitments under HSMP: court
Unlawful to apply new rules retrospectively
LONDON: Many of the thousands of Indian workers, who came to Britain under the Highly-Skilled Migrant Programme (HSMP), fear deportation because, they allege, that the government is dragging its feet over implementing court orders exempting them from new immigration rules.
Some are already reported to have been refused further leave to stay in Britain and threatened with deportation.
Ashish Vijayan, an orthopaedic surgeon, said his application for visa extension was turned down. He said he, his wife and their 14-month-old were told that if they did not leave they would be “removed to India.”
The surgeon said he was “shocked” that he had been refused extension despite the recent High Court ruling that it would be “unlawful” to apply the new rules retrospectively. Last week, the court directed the government to honour its original commitments under the HSMP as, in its opinion, there was not “sufficient public interest” to justify a departure. The HSMP Forum, which has been campaigning for the rights of Indian immigrants, accused the Home Office of flouting the court orders and said it amounted to contempt.
“The Home Secretary is not only acting unlawfully, but to paraphrase the court, displaying a disturbing degree of insensitivity to the plight of highly skilled migrants affected by these unlawful policies,” said forum executive director Amit Kapadia.
The row centres on the migrants’ right to settle in Britain. Under the original scheme, highly-skilled migrants could claim residency after four years. Later, the requirement was raised to five years and is being sought to be applied retrospectively. The High Court upheld that the migrants should continue to be governed by old rules.
The Home Office said: “This case was about an old set of rules that have been swept away by our new points based system. We believed we had fully implemented the previous Judge’s findings relating to the changes we made to the HSMP in 2006. The High Court took a different view and we accept its findings. We will now carefully consider the judgment before publishing our remedies.”

A rape-cum-murder convict invites apex court’s wrath
Apr 17th, 2009 By Sindh Today
New Delhi, April 17 (IANS) A Tamil Nadu resident, sentenced to life in jail for raping his brother’s wife and then burning her alive along with her 13-month-old child to screen his horrendous crime, Friday ended up inviting the Supreme Court’s wrath for challenging his conviction.
Appalled by the barbarity of Salem resident Kumar’s crime, a bench of Justice Markandey Katju and Justice V.S. Sirpurkar asked him: “Why should you not be given death penalty instead?”
The bench also expressed its ire against the state government for not appealing against the Madras High Court ruling that confirmed the life term imposed on Kumar by the trial court, and not seeking enhancement of his sentence.
The bench through a notice also asked the state government as to why Kumar’s sentence should not be enhanced to death penalty.
Endorsing life term to Kumar, the Madras High Court had observed: “Criminal trials seldom bring before us such persons as Kumar, accused of such acts of quivering barbarity.”
“One such act of barbarity is the offence of rape, which was more in tune with tribal society and calls for stringent punishment. This case is more dreadful as the offence of rape was committed by the accused on his own sister-in-law,” said the high court.
“And the situation turned horrendous as the accused to screen his crime burnt alive not merely his sister-in-law but her innocent child,” the high court had observed.
The rape and the two murders date back to India’s Independence Day in 2003, when Kumar made advances towards his sister-in-law.
But when she spurned him, he hit her with a kitchen utensil and subsequently raped her when she was semiconscious.
Later, he poured kerosene on her and her innocent daughter and set them ablaze.
In fact, before burning them alive, Kumar also forced his sister-in-law to call up her brother and demand money from him, to make the case look like as if she had committed suicide owing to harassment for dowry demand.

Bench refuses to quash TCs
Mohamed Imranullah S.
MADURAI: The Madras High Court Bench here on Friday refused to quash transfer certificates issued to three engineering students for consuming liquor inside their college premises in Sivaganga district on January 4.
Dismissing their writ petitions by a common judgement, Justice S. Manikumar said this was not a case where the students had been victimised by the college management and therefore the court should lend its arm to save them.
Any misplaced sympathy for the petitioners would tantamount to curtailing the powers of the educational institution to have an effective control over students who indulge in serious acts of misconduct.
The Judge pointed out that two out of the three students were in the habit of committing acts of indiscipline and tendering apology. The students were hauled up for consuming liquor in the college hostel last year. Then, they were suspended from the institution for a brief period. In the same year, they were also punished for assaulting one of their college mates.
Despite being warned adequately, the students, on January 4, entered into a quarrel with a woman employee in the hostel mess in an inebriated mood. Their mobile phones, seized by two deputy wardens, contained obscene pictures.
A seven-member enquiry committee headed by the Principal recommended dismissal of the students. However, acceding to their parents’ request, the authorities decided to issue transfer certificates (TC) without any adverse remarks.
After obtaining the TCs, the students challenged it on the ground that the officials coerced their parents to put their signatures in blank papers and used those documents to throw them out of the college.
Rejecting petitioners’ contention, the Judge said that it was not difficult to visualise that the petitioners had filed the writ petitions after accepting the transfer certificates because of the fear of being rusticated from the college for their misconduct.

Delhi HC restrains channels from using IPL cheergirl footage
Posted: Apr 17, 2009 at 1913 hrs IST
New Delhi: The Delhi High Court restrained private television news channels ‘Aaj Tak’ and ‘Headlines Today’ from telecasting entertainment footage like cheer girls in action during the IPL matches starting on Saturday in South Africa.
The court in an interim order allowed the two channels to telecast three-and-a-half minute of deferred live visuals of a match but restrained it from using the entertainment footage.
The official broadcaster of IPL Sony Entertainment and the news channels came to an agreement on using the deferred clips of a match in the first 10 days of the league.
“Defendant (the news channels) would have permission of telecasting three-a-and half minute for the cricket match… but would not be entitled to use any entertainment footage,” Justice S N Aggarwal.
Senior Advocate AS Chandiok, appearing for Sony Entertainment, pleaded that such an arrangement should be binding on all news organisations.
But the court turned down the contention as other news organisations were not made party in the case by the Sony group.
The court modified its previous order in which it had, on April 1, restrained the channel from broadcasting footage of a match beyond 30 seconds without permission of MSM Satellite (Singapore) PTE Ltd, a part of Sony Entertainment, which has got the telecast rights for these matches.

NHRC takes suo-motu notice of media reports on Delhi student’s death
April 17th, 2009
NEW DELHI – The National Human Rights Commission has taken suo-motu cognizance of distressing news reports alleging that an 11 year old student Shanno Khan of M.C.D. Girls Primary School, Narela, had to be admitted to a hospital following punishment meted to her by the school teacher.
The Commission has said that the contents of the reports raise serious issues of human rights violation of the school girl and has asked the Commissioner, Municipal Corporation Delhi, to send factual report within four weeks. (ANI)

Recruitment of constables in ’89Punjab exceeded reservation: HC
Saurabh MalikTribune News Service
Chandigarh, April 17A 1989 case challenging the selections of constables has culminated with the Punjab and Haryana High Court holding that the state of Punjab and other respondents “could not have reserved for more than 50 per cent of the posts”.
The high court has ruled 50 per cent ceiling included the posts in “carry forward position”. Justice MM Kumar also ruled the rights of two general category candidates could not be denied to them, as they were found to be in the “zone of consideration, having been selected at serial numbers 100 and 96 out of 101 posts meant for general category”.
In a bunch of two petitions, directions were sought for quashing the selection of constables belonging to Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes and backward classes, beyond 25 per cent reservation in accordance with an advertisement.
Directions were also sought to consider the petitioners for appointment as constables on the basis of general category merit list.
Issued on June 28, 1989, the ad had invited applications for direct recruitment of constables/driver constables in the districts of Patiala, Ludhiana, Sangrur and Ropar. It was provided in the advertisement that 25 per cent of the posts would be reserved for Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes, 14 per cent for ex-servicemen or their dependents, 5 per cent for backward classes and 1 per cent for children/grand children of freedom fighters.
The remaining 55 per cent were kept apart for the general category. The name of petitioner Bhupinder Singh figured at 95 and petitioner Sukhwinder Singh at 100. Third petitioner, also named Sukhwinder Singh, was at 96 on the merit list.
The petitioners felt aggrieved by Sangrur senior superintendent of police’s action of recruiting just 82 candidates from the general category and same number of candidates from the Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribe category, whereas the total number of posts were 202.
The respondents explained out of 202 posts, 38 were kept apart to fill up the backlog vacancies. As such, only 164 posts for current recruitment were available. During the course of hearing, it was pointed out that Bhupinder Singh was found medically unfit.
After hearing the arguments, Justice Kumar ruled the case of the other two petitioners was squarely covered by the nine-Judge Constitution Bench judgment of the SC and “the respondents could not have reserved for more than 50 per cent of the posts, which was to include even the posts in carry forward position”.

Malta Boat TragedyTwo sentenced to 30 years in jail
Our Correspondent
Hoshiarpur, April 17With the efforts of the Malta Boat Tragedy Probe Mission (MBTPM), a court in Italy has sentenced Trab Ahmed Sheikh and Jarvodakiz, two members of a gang of international human traffickers who were involved in the Malta Boat Tragedy, to 30 years of imprisonment.
In a press statement here today, chairman, MBTPM, Balwant Singh Khera stated that Trab, who belonged to Pakistan, was married to a woman from Malta. He was running a restaurant at Malta, while Jarvodakiz was a resident of Lebanon. They had purchased a ship used in World War II to ferry passengers.
As many as 565 passengers of a number of countries, including India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, boarded the ship from Malta shore on December 25, 1996, for Italy. But the ship sank the same night, killing 290 passengers.
The court has held the two responsible for the tragedy and for not providing any compensation to the kin of the victims.
It may be recalled that the court had already sentenced captain of the ship Yusaf Alhalal to 30 years of imprisonment and ordered that compensation be paid to the families of the victims.
A case has already been filed by the CBI against 27 Indians accused in this tragedy in the Tees Hazari court of Metropolitan Magistrate, Delhi.
Responding to the demand for speeding up the case, the Delhi High Court had ordered that proceedings should be held daily. The first phase of the case would be heard daily from April 23 and is expected to be completed before May 15, 2009.
Out of the accused, two were police officers.

MLA taxes
Chandigarh, April 17With the response from the Union of India awaited on the issue of payment of Punjab Vidhan Sabha member’s income tax from the state exchequer, the Bench of Justice MM Kumar and Justice HS Bhalla fixed May 12 as the date for further hearing.
On the previous date of hearing, both the Punjab government and the Vidhan Sabha had replied, saying they were merely following the practice in force at the Centre. — TNS

Palwal killingHC issues notice to CBI Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, April 17Just over a fortnight after a young Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) leader was gunned down on March 30 by car borne assailants, the Punjab and Haryana High Court today issued notice of motion to the state of Haryana and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on a petition seeking probe by the premier investigating agency.
In a petition placed before Justice Rajive Bhalla, victim Neeraj’s uncle Mahavir of Mohalla Kanugo submitted his nephew was shot by assailants, including a Faridabad politician.
The petitioner identified two other assailants, but alleged complete police inaction, as the accused enjoyed political clout.
After preliminary hearing, Justice Bhalla issued notices for May 20.

7-year jail for drug peddler
Tribune News Service
Dharamsala, April 17Kangra Additional District and Sessions Judge BL Soni today sentenced narcotic dealer Roshan Lal to seven years of rigorous imprisonment.
A fine of Rs 50,000 has also been imposed on the accused. In case of default in payment of fine the accused would have to serve one more year in the jail.
Deputy district attorney BK Marwaha said the police caught Roshan Lal, a resident of Nelwah village in the Indora area of Kangra district, on July 16, 2006, on a tip-off that he was bringing poppy husk into the district.
The police intercepted Roshan in a naka near his village. On seeing the police, hetried to flee.
The accused was found carrying 114.5 kg of poppy husk in a bag on his scooter. During the proceeding of the case 14 witnesses disposed off against the accused.

SC frowns upon strictures against lower judiciary
R SedhuramanLegal Correspondent
New Delhi, April 17The Supreme Court has advised high courts to avoid passing strictures against lower judicial officers who “mostly work under a charged atmosphere and are constantly under psychological pressure”.
Observing that such officers did not enjoy the benefits which were available to the higher courts, a Bench comprising Chief Justice KG Balakrishnan and Justice P Sathasivam said that in view of this “remarks/observations and strictures are to be avoided.”
Expunging the “offending remarks” made by the Delhi High Court against Special Judge (NDPS) Parkash Singh Teji, the apex court said strictures should be avoided particularly if the officer had no occasion to put forth his reasoning.
Remanding a case back to the trial court on July 6, 2006, the HC had remarked that the learned Judge who passed the impugned judgment and decree “need be careful in future, rather than adopting a hasty, slip shod and perfunctory approach”.
The affected Judge challenged it in the Supreme Court, stating that by making such remarks behind his back, the HC failed to appreciate certain relevant facts. It was pointed out that the suit that was disposed of on December 19, 2005 had been filed in 1984.
Whatever mistake the HC had pointed out was “neither deliberate nor intentional”. He also highlighted that the HC failed to appreciate that the statement of prosecution witnesses was attached with the order sheet, but it was not arranged or placed where it should have been placed as per Rules 8 and 9 of the Delhi High Court (Original Side) Rules, 1967.
“Judicial restraint and discipline are as necessary to the orderly administration of justice as they are to the effectiveness of the Army,” the Bench said in the judgment, written by Justice Sathasivam.
The court pointed out that higher courts everyday came across orders of the lower courts which were not justified either in law or in fact and modified them or set them aside.

HC asks CTC to pay interest
KOLKATA, April 17: Mr Justice Dipankar Dutta of Calcutta High Court today directed Calcutta Tram Company to pay the interest on the revised salary arrears of its employees from 1997 till date within 12 weeks. The court further directed the CTC to calculate the arrears interest with a break-up in terms of a memorandum of the state transport department in this matter which was also adopted by the CTC. In terms of the state government memorandum which was adopted by the CTC, the employees should have been paid the arrears interest, Mr Arun Maity and Ms Kaberi Sengupta submitted. Some of the employees have retired, but are yet to get arrears, it was further submitted. This contention was accepted by the CTC and state government counsel. n SNS

Court grants bail to BJP nominee Ashok Sahu
Special Correspondent
BHUBANESWAR: A court at Phulbani on Friday granted bail to Ashok Sahu, Bharatiya Janata Party’s nominee for the Kandhamal Lok Sabha seat in Orissa.
Kandhamal District and Sessions Judge ordered Mr. Sahu’s release on his furnishing a bond for Rs. 10,000 and a surety for a like amount.
Mr. Sahu was lodged in the G. Udayagiri jail following his arrest. He, however, could not be released immediately due to the non-furnishing of papers. Mr. Sahu was arrested on April 14 following the filing of a case against him for allegedly making an inflammatory speech at an election rally on April 5.

State files report on elephant conservation
Staff Reporter

Court to monitor conservation programmes
State proposes action plan to protect wildlife
BANGALORE: The Karnataka High Court on Friday indicated that it would constitute a committee under the chairmanship of the Member-Secretary of the Karnataka State Legal Services Authority (KSLSA) to monitor elephant conservation programmes in the State.
A Division Bench comprising Chief Justice P.D. Dinakaran and Justice V.G. Sabhahit made this oral observation when it was dealing with a suo motu public interest litigation (PIL) petition on elephant deaths in Karnataka.
When the matter came up, the State filed a report on “Comprehensive Action Plan for the Conservation of Elephants and other Wildlife in the State.” It said it was fully committed to the conservation of elephants and other wildlife and that it had proposed a time-bound action plan as per the directions of the Supreme Court to protect wildlife.
It said a Wildlife Advisory Board was constituted in 2006 under the chairmanship of the Chief Minister. The board was reconstituted in March 2009 and a meeting would be convened shortly. It said honorary wildlife wardens had already been appointed.
Besides, final notification had already been issued for acquisition of land for five national parks and 21 wildlife sanctuaries. It said so far no land in protected areas had been denotified.
The report said 82,688 cattle were immunised in 2008-09 to prevent outbreak of communicable diseases among wildlife.
It as per the directions of the Supreme Court, transfer of land within a sanctuary had been prohibited for the next 50 years, except by way of succession. It said several other steps such as setting up of anti-poaching camps and elephant scaring camps, constructing barriers, special force for tiger protection, employment of tribal people and inter-State border meetings had been taken up.

HC directs college to admit students
Staff Reporter
BANGALORE: The Karnataka High Court on Friday directed the Yenepoya Dental College to admit students selected under Government quota for the postgraduate (PG) dental course for this academic year.
Justice Mohan Shantangouder passed the order on petitions filed by five students, including Ganesh Chinathan, Ajay Prasad Hrishi, Kudalkar Mithun, Mritunjaya Kumar, and Sandeep Ramanath Jithuni, who had challenged the refusal by the institution to admit them.
The petitioners said that they had graduated from medical and dental colleges and had appeared for the PGCET and got selected. Although they were allotted the Yenepoya Dental College, they were refused admission stating that the institution had now become a deemed university.
Justice Shantangouder allowed the petitions and in an interim order, directed the college to admit the students.
Notice to MRPL School
Justice Mohan Shantangouder ordered issue of notices to the Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd. School in Mangalore and other respondents on a petition by the MRPL School All Parents’ Coordination Committee for increasing the school fee for the current year by nearly 100 per cent. The petitioners said that the school was started in 1995-96 and it had 1,000 students. The school was affiliated to the Central Board of Secondary Education, they said.

HC verdicts on Net
BANGALORE: The Karnataka High Court on Friday put on the Net several judgments.
The verdicts can be accessed at Only judgments that are released are hosted on the site. These judgments are water-marked and can only be used for references.

Centre to pay 50,000 for challenging CIC
Staff Reporter
NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court has imposed a fine of Rs.50,000 on the Centre for challenging a Central Information Commission order slapping on it a fine of Rs.5,000 for unexplained delay on the part of the Ghaziabad Regional Passport Officer in issuing a passport to an applicant three years ago.
Ajay Kumar Jain of Aligarh had filed an application for a passport in 2006. When after a wait of about one-and-a-half years he approached the Passport Office to enquire about the status of his application, the officer concerned told him to visit the departmental website to know it.
The website showed that the mandatory police verification had been completed and the passport would be issued within a week. But the applicant did not get it.
He once again approached the Passport Office with his complaint. This time round, he was asked to provide two samples of his signature to process his application.
However, instead of providing his signature samples, Mr. Jain filed an application before the Public Information Officer (PIO) of the Passport Office seeking information pertaining to his passport application. The PIO failed to provide the details sought by the applicant. Thereafter he moved the Central Information Commission seeking a direction to the Passport Office to make all the relevant documents to him.
The CIC in its May 15 order last year allowed his pleas. It imposed a fine of Rs.5,000 on the Passport Office and asked it to conduct an inquiry into the circumstances which led to the delay in issuing a passport to the applicant.
The Centre challenged the CIC order on the ground that it did not have the power to ask the Passport Office to conduct an inquiry into the delay in issuance of the passport as well as impose a fine. But Justice S. Ravindra Bhat dismissed the Centre’s plea.

HC orders cops to pay for illegal detention
18 Apr 2009, 0311 hrs IST, Shibu Thomas, TNN
MUMBAI: Navi Mumbai police commissioner Ramrao Wagh on Friday apologized to the Bombay high court for detaining a resident of the area for nine months on the basis of 24 false cases. Not satisfied with only a “sorry’’ from Wagh, the division bench of Justice Ranjana Desai and Justice Rajesh Ketkar said that prima facie it was a case of “gross negligence’’, and asked the Maharashtra government to pay Rs 10,000 as compensation to the detainee, Pawan Arora. This is the first time in the history of criminal justice in the state that compensation has been awarded in a detention case, as the stringent law gives “immunity’’ to police who approve such orders. “The entire police department has to realize that you cannot sit in your chambers and churn out detention orders,’’ thundered Justice Desai. “A person cannot be deprived of his liberty without trial in a lighthearted manner. Preventive detention orders are drastic laws and have to be used with care and circumspection.’’ The judges made it clear that the order of compensation should not be treated as a precedent, but was meant for the “peculiar’’ facts of the case. Wagh, who was present in court, told the judges that he had acted “in good faith’’, but passed the buck to his juniors, saying that he had relied on the documents prepared by subordinates. He further said departmental action had been initiated against the officers concerned, namely senior inspector S Dubal and inspector Tanaji Patil, then attached to the APMC police station. The judges were not convinced. “A detaining authority cannot abdicate his responsibility and rely only on his subordinates,’’ said the judges. During the last hearing of the case, another bench of the court had taken away all Wagh’s powers to pass detention orders. On Friday, the court restored those powers, but asked him to be careful in future. Wagh had ordered Arora’s detention on May 16, 2008, under the Maharashtra Prevention of Dangerous Activities of Slumlords, Bootleggers, Drug Offenders and Dangerous Persons Act (MPDA). The order cited 28 cases allegedly filed against Arora to justify the decision. Nine months later, on January 23, 2009, the HC quashed the detention order after it found that 24 of those cases did not involve Arora at all. The court said that though Arora had a criminal past, it was wrong of the police to put him behind bars on the basis of false cases. Last month, Arora moved the HC seeking Rs 2 lakh as compensation. The HC has now asked the state to circulate its order to the entire police machinery in Maharashtra.

HC quashes 13 detention orders in 3 months
18 Apr 2009, 0242 hrs IST, Shibu Thomas, TNN
MUMBAI: Even as the Maharashtra government proposes to put movie pirates behind bars under draconian detention laws, the Bombay high court has quashed 13 such orders in the past three months. Ruling that “liberty” is one of the foremost fundamental rights of a citizen, the court sounded a note of caution to the police and top bureaucrats against passing such detention orders in a “routine” manner. Under the special detention laws, a person can be held without bail for months together. “The right to liberty is the most cherished right of citizens of this country. The Constitution provides that nobody shall be deprived of his life and liberty, except according to procedure established by the law,” said a division bench of Justice Bilal Nazki and Justice A R Joshi recently, while quashing the order of police commissioner Hassan Gafoor to detain a Govandi resident. “In cases of preventive detention, a man is deprived of his liberty without any charges being levelled against him. Since it is an exception to the rule of liberty, courts have been strict in examining whether this liberty is being deprived of after following procedure established by law,” the court said. The judges reminded the state authorities that with power, come responsibilities. “The power to detain a person has been given to the government under different statutes and even to different high ranking officials. They muct understand that they have an exceptional and extraordinary power and they should not deprive people of their liberties in a routine manner,” said the judges. Recently, while hearing another case, the high court, in an interim order, restrained Navi Mumbai police commissioner from passing any further orders to detain people. Criminal laws, such as the Indian Penal Code, require a person who is arrested to be produced before a magistrate within 24 hours. A special class of detention laws__the Conservation of Foreign Exchange and Prevention of Smuggling Activities Act (COFEPOSA) and the Maharashtra Prevention of Dangerous Activities of Slumlords, Bootleggers, Drug-Offenders and Dangerous Persons Act (MPDA)__allow the government to put a person behind the bars for up to a year. The detenue can represent his case before an advisory board, but once the order is confirmed, there is no provision for appeal. The option exercised by many is to file a case in the high court, but this, say lawyers, is a time-consuming process. The 13 cases Date Accused Law used Who passed the order Reason for quashing *March 6 Sanjay Salunkhe (Thane) COFEPOSA Principal secy Anna Dani Non- application of mind *March 2 Karima Shah (Ghatkopar) MPDA Commissioner Hassan Gafoor Documents not provided *Feb 26 Md Khan (Govandi) MPDA Hassan Gafoor Grounds for detention not disclosed in time *Feb 20 Nilesh Chodankar (Malad) MPDA Hassan Gafoor Doubts over in-camera statements of witnesses *Feb 13 Mahesh Shah (Bhiwandi) COFEPOSA Chandra Iyengar Delay in issuing order *Feb 13 N Harchandani (Ulhasnaga) COFEPOSA Anna Dani Unexplained delay *Feb 2 Papa Rajan Nair (Sion) MPDA D N Jadhav Accused was in jail at the time of detention *Jan 30 Sharad Bhoite (Nerul) COFEPOSA Anna Dani Retraction of confession disregarded *Jan 30 Parvez Shaikh (Koperkhairne) COFEPOSA Anna Dani Non-application of mind *Jan 27 Javed Ahmed (Madanpura) COFEPOSA Anna Dani Delay in passing the order *Jan 23 Pawan Arora (Navi Mumbai) MPDA Ramrao Wagh Detention based on 24 false cases *Jan 16 Girish Shah (Borivli) COFEPOSA Anna dani Retraction of confession disregarded *Jan 16 Shailesh Mane (Malad) MPDA D N Jadhav Non-application of mind

Respond to Correa’s report on Games complex, SC tells DDA
18 Apr 2009, 0329 hrs IST, TNN
NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Friday sought the Delhi Development Authority’s response to the stinging report of renowned architect Charles Correa, who had faulted the authorities for choosing the Siri Fort forest area as the site for constructing basketball and squash courts for the 2010 Commonwealth Games. Arguing before a Bench comprising Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan and Justices Arijit Pasayat and S H Kapadia, amicus curiae Harish Salve said this report coupled with the earlier one from the Central Empowered Committee leaves no room for doubt that hundreds of very old trees were mindlessly cut when DDA could have built the sports facilities at some other place. When he pressed for a stay on the construction till further orders, additional solicitor general Amarendra Saran said every possible clearance for the Commonwealth Games project was taken before the commencement of work. The Bench asked DDA to put their response in writing and posted the matter for further hearing on April 27. Correa had said: “The site is not an appropriate location for such a project. It is far from Metro station, and furthermore has involved savage cutting down of a humongous number of trees, in what can only be described as wilful and heartless.” Correa was entrusted the task by the Supreme Court, with DDA’s consent, after the CEC gave a stinging report against the complex and suggested imposition of Rs 5 crore fine for illegal felling of trees. After inspecting the site and pinpointing the irregularities and faults, Correa said shifting the newly built sports complex, as suggested by CEC, was the best solution. Moreover, the SC should lay down some guidelines that would ensure such blunders do not happen in future. But if, as DDA claims, it was too late for relocating the sports complex to a new venue, then it should be asked to pay a penalty much more than Rs 5 crore suggested by CEC. “The fine of Rs 5 crore suggested by CEC appears to be far too little. A much larger penalty needs to be imposed on DDA, and responsibility be fixed on those individuals who participated in the decisions that brought this calamity about. This is crucial, if we want to ensure that such a crisis does not arise again in the future of our National Capital,” he had said.

Fee hike rollback: Schools move HC
18 Apr 2009, 0334 hrs IST, TNN
NEW DELHI: The tussle between schools and parents continues. Even as parents continue to protest against the fee hike on Friday, the School Action Committee (SAC) has filed a petition against the government in the Delhi High Court. The action committee for the private unaided schools has sought a stay on the order of the government dated April 15 directing the schools to roll back their fee hike if it was not done in consultation with the Parent Teachers Association. D K Bedi, secretary, SAC and principal, Apeejay School, Pitampura, said, “We have filed a petition in HC against the latest notice issued by the government as it is not justified. If one school flouts rules, how can the government punish all the schools with such an order?” He added, “We expect the hearing to come up on Monday. However, how could the government issue another order when the fee hike matter was already sub-judice?” SAC and Delhi Abhibhavak Sangh had earlier filed a petition in HC against the government’s order dated February 11. Bedi said that consulting all the parents for hiking the fees was not practical and the managing committee of the school already had parents representatives. Meanwhile, parents have taken it on themselves to reign in the schools. Protesting the hike, parents of students from different schools in Vikaspuri blocked the traffic on outer ring road during the morning rush hour on Friday. This time, more than 50 schoolchildren also skipped schools to join their parents in the protest. Upendra, general secretary, West Delhi Parents Association, said, “Parents of students from Brain International School, K R Mangalam World School, Mamta Modern School and others came forward with their children to protest. We had blocked the road for just 15 minutes so that the commuters didn’t have much problem.” The parents then submitted an application to the deputy director, education in Vikaspuri. “We were also protesting against the way the schools ignored and eluded the parents on the fee hike issue,” Upendra said.

Schools openly flout HC ban on punishment
18 Apr 2009, 0356 hrs IST, TNN
NEW DELHI: The death of 11-year-old Shanno Khan has again raised questions about the implementation of the ban imposed on corporal punishment by the Delhi High Court in 2001. Calling corporal punishment unconstitutional, the HC banned it in city schools on December 1, 2000, holding that children could not be subjected to any kind of physical violence in the name of education. It said: “Life is protected against cruelty, physical and mental violence, injury or abuse, exploitation, including sexual abuse. All these rights are available to the child and he cannot be deprived of the same just because he is small.” According to Shanta Sinha, chairperson of National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR), amendments to the Indian Penal Code (IPC) is a must. She said there are provisions in IPC which contradict protection of child rights and protect adults who physically punish youngsters. “Section 88 of the IPC gives protection to parents, guardians, adults and other persons to physically punish the children if it is `in the best intention’, while section 89 gives indemnity for acts committed against children below the age of 12 years.” Meanwhile, reacting to the minor’s death, women and child development minister Renuka Choudhary described the incident as a “collective failure”. She added, “It is not just enough to bring in laws. There needs to be a comprehensive change of mindset. Laws are there and the teacher will be punished according to it, but society should take responsibility.” But despite best intentions, legislation or schemes related to children have been given short shrift. Stringent guidelines issued by NCPCR are ignored as they are not supported or enforceable by law. In fact, as per guidelines laid down by the commission, corporal punishment includes slapping, rap on the knuckles, kneeling for hours, running in school grounds, hitting with a scale, pinching and being locked in a classroom. The commission had written to school managements to ensure that these guidelines were followed besides making provision for grievance redressal mechanism where children could complain. Shaken by the Nithari murders, the WCD ministry had prepared an umbrella legislation that brought every kind of offence against children under its aegis. But the effort was stymied by the law ministry that felt that changes in IPC and CrPC would prove adequate. The home ministry, however, differed in its view pointing out that a separate law for children may be a wise move. The result: the draft continues to lie with the WCD ministry waiting for a nod from line ministries. Another ambitious plan for children Integrated Child Protection Scheme was recently cleared by the Planning Commission.

Court awards temple to ISKCON-Bangalore
17 Apr 2009, 2302 hrs IST, TNN
BANGALORE: In a nine-year-old litigation between ISKCON-Bangalore and ISKCON-Mumbai over the ownership of the Sri Radha Krishna Temple on Hare Krishna Hill, Rajajinagar, the Bangalore city civil court on Friday declared ISKCON-Bangalore to be the absolute owner of the Temple and that ISKCON-Mumbai has no right to interfere in ISKON-Bangalore’s affairs. The latter is an independent society registered in Karnataka in 1978 under Karnataka Society Registration Act and ISKCON-Mumbai is a separate society registered in Mumbai. The genesis of the dispute was the difference that arose between the devotees of the two parties on the issue of spiritual succession in ISKCON after founder-acharya Srila Prabhupada’s death. He had before his death, noted that none of his disciples (mostly young westerners) were qualified to occupy the spiritual post of acharya. Hence, he didn’t name a successor but gave a written directive that he would remain acharya of International Society of Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) in the future as well.

Court seeks reply to plea for Rajiv case convicts’ release
18 Apr 2009, 0240 hrs IST, TNN
CHENNAI: The Madras high court on Friday asked the CBI and the state government to file their counter-affidavits to a writ petition seeking the release of the seven convicts in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case on the ground that they were “innocent”. A division bench, comprising Justice Elipe Dharma Rao and Justice C T Selvam, asked the respondents special investigation team of the CBI and the Tamil Nadu home secretary to file their replies and adjourned the case to April 20. The petition was filed by E Veluchamy of Tiruchi, who contended that the findings of the special investigation team of the CBI had been contradicted by the report of the Jain Commission, which probed the wider conspiracy behind the assassination. The panel, in its final report, had suggested areas in which further investigation was necessary. Interpreting this as a finding that the convicts three on death row and four serving life terms were not guilty of the offence, the petitioner claimed that they were liable to be released since their arrest in 1991 and imprisonment since then were illegal. The petitioner also questioned the theory that the LTTE was behind the assassination. While seeking their release in his petition, he also sought interim bail for the convicts pending disposal of his plea.

HC upholds life sentence for man who killed wife, five kids
18 Apr 2009, 0256 hrs IST, TNN

CHENNAI: The Madras high court on Friday upheld a lower court’s order of life sentence awarded to a man who murdered his wife and five daughters in Villupuram in 2001. The court directed that Abdul Kareem who strangulated his wife, placed her body in a pit and buried his five daughters alive in the same pit, after tying their hands and closing their mouths not be released from prison for the rest of his life. The prosecution’s case was that Kareem’s wife had an illicit relationship with his brother and one of his daughters had a similar relationship with a man in the area. But his wife and brother spread rumours that Kareem was having an illicit relationship with one of his daughters who later committed suicide. Kareem murdered his wife and five daughters as the public were talking ill about his family, the prosecution said. At 11 pm on July 27, 2001, he dug a pit near his house saying he wanted to construct a tank.?Having managed to take his wife there, he strangulated her with a saree and placed the body in the pit. Then he brought his daughters and buried them alive, the prosecution said adding that Kareem confessed to the crime later. Upholding the lower court’s order, a division bench, comprising Justice C Nagappan and Justice T Sudanthiram, observed that the guilt of the accused was established beyond reasonable doubt.? A sentence of life imprisonment that, subject to remission, normally lasts 14 years would be grossly inadequate in this case, the bench held.

HC quashes Tamil film director Seeman’s detention
18 Apr 2009, 0305 hrs IST, TNN
CHENNAI: The Madras High Court on Friday quashed the detention of Tamil film director Seeman under the National Security Act (NSA) for allegedly making a pro-LTTE speech in February. The court ruled that merely delivering a speech would not amount to an unlawful activity. Seeman had been detained under NSA on February 27 after he spoke at a meeting in Palayamkottai organised by an advocates’ association. A Division Bench, comprising Justice Elipe Dharma Rao and Justice C T Selvam, set aside the detention order while allowing a habeas corpus petition filed by Seeman’s brother, S James Peter of Virugambakkam. “Considering the facts and circumstances of the case we are of the view that mere delivery of a speech in a meeting would not tantamount to forming an unlawful assembly and thereby affecting the sovereignty of the country,” the court held. Moreover, it said, there were no consequential unlawful activities which were either prejudicial to the maintenance of public order or affecting sovereignty in pursuance of the speech delivered by Seeman, the bench noted.

No excuse for bigamy, HC tells dismissed govt teacher
18 Apr 2009, 0250 hrs IST, TNN
CHENNAI: A 52-year-old dismissed government school teacher’s attempt to justify his second marriage by arguing that he had obtained his first wife’s consent and that he wanted to beget a male child has drawn the ire of the Madras high court. The man had questioned his dismissal from service under conduct rules by offering this bizarre explanation for his act of bigamy. Denouncing his stand as obscurantist and amounting to heaping indignity on women, the court dismissed his petition against his removal from service as misconceived and devoid of merits. V Solaiappan, the petitioner, was a physical education teacher in a government higher secondary school. He was charge-sheeted under the conduct rules for government servants for contracting a second marriage while the first subsisted. His defence was that his first wife was suffering from a terminal disease and had herself insisted that he marry another woman so that they could have a male child. He claimed to have the approval of elders in the family, too. However, he was dismissed from service on September 23, 1994. His appeal to the director of school education and a review plea filed before the government’s school education department were also rejected in 1995 and 1997. He moved the state administrative tribunal against the order of removal. The petition was later transferred to the high court after the tribunal was abolished. Justice K Chandru noted that Solaiappan’s first marriage had taken place in 1967 and that a girl child was born to the couple. The second marriage took place 25 years later in 1992. Though his lawyer pleaded for leniency, the court was not inclined to interfere with the quantum of punishment. “The petitioner is a school teacher and he should have been a role model for others in following monogamy. A bigamous marriage is not only prohibited under the IPC and personal law, but also by a specific conduct rule introduced as Rule 19(1) under the TN government servants’ conduct rules, 1973,” the judge said. The petitioner’s contention that he had his first wife’s consent could never be a defence. The further explanation he had offered that he wanted to have a male child “is really an obscurantist idea which directly shows indignity on women. Such derogatory practices have to be renounced,” Justice Chandru said, noting that renouncing practices derogatory to the dignity of women was one of the fundamental duties enshrined under Art 51-A of the Constitution.

Judge not inclined to giving bail to Kodnani
18 Apr 2009, 0406 hrs IST, TNN
AHMEDABAD: It was no second time lucky for former state minister Maya Kodnani. The judge who granted her anticipatory bail earlier, refused to comply for the same on Friday while hearing her regular bail plea. Court has now adjourned the hearing in this case till April 27. Kodnani has been behind the bars since April 9. Additional sessions judge AK Aswani was not inclined to grant her bail on grounds that Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team (SIT) in Naroda Gam massacre case has not yet filed the chargesheet. The same judge had granted her anticipatory bail after a proceeding of nearly 45 minutes on February 5, while observing that Kodnani being a woman cannot influence witnesses’. The bail was then cancelled by Gujarat High Court after seven full days of hearing. While hearing the regular bail plea by Kodnani on Friday, judge asked why the accused is in so much haste and can’t wait till chargesheet is filed. However, SIT has strongly opposed bail plea, citing high court’s order in which judge had quoted Supreme Court’s observation on rioters, “If in the name of religion, people are killed, that is absolutely a slur and blot on society, religious fanatics really do not belong to any religion. They are no better than terrorists, who kill innocent people for no rhyme or reason.” Investigating officer PL Mall has filed an affidavit in which he has claimed that the investigation in the case is still on and Kodnani can influence witnesses, hence she should not be set free at this point in time. He has requested court not to grant bail to Kodnani forwarding an argument that this is a serious case, wherein 11 persons had lost their lives and if the court grants bail in such a serious offence, it could have an adverse impact on such other cases.

Amol case: Cops get anticipatory bail
17 Apr 2009, 2358 hrs IST, TNN
PUNE: In a reprieve for the six policemen allegedly involved in the Amol Kuchekar custodial death case, additional sessions judge S P Hayathnagarkar on Friday confirmed their interim anticipatory bails. The policemen are suspended sub-inspector Ramdas Shelke, head constable Ramchandra Kore and constables Dattatraya Narale, Atul Menge, Prashant Pawar and Mahesh Kutal. The bail order reads that the policemen should be released on a surety of Rs 20,000 each in the event of their arrest. The policemen have been asked to present themselves daily at the office of the state CID, Pune between 1 pm and 3 pm. The judge further cautioned them against tampering with the evidence and instructed them to co-operate with the CID when called for questioning. Defence lawyer Sanjay Agarwal said the court has granted interim anticipatory bail to his clients till May 18. In the intervening period, the policemen will apply for regular bail, he said. CID deputy superintendent of police D S Dhokale said he will challenge the bail order in the Bombay high court after receiving a certified copy of the order.

Aggrieved sopo contractor’s petition dismissed by HC
18 Apr 2009, 0511 hrs IST, TNN
MARGAO: Attempts by an aggrieved sopo contractor, alleged to have been acting as a “dummy” for previous defaulters, to engage the Margao Municipal Council (MMC) in a legal tangle, miserably failed with the high court of Bombay at Goa dismissing the petition on Friday. The petitioner, Samir Chari, had filed the petition before the court challenging the decision of the civic body to withdraw its letter of acceptance acknowledging him as the highest bidder. Chari had participated in the auction bid for sopo collection on behalf of the MMC from April 09 to March 2010. It may be recalled that though Chari emerged as the highest bidder, MMC chairperson Savio Coutinho accused him of being a dummy of previous sopo contractors who had defaulted in sopo collection payments to the MMC. Coutinho’s contention was that it was the same person who participated in the auction under proxy names every year and subsequently defaulted in payments thus putting the MMC in the red. Upon Coutinho’s insistence, the MMC withdrew the letter of acceptance given to Chari for the bid on the grounds that he didn’t furnish the bank guarantee thus failing to meet the criterion for awarding the contract. Chari, on the other claimed that he had already deposited an EMD of Rs 1,97,083 and security deposit of Rs 3,94,167 in lieu of bank guarantee. Apparently aggrieved by the decision, Chari moved the court. It was Chari’s contention that the withdrawal of the acceptance letter by the MMC was “illegal, arbitrary and unreasonable” and “violative of the petitioner’s fundamental rights guaranteed under Article 14 of the constitution of India.” The court dismissed the petition on the grounds that the petitioner failed to furnish the bank guarantee within the stipulated time frame. Speaking to TOI, MMC chairperson Savio Coutinho, said that the dismissal of the petition by the court has only helped in strengthening his resolve to act tough against perpetrators of malpractices. The MMC, sources informed, will now hold a fresh auction for sopo collection.

Dowry case: Court postpones hearing
18 Apr 2009, 0514 hrs IST
The sessions court at Panaji on Friday postponed the hearing into the anticipatory bail plea in a dowry harassment case. The bail plea was moved by two police officers Sanjiv Dhaku Khandeparkar and his brother Eknath, from Rajinwada-Gaune in Ponda. The matter will now come up for hearing on April 22. The cops filed the plea on Monday after fearing arrest by the Ponda police following the complaint. A case of dowry harassment had been lodged against them by Sangeeta Gaonkar alias Sanjyokta Sanjiv Khandeparkar, wife of Sanjiv Dhaku Khandeparkar.

HC directs govt to provide more water to Shirgao for zatra
18 Apr 2009, 0508 hrs IST, TNN
PANAJI: The high court of Bombay at Goa on Friday directed the state government to provide additional water supply to Shirgao village during the 10-day Lairai zatra festival to be celebrated from April 23 to May 3. The division bench of Justice P B Majmudar and Justice U D Salvi issued the directions after hearing an application filed by the villagers of Shirgao complaining about acute water shortage in the summer season. The villagers claimed that this shortage is due to water pollution caused by extensive mining operations in the area. It is relevant to note that the high court had, in its earlier orders, directed the three mining companies, Bandekar Company Pvt Ltd, Chowgule Co Pvt Ltd, and Dempo Mining Co Pvt Ltd, to provide plastic water tanks to the villagers to solve the water shortage problem. However, when the present application came up for hearing, amicus curiae Norma Alvares pointed out that the tanks provided by these companies have developed cracks as they are of substandard quality. The village receives irregular and limited water supply. All the wells in the village have gone dry due to the summer season and this has led to acute shortage of potable water, she said. Advocate general Subodh Kantak said that the government had taken a decision to build a new water tank for catering to the village’s needs, as the current tank is insufficient. However, the decision could not be implemented due to the election code of conduct being in force throughout the state, he said. The bench, subsequently, directed the three mining companies to stop plying their ore-carrying trucks through the village during the entire 10-day period of the festival.

Appeal against Jain’s acquittal allowed
18 Apr 2009, 0201 hrs IST, TNN
CHANDIGARH: Punjab and Haryana High Court has accepted CBI’s appeal challenging acquittal of former controversial UT home secretary NK Jain in a corruption case, senior CBI officials said. Sources said the appeal was filed in High Court after Jain’s acquittal on October 14 from special court of CBI judge Jagdeep Jain while his co-accused superintendent KB Goel was convicted. An official said Goel was convicted on basis of evidences, also against IAS officer NK Jain. Jain was booked and arrested on disclosure and confession of office superintendent KB Goel on April 6, 2000.

HC seeks reply from Union, state govts
17 Apr 2009, 2320 hrs IST, TNN
PATNA: The Patna High Court on Friday directed the Union and state governments to file counter-affidavits to a PIL which alleged that they had not yet formulated national, state and district-level plans for disaster management as per provisions of the Disaster Management Act, 2005, a central Act. A division bench comprising Chief Justice J B Koshy and Justice Ravi Ranjan issued the directive while hearing the PIL of Chhaya Sarkar, an NGO. Petitioner’s counsel M P Gupta and Brajesh Kumar submitted that after the enactment of the Act, the state government constituted a Disaster Management Authority headed by the chief minister in 2007, and the authority held its first meeting only after 10 months when the worst ever Kosi floods struck five districts of the state wreaking havoc. The PIL had been filed after the Kosi floods in 2008.

HC directs officials to return
18 Apr 2009, 2246 hrs IST, TNN
MADIKERI: The high court has directed the Kodagu district administration to hand over to respective owners, all the licensed guns which had been seized within seven days of the order date, which was passed on Friday. S P Mahadevappa, district Veerashaiva community organisation president, had filed a writ petition in court questioning the district administration’s decision. In his petition, he had stated that the district administration had withdrawn the order in favour of one community after they appealed that the guns were used for their pooja ceremonies. Shridar and S B Shankar, advocates for Mahadevappa, had argued that members of other communities in Kodagu, also had licensed gun holders who used their guns during pooja. Hearing their argument, HC judge Patil ordered the district administration return the guns within seven days from the order date to gun owners. Kodagu district administration had earlier passed an order to confiscate the guns as a precautionary measure during parliamentary elections

Meet to discuss role of advocates on Sunday
18 Apr 2009, 2225 hrs IST, TNN
DHARWAD: Karnataka State Legal Services Authority (KSLSA) and High Court Legal Services Committee will jointly organize a conference of advocates on high court circuit Bench premises here on Sunday. The conference will deliberate on issues like advocates as resources persons in legal literacy programmes, advocates as mediators in mediation and conciliation in Lok Adalat and role of advocates in legal-aid programmes. Briefing reporters on the conference here on Thursday, chairman of High Court Legal Services Committee and high court judge, Justice K L Manjunath, said it aims at sensitizing the advocates on helping the deprived class with legal help. He said the advocates need to be trained in mediation and other aspects in order to dispense justice to the needy. Over 2,000 advocates practising in Dharwad, Bagalkot, Haveri, Gadag, Belgaum, Koppal, Bellary and Uttara Kannada districts will participate in the conference. He said for the first time the branches of Karnataka Judicial Academy and Mediation Centre (KJAMC) will be opened at Dharwad. The Lok Adalat building will also be inaugurated on the occasion. Chief Justice of Karnataka High Court, Justice P D Dinakaran, will inaugurate the branches of KJAMC and Janata Nyayalaya at 9.30 am on Sunday. KSLSA executive chairman Justice V Gopal Gowda will preside. The CJ will inaugurate the conference at 10 am. Justices Manjula Chellur, K Shridhar Rao, V G Sabhahit, K L Manjunath, State Bar Council chairman A R Khan, B D Hiremath and V D Kamareddy will be the chief guests. Justices Ajit Gunjal and Ashok Hinchigeri will speak on advocates as resource persons in legal literacy programmes during the first session at 11 am. Justice K Bhaktavatsala will preside. Justice H Billappa will preside over the second session while Justices Subhas Adi and Jawad Rahim will speak on advocates as mediators in mediation and conciliators in Lok Adalat. Justices A S Pachhapure and S N Satyanarayana will speak on role of advocates in legal aid programme. Justice C R Kumar Swamy will preside. Justice K V Gopal Gowda will deliver the valedictory address at 3.30 pm. Justice Mohan Shantangoudar will preside. Justice H N Nagamohan Das will be the chief guest. Justice K L Manjunath said the Legal Literacy Chariot, which has toured Bidar, Gulbarga and Raichur districts, was getting good response. Three more chariots will be set in motion to cover other parts of the state, he added. Replying to a question, he said KSLSA would provide free legal aid to SC/STs, women, physically challenged, minor children and those with less than an annual income of Rs 50,000 and appealed to the people to make use the organization. When asked about the possibility of false cases being filed, Justice Manjunath said the cases will be examined before being taken up. “However, educating the people is the ultimate means of discouraging them from misusing the facilities,” he said. Justices Ajit Gunjal, Jawad Rahim, Satyanarayana, H N Nagamohan Das and additional registrar general B A Patil were present.

Chamber dispute: Court rejects advocates appeal
18 Apr 2009, 2311 hrs IST, TNN
KANPUR: First additional district and sessions judge of Kanpur Nagar on Saturday rejected the temporary injunction application of advocates in chamber dispute case, but also tied the hands of office bearers of the Kanpur Bar Association in the matter of allotment of chambers. Presiding judge Sri Niwas Prasad, deciding the injunction application, observed that any allotment order made by the general secretary and president would be subject to decision of the suit. Explaining his point, he also observed that the Kanpur Bar Association and its president and general secretary had not arbitrary powers to allot the chambers. They would have to make particular rules and norms and allot chambers thereafter to members of the bar. The plaintiff- advocates- had since deposited money for the chambers. Under those circumstances if any allotment would be made by the president and the general secretary, it would be subject to the decision of the order. Javed Akhtar Siddiqui and 11 other advocates had moved a petition before the court and had pleaded that they had deposited a sum for the chambers on the condition of first come first serve basis. The previous executive committee had also allotted them chambers and had asked them to deposit the remaining amount. But, the new executive committee of the Kanpur Bar Association was neither giving them possession of chambers nor confirming their allotment. Instead, the committee was allotting chambers to other persons. They had also raised the issue of cost of chambers and had submitted that previous committee had already declared the cost of chambers which they had deposited and once they had made the final payment condition of contract was completed, hence KBA was liable to allot them chambers. Therefore, grant them ad interim injunction, restraining the KBA and its general secretary from allotting chambers to any other person. The judge who had rejected first interim injunction application said in his order that considering all the relevant points and given directions, the court was of the opinion that the plaintiff were not entitled to any temporary relief. It was the duty of the Kanpur Bar Association to decide the cost of chambers and allot them to their members according to the fixed policy. Meanwhile, at new chambers site there was a lull. No untoward incident was reported as those in possession of the rooms not only locked their rooms but also guarded them.


2 Responses

  1. Green hope to plant two lakh trees-save nature for future-a special report

    Come Sunday, and the city is all set to go green as Navi Mumbai is will witness the biggest annual greening drive. City NGO Green Hope, for the second year in a row is organizing a major tree plantation drive where in 2 lacs trees will be planted across Navi Mumbai.
    Humankind has an obligation to put right the damage we’ve caused, and evidence suggests the planet has a remarkable ability to heal, if we give it a helping hand. Planting trees is seen as one of the most important things the average man in the street can do, because of its environmental impact…..

  2. nice one blog
    keep postings

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