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  • Sep 17, 2019
    In the first part of the blog of Article 370, a brief of the history of the ancient happenings was covered. In the second part, a timeline of all the events that have happened during the course of time needs to be focused. The timeline gives a clear perspective of the events from 1846 till 2019.   1846: Maharaja Gulab Singh, a Dogra ruler, bought the region of Jammu & Kashmir from the East India Company after signing the Treaty of Amritsar.   1930s: Kashmiri Muslims were unsatisfied with the then Maharaja Hari Singh’s rule and felt his policies were prejudiced. J&K’s first major political party, the National Conference (NC), was born and its founder, Sheikh Muhammad Abdullah’s made a political debut. The Quit Kashmir movement against the maharaja was launched.   August 1947: India gained independence from the British empire, Pakistan was created as a Muslim-majority country. Indian, then home minister Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel worked to convince the undecided princely states to join India.   October 1947: Armed tribesmen from Pakistan infiltrate J&K, Hari Singh realized that he needed Indian help. He reached out to prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru and Patel who agreed to send troops on the condition that the maharaja signs an instrument of accession (IoA) in favour of India. January 1948: India took the Kashmir issue to the United Nations (UN), raising concerns over Pakistan’s forced occupation of parts of Kashmir.  March 1948: Hari Singh appointed an interim government in J&K. Sheikh Abdullah named the prime minister. January 1949: The UN-mediated a ceasefire between Indian and Pakistan—also known as the Karachi Agreement—allowing the two countries to retain control over territories held at the time. July 1949: Hari Singh abdicated in favour of his son Karan Singh. Sheikh Abdullah and three colleagues joined the Indian constituent assembly to discuss provisions of Article 370 under the Indian constitution that is still being drafted. 1950: The Indian constitution came into force. Under this, Article 1 defines J&K as a state of India, Article 370 accords special status to J&K. 1951: The constituent assembly of J&K, the body was responsible for creating the state’s constitution, convenes. All members belong to Sheikh Abdullah’s NC. 1952: Kashmiri leaders discussed their relationship with the union of India in the J&K constituent assembly. This led to a comprehensive Delhi Agreement that defined the relationship of the state with the union. 1953: Sheikh Abdullah was dismissed as prime minister allegedly because he had lost the support of his cabinet. Bakshi Ghulam Mohammad took his place. 1954: A presidential order extended several provisions of the Indian constitution to J&K’s constitution. 1956: J&K adopted its constitution and defined itself as an integral part of India. 1957: The J&K held its first legislative elections.  1960: Both supreme court and election commission of India extended jurisdiction over J&K through an amendment in its constitution. 1962: China gained control of the Aksai Chin region in J&K after a war with India. May 1965: Titles of the prime minister and sadr-i-riyasat officially changed to the chief minister and governor, respectively. June 1965: Abdullah’s NC merged with the Indian National Congress. August 1965 to January 1966: War between India and Pakistan. Indian prime minister Lal Bahadur Shastri and Pakistani President Ayub Khan signed the Tashkent Declaration marking the end of the war. 1966: There was a revival of a demand for a referendum in J&K. These include the Plebiscite Front and the Jammu & Kashmir National Liberation Front (JKLF). 1971: A third war erupted between India and Pakistan. 1972: India and Pakistan signed the Simla Agreement which ratified the ceasefire line as the Line of Control. 1975: Prime minister Indira Gandhi and Sheikh Abdullah signed Kashmir Accord, emphasizing Article 370, and J&K as an integral part of India.  1977: Congress-JKNC split. Congress withdrew support for Sheikh Abdullah’s government, paved way for the central rule. July 1977: Elections held in J&K, Sheikh Abdullah re-elected. 1977 to 1989: J&K saw a steady rise of militant outfits, several unstable governments, and arrests and killings of militant youth. 1990: Kashmiri youth went to streets to protest against Indian administration and hundreds of them died in clashes with Indian troops. Central rule declared just as outfits like JKLF gain strength. Kashmiri Pandits (Hindu Brahmins) flee their hometowns in Kashmir valley in the face of rising militancy. The central government imposes the Armed Forces Special Powers Act, giving armed forces unprecedented powers to counter armed militancy. 1990s: Militant insurgency on the rise.  1995: Prime minister PV Narasimha Rao made a statement in parliament assuring that Article 370 will not be abrogated.  February 1996: India bans JKLF. September 1996: Assembly elections held in J&K. JKNC’s Farooq Abdullah formed a government. 1997: The national human rights commission sets up a J&K chapter to investigate human rights violations there. 1998: India and Pakistan test nuclear weapons. February 1999: Indian prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee visited Pakistan. June 1999: India and Pakistan go to war over Pakistan’s infiltration in Kargil. December 1999: Indian Airlines flight, IC-814, from Delhi to Kathmandu was hijacked by militants. India released three militants in exchange for the flight and the passengers on board to be brought back safely to Delhi. October 2001: The legislative assembly in Srinagar was attacked. December 2001: Armed militants attacked the Indian parliament in New Delhi. 2004: Indo-Pakistani relationship stabilized after decades of instability. Indian prime minister Manmohan Singh met Pakistani President General Pervez Musharraf. 2005 to 2008: Clashes between armed forces, militants, and protesting civilians continued in J&K. November 2008: Terrorists affiliated to the Lashkar-e-Taiba attacked various public places, including prominent luxury hotels. 2010: Protests erupted in J&K over a young militant’s killing. 2011: J&K chief minister Omar Abdullah pardoned 1,200 stone pelters. 2013: Afzal Guru hanged for his role in the 2001 attack on parliament. March 2015: The BJP formed a government in J&K with the People’s Democratic Party for the first time. April 2016: Mehbooba Mufti became chief minister after the death of Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, her father. July 2016: Burhan Wani, another young militant, killed in a shootout with armed forces. J&K state erupted in massive protests. September 2016: Armed militants attacked the Indian Army base in Uri, J&K. The army retaliated with surgical strikes across the LoC. July 2017: Thousands of residents of J&K take to the streets to commemorate Burhan Wani’s death. Militants attacked pilgrims on their way to the revered Hindu shrine of Amarnath. June 2018: BJP government pulled out of the alliance with PDP. November 2018: Governor Satya Pal Malik dissolved legislative assembly. December 2018: Central rule declared in the state. February 2019: A vehicle loaded with explosives crashed into an Indian paramilitary convoy, killing 40 personnel.  May 2019: The BJP returned to power for the second time in India. July 2019: US President Donald Trump offered to mediate the Kashmir issue between India and Pakistan. August 2019: Reports suggested a large number of Indian troops have been moved into J&K. Pilgrims to Amarnath asked to return.  August 4: Prominent Kashmiri leaders, including former chief ministers Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti, placed under house arrest. Internet and mobile services curtailed, and section 144, which prevented a gathering of more than four people in public spaces, imposed. August 5: Home minister Amit Shah proposed a presidential order to repeal Article 370 and 35A. J&K to be bifurcated as two union territories of Ladakh (centrally administered) and J&K (with its legislative assembly). Opposition parties protest in parliament; complete shutdown in Kashmir valley.
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  • Sep 16, 2019
    The land of Kashmir was first called in ancient literature as Kashyapmar, which later went on corrupting and became Kashmir. It is said that a rishi named Kashyap takes the fame of setting Kashmir as he is the one who successfully reclaimed Kashmir from a huge lake that existed where the Kashmir Valley is located now. We’ve jotted down the ancient history of Kashmir and how Article 370 came into existence through a series of blogs. The first part, however, briefs of the situation through the 14th Century.   Maurya emperor Ashoka founded the city of Srinagar and along with this brought Buddhism to Kashmir which saw several ruling dynasties till the middle of the fourteenth century.  While Ashoka explored around, a Tibetan Buddhist refugee named Rinchana established the first Muslim dynasty in Kashmir who later converted to Islam.  Later when Akbar became the Mughal emperor, he annexed Kashmir to his empire.   Under Ranjit Singh, the state of Jammu and Kashmir acquired its modern shape. Ranjit Singh established a Sikh confederation and annexed Kashmir from the Mughal empire in the early 19th century.  The administration of J&K was given to a local chieftain from the Dogra community, who expanded it by capturing Ladakh and Baltistan for the Sikh empire. By this time, the British rule of East India Company started getting stronger in India. The company had successfully challenged the advance of the Sikh empire, whose leader Ranjit Singh was forced to sign a Treaty of Amritsar in 1809, which was formalized in 1846 after the first Anglo-Sikh war. This treaty then decided on the fate of J&K.   The British trader-rulers "sold" the dominion of J&K to Dogra king Gulab Singh for Rs 75 lakh. The Dogra king ruled over the regions of Jammu, Kashmir Valley, Gilgit-Baltistan, and Ladakh. The arrangement continued till 1947 when the British divided the Indian subcontinent into two countries - India and Pakistan.   Jammu and Kashmir ruler Hari Singh appeared to chart out his way without acceding to India or Pakistan.  It signed a standstill treaty with Pakistan, which breached the agreement by invading J&K in October 1947. India did not intervene till Hari Singh signed the Instrument of Accession with India and sought help from New Delhi. Hari Singh sought special privileges for his people on the lines of a 1927 law that denied outsiders the right to own property in the state. This law restricted the right to own property in Jammu and Kashmir in line of inheritance only. This had been brought apparently to keep the Britishers away from the salubrious Valley of Kashmir. The Jawaharlal Nehru government agreed to Hari Singh's condition subject to future final settlement.    The matter was placed before the Constituent Assembly of India, which was dealing with the task of framing the Constitution of India. After a lot of deliberation, Article 370 was inserted in the Constitution's twenty-first part that proclaimed it to be "Temporary, Transitional and Special Provision." That’s when “Article 370” provided for special status to J&K, which was granted to it through the Presidential Order of 1954.
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  • Aug 31, 2019
    Acid attack is not something old in India. It has dismayed the conscience of our nation with mutilated faces, unvanquished survivors returning upfront to share terrible stories, and families being bankrupt by the supporting recovery prices of the victim. The Indian Penal Code was modified in 2013 for the first time to add regulations directed to acid attacks. Acid attack is inevitably the worst infliction on another human that leads to complete debilitation, loss of income and opportunity, and even social sequestration. This suggests that the present evil remains quite accessible to most and therefore the causes agitating malice. Acid attacks can overwhelmingly be classified as gender violence as 85% of victims are women. For the 15% male victims, the primary cause of the attack is a property dispute. Before insertion of Sections 326A-326B of the Indian Penal Code, the acid attack could only be prosecuted as violence against women. The Indian penal code amendment on the 2nd of April 2013 included provisions for prosecution of perpetrators, treatment, and rehabilitation of the victims, the right to self-defense against acid attack and control of acid sales. The laws but, obviously are ‘too late’, may additionally be ‘too little’ in their current state.The case of an acid attack came up for hearing before the High Court at Calcutta by Piyali Dutta who wrote to the Chief Secretary, WB requesting for interim compensation of Rs. 3 lakhs. The court observed that, a per the WB Victim Compensation Scheme, 2017, the State or the District Legal Services Authority has the right/authority to decide an application for grant of compensation under Section 357A(4) and thereafter on 7th July, 2017 the court passed a judgment in accordance with the appropriate authority in favor of Piyali for the compensation.
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  • Aug 06, 2019
    It’s definitely a brave and historic move of the Indian Government that Article 370 has been revoked/scrapped in Jammu and Kashmir after fighting for decades. For this decision to be made, the state witnessed increased security deployment over the weekend, riots and abandonment of Internet, while top political leaders were placed under house arrest for a night and curfew was imposed on Monday morning in the state. After the independence from the British rule in 1947, Article 370 was the basis of Jammu and Kashmir's accession to the Indian union at a time when erstwhile princely states had the choice to join either India or Pakistan. The article 1949 exempts J&K from the Indian constitution. It allows the Indian-administered jurisdiction to create their own laws on every other subject but finance, defence, foreign affairs and communications. J&K set up a whole separate constitution with a separate flag and denied property rights to the outsiders in the region. In matters of property ownership and citizenship the residents of the state lives under different laws from the rest of the country. Through a presidential order in 1954, Article 35A was introduced to continue the old provisions of the territory regulations under Article 370 of the Indian constitution. The article permits the local legislature in Indian-administered Kashmir to define permanent residents of the region. It forbids outsiders from permanently settling, buying land, holding local government jobs or winning education scholarships in the region. The article, Permanent Residents Law, bars female residents of J&K from holding any property rights if they get married to a person outside the state. The provision also extends to such women's children and furthermore. Below mentioned are some before/after scenes from the state and now a Union Territory J&K. Previously, J&K had special powers exercised within themselves but after the scrapping, no more special powers are held. People of J&K had dual citizenship but wouldn’t have the same and will be considered a citizen of India. J&K had their special flag but now the state will only have a Tricolour flag. Article 356 wasn’t applicable but from now it will be imposed. Article 360 which states financial emergency; wasn’t applicable but will be valid. No reservations for minorities were available but all the minorities will be granted reservation. Citizens of India, outside of J&K couldn’t buy land in J&K previously but now can purchase a property there. RTI wasn’t applicable before but is now. Legislative assembly for 6 years of duration was there but the assembly duration in now turned Union Territory J&K will be of 5 years only. J&K has been suffering. Be it from India or Pakistan. More than anyone the citizens are affected. This scrapping has already evoked people, politicians and nations along with it. AS we can see, it’s going to be tough. However, let’s not come to a judgment of right or wrong and keep the verdict safe for the aftereffects.
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  • Jul 27, 2019
    Amicus Curiae is a legal phrase, literally translated as “friend of the court”, which refers to someone, not a party or to a case but who volunteers to offer help on a point of law by providing needful information or some other aspect of the case to assist the court in deciding a matter proposed. The information may be in the form of a legal opinion, a testimony that has not been solicited by any of the parties, or a learned treatise on a matter that bears on the case. The decision of whether to accept the information lies completely with the discretion of the court. The role of an amicus is often confused with that of an intervener who has a direct interest in the outcome of the lawsuit. Amicus curiae are generally organizations non-profit legal advocacy organization who frequently submits briefs to advocate against a particular legal change or interpretation. In a populated nation like India, the court has allowed various people to act as amicus curiae for the proceedings to become faster. The importance of amicus curiae comes into existence when the prosecution and the defence go beyond ethical and professional practices to murder justice for their own goods. The courts have welcomed the idea of permitting amicus curiae to associate themselves with proceedings involving public interest. With this introduction, the court is guided by the academic perspective required for a particular case and also enables the court to have an understanding which would allow them to do justice in their own space. The person allowed by the courts to act as amicus curiae is who on behalf of the society represents the unbiased will and opinions. Thus in India, if the accused is unrepresented with a petition received from the jail or from any other criminal matter then an Advocate is appointed as amicus curiae by the Court itself to defend and argue the case of the accused. The Court can appoint an Advocate as amicus curiae if it is necessary for an unrepresented party in civil matters too. In any matter of general public importance in which the involvement of the public is at large an amicus curiae can be appointed directly by the court.
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  • Jul 15, 2019
    ADR In The Age Of Digitization.   Technology is transforming the landscape of disputing. In today’s era where the population is growing rapidly ‘conflict is a growth industry’ as consumers have problems with transactions, citizens worry about preserving their identity, businesses face threats to their reputations, social networks foster anti-social behavior, governments struggle with security, patients encounter new health care choices and everyone experiences imperfectly functioning websites. The meet of the physical world with the virtual world has brought with it a broad range of novel, complex and valuable transactions. It has also brought with it a need for new dispute resolution and prevention processes.   Alternative dispute resolutions (ADR) are the methods of resolving a dispute between parties other than traditional courts. ADR includes early neutral evaluation, negotiation, mediation, arbitration, and online dispute resolution (ODR). ODR which is Online Dispute Resolution and has been introduced for quick and convenient resolving claims using online drive-thru processes instead of more costly and time- consuming face-to-face meetings and hearings. Most commentators have nonetheless focused mainly on non-binding or automated bidding processes, perhaps due in part to fairness concerns associated with off-line arbitration. We’re exploring the potential for online binding arbitration (OArb), and shedding new light on arbitration as means for empowering consumers to obtain remedies on their e- merchant claims. By moving arbitration online, OArb helps address concerns regarding companies' use of arbitration clauses to curb consumers' access to remedies on their typically small claims. This offers suggestions for regulations that aim to capitalize on OArb's potential for providing consumers with convenient and cost-effective access to remedies while augmenting companies' cost-savings from avoiding court and class actions, which they may pass on to consumers through lower prices and better quality products.   As with regular dispute resolution, ODR allows for filling the gaps of the current regulations in international private law to deal with Internet cases. It also allows for improving early neutral evaluation by enabling to bring in experts regardless of the geographical location, improving effective negotiation by fostering single or double blind negotiations, introducing e-mediation where parties are led through automated choices to achieve consensus before working with a mediator, introducing new forms of arbitration and new rules of procedure such as the digital submission of evidence and documentation, holding hearings via online media, etc.
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  • Jun 21, 2019
    Introduction Arbitration in India is emerging and at a fast-pace. The arbitration clause constitutes of almost 95% of agreements between parties. The inclusion of the arbitration clause in a contract is high in the construction and infrastructure, and oil and gas sectors. Arbitration disputes in India have been rampant in the construction and infrastructure, and oil and gas sectors. This is primarily due to the nature of these businesses and risk attached. India is slowly growing as a hub for international arbitration too. Looking at the pendency of cases in India and how convenient arbitration is as a dispute settlement method, the rising growth of the arbitration market in the Indian legal industry is definitely a good news.   How Arbitration benefits us?In simple words, arbitration is the act of dispute settlement through an arbitrator, i.e. a third party, who is not involved in the dispute. Arbitration in India is regulated by the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996. The Act is based on the 1985 UNCITRAL (The United Nations Commission on International Trade Law) Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration and the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules 1976. There are many advantages of arbitration. It brings down the costs of dispute settlement, it fixes time lines for expeditious disposal and it minimizes the court intervention. Since the arbitrator is appointed by the mutual agreement of both the parties, it also ensures the neutrality of arbitrator and enforcement of awards. Arbitration also benefits the country and the economy. Having arbitration law encourages foreign investments to a country. It projects the country as an investor friendly one having a sound legal framework and ease of doing business. Having an arbitration law facilitates effective conduct of international and domestic arbitrations raised under various agreements.   ConclusionArbitration in India is gaining importance given the over-stressed judicial system with the huge pendency of cases. With a lot of commercial disputes, it’s necessary to have a proper arbitration mechanism in place for faster resolution of issues.  
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  • Jun 19, 2019
    The way we do business is changing everyday and every minute. Globalization alongside technological advancements is promoting business growth, different economies of sovereign states and the individual purchasing power. A lot of jobs that required manual labour and human expertise are now being automated. While artificial intelligence (AI) has been there for some years in the modern times, Siri remains to be the most popular form of AI known to people. Siri has very conveniently replaced the job of a secretary. Similarly, AI is being used in the medical industry too. However, it has its own downside. Firstly, patients would trust human expertise and experience rather than to be operated by a machine. Secondly, the unemployment rate in many countries is on the rise and AI is only adding to that. However, AI does improve ease of doing business which we will understand in depth at a later stage in the article. As automation and digitalization is the new way of doing business in almost all industries, how would AI impact the legal industry? Can lawyers benefit from AI in litigation? Can litigation that has always required expertise, logic, knowledge and the oratory skills of lawyers and the fine sense of judgement of judges take place by machines? In simple terms, yes and no. Surely there is a lot of work that takes place in preparing for a hearing in court. What litigants do at court, is hardly 5% of their actual work. Most of the work takes place back in the office or chambers. The first task that artificial intelligence can do is due diligence. Just like how there are apps like grammarly that checks for grammatical errors in a write-up, similarly artificial intelligence can be used to review and conduct due diligence for different contracts. Secondly, artificial intelligence can be used to draft contracts. There are a lot of instances where the main content of a contract remains the same and only the date, amount and name of the parties has to be changed. In such cases, artificial intelligence can be very useful tool to save time and effort. AI can also help in case law research. Only by typing the brief facts of case, AI shall be able to find all the relevant case laws that suit the facts of the case, the judgement given and which court gave that judgement. In terms of giving judgements, AI can use past judgements for a given type of case and use it as precedence to give judgement and will also be able to analyse the evidences submitted. This will also aid in reducing the backlog of cases that we have in India. However, since facts of the case are not always similar to other cases and there is a possibility of a wrong judgement given by AI in a rare case which had very unusual circumstances like the Arushi murder case for example, and cannot be compared to other cases where the circumstances and facts were very simple and straightforward. Moreover, as our society is changing, so are the judgements. Section 377 of Indian Penal Code, 1860 that discriminated against the LGBTQ community was quashed in a judgement last year. This is leading to developments in law and rights of people which the AI may not be able to catch with full efficiency. Even though AI has its own limitations, it minimizes risks of human error, can be cost-efficient in the long run, increases productivity by reducing time to do a particular tasks and increases efficiency. AI can be used as a wonderful assistant for lawyers to make their jobs easier and improve their efficiency and productivity. AI can hugely contribute and benefit not just courtroom lawyers but also in-house counsels. Indeed, the future is now and the benefits of AI in a legal department are many. AI has arrived in terms of assisting lawyers to do things faster, better, and cheaper. The existing technology may be limited for now, but the possibilities are intriguing and the availability, quality, and price will all soon come together in products that are just too useful for lawyers to resist. 
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  • Jun 18, 2019
    National Company Law Tribunal is the outcome of the Eradi Committee. NCLT was intended to be introduced in the Indian legal system in 2002 under the framework of Companies Act, 1956 however, due to the litigation with respect to the constitutional validity of NCLT which went for over 10 years, therefore, it was notified under the Companies Act, 2013. It is a quasi-judicial authority incorporated for dealing with corporate disputes that are of civil nature arising under the Companies Act. However, a difference could be witnessed in the powers and functions of NCLT under the previous Companies Act and the 2013 Act. The constitutional validity of the NCLT and specified allied provisions contained in the Act were re-challenged. Supreme Court had preserved the constitutional validity of the NCLT, however, specific provisions were rendered as a violation of the constitutional principles. NCLT works on the lines of a normal Court of law in the country and is obliged to fairly and without any biases determine the facts of each case and decide with matters in accordance with principles of natural justice and in the continuance of such decisions, offer conclusions from decisions in the form of orders. The orders so formed by NCLT could assist in resolving a situation, rectifying a wrong done by any corporate or levying penalties and costs and might alter the rights, obligations, duties or privileges of the concerned parties. The Tribunal isn’t required to adhere to the severe rules with respect to appreciation of any evidence or procedural law. The National Company Law Tribunal has the power under the Companies Act to adjudicate proceedings: Initiated before the The National Company Law Tribunal has the power under the Companies Act to adjudicate proceedings: Initiated before the Company Law Board under the previous act (the Companies Act 1956);Pending before the Board for Industrial and Financial Reconstruction, including those pending under the Sick Industrial Companies (Special Provisions) Act, 1985;Pending before the Appellate Authority for Industrial and Financial Reconstruction; andPertaining to claims of oppression and mismanagement of a company, winding up of companies and all other powers prescribed under the Companies Act.
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  • Jun 17, 2019
    ABETMENT TO SUICIDE    Abetment of suicide is an offence under section 306 & 107 of the Indian penal code, 1860. A woman may be driven to commit suicide due to excessive demands for dowry. However, it may be difficult to prove that the death was a dowry death. In such cases, these provisions can be used to punish the offender. LAW IN DETAIL A person is guilty of abetment when a. He instigates someone to commit suicide (or) b. He is part of a conspiracy to make a person commit suicide.(or) c. He intentionally helps the victim to commit suicide by doing an act or by not doingsomething that he was bound to do. The charge of abetment of suicide is usually accompanied by a charge under section 498A,IPC if the woman was treated cruelly by her husband or his relatives.Where a woman has committed suicide within 7 years of her marriage because of violence by her husband or relatives and the prosecution proves the above, the court presumes that the husband or his relatives abetted the suicide.Where the woman committed suicide after 7 years of her marriage, no presumption will be made. The prosecution has to prove beyond reasonable doubt that the cruelty was of such a nature that it drove the woman to commit suicide. Complaint Under which Section ? Section 306 of Indian Penal Code - Abetment of Suicide, Section 107 - General abetment; 498A - Cruelty; 113A, Indian Evidence Act; Presumption asto abetment of suicide by a married woman. Whom to complain / where to complaint? 1. Complaint should be given to the SHO of the concerned police station for lodging an FIR. 2. Complaint in police station under sections 306, 498A and 107, IPC and sections 113A Indian Evidence Act. 3. If the police officer refuses to lodge an FIR on your complaint send a written complaint to the Superintendent of Police either by post or in person explaining the facts of yourcase. If the Superintendent thinks that your case relates to a cognizable offence, he /she will either investigate the case personally or direct some officer to investigate the matter. 4. If no action is taken in your case by the Superintendent, make a complaint to the Magistrate asking him / her to direct the police to register your FIR. 5. If still no action is taken in your case file a writ petition in the High Court asking for your FIR to be registered. ALTERNATE REMEDIES 1. There is no alternative remedy. It cannot be compounded.2. There is no compromise in such cases.3. Legal Services Authority can be approached if FIR is not registered by the police .
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  • Jun 14, 2019
    Automation: A Day in the Life of a Lawyer.  In June 2018, I had got an opportunity to intern with one of the reputed law firms in Bangalore. My internship was for 1 month and it was in the litigation department of the firm. I was assigned a partner who would be my mentor for the entire period of the internship. Being an intern, anybody in the litigation office could give me work and it was mainly research work.  Within the first 3 days of my internship itself, I understood that a litigating lawyer’s life is hectic and tiresome. There are a lot of meetings to attend to and sometimes the lawyers would work until midnight. No matter how hard they tried, they always seemed to be running behind schedule.   A regular day of a litigating lawyer at the firm started around 8:30 AM. They would start by preparing a task sheet which would contain a list of all the cases they need to attend to, the court i.e Small Causes Court, Debt Recovery Tribunal, District Court or the High Court and the courtroom number. It was arranged in such a manner that they do not miss a single hearing. However, they did. My seniors have missed a lot of hearings especially in the Small Causes Court and some part of it could be blamed on the fast-paced nature of the court. They would then arrange all the documents and heavy files together and give them to me to carry. Around 9:45 AM we would leave for the court.  At the court, I did get a chance to practice. Not law, but weightlifting. In my opinion, carrying heavy files and climbing 6 floors of the District Court in the scorching summer heat helps one burn more calories than working out in the gym. District Courts do not even have ACs like the High Court. At that time I wondered, how amazing it would have been if all these files and schedule could just fit inside my pocket? A lot of times, it would just slip out of my senior’s mind that he had a meeting scheduled and sometimes would even miss a hearing and would send an associate to go and ask for a pass over or a next hearing date. While some lawyers would spend the entire day at the court attending to different matters, some would spend their time at the office preparing for the next case. Around 1 PM, I was generally asked to head back to the office and assist the other lawyers. My generous senior always paid for my auto. After reaching the office I would see lawyers tirelessly working. Some lawyers were so pre-occupied with work that they would have their lunch while sitting in front of their laptop screens whereas, we interns who had a relatively lesser workload, lavishly enjoyed an hour lunch break at the nearest food joint. It was obvious that the lawyers were struggling to manage their time efficiently. It would have been so convenient for them had they been jotting down their schedule for the day and had a secretary who would keep giving them reminders. Another problem that I noticed was with revenue generation for the firm. Some clients would just keep postponing the payment date for the lawyer’s fee. There were so many clients whose lawyer’s fee payment had been due for over 3 months. Not that the clients were dodging to pay, it was just that the lawyer and the client would get so busy with their day to day activities that they would just forget about it. An automated reminder to the clients to pay their fee would have made things much simpler.  For the rest of the day, the lawyers would keep getting up and go back and forth to the 2nd floor where we had our library to clear any doubts or refer to some books and bare acts. After reaching the library, they would easily spend 10-15 minutes searching for the right book and the orange color of all the bare acts just made it more challenging.  I along with the other interns would leave office by 7 PM while the other lawyers stayed back. The dark circles under their eyes next day morning suggested what time they left the office.  Poor Work-Life balance has been a serious problem in our modern day society and just like any other white-collar professionals, lawyers too are victims to this. No matter how knowledgeable and skilled a lawyer is, at the end of the day he/she is a human being and not a machine. While there have been many technological advancements to make lives easier for professionals, there haven’t been much when we are addressing the needs of lawyers. Present day lawyers require technology and digital automation as much as any other professional does. The technology needs to provide a one-stop digital solution that would provide: Access to all bare acts and relevant case laws that would ensure that they do not have to go back and forth to the 2nd floor and can continue working without breaking their flow of thoughts. A platform where they can store electronic versions of their documents so that lawyers do not have to carry heavy files. A personal diary where they can schedule meetings and set reminders so that they never miss a single meeting or hearing. An automated task-sheet which would provide them the list of cases, courts, and court hall number every morning so that they can save their precious morning time. A software that would send automated e-mails to their clients with regards to a reminder for payment of lawyer’s fee or reschedule a meeting.  
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  • Jun 03, 2019
    Alternate Dispute Resolution Mechanism   The Concept & its efficacy:“It is the spirit and not the form of law that keeps the justice alive.” LJ Earl WarrenThe concept of Conflict Management through Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) has introduced a new mechanism of dispute resolution that is non adversarial. A dispute is basically ‘lis inter partes’ and the justice dispensation system in India has found an alternative to Adversarial litigation in the form of ADR Mechanism. New methods of dispute resolution such as ADR facilitate parties to deal with the underlying issues in dispute in a more cost-effective manner and with increased efficacy. In addition, these processes have the advantage of providing parties with the opportunity to reduce hostility, regain a sense of control, gain acceptance of the outcome, resolve conflict in a peaceful manner, and achieve a greater sense of justice in each individual case. The resolution of disputes takes place usually in private and is more viable, economic, and efficient. ADR is generally classified into at least four types: negotiation, mediation, collaborative law, and arbitration. (Sometimes a fifth type, conciliation, is included as well, but for present purposes it can be regarded as a form of mediationNeed of ADR in India:The system of dispensing justice in India has come under great stress for several reasons mainly because of the huge pendency of cases in courts. In India, the number of cases filed in the courts has shown a tremendous increase in recent years resulting in pendency and delays underlining the need for alternative dispute resolution methods. It is in this context that a Resolution was adopted by the Chief Ministers and the Chief Justices of States in a conference held in New Delhi on 4th December 1993 under the chairmanship of the then Prime Minister and presided over by the Chief Justice of India.In a developing country like India with major economic reforms under way within the framework of the rule of law, strategies for swifter resolution of disputes for lessening the burden on [1]the courts and to provide means for expeditious resolution of disputes, there is no better option but to strive to develop alternative modes of dispute resolution (ADR) by establishing facilities for providing settlement of disputes through arbitration, conciliation, mediation and negotiation.Impact/resulting acts of ADR:The technique of ADR is an effort to design a workable and fair alternative to our traditional judicial system. It is a fast track system of dispensing justice. There are various ADR techniques viz. arbitration, mediation, conciliation, mediation-arbitration, mini-trial, private judging, final offer arbitration, court-annexed ADR and summary jury trial.These techniques have been developed on scientific lines in USA, UK, France, Canada, China, Japan, South Africa, Australia and Singapore. ADR has emerged as a significant movement in these countries and has not only helped reduce cost and time taken for resolution of disputes, but also in providing a congenial atmosphere and a less formal and less complicated forum for various types of disputes.The Arbitration Act, 1940 was not meeting the requirements of either the international or domestic standards of resolving disputes. Enormous delays and court intervention frustrated the very purpose of arbitration as a means for expeditious resolution of disputes. The Supreme Court in several cases repeatedly pointed out the need to change the law. The Public Accounts Committee too deprecated the Arbitration Act of 1940. In the conferences of Chief Justices, Chief Ministers and Law Ministers of all the States, it was decided that since the entire burden of justice system cannot be borne by the courts alone, an Alternative Dispute Resolution system should be adopted. Trade and industry also demanded drastic changes in the 1940 Act. The Government of India thought it necessary to provide a new forum and procedure for resolving international and domestic disputes quickly.Thus "The Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996"came into being. The law relating to Arbitration and Conciliation is almost the same as in the advanced countries. Conciliation has been given statutory recognition as a means for settlement of the disputes in terms of this Act. In addition to this, the new Act also guarantees independence and impartiality of the arbitrators irrespective of their nationality. The new Act of 1996 brought in several changes to expedite the process of arbitration. This legislation has developed confidence among foreign parties interested to invest in India or to go for joint ventures, foreign investment, transfer of technology and foreign collaborations. The advantage of ADR is that it is more flexible and avoids seeking recourse to the courts. In conciliation/mediation, parties are free to withdraw at any stage of time. It has been seen that resolution of disputes is quicker and cheaper through ADR. The parties involved in ADR do not develop strained relations; rather they maintain the continued relationship between themselves. Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996Part I of this act formalizes the process of Arbitration and Part III formalizes the process of Conciliation. (Part II is about Enforcement of Foreign Awards under New York and Geneva Conventions.)Arbitration:The process of arbitration can start only if there exists a valid Arbitration Agreement between the parties prior to the emergence of the dispute. As per Section 7, such an agreement must be in writing. The contract, regarding which the dispute exists, must either contain an arbitration clause or must refer to a separate document signed by the parties containing the arbitration agreement. The existence of an arbitration agreement can also be inferred by written correspondence such as letters, telex, or telegrams which provide a record of the agreement. An exchange of statement of claim and defence in which existence of an arbitration agreement is alleged by one party and not denied by other is also considered as valid written arbitration agreement. ConciliationConciliation is a less formal form of arbitration. This process does not require an existence of any prior agreement. Any party can request the other party to appoint a conciliator. One conciliator is preferred but two or three are also allowed. In case of multiple conciliators, all must act jointly. If a party rejects an offer to conciliate, there can be no conciliation. MediationMediation, a form of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) or "appropriate dispute resolution", aims to assist two (or more) disputants in reaching an agreement. The parties themselves determine the conditions of any settlements reached— rather than accepting something imposed by a third party. The disputes may involve (as parties) states, organizations, communities, individuals or other representatives with a vested interest in the outcome. NegotiationNegotiation is a dialogue intended to resolve disputes, to produce an agreement upon courses of action, to bargain for individual or collective advantage, or to craft outcomes to satisfy various interests. It is the primary method of alternative dispute resolution. Lok Adalat:“While Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 is a fairly standard western approach towards ADR, the Lok Adalat system constituted under National Legal Services Authority Act, 1987 is a uniquely Indian approach”.It roughly means "People's court". India has had a long history of resolving disputes through the mediation of village elders. The system of Lok Adalats is an improvement on that and is based on Gandhian principles. This is a non-adversarial system, where by mock courts (called Lok Adalats) are held by the State Authority, District Auth[2]ority, Supreme Court Legal Services Committee, High Court Legal Services Committee, or Taluk Legal Services Committee, periodically for exercising such jurisdiction as they thinks fit. These are usually presided by retired judge, social activists, or members of legal profession. It does not have jurisdiction on matters related to non-compoundable offences.
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