Citizens' Issues
District Court stays search warrant for Parrikar's official residence

Following the stay granted late on Wednesday, the Additional District Sessions court is expected to hear arguments over issue of the search warrant on Thursday

 

In a late development, South Goa additional District and Sessions judge P Sawaikar on Wednesday stayed the warrant issued by a trial court to search the official residence of Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar at 10 Akbar road in New Delhi for a former Goa minister, who has been reported missing for over a fortnight.
 
The order staying the search warrant was issued late on Wednesday night according to chief minister Laxmikant Parsekar.
 
"It was been stayed. The police had gone in appeal against the (lower) court's direction to issue search warrant," Parsekar confirmed to IANS over telephone.
 
Following the stay granted late on Wednesday, the Additional District Sessions court is expected to hear arguments over issue of the search warrant on Thursday.
 
Earlier in the day, the Judicial Magistrate First Class (Margao) Bosco Roberts, was conducting proceedings related to the formal arrest of former Archives and Archaeology minister Pacheco, whose conviction for an assault was upheld by the Supreme Court earlier this month.
 
Pacheco has been untraceable and missing for over two weeks.
 
The search warrant had directed police to search Parrikar's official residence in Delhi to trace Pacheco after the petitioner, lawyer-activist Aires Rodrigues, told the trial court that Pacheco was seen in the vicinity of 10, Akbar Road in New Delhi, Parrikar's official residence.
 
In his reply submitted to the court, police officer Uttam Rautdessai, in charge of the Colva police station which has been tasked with serving the arrest warrant on Pacheco, said the investigation revealed that the former minister had left Goa for Delhi on April 8. He was booked at Hotel Royal Plaza at Ashoka Road in the national capital till April 12.
 
Rautdessai, however, conceded that his team was unable to arrest the former minister when in Delhi. He also said that police were in the process of tracking down the bank accounts of the former minister and trying to track down his recent expenses.
 
Pacheco, who faces six-month imprisonment and a fine of Rs.1,500 for assaulting a junior engineer of the state electricity department in 2006, has been missing and untraceable ever since the Supreme Court upheld his conviction earlier this month.
 

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Juveniles in 16-18 age group to be tried as adults in heinous crimes

The amendment to the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Bill 2014 was approved at a meeting of the cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi

 

The union cabinet on Wednesday approved amendments to the Juvenile Justice Act which paves the way for children in the age group of 16-18 years to be tried as adults if they commit heinous crimes.
 
The amendment to the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Bill 2014 was approved at a meeting of the cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
 
"Keeping in view the increasing number of serious offences being committed by persons in the age group of 16-18 years and recognizing the rights of the victims as being equally important as the rights of juveniles, special provisions were proposed to tackle heinous offences committed by individuals in this age group," an official statement said.
 
The proposed legislation, which would replace the existing Juvenile Justice Act 2000, clearly defines and classifies offences as petty, serious and heinous, and defines differentiated processes for each category.
 
The statement said "this unique instrument of a two-stage assessment or trial brings about a balance that is sensitive to the rights of the child, protective of his legitimate interests and yet conscious of the need to deter crimes, especially brutal crimes against women".
 
"The proposed amendment further reinforces these principles through introduction of a new provision that disallows the protection from disqualification in cases where a juvenile is tried and convicted under the adult system," it said.
 
"The amendments to the draft bill strike a fine balance between the demands of the stakeholders asking for continued protection of rights of juveniles and the popular demand of citizens in the light of increasing incidence of heinous crimes by young boys".
 
The ministry of women and child development had introduced the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Bill 2014 in the Lok Sabha in August 2014.
 
The bill had been referred to the standing committee which had recommended keeping the juvenile age at 18 years.
 
The new legislation also proposes to streamline adoption procedures for orphaned, abandoned and surrendered children. It establishes a statutory status for the Child Adoption Resources Authority (CARA).
 
It also proposes several rehabilitation and social integration measures for institutional and non-institutional children and provide for sponsorship and foster care as completely new measures.
 

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Cabinet okays bill to set up commercial divisions in courts

The Commercial Divisions will exercise jurisdiction over all cases and applications relating to commercial disputes

 

In a move aimed to speed up the disposal of commercial suits and take into consideration the Law Commission's recommendations on the matter, the union cabinet on Wednesday okayed the introduction of a bill to set up exclusive commercial divisions in courts.
 
The cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, approved to introduce in the current session of parliament a bill called "The Commercial Division and Commercial Appellate Division of High Courts and Commercial Courts Bill, 2015", the government said in a statement.
 
The commercial divisions would deal with 'commercial disputes', which are defined to mean disputes arising out of ordinary transactions of merchants, bankers, financiers and traders such as those relating to mercantile documents, joint venture and partnership agreements, intellectual property rights, insurance and other areas.
 
Commercial Divisions are to be set up in those high courts which are already exercising ordinary original civil jurisdiction such as the Delhi, Bombay, Calcutta, Madras, and Himachal Pradesh High Court.
 
The Commercial Divisions will exercise jurisdiction over all cases and applications relating to commercial disputes.
 
The Commercial Division shall have territorial jurisdiction over such area on which it has original jurisdiction.
 
The Commercial Courts which will be equivalent to District Courts are to be set up in states and union territories where the high courts do not have ordinary original civil jurisdiction, and in the states where the high court has original jurisdiction in respect of those regions to which the original jurisdiction of a high court does not extend.
 
The minimum pecuniary jurisdiction of such Commercial Courts and Commercial Division is proposed as Rs.1 crore, the statement said.
 
"Commercial Appellate Division" shall be set up in all the high courts to hear appeal against (i) Orders of Commercial Division of High Court; and (ii) Orders of Commercial Courts.
 
Commercial Divisions or Commercial Courts shall not have jurisdiction in matters relating to commercial dispute, where the jurisdiction of the civil court has been either expressly or impliedly barred under law.
 
It is proposed to have a streamlined procedure which is to be adopted for the conduct of cases in the Commercial Division and in the Commercial Court by amending the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908, so as to improve the efficiency and reduce delays in disposal of commercial cases.
 
The amended CCP as applicable to the Commercial Divisions and Commercial Courts will prevail over the existing High Court Rules and other provisions of the CPC to the contrary, it said.
 
The Law Commission in its 253rd Report recommended establishment of Commercial Courts, Commercial Divisions and Commercial Appellate Divisions in the High Courts.
 
The finance minister in his budget speech of 2015 made a statement that for the quick resolution of commercial disputes, the government proposes to set up exclusive commercial divisions in various courts in India based on the recommendations of the 253rd report of the Law Commission.
 
The establishment of commercial courts in India is a stepping stone to bring about reform in the civil justice system, it said.
 

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