4 Important Supreme Court Judgments April 11, 2019

1. Center of Indian Trade Union, A Federation of Registered Trade Unions v. The State of Maharashtra

The Commission of Inquiry Act, 1952 - Power Project Agreement (PPA) - Though normally in such a case a judicial inquiry should have been conducted but as far as the present case is concerned, more than a quarter of century has elapsed since the first PPA was executed. The foreign corporation and the original project proponents are no longer available. Most of the senior officials would have retired and virtually no action can be taken against them. Furthermore, the commission of inquiry even if continued or constituted afresh, will take its own time and, as opined by Members of the Godbole Committee, the constitution of such commission of inquiry would serve no useful purpose. This was the stand in the year 2001 and has greater force 18 years later. In view of the long delay and in view of the fact that due to non­availability of many persons involved, no useful purpose would be served in continuing with the judicial commission of inquiry, we close the petition in the peculiar facts and circumstances of the case.

Case Number : SLP (C) No. 7734 of 1997 11-04-2019
Petitioner's Advocate : Kamini Jaiswal
Respondent's Advocate : Nishant Ramakantrao Katneshwarkar
Bench : Hon'ble The Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, Hon'ble Mr. Justice Deepak Gupta, Hon'ble Mr. Justice Sanjiv Khanna

2. Indibily Creative Pvt. Ltd. v. Govt. of West Bengal

The Cinematograph Act 1952 - Sections 4, 5, 5A, 5B, 6 and 13 - Principles for guidance in certifying films - Power of State Government or District Magistrate to suspend exhibition of films in certain cases - Power of Central Government or local authority to suspend exhibition of films in certain cases - SC issues a Mandamus restraining the state from taking recourse to any form of extra constitutional means to prevent the lawful screening of the feature film Bhobishyoter Bhoot.

The state shall specifically ensure that the properties of the theatre owners who exhibit the film are duly protected as are the viewers against attempts on their safety. As a consequence of the pulling off of the film from the theatres where it was screened on 16 February 2019, the petitioners have suffered a violation of their fundamental right to free speech and expression and of their right to pursue a lawful business. This has been occasioned by the acts of commission and, in any event, of omission on the part of the state in failing to affirm, fulfill and respect the fundamental freedoms of the petitioners. We are clearly of the view that a remedy in public law for the grant of remedial compensation is required in the present case. We order and direct the respondents to pay to the petitioners compensation which we quantify at Rs 20 lakhs within a period of one month from the date of the present judgment. The Writ Petition is allowed in the above terms. The petitioners shall be entitled to the costs of the proceedings quantified at Rs 1 lakh, to be paid over within one month. [Para 19 - 21]

Case Number : W.P. (C) No. 306 of 2019 11-04-2019
Petitioner's Advocate : Rukhsana Choudhury
Bench : Hon'ble Dr. Justice D.Y. Chandrachud, Hon'ble Mr. Justice Hemant Gupta

3. Chairman and Managing Director The Fertilizers and Chemicals Tranvancore Ltd. v. General Secretary Fact Employees Association

The Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 - Section 11 - The Industrial Disputes Act, 1947 - Section 10 - Principle of res judicata - Whether the principle of res judicata applies to the labour proceedings or not ? Held, the general principle of res judicata applies to an industrial adjudication.

Case Number : C.A. No. 3803 of 2019 11-04-2019
Petitioner's Advocate : Siddhartha Jha
Bench : Hon'ble Mr. Justice Abhay Manohar Sapre, Hon'ble Ms. Justice Indu Malhotra

4. Atma Ram v. The State of Rajasthan

The Indian Penal Code, 1860 - Sections 302, 307, 452, 447, 323, 147, 148 and 149 - The Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 - Sections 273, 299 and 317 - Evidence to be taken in presence of accused - Record of evidence in absence of accused - Provision for inquiries and trial being held in the absence of accused in certain cases - Discussed.

Case Number : Crl.A. No. 656 - 657 of 2019 11-04-2019
Petitioner's Advocate : Saurabh Ajay Gupta
Bench : Hon'ble Mr. Justice Uday Umesh Lalit, Hon'ble Ms. Justice Indu Malhotra
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