Upholding daughter’s property rights

Amritananda Chakravorty Mihir Samson

i. Arbitral award against Ranbaxy upheld – The Delhi High Court has upheld international arbitral award against the former promoters of the Ranbaxy group, Malvinder and Shivinder Mohan Singh. Daiichi had filed an execution petition to enforce a Rs 6500 Cr award passed by a Singaporean tribunal, when it reached the conclusion that the brothers had hidden an important document from Daiichi while entering into a Share Purchase and Subscription Agreement. The High Court though held that the award was not enforceable against the children of the brothers, holding that the protection of minors was a part of fundamental policy of India. [Daiichi Sankyo Company Limited v Malvinder Mohan Singh, OMP (Execution First Appeal) (Commercial) 6/2016, date of judgment: 31.01.2018]

ii. PIL to make sexual harassment laws gender neutral dismissed – The Supreme Court has dismissed a petition, which sought making the laws on rape, sexual harassment, stalking, etc gender neutral. The Chief Justice of India Dipak Mishra termed the petition as “imaginary” and claimed that such laws could not be held unconstitutional, as such laws were a part of measures taken under Article 15(3) to protect women. Further, the Court said that such a change would come be in the ambit of the Parliament and not the Supreme Court. [Rishi Malhotra v Union of India, Writ Petition (Criminal) No(s).7/2018, date of order: 02.02.2018]

iii. Court checks violation of individual’s privacy – The Allahabad High Court, in a case relating to surveillance of potential suspects, emphasised the importance of protecting the fundamental right of privacy.  The Court struck down the police action of continuing surveillance of a man from 2011 onwards, which began owing to sufficient reasons. But in recent years, it continued without the application of mind and there was no need to continue with the surveillance by opening his history sheet and subjecting him to unnecessary scrutiny. Such intrusion into the privacy of an individual could only be allowed in accordance with the situations mentioned in Police Regulations, which were not met in the case. [Bablu Shah v State of UP, Criminal Miscellaneous Writ Petition No. 29022/2017, date of order: 24.01.2017]

iv. Issues surrounding Jallikattu referred to five judge bench – The question as whether Tamil Nadu can conserve Jallikattu (bull fighting festival) as its cultural right or not has been referred to a bench of five judges, as the judges felt that it involved questions of substantial importance pertaining to the interpretation of the Constitution. A batch of petitions question the constitutional validity of Prevention of Cruelty of Animals (Tamil Nadu Amendment) Act, 2017, which sought to allow Jallikattu in the State of Tamil Nadu. [The Animal Welfare Board of India v Union of India, Writ Petition (Civil) No. 23/2016, date of order: 02.02.2018]

v. Reply on application against pushing back of Rohingyas sought – The Supreme Court has sought reply from the Centre on an application filed by Prashant Bhushan seeking a direction to the government to not stop Rohingyas from entering India. Bhushan further argued that their deportation was also against the principle of Non-refoulment, which prohibits deportation of refugees if they face persecution in their own country. The Centre opposed the application on the basis that such decisions were to be taken by the executive and the Courts were not to interfere in them. [Mohammad Salimullah v Union of India, Writ Petition No. 793/2017, date of order: 31.01.2018]

vi. Arguments begin in Judge Loya’s case – Senior Counsel Dushyant Dave appearing for Bombay Lawyers’ Association, seeking an independent probe into the death of Judge Loya, implored the Court to have the report of Commissioner of Intelligence placed on record as it suffered from various contradictions He further placed reliance on earlier cases to further press his case, contending that an attack on lower judiciary is an attack on the entire system and not just one man. [Bombay Lawyers Association v The Registrar General, Transfer Case (Criminal) No. 1/2018, date of order: 02.02.2018]

Others –

i. Salaries of Supreme Court and High Court judges hiked – The Central government has hiked the salaries of the Supreme Court and High Court judges. Vide the High Court And Supreme Court Judges (Salaries And Conditions Of Service) Amendment Act, 2018, the salary of the Chief Justice of India has been increased from the present ₹1 lakh to ₹ 2.80 lakhs per month. The hike will be applicable from January 2016 onwards.

ii. All judicial work taken away from Justice Shri Narayan Shukla–An in-house inquiry committee constituted by the Chief Justice of India, Shri Dipak Mishra, has recommended the removal of sitting Allahabad High Court judge, Justice SN Shukla. The report noted that he had made hand-written corrections to the judgment in Medical College admissions case to allow GCRG Institute of Medical Science to admit a new batch. Further, it was alleged that Shukla J had violated orders passed by the CJI Misra-led bench of the Supreme Court, which was hearing cases regarding opening of medical colleges. The report further stated that Justice Shukla had “disgraced the values of judicial life, acted in a manner unbecoming of a judge”, and lowered the “majesty, dignity and credibility of his office”. CJI Misra had advised Justice Shukla to either resign or take voluntary retirement. However, the High Court judge has refused either option, prompting CJI to take away judicial work from him. (IPA/Concluded)

Wednesday, 21 February, 2018