Citizens' Issues
This Judge Parted with His Pants... And Lost His Shirt
Around the turn of the century, a news report had carried a bizarre story. An American judge gave his trousers (pants) to a Chinese laundry for alteration. Cost $10.50. He then experienced what is a common occurrence; clothes lost at the laundry. Happens to everybody. 
 
In India, the usual practice is to compensate by paying half the cost of the missing garment. Judge Pearson was not to be so easily placated. He must have served in the navy, for he thought his pants were made of gold. He sued Ms Chung, the laundress, for $54 million. Nearly Rs362 crore, in today’s money.
 
The story was lost in memory when suddenly it hit the news. While no one in his right mind would institute such a suit, for half a suit, the dishonourable judge had argued with typical lawyerly ingenuity. There was a sign, he said, outside the laundry that stated, ‘SATISFACTION GUARANTEED’. And that, according to his judicial prudence, meant ‘complete satisfaction’. He quoted other signage, too.
 
To rub the salt in, Judge Pearson came up with some voodoo mathematics. He added, multiplied and exponentially increased the figure for damages. He included attorney’s fees for a case he was pursuing himself. Ms Chung, the Chinese laundress, countered with, “the ‘SATISFACTION GUARANTEED’ sign has greeted each arriving customer, (that) they actually intended only to operate in accordance with prevailing industry standards—and prevailing industry standards do not unconditionally (or even conditionally) include as a part of the purchase price a guarantee that the customer will be satisfied with all aspects of his or her transaction with the cleaners.” Battle had been joined.
 
Then, one day, Ms Chung claimed that “they have located the Plaintiff’s pants and offered them to Plaintiff,” and filed a $4,600 offer of judgement. ‘Chickenfeed’ said Judge Pearson. And on he went, until the vicious nature of the ‘Pant Suit’ inevitably led to disciplinary action against Judge Pearson. He lost his job and was put in the dock. 
 
You be the judge. 
 
The committee decided, as any reasonable man would. It first admonished Judge Pearson, “… in the Court’s view, has been delayed unnecessarily by Pearson’s disproportionate approach” and that “(Pearson) is acting in bad faith and with an intent to delay the proceedings.” Judge Pearson’s verbal gymnastics and weirdo interpretations had left a bitter taste in every mouth. 
 
It further observed, “We note, however, that (Pearson) was so unwavering in his obstinacy that he recklessly deprived himself of a settlement of at least $12,000”. Next, “… in the Committee’s view, (Pearson’s) litigation tactics went beyond aggressiveness and crossed the boundary into abusiveness,” and, “(I)n addition, at some points (Pearson’s) actions reflected a level of personal animus against the Chungs.” As we have said often, the ‘teach-him-a-lesson’ lawsuit will end disastrously. 
 
Fortunately for Judge Pearson, there was no indication of dishonesty, eliminating the chances of severe punishment. He wound up with a slap-on-the wrist 30-day sanction. 
 
What do we learn from this? That courts are not amphitheatres nor are advocates-paid gladiators. That lawyers must adhere to what others say about approaching courts. There need to be meritorious claims and contentions. “A lawyer shall not bring or defend a proceeding, or assert or controvert an issue therein, unless there is a basis in law and fact for doing so that is not frivolous, which includes a good faith argument…’
 
To give the devil his due, Judge Pearson had a good track-record but, at that point, was going through a marriage break-up. He needed $12, 000/- to pay his ex-wife’s attorney! 
 
And the Chungs have removed the signs. 

User

COMMENTS

Prakash Shiva

10 months ago

'Attara Cutchery' Karnataka High Court Building, faced similar problem which was resolved by the Supreme Court. Eminent Citizens of Bangalore had filed Writ petition in that regard.

Fire Safety: Understanding the risk and safety measures
"Fire safety is an important aspect in disaster management. However, several times, we found, people are not aware about controlling or extinguishing fire. Especially, there are increasing number of fires caused due to electricity and we must know the safety precautions to take and how to control fire from spreading before the fire brigade arrives," says Anil Maruti Aware, Deputy Controller from the Directorate of Civil Defence. He was speaking on “Disaster Management: Fire Safety" and understanding risks associated with different kinds of fires, including chemical fires. 
 
Moneylife Foundation with Police Reforms Watch & Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative and with support from Saraswat Bank has launched the 12-week program (every Wednesday) that aims to spread knowledge about protecting yourself, your rights, the Indian Penal Code (IPC), cybercrime and economic offences. Today was the second such session.
 
Sucheta Dalal, Founder Trustee of Moneylife Foundation also informed the audience about upcoming events under the 12-Week series, “Police & You”. She said, “Over the next few weeks, we will have well-known officials and lawyers as speakers. This includes, Vilas Tupe, former Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP), noted lawyer Adv Satish ManeShinde, Mr Ramesh Mahale (former ACP), who successfully conducted Ajmal Kasab case investigation, Adv Mrunalini Deshmukh, who is one of the best lawyer on women’s issues and retired ACP Ramesh Shriwastav.”
 
The event was held in the well-appointed auditorium of Saraswat Bank headquarters, Eknath Thakur Bhavan. 
 
The second session of the 12-week series on "Disaster Management: Fire Safety" was conducted by Anil Maruti Aware, and Manohar Keshav Mhatre from the Directorate of Civil Defence of Maharashtra Govt. Mr Mhatre, the Deputy Controller at CDO for Area-I of Greater Mumbai, conducted the session. He explained the chemistry behind fire saying, "Fire is a chemical chain reaction which takes place with the evolution of heat and light."
 
He said there are three basic elements in a fire, oxygen, fuel and heat. "Normal air contains 21% of oxygen, which is more than what is required for the fire. Fuels come in different states like gas, liquid and solids. Heat sources help fire to reach ignition temperature."
 
There are four principles that are used to extinguish the fire: starvation, smothering, cooling and breaking the chain reaction. Starvation means removing un-burnt material from the fire area. In smothering, the supply of oxygen is cut from the fire area. In cooling method, heat is removed from the burning material or fire area, and breaking of chain reaction is a chemical process, Mr Aware said.
 
 
He explained phases of burning, modes of spreading the fire with examples. Mr Aware then informed the audience about different types of fire extinguishers and their usage and the need to properly maintain such equipments.

User

COMMENTS

Santhanam Krishnan

10 months ago

It is a programme to be made compulsory in schools and colleges. Worth for all citizens.

MAHENDRA ISLANIYA

10 months ago

I attended both the program(1st & 2nd) & found to be very useful & Informative,as far as Heavy Rain,Traffic,Health not stopping me,i wish to attend all the balance 10 meeting.

Nifty, Sensex may be headed higher – Wednesday closing report
We had mentioned in Tuesday’s closing report that Nifty, Sensex were still under the control of bulls. The major indices of the Indian stock markets ended with marginal gains. 
 
 
Profit booking, combined with caution ahead of derivatives expiry and a key announcement over the US interest rates, made the Sensex oscillate in a 300-point range. Sensex had earlier receded during the mid-afternoon trade session after touching new intra-day highs for the last 11 months. The BSE market breadth was slightly tilted in favour of the bears -- with 1,341 declines and 1,317 advances. On the NSE advances, there were 787 advances, 798 declines and 78 unchanged.
 
Yes Bank on Wednesday posted a net profit at Rs731.80 crore for the first quarter ending in June on the back of higher net interest and other incomes -- a 32.76% rise. The private sector bank had reported a net profit of Rs551.20 crore in the same period an year ago. The bank's net interest income increased 24.23% to Rs1,316.58 crore in the quarter, from Rs1,059.81 crore in the April-June period last year. Its other income during the quarter in question jumped over 65% to Rs900.52 crore from Rs545.17 crore in the same period last year. Net interest margin expanded to 3.4% from 3.3% in the year-ago period. "Given the improving macroeconomic environment along with stable asset quality and accelerating retail franchise, the bank is well poised to capture market share across retail and corporate segments at an enhanced pace," the bank's Chief Executive Rana Kapoor said in a statement. Yes Bank's gross Non-Performing Assets (NPA), or bad loans, during the quarter in consideration grew by 12.76% to Rs844.56 crore, from Rs748.98 crore in the previous quarter. Gross NPAs stood at 0.79% of total loans at the end of the June quarter, as compared to 0.46% in the same period a year ago quarter. The bank's shares closed at Rs1,200.10 on the Bombay Stock Exchange.
 
Passenger car major Maruti Suzuki on Wednesday announced that the sales of its first light commercial vehicle (LCV), Super Carry, will commence from August end. The company said that the new vehicle will be initially sold in three cities -- Ahmedabad (Rs4.03 lakh), Kolkata (Rs4.11 lakh) and Ludhiana (Rs4.01 lakh), through dedicated channels. According to RS Kalsi, Executive Director (Marketing and Sales), Maruti Suzuki, the new vehicle has been designed and developed on the basis of detailed research and understanding of customer requirements. The company pointed out that it has invested about Rs300 crore towards the development of Super Carry, which will be available in diesel fuel option. The LCV is powered by a 793 cc diesel engine which is mated to a five-speed manual transmission. The new vehicle offers a fuel efficiency of 22.07 km per litre and a maximum speed of 80 km per hour. It has a payload capacity of 740 kg. Maruti Suzuki shares closed at Rs4,558.85, up 1.64% on the BSE. 
 
Two- and three-wheeler major Bajaj Auto reported a rise of just 2% in its net profit for the first quarter (Q1) of 2016-17. The automobile major's net profit increased to Rs978 crore for the quarter ended June 30, 2016, from Rs957 crore in the corresponding period of 2015-16. According to the company, its turnover (which includes excise duty) for the quarter under review increased by 2.71% to Rs6,356 crore from Rs6,188 crore for the quarter ended June 30, 2015. "Despite input cost pressures and continuing headwinds in export markets, the company has declared an industry high EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation) of 21.2%," the company said in a statement. However, Bajaj Auto's overall quarterly sales including exports slipped by 1.80% to 994,733 units from 1,013,029 units sold during the corresponding quarter of 2015-16. Further, the company reported a growth of 13.78% in its Q1 consolidated net profit which stood at Rs1,040 crore from Rs914 crore. Bajaj Auto shares closed at Rs2,668.75, down 0.05% on the BSE.
 
The top gainers and top losers of the major indices are given in the table below:
 
 
The closing values of major Asian indices are given in the table below:
 
 
 

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