Arbitration of Landlord and Tenant dispute if permissible?

Remedy of Arbitration:

Arbitration is a private dispute resolution mechanism whereby two or more parties agree to resolve their current or future disputes by an arbitral tribunal, as an alternative to adjudication by the courts or a public forum established by law. Parties by mutual agreement forgo their right in law to have their disputes adjudicated in the courts/public forum. Arbitration agreement gives contractual authority to the arbitral tribunal to adjudicate the disputes and bind the parties.

Dispute between lessor and lessee:

The tenancy in question was not protected under the rent control legislation and the rights and obligations were governed by the Transfer of Property Act.

Who will decide the arbitrability of dispute?

‘Who decides Arbitrability?’ can be crystallized as under:

(a) Ratio of the decision in Patel Engineering Ltd.on the scope of judicial review by the court while deciding an application under Sections 8 or 11 of the Arbitration Act, post the amendments by Act 3 of 2016(with retrospective effect from 23.10.2015) and even post the amendments vide Act 33 of 2019 (with effect from 09.08.2019), is no longer applicable.

(b) Scope of judicial review and jurisdiction of the court under Section 8 and 11 of the Arbitration Act is identical but extremely limited and restricted.

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Reservations in Appointment is not creation of rigid slots for employment

Reservation in appointment:

Article 16(4) of Constitution of India:

Subject to any permissible reservations i.e.either Social (Vertical) or Special (Horizontal), opportunities to public employment and selection of candidates must purely be based on merit.Any selection which results in candidates getting selected against Open/General category with less merit than the other available candidates will certainly be opposed to principles of equality. There can be special dispensation when it comes to candidates being considered against seats or quota meant for reserved categories and in theory it is possible that a more meritorious candidate coming from Open/General category may not get selected. But the converse can never be true and will be opposed to61the very basic principles which have all the while been accepted by this Court. Any view or process of interpretation which will lead to incongruity as highlighted earlier, must be rejected.

Even going by the present illustration, the first female candidate allocated in the vertical column for Scheduled Tribes may have secured higher position than the candidate at Serial No.64. In that event said candidate must be shifted from the category of Scheduled Tribes to Open / General category causing a resultant vacancy in the vertical column of Scheduled Tribes. Such vacancy must then enure to the benefit of the candidate in the Waiting List for Scheduled Tribes – Female.

Reservation is not rigid:

Reservations, both vertical and horizontal, are method of ensuring representation in public services. These are not to be seen as rigid “slots”, where a candidate’s merit, which otherwise entitles her to be shown in the open general category, is foreclosed, as the consequence would be, if the state’s argument is accepted. Doing so, would result in a communal reservation, where each social category is confined within the extent of their reservation, thus negating merit. The open category is open to all, and the only condition for a candidate to be shown in it is merit, regardless of whether reservation benefit of either type is available to her or him.

Arbitrary denial of Admission to MBBS Course.

The Respondent No.1 passed the final year MBBS Examination in January, 2019. She completed the one-year Compulsory Rotary Internship as a Resident Intern from 28.03.2019 to 27.03.2020 at Malla Reddy Narayana Multispecialty Hospital. Thereafter, she was awarded Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery Degree on11.06.2020. In the meanwhile, she appeared in the All-India National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET)Medical PG Entrance examination, 2020 on 05.01.2020.She secured All India Rank-93563 with 327 marks in the NEET examination for admission into Post Graduation Medical Course. The Respondent No.1 was called for counselling and was given provisional admission to the MS (General Surgery) course in the Mop-up Phase (MQ)-P3 on 28.07.2020 and was allotted to the Respondent No.2- College under Management Quota. According to the provisional allotment order, Respondent No.1 was required to report before the Principal of Respondent No.2-College by 04:00 PM on 30.07.2020. In case of failure to report before Respondent No.2 -College within the prescribed time, the provisional selection of Respondent No. 1 shall be automatically cancelled.According to Respondent No.1, she approached Respondent No.2-College along with her father on29.07.2020 and 30.07.2020 for submission of certificates and payment of tuition fees as well as college fees. Inspite of her presence in Respondent No. 2-College, the admission of Respondent No.1 was not completed. On30.07.2020, the last date for admission into PG Medical Courses was extended till 30.08.2020 pursuant to the directions issued by this Court. Respondent No.1 made an attempt to meet the Chairman of Respondent No.2-College on 07.08.2020. However, she was not permitted to meet the Chairman. 3.Having left with no other alternative, Respondent No.1 filed a Writ Petition for seeking a declaration that denial of admission to her in the PG Medical Course for the academic year 2020-2021 as illegal. Respondent No.1 also sought a direction to Respondent No.2-College to grant admission in MS (General Surgery). Respondent No.2-College filed a counter in the Writ Petition in which it was stated that the University constituted a Committee for verification of original certificates and students who were allotted provisional admission by the University were directed to approach the said Committee for the purpose of verification of original certificates. Respondent No.2-College denied that Respondent No.1approached the College for admission on 29.07.2020 or 30.07.2020. In the next sentence the Respondent No.2-College averred that Respondent No.1 and her father visited the College on 29.07.2020 only for the purpose of enquiring about the admission procedure and the requisite fee. As Respondent No.1 did not avail the opportunity of admission, Respondent No.1-Collegecontended that Respondent No.5 was given admission on 11.08.2020.

By its judgment dated 18.09.2020, a Division Bench of the High Court allowed the Writ Petition and directed the Appellant to create a seat in MS (General Surgery)and to grant admission to Respondent No.1. The High Court disbelieved the statement of Respondent No.2-College that Respondent No.1 did not approach the College either on 29.07.2020 or 30.07.2020. The admission granted to Respondent No.5 who is 2000ranks below Respondent No.1 on 11.08.2020 was found fault with by the High Court. As Respondent No.1 was illegally denied admission by Respondent No.2-College,the High Court directed creation of a seat and to grant admission in MS (General Surgery) to her.

In S. Krishna Sradha case(supra), Supreme Court held as follows:

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Uttar Pradesh promulgates anti-conversion (love-jihad) law.

A marriage in Uttar Pradesh will be declared “null and void” if the conversion of a woman is solely for that purpose. Those wishing to change their religion after marriage have to apply to the district magistrate at least 60 days prior to conversion. The Priest/Moulana performing the conversion without this notice shall also be liable to imprisonment.

U.P. Unlawful Religious Conversion Prohibition Ordinance:

Thus the Uttar Pradesh became the first state to bring an anti-love jihad law after Governor Anandiben Patel promulgated the UP Prohibition of Unlawful Conversion of Religion Ordinance 2020. The law prohibits forcible or “dishonest” religious conversions and is applicable from today (28th November 2020) in Uttar Pradesh to check ‘love jihad‘.

For conversions of minors and women of SC/ST community, there will be a jail term of three to 10 years with a Rs 25,000 penalty. In case of mass conversion, offenders can be penalised with a jail term of 3-10 years and a fine of at least Rs 50,000.

Read full Ordinance here:

Fixation of seniority in a newly created cadre

Interpretation of Rule 27 of the Rajasthan Commercial Taxes Subordinate Services (General Branch) Rules, 1975:

Delay in appointment made through multiple advertisement:

“Seniority in respect of persons appointed on the posts included in the cadre of service shall be as per the provisions of these rules and shall be fixed from the date of their appointment. Those appointed on ad hoc or urgent temporary basis, they shall not be considered after their regular selection.

Provided

(1)That the seniority inter-se of the persons appointed to the Service before the commencement of the rules, and/or in process of integration of the Services of the pre-reorganisation of States of Rajasthan or the Services of the new State of Rajasthan established by the State Re-organisation Act, 1956, shall be determined, modified or altered by the Appointing Authority on an ad hoc basis;

(2)That the persons selected and appointed as a result of a selection, which is not subject to review and revision, shall rank senior to the persons who are selected and appointed as a result of subsequent selection. Seniority inter se of persons selected on the basis of seniority-cum-merit and on the basis of merit in the same selection shall be the same as in the next below grade;”

Keeping in mind that the advertisements (for filling the entire cadre, in both the quotas or streams of recruitment) were issued one after the other, and more importantly, that this was the first selection and recruitment to a newly created cadre,the delay which occurred on account of administrative exigencies (and also the completion of procedure, such as verification of antecedents) the seniority of the promotees given on the basis of their dates of appointment, is justified by Rule 27 in this case.

Read Full Judgment here:

Bail not the Jail is the principle in Criminal Law of India

Final judgment in Arnab Goswami case:

The High Court was of the view that the prayers for interim relief proceeded on the premise that the appellant had been illegally detained and since he was in judicial custody, it would not entertain the request for bail or for stay of the investigation in the exercise of its extra-ordinary jurisdiction. The High Court held that since the appellant was in judicial custody, it was open to him to avail of the remedy of bail under Section 439 of the CrPC. The High Court declined prima facie to consider the submission of the appellant that the allegations in the FIR, read as they stand,do not disclose the commission of an offence under Section 306 of the IPC. That is how the case has come to Supreme Court.

Human Liberty

Human liberty is a precious constitutional value,which is undoubtedly subject to regulation by validly enacted legislation.As such, the citizen is subject to the edicts of criminal law and procedure.Section 482 recognizes the inherent power of the High Court to make such orders as are necessary to give effect to the provisions of the CrPC ―or prevent abuse of the process of any Court or otherwise to secure the ends of justice.

Respondents are right in submitting that the procedural hierarchy of courts in matters concerning the grant of bail needs to be respected. However, there was a failure of the High Court to discharge its adjudicatory function at two levels –first in declining to evaluate prima facie at the interim stage in a petition for quashing the FIR as to whether an arguable case has been made out, and secondly, in declining interim bail, as a consequence of its failure to render a prima facie opinion on the first. The High Court did have the power to protect the citizen by an interim order in a petition invoking Article226. Where the High Court has failed to do so, this Court would be abdicating its role and functions as a constitutional court if it refuses to interfere, despite the parameters for such interference being met. The doors of this Court cannot be closed to a citizen who is able to establish prima facie that the instrumentality of the State is being weaponized for using the force of criminal law. Our courts must ensure that they continue to remain the first line of defense against the deprivation of the liberty of citizens. Deprivation of liberty even for a single day is one day too many. We must always be mindful of the deeper systemic implications of our decisions

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Duty of Public Authority to act fairly.

Duty of Public Authority under article 14 f Constitution:

It is clear from the Board‟s conduct that it never responded to the letters written by Asiatic Steel; at least, no reply has been placed on record. Even Asiatic Steel‟s request for permission to carry-out the necessary clearance work at the cost of the board, was not responded to-either positively or negatively. Further, whenever any bidder approached the court complaining that the plot allotted was unusable, the Board decided, mostly contemporaneously, to refund the amount, even with interest. In the case of Asiatic Steel, however, when the demand was made for refund on 19.05.1998, the Board did not act,forcing the company to approach the court, firstly through a civil suit which was later withdrawn, and then in a writ petition.

Silence of public authority:

In the opinion of this court, the Board‟s complete silence in responding to Asiatic Steel’s demand for refund, coupled with the absence of any material placed on record by it suggesting that the complaints had no substance leaves it vulnerable to the charge of complete arbitrariness. The Board‟s conductor indifference in regard to the refund sought (in respect of which there was no meaningful argument on its part before the High Court) can be only on the premise that it wished the parties to approach the court, till a decision could be taken to refund the amounts received by it.

In this court‟s considered view, the Board’s action is entirely unacceptable. As a public body charged to uphold the rule of law, its conduct had to be fair and not arbitrary. If it had any meaningful justification for withholding the amount received from Asiatic Steel, such justification has not been highlighted ever. On the other hand, its conduct reveals that it wished that the parties should approach the court, before it took a decision. This behavior of deliberate inaction to force a citizen or a commercial concern to approach the court, rather than take a decision, justified on the anvil of reason (in the present case, a decision to refund) means that the Board acted in a discriminatory manner.

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Criticizing Government is illegal in State of Kerala

Free Speech???

Kerala Government has issued an ordinance amending the Police Act whereby any act of threatening, abusing, humiliating or defaming any person is made punishable. However there is no specific definition of these words chosen from moral vocabulary. Therefore the concerned police officer will be free to define these words and make arrests as per his or her whim and fancy.

Full Text of Ordinance

ORDINANCE No. 79 OF 2020

THE KERALA POLICE (AMENDMENT) ORDINANCE, 2020

Promulgated by the Governor of Kerala in the Seventy-first Year of the Republic of India.

AN
ORDINANCE
further to amend the Kerala Police Act. 2011.

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Transfer of windiing up proceedings from High Court to NCLT

Locus Standi of Creditor:

If any creditor is aggrieved by any decision of the official liquidator, he is entitled under the 1956 Act to challenge the same before the Company Court. Once he does that, he becomes a party to the proceeding, even by the plain language of the section. Instead of asking a party to adopt such a circuitous route and then take recourse to the 5th proviso to section 434(1)(c), it would be better to recognise the right of such a party to seek transfer directly.

Object of Insolvency Act:

The object of IBC will be stultified if parallel proceedings are allowed to go on in different fora. If the Allahabad High Court is allowed to proceed with the winding up and NCLT is allowed to proceed with an enquiry into the application under Section 7 IBC, the entire object of IBC will be thrown to the winds.

Proceedings transferred:

Therefore, we are of the considered view that the petitioner ­herein will come within the definition of the expression “party” appearing in the 5th proviso to Clause (c) of Sub­section (1) of Section 434 of the Companies Act, 2013 and that the petitioner is entitled to seek a transfer of the pending winding up proceedings against the first respondent, to the NCLT. It is important to note that the restriction under Rules 5 and 6 of the Companies (Transfer of Pending Proceedings) Rules, 2016 relating to the stage at which a transfer could be ordered, has no application to the case of a transfer covered by the 5th proviso to clause (c) of sub­section (1) of Section 434. Therefore, the impugned order of the High court rejecting the petition for transfer on the basis of Rule 26 of the Companies (Court) Rules, 1959 is flawed.

[Source: KALEDONIA JUTE AND FIBRES PVT. LTD. v. AXIS NIRMAN AND INDUSTRIES LTD. decided by SC on 9th November 2020]

Challenge to Order Framing of Charge in Writ Jurisdiction

Whether an order on charge would be an interlocutory order for the purposes of Section 19(3)(c) PCA:

If contrary to the above law, at the stage of charge, the High Court adopts the approach of weighing probabilities and re-appreciate the material, it may be certainly a time consuming exercise. The legislative policy of expeditious final disposal of the trial is thus, hampered. Thus, even while reiterating the view that there is no bar to jurisdiction of the High Court to consider a challenge against an order of framing charge in exceptional situation for correcting a patent error of lack of jurisdiction, exercise of such jurisdiction has to be limited to rarest of rare cases.

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