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New Delhi, June 2 (IANS) The Supreme Court on Thursday declined to hold an urgent hearing of a plea by a former

BSP lawmaker Umakant Yadav seeking the stay of his conviction in a land dispute matter so that he could contest
election to Uttar Pradesh assembly scheduled for next year
A vacation bench of Justice Pinaki Chandra Ghose and Justice Amitava Roy declined the early hearing of the plea as
his counsel Dushyant Parashar told the bench that he has already undergone more than six years of the seven year
sentence awarded to him.
Yadav, who was convicted by a court in Uttar Pradesh's Jaunpur town on February 7, 2012, told the court that he has
already undergone six years, two months imprisonment and his appeal against his conviction and sentencing was
pending before the session court there.
Convicted for offences under Indian Penal Code's section 419 (Punishment for cheating by personation), 420 (Cheating
and dishonestly inducing delivery of property), 467 (Forgery of valuable security, will, etc), 468 (Forgery for purpose of
cheating), 469 (Forgery for purpose of harming reputation),471 (Using as genuine a forged document), and 506
(Punishment for criminal intimidation), he is on bail at present.
Before being convicted and sentenced to jail, Yadav was member of Uttar Pradesh assembly for three terms and an MP
for one term.
The bench took exception to the lawyer telling it that the petitioner was a former MP.
"Don't tell us all this. For us all are equal," it observed.

Referring to earlier verdicts of the top court including in the case of actor Sanjay Duttin 1993 Mumbai serial bomb blast
case, Yadav said that the absence of the stay of conviction and sentence including fine came in the way of his
contesting the upcoming assembly elections.

His plea for the suspension of conviction and fine was earlier rejected by the Jaunpur sessions judge on December 16,
2013 and the Allahabad High court too declined it.

Taj chef gets jail, made to stand till rising of court


Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, May 9
A chef of Taj Hotel here was today sentenced to a one-year jail term and a fine of Rs 12,500 by a local court in three cases of food adulteration. He
was also made to stand till the rising of the court.
He was booked on October 18, 2010, under the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act, 1954, by a UT inspection team, led by Surinder Pal Singh and
Bharat Kanojia, food inspectors, Chandigarh, in three cases.
In the the first case, he was booked for adulteration in dhaniya and chuttni. In this case, he was sentenced to a one-year jail term and a fine of Rs
6,000.
In another case of adulteration in double toned dahi, he was pronounced a similar sentence and fine.
In the third case, the prosecution said according to the statement of the food inspector, it was clearly established that Neeraj Chaudhary was found
preparing, storing and selling food articles such as dahi, kaanji, cooked paneer, cooked rajmah and mutton gravy in utensils/containers which
were imperfectly enameled, chipped and in insanitary conditions. Hence, the chef is liable to be convicted for the offence.
On the other hand, the defence counsel submitted at the outset that the present case was a result of mala fide intentions and not at the instance of
any individual complainant. The counsel submitted that Taj Hotel had served a food bill to some senior officer of the Chandigarh Administration
and with a feeling of revenge, an inspection was conducted in the hotel and a false case prepared against the accused.
In this case, he was sentenced to stand till the rising of the court along with a fine of Rs 500. All three sentences will run concurrently.
After considering the age and antecedents of the convict and having regard to the fact that it is a five-star hotel which in normal course is
expected to maintain the highest standards of hygiene and compliance with rules and regulations under the Act, the offence committed becomes
particularly appalling, said Chief Judicial Magistrate Akshdeep Mahajan in the order.

11 Landmark Judgments By The Indian Supreme Court In Recent Times

On the 15th of April, 2014, the Supreme Court of India (in an


unexpected show of decency) decided to recognise the
transgender community as a third gender, availing them of basic
human rights of education, jobs and voting. The landmark
judgement was met with a roaring approval from all liberal
corners of the nation. Given the 377 debacle which criminalized
unnatural sex, thereby criminalizing the LGBT community as a
whole, just a few months prior to that, it was heartening to see

such a forward-thinking judgement, even if it was in polar


opposition to their own thinking by 377s definition. Moreover, as
recently as November, there is now a bill in parliament that is
pushing to lower the juvenile justice age allowing minors above
the age of 16 to be tried in courts as adults, for committing
heinous crimes.
In light of all of these seemingly contradictory judgments,
Homegrown felt compelled to dig deeper in the hopes of
answering one questionare we progressing or are we regressing
as a society? Well, you can keep score yourself. We tallied up
some of the more recent landmark judgments by our court that
have affected the humanitarian nature of this nation.
I. Om Prakash Vs Dil Bahar (2006)
What: A rape accused could now be convicted on the sole
evidence of the victim, even if medical evidence did not
prove rape.
Case Speak: The victim, six months pregnant, was in court because her husband was facing challan proceedings. The accused was a relative
and had come to attend the same. Finding her in isolation outside the Zilla Parishad, the accused tried to rape her. However, she raised an alarm
and the accused was assaulted by the locals and handed over to the police. Although no evidence of rape was found, the accused was given a
seven-year sentence based on the statement of the victim and eyewitness accounts.
A statement from the court read, It is settled law that the victim of sexual assault is not treated as accomplice and as such, her
evidence does not require corroboration from any other evidence including the evidence of a doctor. In a given case even if the
doctor who examined the victim does not find sign of rape, it is no ground to disbelieve the sole testimony of the prosecutrix. In
normal course a victim of sexual assault does not like to disclose such offence even before her family members much less
before public or before the police. The Indian woman has the tendency to conceal such offence because it involves her prestige
as well as the prestige of her family. Only in few cases does the victim girl or the family members have the courage to go
before the police station and lodge a case. In the instant case, the suggestion given on behalf of the defence that the victim
has falsely implicated the accused does not appeal to reasoning. There was no apparent reason for a married woman to falsely
implicate the accused after scatting her own prestige and honour.
Homegrown Verdict: The ruling had both positives and negatives. Rapists deserve the worst of the law, and the ruling meant that escape for
them has become more difficult. The ruling was based on the fact that the victim of the rape is not an accomplice to the crime and her statement
should be relied upon. The need for corroboration arises only in cases where the court cannot place implicit reliance on the statement of the
prosecutrix.
While this may hold true, one must also understand that the law can be wrongly misused with terrible consequences. The fact that a person can
be convicted even if medical reports suggest otherwise makes it that much easier for false cases to be lodged. The judges of the Supreme Court
also simply assume that the Indian woman is pure and noble and can do no wrong.
That being said, it is still a necessary and progressive step forward in a nation where women have borne the pain brunt of victimization for far too
long. This might be considered a tipping of the scales in favour of a community who have had them tipped against them for far too long, so
perhaps it is about restoring a balance for the court. Besides which, its clear rapists in this country (and plenty of educated people too) need their
thinking on this issue rewired.

II. The Anchorage Case (2011)


What: Restoration of the conviction and sentence of sixyear rigorous imprisonment imposed on two British
nationals who were acquitted by the Bombay High Court in
a pedophilia case.
Case Speak: Two Britons, Duncan Grant and Allan Waters, ran the Anchorage Shelter Home in Colaba, Mumbai, where they sexually abused
children for years. In 2001, working on a tip-off, Childline NGO gathered evidence and filed a case against the two British nationals. The sexual
abuse of the boys at Anchorage Shelters was also brought to the notice of Advocate Ms. Maharukh Adenwalla who works on issues of child rights
and she brought the same to the attention of the Bombay High Court. After the facts became public, the two British nationals absconded but were
made to face trial after a lengthy extradition process.
After taking all the facts, evidence and witness accounts, the sessions court convicted them under sections 120 B, 107, 373 and 377 IPC and
sentenced Grant and Waters to six years imprisonment and a fine of 20,000 pounds each. However, they challenged this in the Mumbai High

court, and in a shocking judgement, were acquitted of all charges. Finally, the case went to the Supreme Court, which overturned the High courts
judgement (uncommon to say the least) and restored the original sentence, thereby convicting the paedophiles. The judges, while passing the
judgement, rightly said, A deterrent punishment is being imposed in order to help wipe out the name of India from the map of sex
tourism. Let paedophiles all over the world know that India should not be their destination in the future. Children are the
greatest gift to humanity. The sexual abuse of children is one of the most heinous crimes.
Homegrown Verdict: The case achieved widespread media coverage, which stressed on the fact that child abuse is rampant behind closed
doors in India. More often than not, the abusers are in complete control of the victims. They are vulnerable, scared and lack support. In such a
time, this judgement (albeit, even with the High Court blemish) gave hope to NGOs and other similar organisations that justice still prevails in this
country.

III. The Nirbhaya Case (2012)


What: 4 out of 5 rape accused received the death
sentence and as a result of this case the rape law was
amended to go beyond penile-vaginal intercourse. The
new definition penalizes penetration of any orifice of the
woman with any part of the mans body or with any
object.
Case Speak: This hardly requires retelling given the freshness of it in the nations collective consciousness, but here it is anyway. A young girl
was returning home with a male friend after watching a movie. They boarded a bus and soon figured out that something was wrong. The six
people on board, including the driver knocked the boy unconscious with an iron rod and then raped her one at a time. They shoved an iron rod in
her vagina, severely damaging her intestines, abdomen and genitals. Finally, they threw the boy and the woman out of the bus, and drove away.
The woman was rushed to the hospital and the men were arrested within 24 hours. Eventually, the woman succumbed to her injuries, and the
men immediately went on trial. While on trial, one of the accused committed suicide in jail. The remaining five were subsequently charged for rape
and murder. The four adults were granted a death penalty, while the minor was sent to a reform facility for three years.
Homegrown Verdict: The case received media coverage like none other. The aftermath was that six new fast track courts were created to
hear rape cases, which means that the rape cases do not remain stagnant in courts for far too long. Various laws were passed and amendments
were made, which included a mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years in case of a rape as well as the widening of the definition of rape. The
impacts of the latter are already being felt as is evident with the Tarun Tejpal rape case.
Although various changes were made, one might argue that theres still a lot that needs to be addressed. The fact that marital rape is still not
considered a crime is a serious issue in our country. Another matter that needs addressing however, is the fact that we refuse to foresee things,
and only act after a heinous crime has been committed and under immense public scrutiny. Rape has been rampant in India for years. Why did it
take a brutal murder for these laws to be passed? Surely they could have been discussed and passed years before? We must now make sure
that the laws are stringent and the punishment for a convicted rapist should be nothing short of death

IV. Tamil Nadu Vs Suhas Katti (2004)


What: The first case involving conviction under the
Information Technology Act, 2000, related to the posting
of obscene messages on the Internet.
Case Speak: The case was related to the posting of obscene and defamatory messages about a divorcee woman in a Yahoo messenger
group. The accused, said to be a family friend of the victim, wanted to marry her. But she ended up marrying someone else, much to his dismay.
After she got divorced, he tried to woo her again, only to be rebuffed. Incensed, he started harassing her and posting her number on messenger
groups, which led to plenty of lewd and annoying phone calls to the victim. Finally, the victim decided to file a complaint under the Information
Technology Act. Although the defence put a good case, the Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate, on the basis of the available witnesses and
the other relevant evidences held the accused guilty under section 469 and 509 of Indian penal code and section 67 of the Information
Technology Act 2000. The accused was convicted and sentenced in accordance with the aforementioned sections (fines and imprisonment).
Homegrown Verdict: The impact of the case was far reaching. The internet had only started to emerge hugely within the Indian context and
the laws for it were hardly stringent. However, the IT act and its implementation in this case helped both the courts and the public: it set a
benchmark for the courts, inspired people and gave them strength to lodge cases in case they were harassed on the internet.

V. Section 377 (2013)


What: Criminalisation of unnatural sex which includes
gay sex, sex with animals, sex with minors and fellatio.
Case Speak: The law, established in 1861, was enforced to criminalise sexual activities that were against the order of nature, which at that
point included homosexual activities. What is little known, however, is that it extends to any sexual union involving penile insertion. Thus, even
consensual heterosexual acts such as fellatio and anal penetration may be punishable under this law. In 2009, in a landmark judgement the Delhi
High Court scrapped section 377, citing it unconstitutional with respect to sex between consenting adults. However, the celebrations, and respite,
were short-lived when in a bizarre turn of events the judgement was overturned by the Supreme Court of India. It ruled that Section 377 in the
Indian Penal Code will continue making gay sex irrespective of age and consent an offence punishable with a sentence up to life term and
put the onus on Parliament to consider the desirability and propriety of deleting Section 377 from the statute book or amend it.
Homegrown Verdict: Although there have been no convictions under 377 in the last 20 years, nobody can deny that the judgement was
regressive. The law has been used on more occasion than one to harass sex workers and homosexuals alike. While people go on about

maintaining the culture of India, they conveniently forget that the rule in itself was enforced by the British, who themselves got rid of the law in
1967.
The recent developments make this judgement seem even more bizarre in hindsight. The Supreme Court has recognised the transgender sex
and given them a third sex status, but according to 377, if they indulge in sexual activity of any kind they can be arrested. So its all right to give
them recognition, but lets deprive them of their basic right to engage in sexual activity by choice? The law is ambiguous and archaic, and heavy
criticism from within the country as well as outside it is testament to that. Like it is said, it is not a matter of sex, it is a matter of curbing human
rights which is not what a democracy does.

VI. NOTA (2013)


What: Right to negative vote.
Case Speak: On October 14, the Supreme Court recognised the right to negative vote for the electorate in the country. The voters will now
have a None of the Above option if they dont feel that the candidates deserve a vote. Negative voting will lead to systemic change in polls and
political parties will be forced to project clean candidates. If the right to vote is a statutory right, then the right to reject candidate is a fundamental
right of speech and expression under Constitution, the court said.
Homegrown Verdict: NOTA, as of now, is nothing but a hoodwink. It is just a right to register a negative option, but doesnt have any effect
on the final result. Think of it this way Out of a 100 votes, if 99 are NOTA votes, the candidate with one vote will come into power, rendering the
99 votes useless. A detailed analysis of NOTA can be found here.

VII. Re-opening dance bars (2013)


What: The Supreme Court on July 16 gave its go-ahead to
the reopening of Dance Bars in the maximum city and
elsewhere in the state.
Case Speak: On 15th of August, 2005, Home Minister RR Patil announced that dance bars would be shut all across the state. He stated that
the dance bars were corrupting the moral fibre of the youth, and that dance bars were creating havoc in Maharashtra. Because of the ban, 75,000
girls became unemployed, and although a rehabilitation program was in place, it wasnt implemented, and many of the girls left the state or had to
resort to prostitution. Eight years later, the Supreme Court finally struck down the ban. The Supreme Court had taken up the case after the state
government contested the 2006 Bombay High Court order that the Act prohibiting dancing violated the right to carry on ones profession under
Article 19 of the Constitution. The HC also held that banning dances in some establishments while permitting them in others (like five star hotels
and pubs) was contrary to the rule of equality.
Homegrown Verdict: Despite the fact that the ban had been lifted, the police has not handed the licenses to the bar owners, stating that
theyre waiting for an order from the state government. To counter the verdict, the state government is working on an ordinance to ban dance
bars. Another option being considered is making getting licences more difficult by adding stringent conditions and making the annual license fee
unaffordable. While the claims that some dance bars lead to trafficking and prostitution may be valid, one can also argue that a majority of the
girls make an honest living by dancing, and taking that form of employment without proper means for rehabilitation organized by the government
is incredibly unjust. If the state government had its way and the bars dont re-open, it must ensure that the rehabilitation of the dancers, which as
promised, is fulfilled.

VIII. Social Media (2013)


What: In view of public outrage over people being
arrested for making comments or liking posts on
Facebook, Centre had on January 9 issued advisory to all
states and UTs asking them not to arrest a person in such
cases without prior approval of a senior police officer.
Case Speak: On May 16, the Supreme Court, while delivering its verdict on a plea by Shreya Singhal who had petitioned the court against the
arrest of an activist Jaya Vindhyalaya, under provisions of the IT Act on a complaint filed by an Andhra Pradesh MLA, ruled that no person would
be arrested under Section 66A of the IT Act for posting objectionable comments on social networking websites without prior approval from an
officer of the Inspector General of Police-rank.
Homegrown Verdict: This ones quite simple, actually. The arrests of the girls for posting Facebook statuses sparked massive outrage
throughout the country, making the Supreme Court issue the advisory. While common sense prevailed in this case, the law itself is pretty
ambiguous. The apex court is still examining the constitutional validity of section 66A of the IT Act and what exactly could be regarded as grossly
offensive information, the punishment for which is a maximum imprisonment of three years.

IX. Cheap cancer drugs (2013)


What: The Supreme Court rejected a patent plea by Swiss
drugmaker Novartis AG for cancer drug Glivec, boosting
the case for cheaper drugs for life-threatening diseases.
Case Speak: In 2006, Swiss-based company Novartis applied for a patent, stating that the substances used in the drug were an invention.
They wanted exclusive rights for manufacturing Glivec and to restrain Indian firms from making generic medicine. After a seven-year-long battle,
the Supreme Court finally delivered its judgement, dismissing the plea.
We certainly do not wish the law of patent in this country to develop on the lines where there may be a vast gap between the
coverage and the disclosure under the patent; where the scope of the patent is determined not on the intrinsic worth of the
invention but by the artful drafting of its claims by skilful lawyers, and where patents are traded as a commodity not for

production and marketing of the patented products but to search for someone who may be sued for infringement of the
patent, the bench said.
Homegrown Verdict: The judgement is remarkable in the sense that it provides massive relief to over 28 lakh cancer patients in India.
Consider this: a one-month dose of Glivec costs around Rs 1.2 lakh, while generic drugs, manufactured by Indian companies, costs Rs 8,000. A
patent would have given Novratis a 20-year monopoly on the drug, meaning that it would have been impossible for the average Indian to find an
affordable cancer drug in that period.

X. Curbing the sale of Acid (2013)


What: The court said that acid should be sold only to
people who show a valid identity card. Buyers will also
have explain why they need the chemical and sales will
have to be reported to the police.
Case Speak: After considering plenty of acid attack cases and the change.org petitions, the Supreme Court finally decided to act and ordered
the federal governments to regulate the sale of acid in the country. The court said that acid should be sold only to people who provide a valid
identity card.
Buyers will also have explain why they need the chemical and sales will have to be reported to the police. We direct the chief secretaries of all
states and the administrator of the Union Territories to comply with the direction given in the order on July 18 and frame rules in tune with model
rules framed by Centre to regulate the sale of acid at the earliest and possibly by March 31,2014, the bench said.
In addition to that, they also asked all chief secretaries to file a response on providing free-of-cost treatment, including plastic surgery, to acid
attack victims.
Homegrown Verdict: The Supreme Court ruling has been welcomed with enthusiasm. India has close to a thousand acid attacks every year.
These attacks disfigure women, destroy their life and most of them either suffer from chronic depression, live in isolation or commit suicide. The
regulation of sale of acid in Bangladesh saw a significant decline in acid attacks, and fingers are crossed for the same to happen in India.

XI. Lily Thomas vs Union of India (2013)


What: Any Member of Parliament (MP), Member of the
Legislative Assembly (MLA) or Member of a Legislative
Council (MLC) who is convicted of a crime with more than
two year sentence, will be disqualified as an elected
representative on the date of conviction.
Case Speak: The Supreme Court of India, in their judgement of the Lily Thomas v. Union of India case ruled that any Member of Parliament
(MP), Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) or Member of a Legislative Council (MLC) who is convicted of a crime with more than two year
sentence will be disqualified as an elected representative on the date of conviction. The verdict sent waves of panic amongst the government, as
many of the MPs have pending criminal cases against them. In an attempt to overturn this decision, the Representation of the People (Second
Amendment and Validation) Bill, 2013, was introduced into the Rajya Sabha on 30 August by Law Minister Kapil Sibal; by the proposed
amendment, representatives would not be disqualified immediately after conviction. The Indian government also filed a review petition, which the
Supreme Court dismissed.
Homegrown Verdict: The effect of the ruling was immediate: three MPs Rasheed Masood, Lalu Prasad Yadav and Jagdish Sharma, all
since convicted, have lost their Parliament membership. According to the Association of Democratic Reforms, as many as 72 sitting MPs face
criminal charges and could be disqualified if convicted for over two years. If that is the case, one can hope that the dream of Clean Politics might
not be that far-fetched, after all?

Preeti Rathi acid attack in Mumbai: Man


convicted for murder
A special womens court on Tuesday convicted 25-year-old Delhi resident Ankur Panwar of the murder of 23-year-old
Preeti Rathi in May 2013. Panwar threw acid on Rathis face at Bandra terminus soon after she arrived in Mumbai on
May 2, 2013 to work as a nurse in the Indian Navy. Rathi suffered grievous injuries and died a month later of multiple
organ failure. Panwar, Rathis neighbour in Delhi, reportedly attacked her as he was jealous of her success and because
she had spurned his advances.
Judge AS Shende, who convicted Panwar, will hear arguments on his sentencing on Wednesday. Public prosecutor
Ujjwal Nikam said the prosecution is likely to seek the death penalty.
According to police records, Rathi arrived at Bandra terminus on May 2, 2013 with her father Amarsingh Rathi and aunt
Sunita Dahiya, and was to join INHS Aswini as lieutenant (nursing). Panwar had taken the same train. At Bandra station,

he tapped her on the shoulder. When Rathi turned around he threw acid on her face, also injuring her father, aunt and
two other passengers Sudeshakumari Singh and Sameer Shaikh.
Rathi was taken Guru Nanak Hospital before being shifted to Masina Hospital. When her condition worsened, she was
taken to Bombay Hospital on May 18. However, she succumbed to her injuries on June 1.
Rathis post-mortem report states that she died of multiple organ failure. Apeksha Vora, Panwars lawyer, alleged that
Rathi had died not because of the acid attack but owing to medical negligence by doctors at Bhabha Hospital. The
prosecution, however, rejected the allegation and said Rathi had never been taken to Bhabha Hospital.
After a shoddy investigation, the government railway police (GRP) first arrested Pawankumar Gahalon, another
neighbour of Rathi in Delhi, but let him off as they found no evidence linking him to the murder. Then, on January 17,
2014, the Mumbai crime branch arrested Panwar and charged him with murder.
While convicting Panwar, the court relied heavily on the testimony of Shaikh, who was also injured in the attack, and of
another passenger, Rohit Singh, who identified Panwar in court. Of the five eyewitnesses examined by the court, three
were injured in the attack. In all, 37 witnesses, including doctors from all the three hospitals, were examined.
The prosecution also called as a witness a shopkeeper who identified Panwar as the person who had bought acid from
his shop, and also relied on call records to show that Panwar had travelled from Delhi to Mumbai on the day of the
murder.

RBI Mandates Cyber Security Policy to Keep Hackers at Bay


Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has directed all banks to immediately
frame cyber security policies approved by their respective boards.
Infrastructure Projects: RBI Relaxes Refinancing Norms for NBFCs
RBI in order to encourage infrastructure financing has eased norms
for NBFCs to refinance such projects and provide longer repayment
tenures.
Jammu and Kashmir High Court: Extend PM's job plan to Pandits
Jammu & Kashmir High Court has directed the Centre to consider a
plea of Kashmir-based Pandits to bring them under the ambit of the
Prime Minister's job package.
Kerala High Court has directed that elephant should not be used for
idol procession during Sabarimala's main festival season,
'Makaravilakku'. However, the court has allowed using one elephant
for the procession (Avinash Das v university of kerala)
Government has imposed anti-dumping duty of USD 122.14-279.78 per
tonne on import of chemical, used in pharmaceutical and fragrance
industry, from China and Russia to protect domestic manufacturers.
Government Banks on New PSU Norms for Higher Non-tax Revenue
Centre has released new guidelines on capital restructuring of
state-owned companies, which will make them more accountable on
matters of dividends, buybacks and bonuses, and will help the
government meet its non-tax revenue and capital receipts target for
the year.
Supreme Court has declined to hear a plea by a BJP legislator in
Madhya Pradesh assembly seeking clarification that he can vote in
the biennial election to the Rajya Sabha. The legislator named
Rajendra Meshram was elected to the Madhya Pradesh assembly from

Devsar however his election was set aside by the High Court for not
complying with the provision of the Representation of People Act as
he failed to file a certified copy of the voters list.

Supreme Court didnt expand the boundaries of Self Defence; Just


applied

the

157

Year

Old

Law

A report in Yesterdays Times of India titled SC expands scope of right to


self-defence reads as follows: In a significant judgment that expands the
boundaries of the right to self-defence, the Supreme Court has ruled that
a person would be right in taking the law into his hands if he witnessed his
parents or relatives being assaulted. The report was based on a Supreme
Court Judgment delivered on 3rd June 2016 by a two-judge bench
comprising of Justices Dipak Misra and Shiva Kirti Singh in the case of
Bhagwan Sahai vs. State of Rajasthan. LiveLaw had published a report on
the Judgment on the same day.

To understand the Supreme Courts

judgment in this case, a little bit of background may help the reader. The
case was an appeal against the conviction of the accused by the
Rajasthan high court on the ground that the right of private defence under
Section 97 of the IPC could not be invoked by the accused. Section 97 of
the IPC reads as follows: Right of private defence of the body and of
property.Every person has a right, subject to the restrictions contained
in section 99, to defend (First) His own body, and the body of any
other person, against any offence affecting the human body; (Secondly)
The property, whether movable or immovable, of himself or of any other
person, against any act which is an offence falling under the definition of
theft, robbery, mischief or criminal trespass, or which is an attempt to
commit theft, robbery, mischief or criminal trespass. Section 97 was part
of the Indian Penal Code as enacted in 1860. Explaining Section 97,
Supreme Court speaking through Justice Vivian Bose in Amjad Khan Vs
The State (1952) held as follows: Under section 97 of the Indian Penal
Code the right extends not only to the defence of ones own body against
any offence affecting the human body but also to defending the body of
any other person. The right also embraces the protection of property,
whether ones own or another persons, against certain specified offences,

namely theft, robbery, mischief and criminal trespass. The right of


private defence, however, cannot be claimed by an accused, if the facts
suggest that the parties had involved in a free fight between them, and it
could not be determined as to which party was the first aggressor, thus
forcing the other party to use force against the aggressor, so as to defend.
This is exactly what the Rajasthan high court did while upholding the
conviction of the accused. The high court held that as both the parties had
withheld the origin and genesis of the incident, it could not be determined
who was the aggressor, and hence it had to be considered as a free fight.
Terming the above view of High Court as misconceived, Supreme Court
held as follows; Once the Court came to a finding that the prosecution
has suppressed the genesis and origin of the occurrence and also failed to
explain the injuries on the person of the accused including death of father
of the appellants, the only possible and probable course left open was to
grant benefit of doubt to the appellants. The appellants can legitimately
claim right to use force once they saw their parents being assaulted and
when actually it has been shown that due to such assault and injury their
father subsequently died. In the given facts, adverse inference must be
drawn against the prosecution for not offering any explanation much less
a plausible one. If one reads the above observation along with Section 97
IPC reproduced earlier, it is clear that the Supreme Court has not
expanded the boundaries of the Right of Self Defence in Bhagwan Sahai
vs. State of Rajasthan, but applied the law which has been in force for the
last 156 years.
If prosecution suppresses the genesis and origin of occurrence of
crime, accused are entitled to get benefit of doubt: SC [Read
Judgment]
The Supreme Court in Bhagwan Sahai vs. State of Rajasthan has restated
that if the prosecution has suppressed the genesis and origin of the
occurrence of crime, the accused are entitled to get benefit of doubt.
Setting aside the judgment of the High Court which had found the accused
guilty under section 308/34 of the IPC, Division Bench comprising of
Justices Dipak Misra and Shiva Kirti Singh acquitted the accused. The High

Court had held that since both the parties had withheld the origin and
genesis of the occurrence and since it cannot be determined as to which
party was the aggressor, the case had to be decided against the accused
persons treating it as a case of free fight between the parties. Terming the
High Court finding as misconceived, the Court observed Once the Court
came to a finding that the prosecution has suppressed the genesis and
origin of the occurrence and also failed to explain the injuries on the
person of the accused including death of father of the appellants, the only
possible and probable course left open was to grant benefit of doubt to
the appellants. Referring to Lakshmi Singh and others v. State of Bihar,
the Court further said The appellants can legitimately claim right to use
force once they saw their parents being assaulted and when actually it
has been shown that due to such assault and injury their father
subsequently died. In the given facts, adverse inference must be drawn
against the prosecution for not offering any explanation much less a
plausible one. Drawing of such adverse inference is given a go-bye in the
case of free fight mainly because the occurrence in that case may take
place at different spots and in such a manner that a witness may not
reasonably be expected to see and therefore explain the injuries sustained
by the defence party. This is not the factual situation in the present case.
SC Permits Delhi Govt. to Buy 110 Diesel Ambulances
Supreme Court, while giving partial relaxation of its blanket ban on
fresh registration of diesel vehicles over 2000 CC in the National
Capital, has allowed the Delhi Government to purchase 110 diesel-run
ambulances. (MC Mehta case)
Supreme Court has indicated of lifting seven-month-long ban on sale
of diesel cars and SUVs with engine capacity of 2000cc or more in
the National Capital Region by accepting in principle auto majors'
offer to voluntarily deposit an interim Green Cess of 1% of the
vehicle's ex-showroom cost.
------- (society of Indian automobiles v state of kerala)
NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Monday gave a clear indication of lifting the seven-month-long
ban on sale of diesel cars and SUVs with engine capacity of 2000cc or more in the National Capital
Region by accepting in principle auto majors' offer to voluntarily deposit an interim green cess of 1%
of the vehicle's ex-showroom cost.
Mercedes Benz, whose diesel cars all have engine capacity of 2000cc or more, and Toyota, whose
best-selling Innova has taken a beating after the ban, told the SC that as an interim measure, they
could deposit 1% of the ex-showroom cost of each big diesel car or SUV in an escrow account.
Before reserving its order on applications seeking vacation of the ban, a bench of Chief Justice T S

Thakur and Justices A K Sikri and R Banumathi said, "If you (automobile manufacturers) deposit on
sale of each big diesel car a green cess of 1% of ex-showroom cost of the vehicle, you can sell as
many as you want."
Even though the controversy on levying green cess on big diesel cars under the 'polluter pays'
principle appeared settled, the Centre raised two fundamental objectionsone, that the court had no
jurisdiction to levy tax as it fell within the exclusive domain of the government, and two, the court was
not right in its perception that "diesel is the devil".
Attorney general Mukul Rohatgi said, "The likely imposition of green cess for diesel cars of more than
2000cc engine capacity will not be in consonance with the constitutional scheme of things in terms of
Article 265 of the Constitution of India that 'no tax can be levied without the authority of law' and such
cess must be imposed through legislation by authority of Parliament.
"Therefore, imposition of green cess without legislative mandate would be in contravention of the
constitutional mandate, especially when duties and taxation on diesel cars are already in place."
As the court wondered whether the attorney general was arguing for the government or the
automobile manufacturers, amicus curiae Aparajita Singh said the court in public interest and in
protection of right to life guaranteed under Article 21, which encompasses right to clean environment,
had in the past imposed green cess as 'net present value' (NPV) on industries to which forest land
had been allotted.
"Imposing green cess on diesel cars, which in common perception is more polluting than petrol cars,
is a possible solution to deter sale of more diesel cars under the precautionary principle to protect
intergenerational equity and to save children from the ill-effects of vehicular emission," Singh said.
The AG requested the court to vacate the December 16 order banning sale of big diesel cars and
SUVs in the NCR saying it was the constitutional duty of the government to impose tax and not that of
the judiciary. He requested the court to give the government six weeks to conduct a detailed study on
various issues related to diesel cars, their emissions, utilization of subsidized fuel by these costly cars
and SUVs and arrive at an amount that should be imposed on car manufacturers.
He said manufacturers of big diesel cars more than met the emission norms and hence it would send
a wrong signal to the automobile industry, which has attracted huge foreign direct investment under
Make In India programme and created millions of jobs.
Though the bench agreed with the AG's request to conduct a study, it said, "The Supreme Court had
come to the rescue of people in the 1990s by ordering conversion of the entire city transport into CNG
mode. If it had not done so, people would have found it difficult to breathe and live in Delhi. The
government must not be seen to be opposing the court's green move against vehicles which are
perceived to be polluting."

Supreme Court has sought response of Animal Welfare Board of India


(AWBI) on a petition against rising instances of "barbaric cruelty"
to animals and their exploitation in the pet shop industry.
Promotion for Disabled Must in All Posts
Supreme Court while quashing the central government's earlier orders
on restricting reservation for the differently-abled in promotion to
Group A and Group B posts, has ruled that three percent reservation
shall be provided to them in all posts and services under the
Government of India

Cant attach government officials illegal assets if hes dead:


Supreme Court

NEW DELHI: Disproportionate assets amassed by a government official


cannot be attached from his family members if the officer dies during
pendency of trial against him, the Supreme Court ruled on Monday.
Terming the orders of a trial court and the Andhra Pradesh high court
allowing attachment of assets of a government official after his death a
"gross miscarriage of justice", a bench of Justices S A Bobde and Amitava
Roy said no proceedings could be allowed against a dead man.
The bench also slammed the trial court for convicting the accused,
Ramachandraiah, for misappropriating Rs 657,355, two years after his
death. The attachment order was passed on the basis of the conviction
order and the HC also approved the attachment proceedings.
"There is no legal provision which enables continuance of prosecution
upon death of the accused. We must record that the proceedings and the
decisions of the courts below are disturbing, to say the least. In the first
place, though the accused had died, the trial court proceeded with the
trial and recorded a conviction two years after his death," the bench said.
"Then, this null and void conviction was used as a basis for making an
attachment of his properties before the sessions court. Astonishingly, all
applications succeeded, the attachment was made absolute and, over and
above all, the HC upheld the attachment," it added. The court passed the
order on a petition filed by Ramachandraiah's family members contending
that the lower court and the HC erred in directing the attachment. They
said the conviction, on the basis of which the attachment order was
passed, was itself illegal as the court could not convict a dead person.
The state government, however, justified the attachment and told the
bench that the Criminal Procedure Code did not bar government agencies
from attaching properties of an accused in case of abatement of
proceedings due to death of the accused.

The SC, however, was not satisfied with its contention and said: "If the law
requires that the orders of attachment should be withdrawn upon
acquittal, it stands to reason that such orders must be withdrawn when
the prosecution abates or cannot result in a conviction due to the death of
the accused, whose property is attached.

Madras HC Says, Concept of Fair Trial Also Extends to Victims and


Society at Large
Madras HC, while confirming life term sentence to an 80-year-old
man, who was charged of raping three children, has said that a fair
trial is not concept guaranteed only for accused but also extends to
victims and society at large
India's first e-court was opened at High Court of at Hyderabad,
which is the common high court for the States of Telangana and
Andhra Pradesh. Inaugurating the e-court, Supreme Court judge
Justice Madan B. Lokur said Telangana and Andhra Pradesh were first
two states in the country to be chosen for Integrated Criminal
Justice System project.
Supreme Court has asked an animal rights activist and NGOs to
approach Delhi High Court with their plea for quashing of three
notifications of the Centre declaring Nilgais, monkeys and wild
boars as vermin.
----------------Supreme Court has ruled that if a convict is awarded multiple life
imprisonment then they shall run concurrently and not consecutively.
The Supreme Court today held that if multiple life sentences are awarded to a convict in the same trial, the same will
run concurrently and not consecutively.
This decision was rendered by a Constitution bench comprising Chief Justice TS Thakur and FML Kalifulla, AK Sikri,
SA Bobde and R Banumathi JJ.
The Court also ruled that if a convict is awarded a lesser sentence of imprisonment along with life imprisonment, then
the same will run consecutively with the term sentence running first, followed by the life sentence.
The question that arose for determination in the case was the following:
Whether consecutive life sentences can be awarded to a convict on being found guilty of a series of murders for which
he has been tried in a single trial?.
The appellants in the case were tried for several offences including an offence punishable under Section 302 of the
Indian Penal Code for several murders allegedly committed by them in a single incident. They were found guilty and
sentenced to suffer varying sentences, including a sentence of imprisonment for life for each one of the murders
committed by them. The sentence of imprisonment for life for each one of the murders was directed to run
consecutively as provided under Section 31 of Code of Criminal Procedure.
This was challenged by the appellants. Relying on O.M. Cherian @ Thankachan v. State of Kerala & Ors.
and Duryodhan Rout v. State of Orissa, the appellants contended that life imprisonment awarded to them for different
murders in a single trial should run concurrently and not consecutively.
The court first proceeded to dissect the logic upon which the above two decisions were based.
It would appear from the above two pronouncements that the logic behind life sentences not running consecutively lies
in the fact that imprisonment for life implies imprisonment till the end of the normal life of the convict. If that proposition
is sound, the logic underlying the ratio of the decisions of this Court in O.M. Cherian and Duryodhan Rout cases (supra)
would also be equally sound. What then needs to be examined is whether imprisonment for life does indeed imply

imprisonment till the end of the normal life of the convict as observed in O.M. Cherian and Duryodhan Routs cases
(supra).
The court relying on a catena of judgments answered this issue in the affirmative before proceeding to decide on the
main issue at hand regarding whether the life sentences should run concurrently or consecutively.
It dealt with Section 31 of Code of Criminal Procedure in detail. Section 31 provides that when two sentences are
awarded in one trial, they will run consecutively and not concurrently unless the court directs that the sentences run
concurrently. The court, however ruled that in case of life imprisonment the same cannot be applicable.
the provisions of Section 31 under Cr.P.C. must be so interpreted as to be consistent with the basic tenet that a life
sentence requires the prisoner to spend the rest of his life in prison. Any direction that requires the offender to undergo
imprisonment for life twice over would be anomalous and irrational for it will disregard the fact that humans like all
other living beings have but one life to live. So understood Section 31 (1) would permit consecutive running of sentences
only if such sentences do not happen to be life sentences. That is, in our opinion, the only way one can avoid an obvious
impossibility of a prisoner serving two consecutive life sentences.
In arriving at this conclusion, the court also placed reliance on another provision Section 427(2) of CrPC.
That, in our opinion, happens to be the logic behind Section 427 (2) of the Cr.P.C. mandating that if a prisoner already
undergoing life sentence is sentenced to another imprisonment for life for a subsequent offence committed by him, the
two sentences so awarded shall run concurrently and not consecutively. Section 427 (2) in that way carves out an
exception to the general rule recognised in Section 427 (1) that sentences awarded upon conviction for a subsequent
offence shall run consecutively.
The court, thus, ruled that if more than one life sentences are awarded, then the same would get super imposed over
each other.
We are also inclined to hold that if more than one life sentences are awarded to the prisoner, the same would get super
imposed over each other. This will imply that in case the prisoner is granted the benefit of any remission or
commutation qua one such sentence, the benefit of such remission would not ipso facto extend to the other.

Cases pertaining to matrimonial disputes can now be transferred out of Jammu and Kashmir by the apex court for ensuring
access to justice to litigants, the Supreme Court on Tuesday ruled.
A five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice TS Thakur considered the fact that the local laws of Jammu and
Kashmir do not provide remedy for seeking transfer of the cases outside the state at the request of a litigant.
The provisions of the Civil Procedure Code and the Criminal Procedure Code which deal with transfer of cases, are not
applicable in Jammu and Kashmir. The bench also comprising justices FMI Kalifulla, A K Sikri, S A Bobde and R Banumati said
the apex court can exercise its Constitutional powers while transferring the cases out of the state to ensure access to justice, a
key right available to all litigants.
The judgement came on a batch of petitions including the one filed by one Anita Kushwaha, who had sought transfer of her
cases out of Jammu and Kashmir.

Supreme Court has appointed medical panel from KEM hospital in


Mumbai to examine petitioner old who sought its nod for abortion
after 24 weeks. (X v Union of India)
-------------------

Jallikattu??