Bombay High Court recently slapped a fine of Rs. 50,000 on the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) for an illegal arrest made by its officer in the PNB fraud case. The Bench comprising Justice S.J. Kathawalla and Justice Bharti Dangre, however, clarified that the agency is free to recover this cost from the erring officers responsible for the violations, as found after disciplinary proceedings. The alleged accused was arrested in violation of Section 46(4) of the Code of Criminal Procedure. The provision bars arrest of a woman after sunset and before sunrise. As per the provision, such arrest can only be made in exceptional circumstances, and that too after a woman police officer obtains prior permission from Judicial Magistrate first class.
The Supreme Court has held that non-maintenance of General Diary per se will not render the whole prosecution illegal, though it may have consequences on the merits of the case, which is a matter of trial. A bench of Justice NV Ramana and Justice S Abdul Nazeer set aside a Karnataka High Court judgment that quashed entire criminal proceedings on the ground that preliminary report conducted by the police was done without any entries made in the Station Diary as to the conduction of the preliminary enquiry. The bench observed that the absence of entries in the General Diary concerning the preliminary enquiry would not be per se illegal as there is no provision of Cr.P.C barring investigating authority to investigate into matter, which may for some justifiable ground, not found to have been entered in the General Diary right after receiving the Confidential Information
A Petition has been filed before the Supreme Court demanding that Court vacations be cut short in order to reduce the ever-mounting pendency of cases. Mr. Upadhyay alleges a violation of Articles 14 and 21 of the Constitution of India with denial of the right to speedy trial due to the huge pendency of cases. The Petition highlights the magnitude of the problem by placing before the Court statistics on the level of pendency. It submits that as on 1 January 2016, there existed a total of 3,11,61,724 cases pending before the courts in the country and contends that the Indian Judiciary would take 320 years to clear the backlog of about 31.28 million cases pending in various courts in India.
In a huge relief to Delhi Development Authority (DDA), the Supreme Court has partly modified its March 6 order staying further progress in amending the Master Plan of Delhi-2021. A bench of Justices Madan B Lokur and Navin Sinha have also given the Centre a window of 15 days for inviting objections to the proposed changes. It asked the Centre to consider the objections to the proposed amendments to the Master Plan of Delhi (MPD) and take a final call after considering all the aspects.
A three-judge bench of the Supreme Court has referred to a larger bench the following two questions in the matter of pre-arrest bail:
- Whether the protection granted to a person under Section 438 CrPC should be limited to a fixed period so as to enable the person to surrender before the trial court and seek regular bail?
- Whether the life of an anticipatory bail should end at the time and stage when the accused is summoned by the court?
The bench headed by Justice Kurian Joseph was considering this issue as it noted divergent views in earlier decisions as to whether an anticipatory bail should be for a limited period of time.
A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra has extended the tenure of President and other members of National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC), till fresh appointments are made to ensure its smooth functioning. Supreme Court had on December 11 last year extended till March 15 the tenure of the NCDRC members and later modified the order and extended it to June 30.
Observing that making of a false document is different than causing it to be made, the Supreme Court, in Sheila Sebastian v. R. Jawaharaj, has held that a charge of forgery cannot be imposed on a person who is not the maker of the same. Referring to Sections 463-465 of Indian Penal Code, a bench of Justice NV Ramana and Justice S. Abdul Nazeer observed that unless and until ingredients under Section 463 are satisfied a person cannot be convicted under Section 465 by solely relying on the ingredients of Section 464, as the offence of forgery would remain incomplete.
The Madhya Pradesh High Court has held that recovery of a large number of counterfeit currency notes from an accused in public place is sufficient to establish the mens rea and knowledge or reasons to believe the same to be forged or counterfeit and intending to use the same as genuine. The division bench observed that during the trial, the accused had preferred to plead total denial, they had not cared to explain as to why such currency notes were in their possession, though according to provisions contained in Section 106 of the Evidence Act the burden was on them to explain it.
In view of the ongoing and upcoming elections in different parts of the country, two PILs were filed by Rituparna Sarkar Dutta and another by an NGO, Human Rights Protection for Common People, seeking a direction to the state authorities to not allow the political parties/associations to hold political rallies during working days in the vicinity of the city of Calcutta since the same paralyses the free movement of public at large.
The Calcutta High Court observed that no road/street must be completely blocked and made inaccessible to pedestrians or to motor traffic by reason of holding any meeting/rally/procession for elections and a reasonable part of every road/street must be kept free of blockage and open to pedestrians and motor traffic. Though the bench did not pass any direction in this regard, it also opined that, “Although ideally, political meetings/rallies/processions should be held on holidays i.e., weekends or other public holidays as the same is likely to cause less inconvenience to the members of the public, we do not deem it proper to pass any such absolute direction”.
The bench of Justices J Chelameswar and Sanjay Kishan Kaul has directed the Ministry of External Affairs to pay a compensation of Rs 5 lakh to each of private Hajj and Umrah tour operators who came before it feeling remorseful about the loss of business due to non-grant of quota for non-compliance of certain conditions. The petitioners prayed for quashing of the communications dated 27.07.2016 by the Government of India rejecting their applications for registration and allocation of quota for Hajj 2016 on the ground that they have not complied with certain clauses of the policy for private tour operators as laid down by the Supreme Court. Holding the order of the officials of the Ministry as arbitrary and illegal, the court held that private tour operators lost their right to secure quota on a patently wrongful and “mindless” order passed for reasons which did not apply to them and for conditions which had been specifically exempted.
While setting aside a High Court order punishing a wife for contempt, a Bench of Justice AK Sikri and Justice Ashok Bhushan in case of Meenal Bhargava v. Naveen Sharma, has observed that forcing a spouse to join the company of the other party and on failing to do so, punishing her in committing contempt of the court order that too by awarding maximum civil imprisonment in law, cannot be countenanced. In the case, when the wife failed to adhere to the settlement reached before the High Court, and did not comply with the Consent order, the husband filed Civil Contempt Petition against his wife under the Contempt of Courts Act, 1971. The High Court found the wife to be in contempt and awarded maximum punishment of six months civil imprisonment. On challenge, the Supreme Court held that, “Even when a decree of conjugal rights is filed by a competent court of law in favour of one of the spouses, such a decree cannot be executed and the other spouse who is directed to resume the conjugal relations, cannot be forced to do so.”
While confirming death sentence to two men accused of rape and murder of an 11-year-old girl, the Madhya Pradesh High Court observed that it considers death sentence as a measure of social necessity and also a mean of deterring other potential offenders. The bench also observed that the only punishment which the accused persons deserve for having committed the reprehensible and gruesome murder of an innocent child to satisfy their lust, is nothing but death. The judgment also quotes a provision of the ordinance recently promulgated providing death penalty for rapists of girls below 12 years of age and other stringent penal provisions for rape.
The Federation of Indian Airlines had challenged the directive of NGT which called for converting all non-CNG vehicles plying at the Indira Gandhi International Airport, to CNG modewithin six months, on the ground that no reasons were given in support of the directive in the NGT order and that there were different types of vehicles deployed at the airport which cannot even be converted into CNG. Considering the submissions, the bench issued notice and stayed the direction.
While hearing the petition instituted on behalf of two Rajya Sabha MPs to challenge the order of the Vice President rejecting the Notice of Motion for impeachment of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, a five-judge constitution bench, comprising Justices A. K. Sikri, S. A. Bobde, N. V. Ramanna, Arun Mishra and A. K. Goel, vehemently refused to grant a copy of the administrative order which lead to the constitution of the Constitution Bench, when counsel for the Petitioners Kapil Sibbal pleaded that petitioners are entitled to be informed and tendered a copy of the order. When the bench refused it and strictly asked the counsel to argue on merit, he sought liberty of the court to withdraw the petition and finally withdrew it. Consequently, Advocate Prashant Bhushan filed an RTI seeking the same information.
The Supreme Court in Sree Anandhakumar Mills Vs. Indian Overseas Bank has reiterated that a civil suit would not be maintainable when proceedings under the SARFAESI Act, 2002, are already initiated. A bench of Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice R Banumathi was considering an appeal against a Madras High Court judgment of 2010 that held that the civil court’s jurisdiction is not totally ousted by Section 34 of the SARFAESI Act and the power to grant interim injunction in such suits which are maintainable is also not taken away by Section 34 of the SARFAESI Act. It had also held that the civil court jurisdiction is barred only in regard to the applications filed by a bank/financial institutions for recovery of debts and that hat a partition suit filed by a person who is not a borrower or guarantor is maintainable in a civil court.
In the referred case, the apex court had held a suit for partition would not be maintainable in a situation where proceedings under the SARFAESI Act had been initiated.
- BOMBAY HIGH COURT IMPOSES 50,000 FINE ON CBI FOR ARREST OF WOMAN AFTER SUNSETMay 21, 2018 - 12:31 pm
- SUPREME COURT: NON-MAINTENANCE OF GENERAL DIARY PER SE WON’T RENDER WHOLE PROSECUTION ILLEGALMay 21, 2018 - 12:29 pm
- ALL COURTS SHOULD FUNCTION AT LEAST 6 HOURS PER DAY AND 225 DAYS PER YEAR: PETITION FILED BEFORE SUPREME COURTMay 17, 2018 - 6:30 am