CENTRE DIRECTS SC FOR CESSATION OF CASE AGAINST ITALIAN MARINES AFTER INTERNATIONAL TRIBUNAL’S DECISION

The Centre has proceeded the Supreme Court attempting termination of judicial proceedings against two Italian marines’ charged for killing two Indian fishermen, off the Kerala coast, stating that it has considered the recent ruling of the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) at the Hague which held that India is entrusted to get reimbursement. India had held two Italian marines, Salvatore Girone and Massimiliano Latorre, on board the MV Enrica Lexie — of murdering two Indian fishermen who were on a fishing vessel off Kerala coast in India’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).

The exemptions relished by the Marines employ as a deviation to the jurisdiction of the Indian courts therefore prevent India from performing its jurisdiction over the Marines. It cancelled Italy’s profess to reimburse for the restraint of the Marines. India being a member to the UNCLOS, in compliance with the regulations of the UNCLOS and the Rules of Procedure agreed by the Parties, the Award is ultimate and shall be in accordance with by the parties to the dispute (Article 11, Annex VII, UNCLOS) . The remonstrance against the marines was filed by Freddy, the owner of fishing boat ‘St Antony’ in which the two Kerala fishermen were killed when the marines unfasten fire on them allegedly under the misapprehension that they were pirates. The top court was previously well aware by the Centre that the international arbitral proceedings would be concluded by December 2018 before the International Tribunal for Law of the Sea in Germany. The apex court had earlier stayed all criminal proceedings, including the trial of the two marines. The apex court stated that the proceedings would remain obstructed till the jurisdictional issue about which nation has the right to conduct trial was expressed through international arbitration.

(BY- VASUNDHARA DHAR)

PLEA FILED IN SC AGAINST CONSUMPTION OF ALCOHOL

 

A plea has been filed recently in the Hon’ble Supreme Court seeking for prohibition of consumption of alcohol except for medical cases in spirit of Article 47 of the Indian Constitution. The petition was filed through Advocate Ashwani Kumar Dubey who in the petition stated that consumption of alcohol in times of Covid crises can cause disorder which can make a man vulnerable to the person; the plea has claimed that consumption of alcohol is a health hazard and claimed alcohol as a ‘social evil.’

The Hon’ble Supreme Court held that the prohibition of alcohol cannot be challenged that on the grounds of contravention of Article 19(1)(g) of the Indian Constitution. A similar petition was filed in High Court of Madras which was dismissed on the grounds that regulation of alcohol is purely a matter of state policy and does not warrant judicial intervention further it stated that Article 47 is not an enforceable Provision and therein the said case has no leg to stand. 

(Source – Live Law)

(By – Siddharth Addy)

SC rejects Power Companies’ bid to extend emissions deadline

India’s Supreme Court rejected a request by power producers to extend a deadline to install equipment’s to cut emissions by two years to 2024, according to an order uploaded on the court’s website late on Monday. India has a phased plan for plants to comply with emissions standards, which involve installing Flue Gas Desulphurization (FGD) units that cut emissions of sulphur-dioxide – known to cause lung diseases.

More than half of India’s coal-fired power plants ordered to retrofit equipment to curb sulphur- oxide emissions are set to miss deadlines which go up to the end of 2022. “We are not inclined to allow the prayer made in the application,” India’s Supreme Court said in the order.

(By – Anupama Soumya)

Kerala upholds law prohibiting animal and bird sacrifice in temples

A petition has been filed before the Supreme Court against an order of the Kerala High Court which prohibits ‘animal sacrifice for appeasement of deity’ in temples. The petitioner Gopalkrishnan, a Shakthi worshiper, claimed that animal sacrifice is an integral part of his religious practice mandated by various religious texts and scriptures followed by them and therefore, be permitted. The advocate A Karthik said “In Shakthi worship as per its scriptures and practices popularly known as ‘pramanas’, animal sacrifice is essential and unavoidable for the propitiation of the deity”. It was submitted that Kerala Animals and Bird Sacrifices Prohibition Act violates Article 14 i.e. right to equality because identical practices by other religious communities are not prohibited by the Act and also violates articles 25 and 26 which gives right to practise religion and manage religious affairs. The Act was earlier challenged on June 16 before Kerala High Court. The Act bans and also criminalises sacrificing of animals and birds in temples. 

It was further stated that the Act only penalises animal sacrifice for deities and does not prohibit personal consumption within temples. The petition states “If the object of the law were to ensure prevention and protection of animals, it would demand its uniform application across all religious communities”. The petition also highlighted the central law i.e Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act which specifically prohibits ritually sacrificing animals in Hindu temples throughout India. The plea added “Kerala Animals and Birds Sacrifices Prohibition Act is repugnant to the provisions of PCA Act insofar as the Act operates in the same entry and criminalises an act which the Union Legislation chooses explicitly not to criminalise”.

Source: Hindustan times

(By- Durga Bhatt)

Allow Rath-Yatra without public participation: SC

The Apex court asked the Odisha government to make necessary arrangements to conduct Puri’s Rath Yatra, scheduled to start from June 23, in a restricted manner in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. The apex court also said it cannot “micro-manage” the rituals and left it to the wisdom of state, the Centre and temple management to deal with that issue.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehtha, mentioned the matter before the bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra and stated that “It is a matter of faith for crores. If Lord Jagannath will not come out tomorrow, he cannot come out for 12 years as per traditions. He said, “The tradition of centuries may not be stopped”, while recalling earlier court’s decision i.e. on June 18 for staying of yatra where the bench said Rath-Yatra, cannot be allowed and that “Lord Jagannath won’t forgive us if we allow” it, for modification of its order. 

He further added that the government can impose curfew for a day”. The Odisha government was also in favor of the Centre’s stand in the apex court, which is likely to hear the modification plea during the day itself. The yatra is attended by lakhs of people across the world and is scheduled from June 23. 

By- Durga Bhatt

Seven ‘blacklisted’ Tablighi Jamaat foreign nationals move SC challenging Home Ministry’s order

Seven foreign nationals who have attended a Tablighi Jamaat congregation in New Delhi during March have moved the Apex Court challenging the Home Ministry’s decision to blacklist them for their alleged involvement in the congregation which emerged as a major “Coronavirus hotspot”. Two of them hail from Thailand while there’s one each from Kenya, Mali, Morocco, Tunisia and Malaysia. They requested the court to intervene and remove them from the blacklist which forbids them from entering India for 10 years. 

The petition also sought to declare the MHA decision as “arbitrary”. The petition further stated that “Unilateral blacklisting of 960 foreigners by the Home Ministry vide press release dated April 2, 2020, and the subsequent black listing of around 2,500 forigners as reported on June 4, 2020, is in violation of Article 21. Therefore it is void and unconstitutional as the petitioners have neither been provided any hearing nor notice in this regard”. Investigators had earlier charged the chief of the group Maulana Saad with culpable homocide for its role in increasing Covid-19 infection. He has also been implicated in a money laundering case. Thousands of members gathered in the congneration, acrosss the country, over 15,000 cases were reported with link to this event. 

By- Durga Bhatt

Lawyers Should Be ‘Presentable’ during Virtual Hearing :SC

The incident had happened when the top court was hearing a petition seeking transfer of a case pending in a family court in Haryana’s Rewari to a competent court in Bihar’s Jehanabad.A lawyer appeared in a virtual hearing in the Supreme Court while lying on bed and donning a T-shirt, drawing displeasure of the judge who observed that “minimum court etiquette” should be followed given the public nature of hearings.

Justice S Ravindra Bhat accepted the apology tendered by the advocate, who said it was “inappropriate on his part to make a court appearance, whilst lying on bed dressed in a T-shirt”.

“This court is of the view that when counsel appear in court video hearings, they should be presentable and avoid showing images, which are not appropriate and can only be tolerable in the privacy of their homes,” the court noted in its June 15 order.

“We are all passing through trying times and hearings by virtual courts has become an order of the day. Yet minimum court etiquette in terms of what can be considered decent dress, background, etc should be followed, given the public nature of the hearings,” the apex court said.

(By- Anupama)

Handover Covid-19 test reports directly to Patients and relatives : SC to Maharashtra Government

The Apex Court on Friday declined Maharashtra Government’s decision i.e not to provide a copy of ‘Covid-19 test result’ to the patient or his/her relative. The order, by a three judge bench headed by Justice Ashok Bhushan came as the part of the suo moto monitoring of facilities to Covid patients. The bench stated that it was a strange part of the Maharashtra government to ‘deny’ the copy of the test report if the patient he/she ‘found positive’. Solicitor Tushar Mehthta added, “There is no logic behind this decision. If one undergoes a test, he/she has a right to know the result of the test. When a report of the patient is positive, the same shall be given to the patient or his relatives”. The court also further directed to other states not to follow the same example.

(By- Durga Bhatt)

SC calls for uniform Covid – 19 treatment cost

The Supreme Court today took note of the differences in COVID-19 testing charges in various states and asked the centre to fix an upper limit for these tests. A bench comprising Justices Ashok Bhushan, S K Kaul and M R Shah, which would pass the order later, observed during the hearing that there should be uniformity in COVID-19 testing charge in all states.

“There should be uniformity in COVID-19 test fee. In some states it is Rs 2, 200 and in some it’s Rs 4, 500,” the court told the government. The bench indicated, however, that the court will not venture into the fixation of the charges which will be taken care of by the centre.

(By – Anupama)

SC strongly condemns Delhi government’s approach towards doctors and patients.

Supreme Court takes  suo-motu cognisance concerned with the Covid-19 mismanagement .The Apex Court noticed that the way Delhi government is taking measures for Covid-19 patient as well as for doctors who all are working day and night to save the lives, for a global cause is inappropriate and insufficient. Court has proposed to the Government to file a “better affidavit” in order to do a legitimate work in this pandemic situation.

Justice kaul condemns this act by stating that “The doctors and nurses are soldiers. We are fighting a war. If we don’t treat them properly, how will you win the war? Your approach seems to be that you’re filing FIRs against doctors. You are shooting the messenger, the paramedics, and the doctors! You are suppressing numbers and threatening doctors.”

Meanwhile The Apex Court of the Country has given instructions to the government to rectify all their mistakes quickly as far as mismanagement of the system is concerned.

(By – Sanyogita)