Centre tells SC that Deadline for Aadhaar Card be extended till 31st March

The Centre told the Apex Court on Thursday that the deadline for mandatory linking of Aadhaar be extended till the 31st of March. The statement was made before a bench of Justices headed by CJI Dipak Misra. While Attorney General K K Venugopal said- “There cannot be a stay on the Aadhar scheme which has gone on for years.”, he also went on to state that he was prepared on arguing the case finally and that no interim stay should be granted in a matter of such grave importance.

The Supreme Court also said that the constitution bench would fix the date for final hearing and the disposal of petitions challenging the biometric identification scheme.

UIDAI, today, said that the notifications for verification of bank accounts, PAN cards, SIM cards with biometric ID are valid and binding and there has been no change inflicted on them.

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Art of Living Foundation held accountable for damage to Yamina Flood Plains

The National Green Tribunal held the Art of Living Foundation headed by spiritual leader Ravi Shankar responsible for inflicting damage on the Yamuna flood plains because of the three day cultural extravaganza in March, 2016.

The Art of Living Foundation had already deposited INR 5 crore and the NGT refused to impose any additional environment and ordered the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) to use the same amount to restore the Yamuna flood plains.

The AoL Foundation had decided to challenge the same in the Apex Court.

It was ruled that the Yamuna river bed is not the site for such cultural activities and the NGT further directed the DDA to compute the cost of restoration, after due assessment of the damage caused.

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Delhi HC on the Plea for Legislation on Genocide

The Delhi High Court disposed of a Petition for a legislation on the offence of genocide. The Petitioner by the name of Manjit Singh Butalia approached the Court without making any representation to the Centre and had demanded a direction to the Centre to fulfil its obligations under the Genocide Convention and Treaty Laws 1948.

A bench comprising of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C. Hari Shankar noted that the Petitioner had approached the Court without any representation to the Centre and directed that the petition be treated as a representation.

The Court went on to observe – “In any case, the writ would otherwise be not maintainable as this court does not have the power to issue directions to the respondent to effect any legislation.”

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CJI’s Judgement on the Padmavati case

The Chief Justice of India- Dipak Misra dismissed the petition filed by ML Sharma seeking to restrain director Sanjay leela Bhansali from releasing the movie Padmavati, overseas.

It reads as:

“The instant writ petition has been preferred under Article 32 of the Constitution of India giving it the nomenclature of public interest litigation basically with twin prayers that a film titled “Padmavati” should not be exhibited in other countries without obtaining the requisite certificate from the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) under the Cinematograph Act, 1952 (for brevity, ‘the Act’) and the Rules and guidelines framed thereunder and further to issue a writ of mandamus to the Central Bureau 2 of Investigation (CBI), respondent No. 5 herein, to register an FIR against the respondent Nos. 1 and 2 and their team members for offence punishable under Section 7 of the Act read with Sections 153A, 295, 295A, 499 and 500 of the Indian Penal Code read with Section 4 of the Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act, 1986 and to investigate and prosecute them in accordance with law”

CJI Dipak Misra is well known for his wordplay. He is known for quoting Shakespeare and other bards in his judgements and orders and he seems to have done it again with the curious case of ML Sharma v Sanjay Leela Bhansali, better identified as the Padmavati case.

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Mattel sues film starring Sunny Leone ; Delhi HC asks Mattel to “chill”

Toy giant and creator of the now legendary Barbie doll, Mattel approached the Delhi High Court with an injunction against the upcoming Bollywood movie Tera Intezaar. The movie has a song titled “Barbie Girl”, featuring Sunny Leone and Mattel has alleged that the film has used the company’s trademark “in a manner antagonistic to the values and interests of the customers target base, the plaintiffs cater to.” It is further reported that Mattel thinks that the very presence of Sunny Leone renders it unsuitable for children.

However, the Delhi High Court has asked the toy giant to “chill” and has refused to grant ex-parte injunction. It has also been stated that, that the very presence of Sunny Leone sends across a wrongful message cannot be a valid argument.

There has been a similar case in the year 1997 when Mattel decided to sue the yesteryear music band Aqua for their song Barbie Girl which had lyrics tagged unsuitable for Mattel’s customers. They had lost the case there as well.

Let’s hope that the iconic fashion doll retains its glamour and everything pink, without getting entangled in such legal hassles.

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Delhi HC dismissed plea against “Padmavati”

The Delhi High Court dismissed a plea against the most “controversial” movie of the year- “Padmavati” and observed that petitions of such manner were actually adding fuel to the already existing agitations against the movie.

A bench of Acting Chief Justice Geeta Mittal and Justice C. Hari Shankar called the petition “hopeless” and “misconceived”. The petition, brought by Akhand Rashtrawadi Party( which claims to be a political party) sought that a committee be set up before the release of the movie so as to check for any distortion of historical facts.

“Have you (counsel for the petitioner) seen the film? Have the people, who are burning cinema halls seen the film? By this kind of petitions, you are encouraging the people who are agitating,” the bench observed.

The court further directed the petitioner to approach the Censor Board as the Court is not supposed to entertain the same.

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UP Government tells SC that it is “fully committed” to protect and preserve Taj Mahal

The Uttar Pradesh Government told the Supreme Court that it is indeed committed to preserving and protecting the environment and working towards achievement of sustainable development in and around the Taj Mahal and the Taj Trapezium Zone, which is an area spread over 10,400 sq. kms (approximately) and spans over the districts of Agra, Firozabad, Mathura, Hathras, Etah (in UP) and Bharatpur (in Rajasthan).

The state government, in the affidavit filed at the Apex Court, stated- “It is respectfully submitted that the state is fully committed to protect environment and ensure sustainable development specifically in and around the Taj Trapezium Zone.”

It was also stated that such provisions towards protection of Taj Mahal have been included in the master plan of Agra 2021. A separate micro-level plan is also said to be considered, exclusively for the preservation of the Taj Mahal.

The counsel appearing for the state mentioned the matter before a bench of Justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta  and sought permission for the affidavit, which had been filed by the state in pursuance of an order of the Supreme Court for submission of a comprehensive policy on preservation of the Taj Mahal and TTZ.

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