Thursday, September 30, 2021

Non-registration of vehicle ground for insurance company to deny insurance claim: Supreme Court

The Bench of Justices UU Lalit, Ravindra Bhat and Bela M Trivedi said that when an incident involves a vehicle that has no valid registration, then the insurance company can deny payment of the insurance claim since it is a breach of the conditions of the agreement.

"Therefore, on the date of theft, the vehicle had been driven/used without valid registration, amounting to a clear violation of Sections 39 and 192 of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988. This results in a fundamental breach of the terms and conditions of the policy, as held by this Court in Narinder Singh, entitling the insurer to repudiate the policy,"
 the Court held.

The NCDRC should not have overlooked and disregarded a clear binding judgment of this Court – it also should not have disregarded its ruling in 

6 39. Necessity for registration. - No person shall drive any motor vehicle and no owner of a motor vehicle shall cause or permit the vehicle to be driven in any public place or in any other place unless the vehicle is registered in accordance with this Chapter and the certificate of registration of the vehicle has not been suspended or cancelled and the vehicle carries a registration mark displayed in the prescribed manner: Provided that nothing in this section shall apply to a motor vehicle in possession of a dealer subject to such conditions as may be prescribed by the Central Government. 192. Using vehicle without registration.--(1) Whoever drives a motor vehicle or causes or allows a motor vehicle to be used in contravention of the provisions of section 39 shall be punishable for the first offence with a fine which may extend to five thousand rupees but shall not be less than two thousand rupees for a second or subsequent offence with imprisonment which may extend to one year or with fine which may extend to ten thousand rupees but shall not be less than five thousand rupees or with both: Provided that the court may, for reasons to be recorded, impose a lesser punishment. (2) Nothing in this section shall apply to the use of a motor vehicle in an emergency for the conveyance of persons suffering from sickness or injuries or for the transport of food or materials to relieve distress or of medical supplies for a like purpose: Provided that the persons using the vehicle reports about the same to the Regional Transport Authority within seven days from the date of such use. (3) The court to which an appeal lies from any conviction in respect of an offence of the nature specified in sub-section (1), may set aside or vary any order made by the court below, notwithstanding that no appeal lies against the conviction in connection with which such order was made. Explanation.--Use of a motor vehicle in contravention of the provisions of section 56 shall be deemed to be a contravention of the provisions of section 39 and shall be punishable in the same manner as provided in sub-section (1).

Financial dependency not sole criterion for legal representatives to claim compensation: Kerala High Court

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The Court opined that the Motor Vehicles Act which is a social welfare legislation and courts must, therefore, adopt a beneficial rule of construction favourable to those in whose interest the enactment has been passed.

"Keeping in mind that the enactment is a beneficial and social welfare legislation, impels me to hold that dependency is only a criterion for a legal representative to claim compensation for loss of dependency under Section 166 of the Act, 1988, and is not the ‘be all end all’ criteria to claim compensation under the other pecuniary, non-pecuniary and conventional heads of compensation,

"Even if dependency is a relevant criterion to claim compensation for loss of dependency, it does not mean financial dependency is the ‘ark of the covenant’. Dependency includes gratuitous service dependency, physical dependency, emotional dependency, psychological dependency, and so on and so forth, which can never be equated in terms of money."

The Court also took strong objection to the contention that a daughter, once married would no longer be dependent on her mother.

"It would be preposterous to accept the contention that a 25-year-old daughter would be no longer dependent on her 49-year-old mother because she was given in marriage. The bond between a mother and a daughter is eternal. I reminisce the quotation of Cardinal Mermillod ‒ “No matter how old she may be, sometimes a girl just needs her mom,

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

HC orders Morbi ceramic units to deposit 25% of penalty

The Gujarat high court on Tuesday asked nearly 600 ceramic units in Morbi-Wankaner cluster to deposit 25% of penalty amount with the Gujarat Pollution Control Board. The HC said that all the units were responsible for causing environment damage and liable to pay but permitted the units to make full payments after the authorities complete their damage assessment and fix final liability on each of the units. 
GPCB had ordered all ceramic units in this cluster to pay fine of Rs 5,000 per day since their establishment for causing environmental damage by using coal gasifiers. The interim compensation imposed on these units comes to around Rs 500 crore. The authorities are yet to determine final compensation. 
After demand for interim compensation, more than 500 units approached the HC, complaining that they were not given an opportunity to defend themselves. After hearing the petitions, the bench of Justice J B Pardiwala and Justice V D Nanavati refused to buy the argument that the units were not granted an opportunity of hearing before determining the interim environment damage compensation. The HC said, “We are of the view that the writ applicants (ceramic units) are liable to pay the interim environment damage compensation.” It said that the final payment would be subject to the final damage assessment report by three institutes — National Environment Engineering Research Institute (NEERI), the Indian Institute of Public Health (IIPH) and Advanced Materials and Processes Research Institute (AMPRI). The HC has requested these institutes to speed up their study. 
The court said that by the time the study is completed and appropriate report is filed, the units should deposit 25% of the amount stipulated in the notices issued by GPCB. 
Last November, the HC had stayed the authorities from taking coercive steps for recovery of compensation for their continuing to use coal gasifiers despite a strict no by the National Green Tribunal and the Gujarat high court. The GPCB had cited a report by a committee set up by the NGT, which held the ceramic units responsible for violation of pollution norms and recommended penalty of Rs 5,000 per day since the day GPCB gave consent for establishment to that particular unit.

Adani Gas cannot establish city gas distribution networks in Sanand, Bavla, Dholka: Supreme Court

The Supreme Court on 28-09-21 upheld a Gujarat High Court order which had rejected a plea by Adani Gas Limited seeking authorisation from the Petroleum and Natural Gas Regulatory Board (PNGRB) for establishing and operating city gas distribution (CGD) networks in Gujarat's Sanand, Bavla and Dholka (Adani Gas Limited v. Union of India & Ors).

Permitting only Muslim priest to perform rituals violates religious rights of Hindus and Muslims: Karnataka High Court

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The Karnataka High Court on Tuesday held that permitting only a Muslim Priest to perform the rituals at the Datta Peeta is violative of Article 25 of the Indian Constitution. [Datta Peeta Devasthana Samvardhana Samithi vs State Of Karnataka]

Thursday, September 23, 2021

Kerala High Court sentences temple oracle (Pujari) to life imprisonment for rape of girl

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The Court began the judgement by recording its observation that abandoned women and children often fall victim to predators who are sometimes, as is in this case, priests

"When a man abandons his wife and children, roving vultures wait to prey on not only the abandoned woman but also the helpless children. In this case, we have a 'poojari'/'komaram' (priest/oracle in a temple) taking the abandoned woman and the three children under his wing, only to repeatedly molest the elder girl child, that too in the presence of her siblings. We wonder which God would accept the obeisance and offerings of such a priest or make him a medium?"

Which God would accept the obeisance and offerings of such a priest or make him a medium?"

-Kerala High Court

Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Refuses to discharge rape accused who cited astrological incompatibility to go back on marriage promise -B0mbay High Court

“There is sufficient material to suggest that since inception, the applicant had no intention of upholding his promise to marry the complainant,” -Justice Sandeep Shinde

Friday, September 17, 2021

Kerala High Court denies anticipatory bail to fake lawyer Cessy Xavier

The Kerala High Court on Thursday declined to grant anticipatory bail to a woman who had allegedly practiced law for two years without a law degree (Cessy Xavier v. State of Kerala)

Single judge Justice Shircy V directed the accused, Cessy Xavier to surrender to the authorities for any interrogation they may deem necessary.
A First Information Report was registered against Xavier for offences punishable under Sections Sections 417 (punishment for cheating) and 419 (punishment for cheating by personation) of the Indian Penal Code, both of which are bailable offences.

Bombay High Court directs District Collector to pay ₹10 lakh each to widows of 3 deceased manual scavengers

A Bench of Justices Ujjal Bhuyan and Madhav Jamdar also directed the Maharashtra government to ensure that the "shameful practice of manual scavenging" is discontinued at the earliest.

"Despite strict legislative intent, this shameful practice continues and this should shock the collective conscience of the society,” the Bench remarked.

The Court was hearing a petition by the widows seeking compensation in light of the Supreme Court judgment.

Safai Karamchari Andolan And Ors vs Union Of India A
nd Ors on 27 March, 2014

Allahabad High Court grants bail to man accused of "propagating concept of Islamic State"

"Having heard the submissions of the learned counsel of both sides, nature of accusation and the severity of punishment in case of conviction and the nature of supporting evidence, prima facie satisfaction of the Court in support of the charge, reformative theory of punishment, and larger mandate of the Article 21 of the Constitution of India, the dictum of Apex Court in the case of Dataram Singh v. the State of U.P. and another, reported in (2018) 2 SCC 22 and without expressing any opinion on the merit of the case, I find it to be a case of bail."

Thursday, September 16, 2021

Adults have right to choose their matrimonial partner irrespective of religion: Allahabad High Court

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A Division Bench comprising of Justices Manoj Kumar Gupta and Deepak Verma, granted protection to the inter-faith couple and said that not even their parents can object to their relationship.

"It cannot be disputed that two adults have right of choice of their matrimonial partner irrespective of religious professed by them....As the present petition is a joint petition by the two individuals who claims to be in love with each other and are major, therefore, in our considered opinion, nobody, not even their parents, could object to their relationship," the Court said

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Attorney General KK Venugopal grants consent for contempt of court against Ajeet Bharti for YouTube video on SC

"I find that the contents of the video, which have been watched by 1.7 Lakh viewers are vituperative, gross and highly derogatory to the Supreme Court of India and judiciary as a whole," Venugopal said.

NCLAT cannot condone delay beyond 15 days in appeal against decision of NCLT: Supreme Court

The Supreme Court on Tuesday held that as per Section 61(2) of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) cannot condone a delay beyond 15 days in an appeal filed against a decision of the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) [National Spot Exchange Limited v. Mr Anil Kohli, Resolution Professional].

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Bumper to bumper insurance not mandatory: Madras High Court modifies previous order

The Madras High Court has modified its previous order dated August 4 that mandated bumper to bumper insurance for all new vehicles for a period of five years to ensure the safety of passengers, drivers, and owners (The New India Assurance Co Ltd v. K Parvathi).

This Court hope and trust that lawmakers will look into this aspect and examine the need for suitable amendment in the Act, relating to the wide coverage of vehicles so as to protect the innocent victims.”

Provisions of Consumer Protection Rules 2020 -Rule 3(2),Rule 4(2)(c),Rule 6(9) Quashed -Bombay High Court

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The Nagpur Bench of Bombay High Court on 14/09/21 set aside provisions of the Consumer Protection Rules, 2020 which govern the appointment of the president and members to State and District Consumer Disputes Redressal Commissions.

A Bench of Justice SB Shukre and AS Kilor held that the below three provisions were in violation of Article 14 of the Constitution and quashed them.

The following Rules were the cause of grievance:

  • Rule 3(2) - prescribed a minimum experience of not less than 20 years for appointment of the president and members of State Commission;

  • Rule 4(2)(c)experience of not less than 15 years for appointment of the president and members of District Commission; and

  • Rule 6(9) provided for the selection committee to determine its procedure for making its recommendations keeping in view the requirement of the Commission.

Sunday, September 5, 2021

Thursday, September 2, 2021

“Purpose of verification of caste certificates by scrutiny committees is to avoid false and bogus claims.” -SC

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The Bench of Justices L Nageswara Rao and Aniruddha Bose held that the “purpose of verification of caste certificates by scrutiny committees is to avoid false and bogus claims.”

Repeated inquiries for verification of caste certificates would be detrimental to the members of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes. Reopening of inquiry into caste certificates can be only in case they are vitiated by fraud or when they were issued without proper inquiry,” 

 The Court placed reliance on the Government Order dated September 12, 2007.

The guidelines issued by G.O.108 dated 12.09.2007 do not permit the State Level Scrutiny Committee to reopen cases which have become final,” stated the Supreme Court.