Legal News Shots- Today’s Best Picks From Around The World

Legal News Shots- Today's Best Picks From Around The World
Legal News Shots- Today's Best Picks From Around The World

INDIA- Supreme Court of India- No SDM has the power to order Police to lodge an FIR

No district or sub-divisional magistrate in India has the power to order the cops to register FIR on a private complaint, stated the Supreme Court. As per the court’s decision, no executive magistrate will have the power to direct police to register a citizen’s complaint as the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) provides such power only to judicial Magistrates and police officers. A petition, by the owner of a private educational institution against whom a FIR was filed, prompted the SC to examine this aspect of law. A student had approached the SDM complaining about a college run by the petitioner named Naman Singh, alleging that the college had duped her into taking admission in a law course although she later came to know that the college was unrecognised and permission to start the course was still in the pipeline. Acting on the order, the UP Police registered a FIR under various provisions of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) dealing with cheating, criminal breach of trust and forgery against Singh, the institution owner. When the case was taken up in the Supreme Court, the judges spotted the error in law. Finding it strange as to how a SDM could order a registration of a FIR, the SC bench quashed its order.


INDIA- Supreme Court of India set to rule whether Monsanto maintains its patent rights on GMO Bt Corn

The nation awaits the Supreme Court’s take on where the agro-biotech giant Monsanto is battling to reclaim its patent for the pioneering Bt Cotton technology. This will be the court’s first interpretation of convoluted issues relating to the patentability of plant varieties and the decision that it takes will be a turning point for the entire biotechnology industry and its ability to protect plant-related inventions in India. With hundreds of patent applications in the area already granted, and others pending, it is to be hoped that the Supreme Court examines all the issues exhaustively so that the ruling does not prove to be a nemesis for these patent applications and future biotech innovations.


INDIA- Lawyers bandh affects the daily life in four Odisha districts

Due to a dawn-to-dusk shutdown called by lawyers, seeking a permanent High Court bench in the region, hits the normal life of four south Odisha disctricts. Shops, markets, business establishments, educational institutions, banks and offices remained closed, while public transport system came to a grinding halt in the region as bandh supporters blocked thoroughfares and picketed several.  However, emergency services such as healthcare facilities and fire stations were on the go, which remained by and large peaceful, he said.


USA- Federal Court declares New York ban on nunchucks as unconstitutional

The ban on nunchucks in 1974 by New York State that was put into place over fears that youth inspired by martial arts movies would create widespread mayhem is unconstitutional under the Second Amendment, has been ruled by a federal court. James Maloney, the Plaintiff, started his legal battle after being charged with possession of nunchucks in his home in 2000. He initially filed a complaint in 2003, and appealed all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court when the case went against him. The Supreme Court in 2010 remanded the case back down to be reconsidered in light of a Second Amendment decision it had made in another case, and Maloney filed an amended complaint later that year.


USA- Framed in such a way, New Child Pornography brings justice and compensation to victims

A new law on child pornography signed earlier this month is designed to bring justice and compensation to victims of child pornography. The Amy, Vicky, and Andy Child Pornography Victim Assistance Act of 2018 was co-sponsored by Pennsylvania Senator Patrick Toomey.Pennsylvania Senator Patrick Toomey says it’s time to make those who possess or share child pornography pay for their crimes…literally. The law allows victims of child pornography to collect compensation from any person who is convicted of possessing or distributing the victims’ image. The money would help victims pay for medical treatment, counseling, even legal fees.


INDIA- Cancer-causing asbestos apprehended in Johnson & Johnson baby powder: India looking into the report

A report that US multinational Johnson & Johnson knew for decades that its baby power contained cancer-causing asbestos is “under consideration”, India’s central drug regulator CDSCO says. Johnson & Johnson baby powder is widely used in India. The Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO) said, that it was too early to say if a formal probe would be launched. “We tested samples in 2016, but no such thing was found in them,” senior CDSCO official K Bangarurajan told Reuters. “The samples were found to be complying with Indian standards.” Meanwhile, Johnson & Johnson, whose market value has plummeted since the report was published last week, says the Indian government hasn’t yet contacted it. It has called the article “one-sided, false and inflammatory”.


INDIA- The Delhi High Court asks for Model Code of Conduct over Bribery Remarks made by Arvind Kejriwal

The Delhi HC asked the Election Commission to place before it the model code of conduct (MCC), which EC claims was violated by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal by his bribery remarks during the Goa Assembly election campaign. Justice Yogesh Khanna said he wants to see the MCC which according to the EC was violated by Mr Kejriwal and hence an order of censure, and later a direction for lodging an FIR, was issued against him by the poll panel in January last year. The Chief Minister’s lawyers sought that till the matter is before the court, the EC be asked not to take any action against him, especially in view of commencement of poll campaigning in Haryana in January. The high court, however, refused to grant any interim relief to Kejriwal, saying it wants to see the model code of conduct first.


INDIA- Delhi High Court on Tandoor Case- Can a Person Be Put Behind Bars Indefinitely?

The Court on Tuesday raised the question whether a person could be allowed to be kept in jail indefinitely for the offence of murder even if he has already served the sentence while hearing a plea by former youth Congress leader Sushil Kumar Sharma, serving life term in the 1995 murder of his wife Naina Sahni, seeking release and concerned with the human rights of the prisoner and termed the issue as “very serious”.”He is incarcerated for over 25 years including remission. He has already served the sentence. Does it not infringe upon his human rights, which are inalienable rights. The Sentence Review Board (SRB) cannot say no no this murder was brutal, so we will not release him,” the bench said.Referring to a report filed by SRB, the bench noted that the possibility of Sharma committing a similar offence again has been ruled and the authorities do not see him as a menace to society.”Then why should we keep him in jail indefinitely?,” it asked. Sharma, who is in prison since 1995, has contended that he has already undergone the maximum prescribed sentence as mandated under the SRB guidelines.


INDIA- Address proof cannot be a ground for refusing admission in Schools says Delhi High Court

The Delhi High Court Tuesday said not having an address proof of Delhi is not a valid ground to deny admission to children in government schools in the city. Justice C Hari Sankar directed Sarvodaya Kanya Vidyalaya in Anand Vihar to grant admission to three children who live in Ghaziabad. As per the petition, the father of the three children approached the HC saying that the government school denied admission to his children on the ground that they did not have residence proof of Delhi. The petition further stated that refusal of admissions is “arbitrary, discriminatory, illegal, unconstitutional, and violative of fundamental rights”. The HC held that the right to education is fundamental and sacrosanct in nature, and that it cannot be violated by authorities in a whimsical manner.


USA- Texas AG, universities face suit over Israel boycott law

The American Civil Liberties Union of Texas has filed a lawsuit against the state’s attorney general and others over a law requiring contractors to certify they do not boycott Israel.The federal suit filed Tuesday argues the law forces people to choose between their First Amendment rights and their livelihoods. State Attorney General Ken Paxton, along with two school districts and two universities, are listed as defendants.The suit asserts that the parties bringing the suit have either lost “contracting opportunities” because they declined to sign the certification or signed “at the expense” of their Frist Amendment rights. It says the law went into effect last year and requires contractors to certify that they do not boycott Israel or Israel-controlled territories.


UK- Pilots are by law banned from chatting when plane is below 10,000ft

Of course, part of the announcement is to alert the cabin crew that the plane is in descent, and to direct the passengers to put their seatbelt on in case of any turbulence – but part of it is also regulated by law. The law is usually known as Sterile Flight Deck Procedures in Europe and Sterile Cockpit Rule in the US. It limits what pilots can and can’t do during “critical phases of flight”, which according to the FAA, is defined as “all ground operations involving taxi, take-off and landing, and all other flight operations conducted below 10,000 feet, except cruise flight.”This means that any talking, eating or listening to music – basically anything that isn’t essential to their role – is banned during that period. The law was introduced after several fatal accidents due to “poor cockpit discipline” where investigations revealed, the pilots were found to be distracted from their duties before or at the time. The rule also applies to flight attendants. The cabin crew are not supposed to contact the pilots unless in an emergency.They are also supposed to concentrate on preparing the cabin for take off or landing.


AUSTRALIA- After change in the law, Queenslanders can now harvest crocodile eggs

Crocodile farmers in Queensland can now legally hunt and gather crocodile eggs in the wild, and hatch them for luxury goods, after quietly introduced changes to conservation laws. Hunters would have to apply for a licence to collect the eggs from nests in the wild, which would then be transported to private farms and hatched for their skins and meat. The lucrative reptile business was made legal in the Northern Territory in the 1980s, but had always been banned in Queensland until the changes were made without public notification.


INDIA- Delhi HC awaits Centre’s response on plea to construct Nelson Mandela’s statue in Delhi 

The Delhi high court on Tuesday sought a response from the Union and the Delhi governments on a plea filed seeking permission to erect a statue of former South Africa president Nelson Mandela on a road named after him in the national capital. The application was initially moved in 2016 in the Supreme Court, which was hearing a matter with regard to encroachments of public spaces by religious structures, before the BRICS summit in the city as the South African government wanted to unveil Mandela’s statue during the event.


SOUTH AFRICA- Law and disorder: Judges and Advocates under siege at high court

Johannesburg lawyers and judges are under siege by armed thugs operating in and around the city’s high court precinct.Criminals have, since the beginning of December, attacked three advocates leaving the courthouse. Now lawyers are threatening legal action.


RUSSIA- Lawmakers in Russia back law jailing anyone urging teenagers to protest  

Lawmakers in Russia have approved draft legislation according to which calling on teenagers to attend unauthorized street protests a jailable offence,  a move Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny said on Tuesday was designed to frustrate his own activity. The new legislation proposes introducing fines of up to 50,000 rubles ($750) or a jail sentence of up to 15 days for anyone calling on people aged under 18 to attend unauthorised protests. Companies or organisations that encourage minors to attend could be fined up to 500,000 rubles as per the new law.


INDIA- Godavari river cleansing urged by Bombay High Court, Orders several steps

The Bombay High Court today passed an order ensuring several steps to rejuvenate and prevent further pollution of Godavari river. The court noted,  after Kumbh Mela in 2015, a major religious event which takes place every 12 years, a substantial quantity of water was required to be released from upstream dams to clean up dirt in the river.Godavari is the second longest river in India after the river Ganga. The river serves as main source of water supply to the Nashik city in the heart of Maharashtra. But there is large scale pollution as well from various sources, industrial as well as human. “”Nashik Municipal Corporation shall make available the facility of sufficient number of permanent artificial ponds for immersion of ashes and other organic material during the course of traditional obsequies,” the order said.


INDIA- HC upholds validity of Maharashtra’s notification for TDR police

The Bombay High Court Tuesday upheld as legal and valid a 2016 notification of the Maharashtra government that amended the Transferable Development Rights (TDR) policy for the Greater Mumbai region. A bench of Justices A S Oka and R I Chagla upheld the notification dated November 16, 2016 that grants additional construction rights and Floor Space Index (FSI) benefits to those developers, who surrender their land to make way for roads marked in the city’s Development Plan (DP). While the Maharashtra government had earlier granted a fixed percentage of FSI and TDR benefits, the 2016 notification granted such benefits based on the ratio between the land surrendered and the width of the proposed road on such land.


INDIA-Punjab High Court raps CBI over pending desecration cases

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Tuesday told the Punjab and Haryana High Court that the three cases related to 2015 desecration incidents that were entrusted to it earlier by the Punjab government were still “pending” for investigation before it, even as the High Court questioned it for the delay in completion of probe and regarding its stand in such cases where the consent for probe has been withdrawn by the government.  The plea has been filed by the accused police officers for CBI probe in all the cases related to sacrilege including the FIRs registered to probe the police firing in Faridkot. The arguments for the CBI probe were completed by the counsel representing the police officers on Tuesday. The government will begin to present its side on December 20 in the cases related to sacrilege and firing incident of Behbal Kalan and Kotkapura.


GERMANY- In order to attract more foreign workers, Germany plans to relax its immigration rules

Worker-starved Germany plans to ease its immigration policies and rules so that foreign job seekers could get attracted to the German market and replenish its fast ageing workforce, despite mounting public resistance against new arrivals. The German Trade Union Confederation has warned that the eased access could lead to salary dumping and exploitation of foreign workers.Under the planned relaxed rules, jobseekers from outside the EU – including, for example, cooks, metallurgy workers or IT technicians – would be allowed to come to Germany for six months to try and find employment, provided they speak German and can financially support themselves.




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