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Shruti Desai

LEAKING A VIDEO OF AN OFFICER COUNTING BALLOT PAPERS  DURING THE VOTING PROCESS OF CHANDIGARH MUNICIPALITY TO SOCIAL MEDIA IS IN BREACH OF DATA PRIVACY?

February 6, 2024

  Data privacy is a law and it’s in force. It came into force on 11th August 2023. Recently an election process was held for electing a Mayor in Chandigarh Municipality. The issue started with Presiding Officer Anil Mansinh looking at surveillance camera and mainly ruling Aam Adami Party lost Mayoral post. Hence an issue is raised that returning officer defaced the ballot papers. The AAP approached the Supreme Court and upon seeing the video a judgment is drawn that returning officer Anil Mansinh tempered the ballot paper. There are two issues: The video presented in court is available on social media platform and all are interpreting the way they want. This is breach of #dataprivacy. How we will discuss here. Can court become judgmental by declaring returning officer guilty without scrutinizing the records? Is court pre-decisive and judgmental in this case?   DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS: [A] The video presented in court is available on social media platform and all are interpreting the way they want. This is breach of #dataprivacy. While answering point No.i let us go back to recent history of constitution bench judgment in which current CJI was a part of it. Justice K.S. Puttaswamy (Retd.) & Anr. vs. Union of India & Ors. (2017), also known as the Right to Privacy verdict, is a landmark decision of the Supreme Court of India, held that, the right to privacy is protected as a fundamental right under Articles 14, 19 and 21 of the Constitution of India. A nine-judge bench of J. S. Khehar, J. Chelameswar, S. A. Bobde, R. K. Agrawal, R. F. Nariman, A. M. Sapre, D. Y. Chandrachud, S. K. Kaul, and S. A. Nazeer unanimously held that “the right to privacy is protected as an intrinsic part of the right to life and personal liberty under Article 21 and as a part of the freedoms guaranteed by Part III of the Constitution.” It explicitly overruled previous judgements of the Supreme Court in Kharak Singh vs. State of UP and M.P. Sharma vs. Union of India, which held that there is no fundamental right to privacy under the Indian Constitution. This judgment settled this position of law and clarified that the Right to Privacy could be infringed upon only when there was a compelling state interest in doing so. This position was the same as with the other fundamental rights . Supreme Court ruled that Right to Privacy is “intrinsic to life and personal liberty” and is inherently protected under Article 21 and as a part of the freedoms guaranteed by Part III of the Constitution. DATA PROTECTION: Central Government passed an Act to provide for the processing of digital personal data in a manner that recognises both the right of individuals to protect their personal data and the need to process such personal data for lawful purposes and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto. The definition of the term data under this Act is as under : (h) “data” means a representation of information, facts, concepts, opinions or instructions in a manner suitable for communication, interpretation or processing by human beings or by […]

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WHEN A CRIMINAL MATTER IS TRANSFERRED TO ANOTHER STATE HIGH COURT THEN WHETHER COURT OF ORIGIN LOSES POWER AND JURISDICTION TO TRY AND ENTERTAIN REMISSION APPLICATION ?

January 9, 2024

BILKIS BANU JUDGEMENT AN ANALYSIS Yesterday two Judges bench passed an order setting aside remission given by the Gujarat High Court on the recommendation of the Gujarat Government under Section 432 (7) (b) of the Code of Civil Procedure 1973 in the matter of Bilkis Banu vs Union of India. But there is different view of 5 Judges Constitution Bench in Murugan Vs Union of India . This law needs more clarification. Brief History : These writ petitions was filed assailing the Orders dated 10.08.2022, granting remission and early release of respondent Nos.3 to 13 in Writ Petition (Crl.) No.491 of 2022 (which petition shall be considered to be the lead petition), who were all convicted, having been found guilty of committing heinous crimes during the large-scale riots in Gujarat on 28.02.2002 and a few days thereafter which occurred in the aftermath of the burning of the train incident in Godhra in the State of Gujarat on 27.02.2002. The crime in question was driven by communal hatred and resulted in twelve convicts, amongst many Writ Petition (Crl.) No.491 of 2022 Etc. others, brutally gang-raping the petitioner in Writ Petition (Crl.) No.491 of 2022, namely, Bilkis Yakub Rasool, who was pregnant at that time. Further, the petitioner’s mother was gang raped and murdered, her cousin who had just delivered a baby was also gang raped and murdered. Eight minors including the petitioner’s cousin’s two-day-old infant were also murdered. The petitioner’s three-year-old daughter was murdered by smashing her head on a rock, her two minor brothers, two minor sisters, her phupha, phupi,mama (uncle, aunt and uncle respectively) and three-cousins were all murdered. Cause of Action Bilkis Yakub Rasool, being an unfortunate victim of the heinous crimes  filed the  writ petition under Article 32 of the Constitution of India, seeking issuance of a writ, order, or direction quashing the Orders dated 10.08.2022 passed by the State of Gujarat by which the convicts in Sessions Case No.634 of 2004, Mumbai (respondent Nos.3 to 13 herein), whose convictions were upheld by a Division Bench of the Bombay High Court and thereafter by Supreme Court. On 28.06.2022, the Department of Home Affairs, Government of Gujarat, addressed a letter to the Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, seeking sanction from the Government of India on the proposal for the premature release of the prisoners, respondent Nos.3 to 13.  By letter dated 11.07.2022, the Ministry of Home Affairs, The government of India conveyed its approval under Section 435 of the CrPC for the premature release of all 11 convicts, respondent Nos.3 to 13. Pursuant to the concurrence of the Central Government, the State of Gujarat issued the impugned orders dated 10.08.2022. In the above background,  writ petitions were filed, praying, inter-alia, for issuance of a writ, order, or direction, quashing the Orders dated 10.08.2022 LEGAL ISSUE INVOLVED It was asserted inter-alia that though the crime was committed in the State of Gujarat, the investigation and trial were carried out in the State of Maharashtra under the orders of this Court. Hence, given the language of Section 432(7)(b), only the state of Maharashtra would be the appropriate […]

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SAME SEX MARRIAGE AND ARDH NARISHWAR – WHETHER IT IS PARALLEL OR THERE IS RESEMBLANCE?

October 19, 2023

What is Ardh -Narishwar? Is it alike a gay or eunuch? Let us see what is Ardh- Narishwar ‘शंकर: पुरुषा: सर्वे स्त्रिय: सर्वा महेश्वरी।’ (शिवपुराण) अर्थात्–समस्त पुरुष भगवान सदाशिव के अंश और समस्त स्त्रियां भगवती शिवा की अंशभूता हैं, उन्हीं भगवान अर्धनारीश्वर से यह सम्पूर्ण चराचर जगत् व्याप्त है। शक्ति के बिना शिव ‘शव’ हैं शिव और शक्ति एक–दूसरे से उसी प्रकार अभिन्न हैं, जिस प्रकार सूर्य और उसका प्रकाश, अग्नि और उसका ताप तथा दूध और उसकी सफेदी। शिव में ‘इ’कार ही शक्ति है। ‘शिव’ से ‘इ’कार निकल जाने पर ‘शव’ ही रह जाता है। शास्त्रों के अनुसार बिना शक्ति की सहायता के शिव का साक्षात्कार नहीं होता। अत: आदिकाल से ही शिव–शक्ति की संयुक्त उपासना होती रही है। भगवान शिव के अर्धनारीश्वररूप का आध्यात्मिक रहस्य भगवान शिव का अर्धनारीश्वररूप जगत्पिता और जगन्माता के सम्बन्ध को दर्शाता है। सत्–चित् और आनन्द–ईश्वर के तीन रूप हैं। इनमें सत्स्वरूप उनका मातृस्वरूप है, चित्स्वरूप उनका पितृस्वरूप है और उनके आनन्दस्वरूप के दर्शन अर्धनारीश्वररूप में ही होते हैं, जब शिव और शक्ति दोनों मिलकर पूर्णतया एक हो जाते हैं। सृष्टि के समय परम पुरुष अपने ही वामांग से प्रकृति को निकालकर उसमें समस्त सृष्टि की उत्पत्ति करते हैं। शिव गृहस्थों के ईश्वर और विवाहित दम्पत्तियों के उपास्य देव हैं क्योंकि अर्धनारीश्वर शिव स्त्री और पुरुष की पूर्ण एकता की अभिव्यक्ति हैं। संसार की सारी विषमताओं से घिरे रहने पर भी अपने मन को शान्त व स्थिर बनाये रखना ही योग है। भगवान शिव अपने पारिवारिक सम्बन्धों से हमें इसी योग की शिक्षा देते हैं। अपनी धर्मपत्नी के साथ पूर्ण एकात्मकता अनुभव कर, उसकी आत्मा में आत्मा मिलाकर ही मनुष्य आनन्दरूप शिव को प्राप्त कर सकता है। क्यों हुआ अर्धनारीश्वर अवतार? भगवान शिव का अर्धनारीश्वरस्वरूप ब्रह्माजी की कामनाओं को पूर्ण करने वाला है। पुराणों के अनुसार लोकपितामह ब्रह्माजी ने सनक–सनन्दन आदि मानसपुत्रों का इस इच्छा से सृजन किया कि वे सृष्टि को आगे बढ़ायें परन्तु उनकी प्रजा की वृद्धि में कोई रुचि नहीं थी। अत: ब्रह्माजी भगवान सदाशिव और उनकी परमाशक्ति का चिंतन करते हुए तप करने लगे। इस तप से प्रसन्न होकर भगवान सदाशिव अर्धनारीश्वर रूप में ब्रह्माजी के पास आए और प्रसन्न होकर अपने वामभाग से अपनी शक्ति रुद्राणी को प्रकट किया। वे ही भवानी, जगदम्बा व जगज्जननी हैं। ब्रह्माजी ने भगवती रुद्राणी की स्तुति करते हुए कहा– ’हे देवि! आपके पहले नारी कुल का प्रादुर्भाव नहीं हुआ था, इसलिए आप ही सृष्टि की प्रथम नारीरूप, मातृरूप और शक्तिरूप हैं। आप अपने एक अंश से इस चराचर जगत् की वृद्धि हेतु मेरे पुत्र दक्ष की कन्या बन जायें।’ ब्रह्माजी की प्रार्थना पर देवी रुद्राणी ने अपनी भौंहों के मध्य भाग से अपने ही समान एक दिव्य नारी–शक्ति उत्पन्न की, जो भगवान शिव की आज्ञा से दक्ष प्रजापति की पुत्री ‘सती’ के नाम से जानी गयीं। देवी रुद्राणी पुन: महादेवजी के शरीर में प्रविष्ट हो गयीं। अत: भगवान सदाशिव के अर्धनारीश्वररूप की उपासना में ही मनुष्य का कल्याण निहित है। अर्धनारीनटेश्वर स्तोत्र (हिन्दी अनुवाद सहित)!!!!!!!! English Translation: That is, all men are part of Lord Sadashiv and all women are part of Lord Shiva, this entire living world is pervaded by the same Lord Ardhanarishwar. Without Shakti, Shiva is a ‘dead body’ Shiva […]

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RIGHTS OF RESERVATIONS AS PER POPULATION WHETHER CONSTITUTIONAL PROPOSITION?

October 4, 2023

During the last 40 years in India, politics has been divided into regional and mainstream parties. The mainstream party was the only one dominated by a family. Under its shelter, every state advanced state-level family powerhouse. They are still inter-alia in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Rajasthan, Jammu and Kashmir, West Bengal, and Telangana. However, the said respective families would oppose state elections and partner in the central government. This continued for decades. Slowly people realised that there is a change in voting tendency. Well, let’s migrate to the topic under discussion to the current situation as the country will go for Lok Sabha elections in 2024. The small local regional parties referred to in para hereinabove along with the mainstream party formed an alliance.  They named it as INDI Alliance. This INDI Alliance has introduced a new idea to fetch more votes. They have proposed that rights on the national resources will be as per the population of a caste.  A caste having a larger population should get more facilities. During the tenure of UPA erstwhile Prime Minister said that it is in particular Muslims who has first right to the resources of this country. Please see the link https://youtube.com/shorts/UAdiboSk-vk?si=P1bjy7UvohWHj-CE PARTITION India has seen division in 1947. A bloody partition based on religion. Millions. Many shed lives and were martyred and many children lost while crossing the border. Nehru became the first PM of independent Bharat.    INDIA WAS BORN We have a constitution in force. Our constitution gives equal opportunity to all. Let us see what it provides: Article 13. Laws inconsistent with or in derogation of the fundamental rights. (1) All laws in force in the territory of India immediately before the commencement of this Constitution, in so far as they are inconsistent with the provisions of this Part, shall, to the extent of such inconsistency, be void. (2) The State shall not make any law which takes away or abridges the rights conferred by this Part and any law made in contravention of this clause shall, to the extent of the contravention, be void Article 14. guarantees Equality before the law. —The State shall not deny to any person equality before the law or the equal protection of the laws within the territory of India. Article 15. Prohibition of discrimination on grounds of religion, race, caste, sex, or place of birth (1) The State shall not discriminate against any citizen on grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth, or any of them. (2) No citizen shall, on grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth, or any of them, be subject to any disability, liability, restriction, or condition with regard to— a) access to shops, public restaurants, hotels and places of public entertainment; or (b) the use of wells, tanks, bathing ghats, roads and places of public resort maintained wholly or partly out of State funds or dedicated to the use of the general public. (3) Nothing in this article shall prevent the State from making any special provision for women and children. [(4) Nothing in this article or in clause (2) of […]

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AMENDING THE CONSTITUTION  BY A JUDGEMENT AND ENCROACHING UPON THE POWER OF THE CONSTITUTIONAL HEAD A JUDICIAL OVERREACH?

March 3, 2023

 Why are we discussing this issue? Anoop Baranwal v. Union of India A Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court has ordered that Election Commissioners will be appointed by the President of India on the advice of a Committee consisting of the President, Prime Minister, Leader of Opposition, and Chief Justice of India. However, in this case, the Office of the President was not a Party. Directions were sought against the Election commission. Hence prima facie the Judgment is not binding upon her. POWER TO AMEND The power to amend the constitution is with Parliament. It is an unfettered power under Article 368 of the Constitution. However, a series of Judgements and stare decisis has put a limitation on the exercise of this power. It was felt by the Court that elected representatives may have their own agendas. The landmark judgments say that as far as fundamental rights are concerned amendment should not touch the basic structure of the constitution. ROLE OF JUDICIARY UNDER THE CONSTITUTION: The Supreme Court has the power to declare any law that it finds unconstitutional void. CAN SUPREME COURT AMEND THE CONSTITUTION BY ORDER AND JUDGMENT? On two occasions this question has arisen: The power of the President to appoint higher court Judges under Articles 124 and 217 is shielded by a Judgement and a system of collegium is formed; Amending Article 324 whereby the power of the President is veiled by a recent judgment of the Supreme Court in the matter of Anup Baranwal ( Supra); POWER OF THE PRESIDENT UNDER THE CONSTITUTION: Under Article 52 President is bestowed upon executive powers. Every power is executed in the name of the President under Article 77. WHAT ARE THE CONSTITUTIONAL PROVISIONS: What is Election Commission? Under the provisions of the Election Commission (Conditions of Service of Election Commissioners and Transaction of Business)] Act, 1991 “Chief Election Commissioner” means the Chief Election Commissioner appointed under Article 324 of the Constitution. PART XV Provides for the appointment of the Election Commission and procedure. Under Article 324 entire superintendence, direction, and control of the preparation of the electoral rolls for, and the conduct of, all elections to Parliament and to the Legislature of every State and of elections to the offices of President and Vice-President held under this Constitution vests in a Commission (referred to in this Constitution as the Election Commission). APPOINTMENT The Election Commission under Article 324 consists of the Chief Election Commissioner and such number of other Election Commissioners if any, is appointed by the President from time to time and the appointment of the Chief Election Commissioner and other Election Commissioners shall, subject to the provisions of any law made in that behalf by Parliament, be made by the President. When any other Election Commissioner is so appointed by the President the Chief Election Commissioner shall act as the Chairman of the Election Commission. Before each general election to the House of the People and to the Legislative Assembly of each State, and before the first general election and thereafter before each biennial election to the Legislative Council of each State having such Council, the […]

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CAN PARLIAMENT SET UP SPECIAL COURT TO DISPOSE OFF PENDING MATTERS? A DISCUSSION AND SUGESSIONS

February 20, 2023

  Indians are a very tolerant community. Citizens are basically law-abiding. But as per data available there are more than 5 crore cases are pending in various courts across India. This includes criminal, civil, DRT, matrimonial, adoption, insolvency, and others. There is always vacancy for Judges and there is also friction between different stakeholders regarding the method of appointment. The pending cases are monetary disputes, land disputes, agricultural land, easement, flat purchasers right, and so on. This also includes international arbitration awards and their execution. When a suit is filed immediate party moves for ad-interim reliefs by way of a Notice of Motion or Interim Application as the case may be. When the order is passed same Notice of Motion comes up for a final hearing after 5 to 10 years. By that time if Plaintiff did not get the order he loses the edge and his right. Then suit may be on board for framing of Issues may be another 5-10 years. The next stage is the affidavit of evidence, admission denial of documents, and cross-examination of witnesses. When a decree is passed it takes time of 2 to 3 years for sealing. When the decree is ready for execution if not executed then we have to take out 21×22 notice in which takes another 2 years to reach and there may be objections. So, for Plaintiff entire exercise is futile. Citizens need a remedy that is speedy and result oriented. The matter doesn’t end here after the ad-interim there is an Appeal from the Order then the Supreme Court and so on and so forth. The litigation is unending and is also costly. To overcome this situation government introduced concept of mediation. It is not much successful. As far as Arbitration is concerned the new concept of institutional arbitration is introduced. It may have been successful but not much accepted by common people like new entrepreneurs, startups, and the common citizens. That is due to cost and fees of an arbitrator. Many petitions are filed in Supreme Court challenging fees of the arbitrator. (See ONGC vs Afcons Gunanusa JV) Does the question arise what is the remedy? The remedy lies in our constitution. Article 217 says the Appointment and conditions of the office of a Judge of a High Court.—(1) Every Judge of a High Court shall be appointed by the President by warrant under his hand and seal and [shall hold office, in the case of an additional or acting Judge, as provided in article 224, and in any other case, until he attains the age of [sixty-two years]:] 126. Appointment of acting Chief Justice.—When the office of Chief Justice of India is vacant or when the Chief Justice is, by reason of absence or otherwise, unable to perform the duties of his office, the duties of the office shall be performed by such one of the other Judges of the Court as the President may appoint for the purpose. 127. Appointment of ad hoc Judges.—(1) If at any time there should not be a quorum of the Judges of the Supreme Court available to hold or […]

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COLLEGIUM CONTROVERSY AND CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY REPORT : WITHOUT PREJUDICE ANALYSIS

January 20, 2023

Is NJAC a violation of Article 368 or violates the theory of pith and substance?  To understand we must go back to the root of the matter.      Brief History This issue is neither constitutional nor legal. The issue is to decide the procedure for appointment of Judges in High Courts namely the High Court and Supreme Court. As such the debate on the procedure to appoint judges to higher courts was debated forcefully by several leading giant members of the Constituent Assembly. But no consensus was drawn. The details we shall see here are below. But before that somewhere in the year 1991 by order and Judgement of the Supreme Court, a system was designed by the name Collegium. In Collegium 6-8 Judges would consider candidates for the office of the higher court judges which includes the Chief Justice of  State and Supreme Court Collegium members. Who selects the candidates and forwards the names to the Law Ministry for scanning intelligence background. There is no other role of the Government in the selection process. The President in the course gives his assent and notifies. Is this a correct system that was dreamt by the makers of our Constitution? Or is hit by pith and substance? Link to read Judgement : https://indiankanoon.org/doc/753224/ Current scenario and the allegations: Over a period of time, this system was allegedly affected by nepotism and it is alleged that it has created a monopoly. There were news reports as well as reports of a senior lawyer at the bar that 50% of the Judges are relatives of the ex-Judges. In the meantime, the Government enacted a law called National Judicial Appointments Commission Act, 2014 ( NJAC ) which was abrogated and declared ultra-vires by the Supreme Court. This resulted in the continuity of the Collegium System. In its logical and practical argument that the Judiciary, it’s argued that the participation of politicians in the selection process may vitiate the independence of the judiciary. This danger was also visualized by the late Dr. B.R. Ambedkar. For the said reason though amendments were moved to adopt the American method of appointment of judges to the higher courts same were withdrawn by respective Constituent Assembly members. However, the late Dr. Ambedkar could not have thought of the situation persisting today about the collegium system which has allegedly resulted in the monopoly of a few families. Here is the link: https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/govt-gives-collegium-proof-of-nepotism-in-picks-for-hc-judges/articleshow/65220425.cms https://www.hindustantimes.com/india/50-hc-judges-related-to-senior-judicial-members-report/story-S8RP2Ir9cEuIN4NewFnvML.html   With this background let us see the history of this issue and why it did not reach finality during the finalization of the Constitution of India.    The Government of India Act, 1919 provided in Section 101 for the Constitution of High Courts; and the appointment of the Chief Justice and the permanent Judges were in the absolute discretion of the Crown, subject only to the prescribed conditions of eligibility. The tenure of their office, according to Section 102, was dependent entirely on the Crown’s pleasure. Under the Government of India, Act, 1935, appointments of Judges of the Federal Court and the High Courts were at the absolute discretion of the Crown or, in other words, […]

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Collectors Land in Mumbai and Transfers

January 4, 2023

      An interesting question was asked on Twitter on collectors’ land. The question was whether it is legal to ask for transfer charges by Collector Mumbai for issuing NOC of flats in Society standing on land belonging to Collector? In Mumbai Collector owns nearly 1282 properties on which development is permitted and sanctioned on Lease. As per the latest data available about 517 properties’ Lease has been expired and in Mumbai leases of about 149 properties have been expired. The government has given this land on meager yearly lease rent. So the Government prescribed a policy for the increase in ground rent on 5th October 1999. Which was challenged and directions were given to give a hearing to those whose lease has been expired and also give an opportunity to convert occupancy to Class II occupants on one-time payments as specified in the Circular. The lease of land for purposes other than Agriculture is granted under provisions inter-alia of the Maharashtra Land Revenue Code, 1966 (“ Said Code” ) and the Maharashtra Land Revenue (Disposal of Government Lands) Rules, 1971 ( Said “ Rules”) . The Said Rule B-26 -27 empowers Collector to Grant Land for Residential use. It reads as under B. Grant of land for residential use 26. Disposal of building sites :- (1) Except as otherwise provided in these rules, the occupancy rights in building sites shall be disposed of by the Collector under Section 20 read with Section 31 by publication to the highest bidder, unless for reasons to be recorded in writing, the Collector thinks that in any particular case, there is reason for granting the land without auction. (2) Where a building site is to be disposed of without auction under sub-rule(1), the Collector shall dispose of the site in occupancy right under Section 20 read with Section 31 on inalienable tenure  [If the occupancy price determined under sub-rule(3) does not exceed Rs. 25,000 and with sanction of the Commissioner, if the occupancy price exceeds Rs. 25,000 but does not exceeds Rs. 1,00,000 and with the sanction of the State Government, in other cases.] (3) The Collector shall determine the occupancy price of the site, regard being had to the following factors that is to say, (a) the sale prices of similar lands in the locality; (b) the situation of the building site; (c) the availability of, and demand for, similar lands; (d) factors which are taken into account in determining the value of land under the Land Acquisition Act, 1894. 27. Grant of land housing schemes :-Building plots may be granted by the State Government for various housing schemes undertaken by any housing board, local authority or co-operative housing society constituted under any law for the time being in force, in occupancy rights under Section 40 on inalienable and impartible tenure on payment of such concessional occupancy price as the State Government may, from time to time fix, regard being had to the nature of the scheme, and in the case of a co-operative housing society, to the income of the members, thereof, such income being ascertained after making such inquiries […]

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CAN A COPARCENER/CO-OWNER SELL HIS/HER SHARE IN A JOINTLY OWNED PROPERTY TO A THIRD PARTY? RIGHT OF PREEMPTION AGRICULTURE LAND VS RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY

December 30, 2022

 Let us first see the provisions of the Transfer of Property Act 1882 and the Hindu Succession Act 1956. Section 22 of The Hindu Succession Act 1956 Section 22 of the Act is as under:- “22. Preferential right to acquire property in certain cases – (1) Where, after the commencement of this Act, an interest in any immovable property of an intestate, or in any business carried on by him or her, whether solely or in conjunction with others devolves upon two or more heirs specified in class I of the Schedule, and any one of such heirs proposes to transfer his or her interest in the property or business, the other heirs shall have a preferential right to acquire the interest proposed to be transferred. (2) The consideration for which any interest in the property of the deceased may be transferred under this section shall, in the absence of any agreement between the parties, be determined by the court on application being made to it in this behalf, and if any person proposing to acquire the interest is not willing to acquire it for the consideration so determined, such person shall be liable to pay all costs of or incident to the application. (3) If there are two or more heirs specified in class I of the Schedule proposing to acquire any interest under this section, that heir who offers the highest consideration for the transfer shall be preferred. Explanation.- In this section, “court” means the court within the limits of whose jurisdiction the immovable property is situate or the business is carried on, and includes any other court which the State Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, specify in this behalf.” OBITER Smt. Laxmi Debi v. Surendra Kumar Panda and Others by the High Court of Orissa. In this case the submission that Section 22 of the Act would not cover succession in respect of agricultural lands was rejected.It was observed and held that “It is clear that the Parliament had omitted the phrase “save as regards agricultural land” from item No. 5 of the Concurrent List in order to have a uniform personal law for Hindus throughout India, and accordingly, it necessitated the enlargement of Entry No. 5. We have no doubt, therefore, that in view of the change in law, the Act will apply to agricultural lands also, and the decision in AIR 1941 FC 72 (K) would no longer hold good.” The High Court of Judicature at Allahabad, in Smt. Prema Devi vs. Joint Director of Consolidation (Headquarter) at Gorakhpur Camp and Ors. held:- In List 2, Entry No. 18 is as follows:– “Land, that is to say, right in or over land, land tenures including the relation of landlord and tenant, and the collection of rents; transfer and alienation of agricultural land; land improvement and agricultural loans; colonization.” This entry which is in the exclusive jurisdiction of the State Legislature is in the widest term. All laws relating to land and land tenures are therefore, within the exclusive jurisdiction of the State Legislature. Even personal law can become applicable to land tenures […]

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COLLEGIUM AND CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY -PITH AND SUBSTANCE CONFLICT OR DEVIATION?

December 19, 2022

Nowadays Collegium is a topic of debate. It’s a system where the Committee of Justices of Higher Courts sanctions and recommends an appointment of an Advocate/Justice of the High Court to a higher bench or apex bench of the Judiciary. Which is under criticism. At present Collegium is a system that makes the appointment and recommends names to the President and Government of India.  However, as a matter of academic interest let us see the background of this issue. To draft the Constitution, a Constituent Assembly was constituted. In the said assembly the topic or article on the appointment of Judges to the higher judiciary amendments was discussed at length. Copy each of Part-1 and Part -2 of the Collegium discussion given below in the link. The following are the relevant resolutions. Proceedings before Constituent Assembly Mr. President: The question is: “That for clause (2) of article 103 the following be substituted:- ‘Every Judges of the Supreme Court shall be appointed by the President by warrant under his hand and seal and shall hold office until he attains the age of sixty-five years: Provided that in the case of appointment of a Judge, other than the Chief Justice, the Chief Justice of India shall always be consulted.’” The amendment was negatived. “That in clause (4) of article 103, for the words ‘supported by not less than two-thirds of the members present and voting has been presented to the president by both Houses of Parliament ‘ the words ‘by each House of Parliament supported by a majority of the total membership of that House and by a majority of not less than two-thirds of the members of that House present and voting has been presented to the President’ be substituted.” The amendment was adopted. Provision of Constitution: An evolution: Provision of Constitution : Establishment and constitution of Supreme Court.—(1) There shall be a Supreme Court of India consisting of a Chief Justice of India and, until Parliament by law prescribes a larger number, of not more than [seven] other Judges. (2) Every Judge of the Supreme Court shall be appointed by the President by warrant under his hand and seal [on the recommendation of the National Judicial Appointments Commission referred to in article 124A]2  and shall hold office until he attains the age of sixty-five years: 3.[* * * * *] 4 [Provided that]— (a) a Judge may, by writing under his hand addressed to the President, resign his office; (b) a Judge may be removed from his office in the manner provided in clause (4). 5 [(2A) The age of a Judge of the Supreme Court shall be determined by such authority and in such manner as Parliament may by law provide.] (3) A person shall not be qualified for appointment as a Judge of the Supreme Court, unless he is a citizen of India and— (a) has been for at least five years a Judge of a High Court or of two or more such Courts in succession; or (b) has been for at least ten years an advocate of a High Court or of two or more such Courts […]

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