Wednesday, September 17, 2014

11 trainee judges to be sacked for misbehaving with a girl in UP

The administrative committee of Allahabad High Court on Wednesday recommended service termination of 11 trainee judges to state Governor, Ram Naik.
The trainee judges were found guilty of creating turmoil in a restaurant and misbehaving with a female trainee judge by the inquiry panel. The High Court had already suspended 20 trainee judges after inquiry committee found them guilty on Tuesday.
The incident took place on September 8 where these judges misbehaved with a female judge in an inebriated condition. It was the last day of their training session.The trainee judges are from Judicial Training and Research Institute (JTRI) in Lucknow.The Allahabad High Court has also transferred three Additional Directors of JTRI and released an order to appoint new Director.

Candy Crush Saga owner moves HC to protect IPR

 The most popular game on smartphones and tabs, the 'Candy Crush Saga', is embroiled in a court case in India. King.com, the company which owns intellectual property of the game, filed a copyright infringement suit against the Apeejay Surrendra Group in the Bombay high court recently to restrain it from using the images of its popular game.

The Candy Crush Saga has 97 million daily active users.

The high court, based on King's ownership of the intellectual property rights for the Candy Crush game and the evidence of its popularity, had passed an ex-parte order, restraining Park Hotel from using the intellectual property.

"In its ex-parte order, the Bombay high court recognized that the intellectual property rights in the game are exclusively associated with King.com.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

US raises 5-fold the fee to renounce citizenship

 Each year, millions of people across the world hanker after US visas and green cards for sundry reasons, from perceived economic opportunities and political and social persecution at home, to dreams of a better lifestyle in the US. More than half million immigrants eventually become naturalized US citizens each year, an expanding segment that has pushed the overall immigrant population in US to over 42 million in 2014, a historic 13% high in a country of 313 million.

Friday, September 12, 2014

HC drops rape charge against athlete Pinki Pramanik

The Calcutta High Court today exonerated Asian Games gold medalist Pinki Pramanik of charges of rape and cheating against her brought by a woman who was her live-in partner.

Justice Subrata Talukdar quashed the charges of rape and cheating against Pramanik who was accused by the woman in June 2012 of not marrying her despite promising to do so and having physical relationship.

Charges were framed against the athlete on the basis of the woman's complaint under sections 376 (rape) and 418 (cheating) of IPC by the Barasat court sessions judge.

Challenging this, Pramanik had moved the high court in late 2013 and prayed for quashing of the charges against her.

Her counsel Kaushik Gupta submitted before Justice Talukdar that medical examination conducted on her proved that she was a woman.

Gupta stated before the court that under Indian law only a man can be accused of rape and as such charges of rape and cheating against Pramanik be quashed.

The prosecution opposed the plea of Pramanik. Justice Talukdar quashed the proceedings against Pramanik after hearing both the parties.

3% quota must for disabled people in govt jobs: SC

The Supreme Court on Friday held that three per cent reservation for disabled people be given in all categories of government jobs including in appointments and promotions to IAS, while pulling up the Centre for "blocking" the very purpose of this empowering legislation by opposing it.

A bench headed by Chief Justice R M Lodha said that people with disabilities have not got their due in the last 19 years despite the framing of the Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, which was passed in 1995.

Govt moves bill on raising quota for disabled people in jobs

Additional solicitor general Pinky Anand, appearing for the Centre, contended that reservation cannot be given in case of promotion to Group A and Group B officers category as it is not a case of appointment.

The bench, however, observed that appointment is a broader concept and the Centre is giving a narrow interpretation of it.

"You are frustrating the very reservation policy and cause of class for which Parliament passed the law," the bench said.

"For the last 19 years it is not being implemented and the class, for which the legislation was made, had not got benefited as it should have," the bench said.

The court dismissed the petition of the Centre challenging an order of Bombay high court which had directed the Centre and the Union Public Service Commission to implement 3 per cent quota in direct recruitments and promotions for the disabled in the IAS.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Indian man admits to sexually touching sleeping woman on plane - Crime against women

A 62-year-old Indian man has pleaded guilty to sexually touching a woman seated next to him aboard a flight from Houston to Newark and faces two years in prison.

The accused, Devender Singh, a resident of Louisiana, admitted before US District Judge Stanley Chesler in Newark federal court to information charging him with abusive sexual contact, US Attorney Paul Fishman said.

The charge carries a maximum potential penalty of two years in prison and a USD 250,000 fine.

He is scheduled to be sentenced in October.

According to the documents filed in the case, Singh was seated next to a woman who occupied a window seat on a United Airlines flight from Houston to Newark.

While the plane was in the air, the woman fell asleep and awoke to find him kissing her face with his hand inside her shirt.

After pushing Singh off of her and telling him to get away, the woman complained to a flight crew member about the incident and asked that the police be present when the plane landed.

The federal government has exclusive jurisdiction over all sexual abuse cases that occur on aircraft in flight in the US.

Wilful default: HC relief for firms' officials

In a big relief for company directors, Gujarat high court (HC) has ruled that in case of wilful default, all the directors of a company cannot be deprived of the facilities of finances and restricted from floating new ventures, as a Master Circular by the Reserve Bank of India says.

HC has declared the provision of RBI's circular prohibiting additional loan facilities for all directors of the company in case of wilful default as unconstitutional and quashed this section from the circular as violation of Article 19(1) (g) of the Constitution. However, the HC has upheld the rest of the circular and said that the RBI was well within its powers to set out such norms in the Master Circular for the treatment that should be meted out to wilful defaulters, said advocate Masoom Shah.

The RBI guidelines prohibit other banks and financial institutions (FI) from offering loans to promoters and directors of the company that has wilfully defaulted. Besides, a covenant in the loan agreements, with the companies in which the banks/notified FIs have a significant stake, should be incorporated by the banks/FIs to the effect that the borrowing company should not induct a person who is a promoter or director on the board of a company which has been identified as a wilful defaulter, said the circular.

HC said that the Master Circular does not impose an unreasonable restriction upon promoters and entrepreneurs by blocking facilities to them for five years. But it cannot "paint all the directors with the same brush. The provisions in the circular shatter the concept of identity of a company being different and distinct from its directors without providing any safeguards."


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Avoid search warrant in child custody cases: Guj HC


Gujarat high court has ruled that in cases of dispute over child's custody between parents, the lower court should not issue search warrant if it is not a case of illegal confinement or forcible abduction of child.

Getting custody of a child from other parent through police intervention by invoking section 97 of the CrPC is a common practice. In this case, a quarreling couple in Junagadh moved court over custody of a two-and a half-year-old child Jeky. The mother sought custody of the son from his father. A lower court issued search warrant under section 97 of the CrPC ordering the police to take custody of the child and hand it over to the mother.

Against this order, the father moved the HC, which quashed the lower court's order. While setting aside the lower court's order, the HC observed, "Father is a statutory guardian of the minor son and when custody of the minor was with the father, nobody can take away the custody of the minor from him except without following the provisions of law which relates to the custody of minor i.e. Hindu Minority and Guardianship Act and Guardian and Wards Act. Thereby, it is specifically contended that there cannot be a search warrant and direction to handover the custody of minor to anybody else from the legal custody of the father, more particularly under section 97 of the Criminal Procedure Code where the court does not have the powers to issue search warrant to take away the custody of minor from his legal guardian."

The HC said that the law makes it clear that the basic requirement to exercise jurisdiction under section 97 of the CrPC is presence of reason to believe that any person is confined under such circumstances that such confinement amounts to an offence. "It is made clear that the primary requirement for issuance of search warrant is confinement of any person and that too, such confinement amounts to an offence," the court order reads.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Ban on e-rickshaws will continue, Delhi high court says

The Delhi high court on Tuesday ordered that the ban on plying of e-rickshaws in the national capital would continue till the law is amended to bring them under the ambit of the Motor Vehicles Act.

A division bench of Justice BD Ahmed and Justice Siddharth Mridul confirmed the ban it had imposed July 31 "till such time rules and regulations are brought about by the legislatature".

The bench had banned plying of e-rickshaws on the city roads, saying they were illegally running and were hazardous to other traffic as well as citizens.

The Centre and associations of E-rickshaws Owner's Association then moved the court seeking a review of its order banning e-rickshaws as thousands of people and their livelihood were being affected by the ban.

The bench dismissed their plea.

The Centre and the associations had sought that the stay be vacated, saying e-rickshaw operators live on the basis of their earnings and the government was seeking an exemption or interim directions till Oct 15, by when the government would be able to bring an amendment in the rules under the Motor Vehicles Act.

HC confirms death for Pune driver who mowed down 9 people

The Bombay high court on Tuesday confirmed the death sentence of state transport driver Santosh Mane over two and a half years after he went on a rampage mowing down pedestrians and motorists in Pune. Nine people were killed and 37 others injured in the incident.

A division bench of Justice V M Kanade and Justice P D Kode rejected Mane's plea of insanity and ruled that there was no chance he could be reformed.

"This is an exceptional and rarest of rare cases where the crime is so cruel, diabolical and revolting so as to shock the collective conscience of the society," said the judges. The high court has stayed its verdict for eight weeks to allow Mane to file an appeal in the Supreme Court.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Narayan Sai denied bail in bribery case

Gujarat high court on Monday rejected the bail plea filed by Asaram's son Narayan Sai in connection with the Rs 9-crore bribery case that was lodged against him and others by the Jahangirpura police in Surat. 

While the HC denied bail to Sai, it also rejected anticipatory bail plea filed by Kaushik Vani, the key accused in this bribery case. The prosecution vehemently opposed Sai's bail plea. Sai was booked and arrested along with others in this case after he and his followers allegedly offered Rs 9 crore to release 42 bags of documents recovered during a search in his ashram. tnnwhile investigating the rape charges levelled against him and his father by two sisters. The accused offered money to cops for returning bags in exchange of other bags so that they could hide their huge transactions of properties. 

While HC has turned down bail plea of some accused, it has granted bail to a cop involved in this case along with two Surat-based builders. 

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Courier firms to pay artist Rs 5 lakh for negligence -Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission

The state consumer disputes redressal commission directed two courier companies to pay a city-based painter a relief of Rs 5 lakh for failing to deliver her paintings in time.

Padmini Rao, of Kilpauk Garden Road, had couriered five boxes containing 85 oil canvas paintings to New Orleans, Louisiana through two companies — DTDC Courier and TNT India Private Ltd.

Rao's counsel T V Lakshmanan said that her husband Ramachar Murali had booked a booth for the exhibition and sale of the paintings at a four-day Rotary International Convention, which was being held from May 21, 2011. The proceeds from the sale were to be donated to the Rotary Foundation. DTDC courier, which received the paintings on May 12, did not send it to the concerned airline carrier till May 15, Lakshmanan said.

Five days later, TNT India, which was to off-load the consignment, "gave a vague assurance" that the parcel would reach JFK Hub, New York by 1.30pm. Despite Murali's repeated calls to the courier companies underlining the "urgency of receiving the parcel immediately," the consignment was delivered only around 11am on May 25, the last day of the convention. Because of the negligence of the companies, Rao suffered "enormous mental agony, and a loss of 6000$," said the counsel.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

SC questions stay on conviction

The stay on his conviction in the 1998 blackbuck poaching case, the Supreme Court on Friday told Bollywood actor Salman Khan that the law applied equally to everyone.
Critical of the relief granted to the actor by the Rajasthan High Court, a bench led by S J Mukhopadhaya said: “You may have good case for suspension of sentence but not for conviction. Let equal law apply to everyone. There should be no discrimination vis-a-vis convicts.”
The remarks were made during the hearing of the petition filed by Rajasthan police against the stay granted by the High Court on his conviction in the case. The bench has now posted the matter for final hearing on October 28.
The observations came from the SC even as Khan told the court in his affidavit that he was never granted any privilege due to his celebrity status. Pleading the court to dismiss the police appeal against the stay order, his affidavit had stated: “It is denied that the High Court failed to apply the principle that everyone is equal before law and granted me special privilege because I am a celebrity. The courts have at all times treated me as any other ordinary citizen and I have always complied with the conditions imposed upon me.”
Khan added he is also a philanthropist and promotes Indian films and his professional engagement generates employment for the industry.
The SC had issued a notice to Khan after Rajasthan Police challenged the High Court’s order staying his conviction.
The actor was convicted in two cases of poaching on the intervening night of October 1 and 2 in 1998 in Mathania and Kankani near Jodhpur. He subsequently faced impediments in travelling abroad for his film shoots in various countries, especially the UK, where visa was denied to him due to his status as a convict. He therefore moved the High Court, which stayed his conviction, pending his appeals.

Wife calls spouse 'hijra', court grants him divorce

Two cases in the family court have shown how all-encompassing 'mental cruelty' can be in divorce matters. A husband called a 'hijra' by his wife for his inability to appease her in bed and a woman whose husband often deliberately switched off the fan in her room both got divorce from their spouses recently, with the woman in the second case getting a Rs 10 lakh alimony.

In the first case, the man said he had married the woman in 2011. He alleged that she was not interested in household work but only in sex and had threatened to harm herself and falsely implicate him and his family members in police cases. The court said his case had been proven, entitling him to get divorce on grounds of cruelty.

In the second instance, the woman filed a petition in 2012 seeking the end of her 14-year marriage. She alleged that her husband would not allow her to use the fan even during summer months, saying it would lead to inflated power bills.

The man who complained of cruelty because his wife called him a 'hijra' said the woman had always felt superior to him and would tell him that marrying him had been a mistake. He said that due to continuous mental torture and humiliation, ?he could not concentrate on his work, and his health too deteriorated.

In May last year, his wife's brother forcibly took her away to their parents' home, after which she did not return to their matrimonial home. Stating that his dream of a happy married life had been shattered due to the woman's behaviour, he filed the divorce petition before court in October last year.

The woman sought time to reply but failed to appear before the court on several occasions after that. The court, while passing an ex-parte order, observed that it had no other option but to accept his evidence. In the second case, the woman, while seeking the end of her marriage, also sought custody of her two children.

Alleging cruelty, she said that while her husband demanded dowry of Rs one lakh on the day of the wedding, the following day, she was forced to take over all the kitchen responsibilities. She alleged that while the man showed no love towards her, she was forced to wash the clothes of all the family members, prepare all their meals and was restricted from calling her parents.

The woman alleged that she was not allowed to take up a job and had to beg for money for even medicines and doctor's expenses. She said she was taunted when her first child, a girl, was born, and was even blamed for bringing ill-luck to the family when her father-in-law, a diabetic, died in 2002 after suffering a heart attack.

She alleged that when she was finally allowed to take up a job, in her absence, her mother-in-law and sister-in-law would torture her daughter and bite her. Citing that it was an unhealthy environment in which to raise her minor children, the woman left the house in 2006. She claimed that in the five years she stayed away, the man did not take any responsibility for the minors even when they were seriously ill, forcing her to file for divorce.