Today’s Legal Updates

Tuesday, 1st February 2022

Legal Awareness :- Indian nationality law

Indian nationality law details the conditions by which a person holds Indian nationality. The two primary pieces of legislation governing these requirements are the Constitution of India and the Citizenship Act, 1955. All persons born in India between 26 January 1950 and 1 July 1987 automatically received citizenship by birth regardless of the nationalities of their parents. Between 1 July 1987 and 3 December 2004, citizenship by birth was granted if at least one parent was a citizen. Individuals born in the country since then receive Indian citizenship at birth only if both parents are Indian citizens, or if one parent is a citizen and the other is not considered an illegal migrant.

Today’s Legal Updates:-

  1. Today a three-judge Bench of the Supreme Court will examine the Constitutional validity of Section 15 of the Hindu Succession Act, 1956.  (Kamal Anant Khopkar v. Union of India)
    • The Act has been assailed on the ground that it discriminates when it comes to the devolution of property in case of a woman dying intestate (without a will) as against devolution of property of a man dying intestate.
      • Provisions under challenge
        • Section 15 read with Section 16 provides for devolution of property of women dying intestate, while Section 8 read with Section 16 provides for devolution of property of men dying intestate.
        • Section 15 provides the general rules of succession in the case of female Hindus. Sub-section (1) lays down that the property of a female Hindu dying intestate shall devolve according to the following rules set out in Section 16.
          • firstly, upon the sons and daughters (including the children of any pre-deceased son or daughter) and the husband
          • secondly, upon the heirs of the husband
          • thirdly, upon the mother and father
          • fourthly, upon the heirs of the father
          • lastly, upon the heirs of the mother.
        • Section 16 deals with the order of succession and manner of distribution among heirs of a female Hindu. It stipulates that among the heirs specified in sub-section (1) of Section 15, those in one entry shall be preferred to those in any succeeding entry and those included in the same entry shall take simultaneously.
        •  Section 8 (general rules of succession in the case of males) provides that the property of a male Hindu dying intestate shall devolve in the following manner
          1.  firstly, upon the heirs, being the relatives specified in class I of the Schedule; [Heirs in Class I are- Son; daughter; widow; mother; son of a pre-deceased son; daughter of a pre-deceased son; son of a pre-deceased daughter; daughter of a pre-deceased daughter; widow of a pre-deceased son; son of a pre-deceased son of a pre- deceased son; daughter of a pre-deceased son of a pre-deceased son; widow of a pre-deceased son of a pre-deceased son]
          2. secondly, if there is no heir of class I, then upon the heirs, being the relatives specified in class II of the Schedule
            • I. Father
            • II. (1) Son’s daughter’s son, (2) son’s daughter’s daughter, (3) brother, (4) sister
            • III. (1) Daughter’s son’s son, (2) daughter’s son’s daughter, (3) daughter’s daughter’s son, (4) daughter’s daughter’s daughter
            • IV. (1) Brother’s son, (2) sister’s son, (3) brother’s daughter, (4) sister’s daughter
            • V. Father’s father; father’s mother
            • VI. Father’s widow; brother’s widow
            • VII. Father’s brother; father’s sister
            • VIII. Mother’s father; mother’s mother
            • IX. Mother’s brother; mother’s sister
          3.  thirdly, if there is no heir of any of the two classes, then upon the agnates of the deceased
          4. lastly, if there is no agnate, then upon the cognates of the deceased.
        • Section 10 of the Act provides that the property of an intestate shall be divided among the heirs in class I of the Schedule in accordance with the following rules
        • Rule 1: The intestate’s widow, or if there are more widows than one, all the widows together, shall take one share
        • Rule 2: The surviving sons and daughters and the mother of the intestate shall each take one share.
        • Rule 3: The heirs In the branch of each pre-deceased son or each pre-deceased daughter of the intestate shall take between them one share.
        • Rule 4: The distribution of the share referred to in Rule 3— (i) among the heirs in the branch of the pre-deceased son shall be so made that his widow (or widows together) and the surviving sons and daughters get equal portions; and the branch of his pre-deceased sons gets the same portion; (ii) among the heirs in the branch of the pre-deceased daughter shall be so made that the surviving sons and daughters get equal portions.
  2. The Gauhati High Court held that in motor accident cases, a claimant borrowing the vehicle of an insured person cannot be a third party for insurance reliefs under a personal accident cover.  (National Insurance Co Ltd vs Md Atikul Islam and anr)
  3. The Supreme Court reiterated that rules made to exercise the powers and privileges of State legislatures constitute “law” within the meaning of Article 13 of the Constitution. (Ashish Shelar v. Maharashtra Legislative Assembly)
    • Supreme Court reiterated that rules made to exercise the powers and privileges of State Legislature constitute law within the meaning of Article 13
    • State argued that the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly Rules were not binding on the house and were akin to society bye laws
    • This submission was found to be without force and was thus rejected by the Supreme Court
    • Concluded that Rules framed by Legislative Assembly under Article 208 are “procedure established by law” for the purpose of Article 21 of the Constitution.
  4. Today the Supreme Court set aside the Delhi High Court order of October 29, 2021 refusing to stay the award passed by a Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC) tribunal which had restrained Future Group from going ahead with its ₹24,731 crore merger deal with Reliance Retail.  (Future Coupons Pvt Ltd vs Amazon)
  5. Today the Delhi High Court granting relief to Indian gaming platform Baazi restrained a company from using any of its trademarks. (Moonshine Technology Pvt Ltd v. Ticktok Games Pvt Ltd)
  6. Today the Supreme Court extended the interim protection granted to Punjab Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) Simarjeet Singh Bains by two days, in cases filed against him for offences of rape and violating COVID protocol.
  7. Today the Kerala High Court ordered that the mobile phones of Malayalam cine actor Dileep, accused in a case of alleged conspiracy to kill police officers, be transferred to the Judicial First Class Magistrate at Aluva.  (P Gopalakrishnan alias Dileep & Ors. v State of Kerala & Ors.)
  8. The National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) Mumbai recently dismissed a petition filed by The Hindu Group Publishing Private Limited (TGH), seeking to initiate a Corporate Insolvency Resolution Process (CIRP) against Deadline Advertising Private Limited (DAPL) on the ground that the dues payable by DAPL could not be considered operational debt.
  9. Karanjawala & Co will represent BharatPe co-founder and Managing Director Ashneer Grover as he weighs his legal options amid calls for his exit from the company in the wake of an investigation into financial irregularities.
  10. The Mumbai Sessions Court will pronounce its verdict in the bail plea filed by Vishal Jha, accused in the Bulli Bai case, on February 5, 2022.
  11. The Karnataka High Court urged the State government to open a gaushala (cow shelter) in every village in accordance with the Karnataka Cattle Slaughter Prevention and Protection Act, to prevent cow slaughter.  (High Court Legal Services Committee v. State of Karnataka and Ors)
  12. A plea has been filed before the Bombay High Court by the father of a deceased medical student, seeking ₹1,000 crores as compensation for the death of his daughter, who he claimed died due to the side effects of COVID vaccine.
  13. Today the Delhi High Court Justice C Hari Shankar expressed the prima facie view that making marital rape a punishable offence would amount to creation of a new offence.  (RIT Foundation v Union of India)
    • “The conjugal right begins and ends at cohabitation, rest is expectation. A denial of this expectation is a perfectly fair ground for divorce…There is an expectation and an in-principle agreement, it may even be an agreement to agree. No wife is saying that when I am ill or exhausted or menstruating that I hereby and forever consent to sexual intercourse. And that if you have intercourse with me, that will be something else, a lesser offence or not called a rape. That it will be akin to slapping or pinching of the posterior.”
    • “It would be like saying a wife who believes that she has a right to maintenance is permitted to sell her husband’s property without his consent… Even the Court cannot direct a couple to have sexual intercourse. It is not a conjugal right. If any party refuses to cohabit, then it is only enforceable by attachment of property. A spouse can claim divorce on grounds of cruelty.”
    • “If protection of conjugal rights was to be taken as the object of Exception 2, the same doesn’t align with post-constitutional law on conjugal rights in India as conjugal rights end where bodily integrity begins…In failing to get rid of the marital rape Exception, they seem to be implying that if a husband penetrates or makes anyone else do it, it is a conjugal right. It is our submission that this object itself is unconstitutional and therefore the Exception 2 cannot remain on the statute books.”
    • “The marital rape exception is archaic, based on an outdated notion of marital relations that has no place in a just constitutional and criminal order. It is thus ripe for being struck down as being manifestly arbitrary.”
  14. Today a Mumbai court granted bail to Yashkumar Parashar, one of the accused in a case registered by Mumbai Police for making derogatory remarks against women on the Clubhouse mobile app.
  15. Today the Kerala High Court initiated a suo motu case to examine the alleged large scale corruption behind fake bills submitted by the Travancore Devaswom Board and subsequent disbanding of the Devaswom Vigilance Wing.
  16. Today the Karnataka High Court directed a medical college and institution not to demand the full 3-year-course fee from a student, who had withdrawn his admission to their post-graduate program.  (Vaibhav Khosla v. State of Karnataka and Ors)
  17. Today the Delhi High Court observed that the Delhi government’s order making face masks mandatory for those travelling alone in cars was “absurd,” and questioned the State as to why the same was still prevailing.  (Rakesh Malhotra & Ors v. GNCTD)
  18. Today Solicitor General (SG) Tushar Mehta maintained before the Supreme Court that his submissions in the case relating to alleged sexual harassment of Additional District Judge (ADJ) by a Madhya Pradesh High Court judge, were gender neutral. (X v. Registrar General)
  19. Today Maharashtra Legislative Assembly member Nitesh Rane has moved the Bombay High Court seeking bail after a court in Sindhudurg, Maharashtra rejected his plea for bail in an attempt to murder case.
  20. Today the Delhi High Court granted bail to two of the three men accused in the murder of 85-year-old Akbari Begum during the Delhi riots of February 2020.  (Ravi Kumar v State)
  21. Today the Supreme Court held that there is no question of repealing a statute which has been declared unconstitutional by a court.  (State of Manipur vs Surjakumar Okram)
  22. Today the Supreme Court granted bail to Paresh Chauhan, accused in a ₹900 crore Goods and Services Tax (GST) billing scam, after noting that he had undergone almost half of his sentence.  (Paresh Nathalal Chauhan v. The State Of Gujarat and Another)
  23. Today A Mumbai court summoned West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in a criminal complaint filed by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Mumbai Secretary Vivekanand Gupta alleging Banerjee disrespected the national anthem.
  24. Today the Calcutta High Court issued a circular declaring that proceedings can be conducted through the hybrid mode.
    • The circular stated that “upon consideration of the recommendations of the Hon’ble Covid Committee of this Hon’ble Court, the Hon’ble the Chief Justice has been pleased to direct that the Court proceedings can be conducted through hybrid mode permitting physical appearances of lawyers as well as through virtual mode”.
    • “The staff strength in the High Court shall be increased to 100% of the total strength with effect from 02nd February, 2022” 

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