Friday, October 30, 2020

Officers under Section 53 of NDPS Act are police; statement under Section 67 is confessional statement-SC

1) Whether the officer investigating the matter under the NDPS Act would qualify as police officer or not?

“[O]fficers who are invested with powers under section 53 of the NDPS Act are "police officers" within the meaning of section 25 of the Evidence Act, as a result of which any confessional statement made to them would be barred under the provisions of sectionI 25 of the Evidence Act, and cannot be taken into account in order to convict an accused under the NDPS Act.”

Whether the statement recorded by the investigating officer under Section 67 of the Act can be treated as confessional statement or not, even if the officer is not treated as police officer?

Thursday, October 29, 2020

Amazon says users don't own content bought on Prime Video

When you purchase a TV show or movie on Amazon Prime Video, you don't actually own it. At least, that's Amazon's argument in an effort to dismiss a lawsuit on Monday.

Amazon on Monday filed a motion to dismiss a lawsuit alleging unfair competition and false advertising, per The Hollywood Reporter. That lawsuit, lodged in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California, accused Amazon of "secretly" reserving the right to end a consumer's access to Prime content.

In its motion, Amazon claims that the plaintiff in the case, Amanda Caudel, didn't suffer any injury because of its terms of service. The retail giant pointed out that Caudel continued to buy content on Prime since filing the lawsuit in April.

More than that, Amazon argues that its site user agreements clearly state that user's aren't actually purchasing a piece of content. Instead, they're buying a limited license for "on-demand viewing over an indefinite period of time."

"The most relevant agreement here -- the Prime Video Terms of Use -- is presented to consumers every time they buy digital content on Amazon Prime Video," Amazon attorney David Biderman wrote in the motion. "These Terms of Use expressly state that purchasers obtain only a limited license to view video content and that purchased content may become unavailable due to provider license restriction or other reasons."

Additionally, Amazon says that users don't actually need to read the terms of use in order to be bound by it. All they need to do is agree to it, which is part of the sign-up process.

"A merchant term of service agreement in an online consumer transaction is valid and enforceable when the consumer had reasonable notice of the terms of service," Biderman wrote.

Amazon's service isn't the only one that offers "licenses" instead of actual products. In 2019, Microsoft began warning users that they would lose access to books purchased through the Microsoft Store.

It isn't clear what Apple's stance on the issue is. Back in 2018, in response to complaints about disappearing iTunes films, Apple said in a statement that "any movies you've already downloaded can be enjoyed at any time and will not be deleted unless you've chosen to do so."

In its own legal terms, it says that some content "may not be available for Redownload if that content is no longer offered on our Services."

Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Section 41A CrPC cannot be used by police to intimidate or harass: Supreme Court

Read Order

The Bench of Justices DY Chandrachud and Indira Banerjee made these observations in a case where a 29-year-old woman, Roshni Biswas, was pulled up by the Kolkata Police for posting objectionable content on Facebook. 

An FIR was registered against Biswas for posting on Facebook that lockdown norms were being violated in Kolkata's Raja Bazaar area and that the police was complacent in taking action in the area to safeguard "a particular community."

Cognizant as the Court is of the underlying principles which restrain the exercise of judicial review in the matter of police investigation, equally, the court must safeguard the fundamental right to the freedom of expression under Article 19(1)(a) of the Constitution. There is a need to ensure that the power under section 41A is not used to intimidate, threaten and harass."

Supreme Court

How is there no information about creation of the app?: CIC issues show cause notice to officials for evasive reply to RTI on Aarogya Setu

Read Order

"After hearing the averments of all the concerned parties and also the CPIO NIC who was present in this case on the basis of oral direction by the Commission, the denial of information by all the concerned authorities cannot be accepted at all."
Central Information Commission

It was held that Section 6(3) of the RTI Act could not be used by public authorities to push off the matter. 

"The addressees cannot simply wash their hands off by stating that the information is not available with them. Some effort should have been put in to find out the custodian(s) of the information sought, by the concerned public authorities when apparently they are the relevant parties..."

Jammu Court grants Deepika Rajawat anticipatory bail in case over Tweet

A Principal Sessons Judge at Jammu has allowed the anticipatory bail plea

preferred by Advocate Deepika Rajawat in the case registered against her over a tweet posted on the occasion of Navratri.

The order was passed 28/10/20 by Judge Sanjeev Gupta. The Judge opined that Rajawat deserved interim protection from arrest in this case.

Accordingly, the Judge has directed that if Rajawat is arrested, she is to be released on interim bail till the next date of hearing, subject to furnishing surety and personal bond to the tune of Rs 50,000. Rajawat has also been asked to cooperate with the probe.

Rajawat's October 19 tweet, which sparked a furore amongst sections of social media, is the following:

Deepika Rawat had submitted that the BJP IT cell gave "communal colour" to her tweet. She had stated that the tweet in question aimed to highlight the increasing number of rapes in the country.

Read Order

Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Centre amends land laws in Jammu & Kashmir: Indian citizens outside J&K now permitted to buy land in the Union Territory

Effectively, non-residents are also now eligible to buy land in Jammu and Kashmir, subject to certain conditions.

Powers under Section 96 of the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganization Act, 2019 have been invoked by the Centre to notify amendments to the Jammu and Kashmir Land Revenue Act 1996, the Jammu and Kashmir Agrarian Reforms Act, 1976 and theJammu and Kashmir Development Act, 1970. 

The order that has introduced these changes has been termed the 
Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir Reorganization (Adaptation of Central Laws) Third Order, 2020.

[NLSIU Student Rape Case]: “An attack on anybody’s daughter is an attack on our daughter", Karnataka High Court recommends capital punishment


On October 13, 2012, near a road which is situated between the main building of Bangalore University and NLSIU, the victim and her friend were seated in their parked car. The convicted persons surrounded the car holding deadly weapons like iron rods, saws, long knives, daggers, and rope.

The convicts forcibly opened the left front door of the car and dragged the victim girl into the forest area, where they gang-raped her.

After their arrest, the convicts were sentenced to life imprisonment by the trial court under Sections 427, 366, 323, 324, 397, 376(2)(g) read with 149 of the Indian Penal Code. 

“We hereby recommend the Legislature/Central Government to further amend the provisions of Section 376D of Indian Penal Code – Gang rape into capital punishment in addition to the existing provision for imprisonment of life and with fine on par with the provisions of Section 376AB and 376DB of Indian Penal Code keeping in view of definition of ‘Woman’ under Section 10 of Indian Penal Code in order to curb the menace of ‘gang rape’ in the society at large."
Karnataka High Court

Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Thackeray-led Government in Maharashtra has withdrawn the consent accorded to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to probe cases within the State.

Exercising powers under Section 6 of the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946, the Uddhav 

Section 6 of the Delhi Special Police Establishment (DSPE) Act provides that a member of the Delhi Special Police Establishment cannot exercise powers and jurisdiction under the Act in any area in a State without the consent of the Government of that State.

Section 6 of the DSPE Act requires the consent of the State Government for the CBI to exercise jurisdiction and to investigate the offences enumerated under Section 3 of the Act in the areas specified by the Government of India by a notification under Section 5 of the Act.

The consent that was given on February 22, 1989, now stands revoked by a notification issued by the Maharashtra Government's Home Department dated October 21, 2020.

"In exercise of the powers conferred by section 6 of the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946 (25 of 1946), the Government of Maharashtra hereby withdraws the consent accorded to the members of Delhi Special Police Establishment vide Government Order, Home Department, No. MIS 0189/CR-28/POL-3, dated 22nd February 1989, as also by any other instruments issued by the Government of Maharashtra... "

reads the Home Department order

This revocation of consent comes soon after Uttar Pradesh Government handed over the TRP scam case probe to the CBI. The Mumbai Police is also investigating a separate FIR concerning the same scam. 

Earlier the Rajasthan Government had withdrawn its general consent. Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal had also revoked such consent in 2018. 


Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Man denied German citizenship for refusing to shake woman's hand

Muslim doctor ‘denied German citizenship after refusing to shake woman’s hand when she presented him with certificate’

A MUSLIM doctor was denied German citizenship after refusing to shake hands with the woman presenting his certificate, according to reports.

The Lebanese man was set to become a German citizen after 13 years in the country, but he fell at the last hurdle after refusing to shake hands with the woman handing over his citizenship at a ceremony in 2015 for religious reasons.

Five years on, a court has backed the decision to deny citizenship to the 40-year-old doctor. 

Judges at the Administrative Court of Baden-Wurttemberg ruled that rejecting a handshake with a woman due to a "danger of sexual temptation" was at odds with integration into Germany society.

The ruling stated that a handshake "has a long tradition of signalling greeting or saying farewell that exists irrespective of social status or sex".

The rejection of the handshake on the grounds of gender was ruled as incompatible with the German constitution's guarantee of equality between men and women.  

The man, who has not been named, moved to Germany in 2002 as a language student before qualifying as a doctor. He later became a consultant physician at a hospital in southern Germany.

Monday, October 19, 2020

Can condition to deposit money be imposed while releasing an accused on default/statutory bail?

Read Judgment

The provision under Section 167(2) of the CrPC envisages the grant of default or statutory bail to an accused in the event that investigation is not completed and a charge-sheet filed within the prescribed time period. Bail under this provision is different from applications for regular bail under Section 437 of the Code, the Court observed.

The Bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan, R Subhash Reddy and MR Shah was considering a petition against the decision of the Madras High Court's Madurai Bench where an accused was directed to deposit a sum of Rs 8 lakhs as a condition for granting default bail.

Setting aside this order of the High Court, the Court noted that it is a well-established principle laid down in a catena of judgments that after the completion of the statutory period of 60 or 90 days, as the case may be, if a chargesheet is not filed against an accused then they have an “indefeasible right” to default bail.

Friday, October 16, 2020

Merely because triple talaq is void & illegal, doesn't mean it could not have been criminalized: Delhi HC forms prima facie opinion

The Delhi High Court has formed a prima facie view that merely because triple talaq has been declared to be void and illegal, it does not mean that the legislature could not have made the continuation of such practice an offence. 

The purpose of Section 4 appears to be to provide a deterrent against such practice. Merely because triple talaq has been declared to be void and illegal, it does not mean that the legislature could not have made the continuation of such practice an offence. This is our prima facie view.
Delhi High Court said.