Bombay High Court Suggests: A Temporary Ban On Cigarettes, Bidis If Fatal
This week, on Thursday, the Bombay HC suggested that cigarettes and bidis be temporarily banned during the COVID-19 pandemic period considering it may have a correlation with the rise in COVID severe cases (Sneha Marjadi v. State of Maharashtra & Ors.).
The Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice GS Kulkarni questioned whether there were any studies to show the connection between the severity of COVID for persons smoking cigarettes and bidis considering the virus admittedly affects lungs. "If this is an issue which would matter and is fatal to the health of the citizens, we are of the opinion that measures would be required to be taken to ban sale of cigarettes and bidis during the pandemic time," the Court suggested.
Supreme Court Passes Guidelines On Appointment Of Ad-Hoc Judges In HCs Under Article 224A
Earlier this week, the Supreme Court on Monday passed a slew of guidelines regarding the appointment of ad-hoc judges in High Courts under Article 224A of the Constitution. Chief Justice of India SA Bobde, Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Surya Kant passed the judgment in the case Lok Prahari vs Union of India. Lok Prahari s Union of India. Lok Prahari, an NGO, had approached the Top Court through a PIL filed under Article 32 seeking the invocation of Article 224A to tackle the problem of mounting case arrears in High Courts.
Article 224A enables a Chief Justice of a High Court, with the previous consent of the President, to request a former High Court judge to "sit and act as a judge" of the High Court to hear cases. The provision has been invoked very rarely in the judicial history of India.
The Delhi High Court's decision on removal of arbitrator under Section 11 of the Arbitration & Conciliation Act
This week, the Delhi HC in Oyo Hotels & Homes Pvt. Ltd. v. Rajan Tewari & Anr, while deciding a petition under Section 11(6) of the Arbitration & Conciliation Act, 1996, held that a Court has the power to set aside the appointment of an arbitrator, if the appointment is ex-facie contrary to the arbitration clause, and thus is non est in law. In the course of setting aside the appointment of the sole arbitrator so appointed by one party, the Court took recourse to Section 11(6) of the Act and appointed another arbitrator to adjudicate the disputes between the parties.
The decision by the Delhi High Court comes as a positive change, and it is hoped that courts unshackle themselves from the technicalities and start imparting substantial justice, whether in arbitration or other matters.
Police Approaches Apex Court Seeking To Relax Directions Prohibiting Handcuffing Of Arrested Persons, Undertrials To Ensure Safe Transit In Pandemic
Recently, the Delhi Police in the Supreme Court requesting it to relax the directions issued by the Apex Court prohibiting Handcuffing of arrested persons and other Undertrial Prisoners till the time the pandemic subsides so as to ensure safe transit while they are being escorted.
In addition the plea also states that there is an apprehension that such a transit of undertrial prisoners between jail and courts by holding their hand moving in close proximity will expose both the prisoner as well as the police personnel to Covid-19 virus. Highlighting how that many of the police of the Delhi Police have already lost their lives due to the coronavirus and this also puts their respective family members due to this risk.
Gauhati HC Grants Bail To Writer Who Allegedly Questioned Martyr Status Of 22 CAPF Soldiers Involved In Anti-Naxal Operation
Recently, the accused petitioner had posted a Facebook post on 05th April 2021 showing disrespect to the martyrs of the Nation and that it was also alleged that the accused petitioner in her post, maligned and disregarded the sacrifice of the martyrs by urging 'Media' not to generate public sentiments in their favour and not to term them as 'Swahids' as they are drawing salary for the services they are providing to the nation.
In the FIR it was mentioned that this defamatory comment had encountered public outrage in social media as on that day, the nation was mourning the martyrdom of 22 Jawans killed during anti-naxal operation in Chattisgarh on 3rd April, 2021. By the petitioner it was submitted that she neither made any anti-national statement nor made the statement which brings or attempts to bring or create any hatred, enmity, contempt or disaffection towards the Government established by law.
Casually Leaving Mouth/Nose Exposed To Be Treated On Same Footing As Not Wearing Mask, Liable To Same Punitive Action: Punjab & Haryana HC
The Punjab and Haryana High Court on Friday ordered that the States of Punjab, Haryana and UT of Chandigarh shall depute officials of the municipal bo dies or health authorities for ensuring that mask etiquettes are followed by the general public and that the States shall promptly redress grievances on the designated helpline numbers.
Justice Rajan Gupta and Justice Karamjit Singh also went ahead to order that the persons wearing their masks casually leaving their mouth or nose exposed will be treated on "equal footing as those not wearing the mask at all and action will be taken.”