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India Legal 03 June 2019

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The Great Oil Spill
America’s directive to India not to lift Iranian oil leaves New Delhi with tough choices. It cannot afford to lose US markets or jeopardise its ties with Iran and the crucial Chabahar Port link

Veröffentlicht in: News & Politik
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India Legal 03 June 2019

  1. 1. NDIA EGALL STORIES THAT COUNT ` 100 I www.indialegallive.com June 3, 2019 America’s directive to India not to lift Iranian oil leaves New Delhi with tough choices. It cannot afford to lose US markets or jeopardise its ties with Iran and the crucial Chabahar Port link TheGreatOilSpill Election Commission: Credibility gap EDITORIAL Modi’s burden
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  3. 3. 4 June 3, 2019 RIME MINISTER Narendra Damo- dardas Modi’s well-wishers should appropriately advise him of William Shakespeare’s famous line from King Henry IV: “Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown.” This pearl of wisdom conveys to a person with great responsibilities, such as a monarch, that his days of sleeping soundly every night are over. Modi’s second electoral victory is huge. But so are the thorns that stud his crown. And they are also sharper. As he enters the next five years of his premiership, he will be scrutini- sed with far more critical intensity by the same voters who gave him his resounding majority. And history has proven that the Indian public, which has acquired a voracious appetite for the ballot, is prone to mercurial shifts in its mood. This election seemed to show that the public viewed Modi’s first five years as a trailer—a pre- view of attractive promises to be kept after the actual show begins. In that sense, the prime min- ister’s second term is the beginning of the real movie and, as the voting percentages and voter turn-outs indicated, it is house full. There are no more excuses now. Grave policy and administra- tive lapses will no longer meet with benevolent acceptance on the ground that a first-time prime minister with little experience of running any- thing larger than the state of Gujarat should, at least, be given a second chance in case, despite his best intentions, he goofs up. He now has no opposition from within his own party, from the Sangh mothership RSS, or from the brutally mangled Opposition in which family-led parties will either disintegrate or even see their factions merge or ally with the BJP. And that is why the burden rests even more heavily on Modi to pull the country out of the quagmire into which it has fallen in the last five years. In 2014, blaming the Congress or previous parties which ran India for its problems, was a credible excuse. But in the last five years, the difficulties besieging the nation can only be blamed on the prime minister and the party which ran the gov- ernment during this period. Since most of the national press has virtually stopped playing the role of critical watchdog, and most parties have been rendered politically im- potent in mounting credible agitations against misgovernance and malfeasance—witness the flop show on making the Rafale fighter plane purchase a national issue—the responsibility of taking up reform, restoration, and revival rests only with the leader during whose previous regime these crises were exacerbated. And the burden will rest squarely on the shoulders of Modi. Event management, as Modi has shown during his Madison Garden foray and other for- eign trips, his donning of fancy headgear, his splendid isolation in a Himalayan cave and his provocative harangues instigating majoritarian- ism have combined to bind their spells. But how long can you keep a country beleaguered with crises and setbacks mesmerised by bread-and- circuses routines? Post-independence India’s history is replete with examples of the political chickens coming home to roost at both the state and national lev- els. And Modi, more than most politicians, must surely be aware of this historical certitude. One major takeaway from this election which Modi’s own die-hard supporters admit is that he over- promised and under-delivered. Most of the wel- fare schemes he promised remained stuffed as paperwork in bureaucratic drawers and cabinets as the promotion of cultural nationalism took pride of place over rapid economic development and poverty alleviation. Still, his supporters, and those whom he drew towards his political bosom through charisma, polarisation, electoral arithmetic, and his larger- than-life all-India presence, appear to believe that no other leader was more capable of solving India’s problems as decisively as Modi and therefore he must be given a second chance lest a hodge-podge alliance comes into power and makes things worse than they already are. MODI’S BURDEN Inderjit Badhwar P ThisLokSabha electionsseemedto showthatthepublic viewedNarendra Modi’sfirstfive yearsasatrailer—a previewof attractivepromises tobekeptafterthe actualshowbegins. Hissecondtermis thebeginningofthe realmovie.There arenomoreexcuses now.Gravepolicy andadministrative lapseswillnolonger meetwith benevolent acceptancethata first-timeprime ministerbegivena secondchance. Letter from the Editor
  4. 4. And herein lie Modi’s challenge and opportunity. Will he ensure that things get better during his second coming or will he let matters slip much to the disap- pointment of his supporters, among them the severest critics of his non-per- formance who still voted for him? The latter was a combination of those who really believed he would be a better leader than anybody in the Opposition, as well as those who believe that national- ism requires all other issues be sacrificed at the altar of Hindu majoritarianism. It was heartening to hear Modi, dur- ing his first post-election speech, swear his allegiance to the primacy of the Constitution. One can only hope that after the heat and dust of communal campaigning and anti-minority dog whistles, this signalled a continuing adherence to the founding fathers’ vision of a multi-cultural, multi-religious na- tion. Is Modi also signalling a renewed commitment to help to restore the cred- ibility of institutions like the CBI, the Election Commission, the RBI, the CAG, as well as non-interference in the Judiciary? Will he stand by his commitment to disengage with those who have raised Nathuram Godse, the assassin of the Father of the Nation, to an iconic figure of worship? T he affairs of this nation will improve only when the leadership publicly acknowl- edges and enunciates the issues. Nobody’s purpose is served by running away from them or arm-twisting government agencies to juggle sta- tistics. The challenges are daunting. Modi’s eco- nomic advisers admit that the nation may be slipping into a situation where middle class pur- chasing power which stimulates the economy has flattened out. The liquidity crunch and palpable economic slowdown because of demonetisation and uncertain indirect tax policies show no signs of abatement. Rising unemployment, reverse migration and severe under-employment are breaking the backs of the rural poor. SMSEs and the unorganised sector are reeling under the weight of increased petroleum prices which could damage India’s entire economic infrastruc- ture in the face of the impending Iranian oil cri- sis caused by the US-Iran standoff. The faith of the public in the banking system is eroding because of financial strains, the drying up of rural credit and the scandalous rise of NPAs. New investment in the manufacturing sector is at a standstill. Ease of doing business remains a slogan. Pledges to protect the environ- ment and clean up our rivers have remained hollow. There is total confusion on the issue of reservations across the board ever since the announcement of the 10 percent quota for upper castes. It is not as if the public was unaware of these problems. Nor did it ignore them. You don’t need the Opposition or the Congress party to tell a hungry, suicidal peasant that he needs a solid meal. The truth is that the voters believed that Modi would be better equipped and capable of solving these problems than any other leader competing with him. So they have put the bur- den back on his shoulders. And this needs solid performance. Not event management. House-fulls can empty out pretty fast if the feature presentation doesn’t match the trailer. Remember, India is the biggest film-going nation in the world. | INDIA LEGAL | June 3, 2019 5 BLESSED FOR ANOTHER TERM PM Narendra Modi coming out of the Kedarnath Temple during his recent two-day pilgrimage to Himalayan shrines in the Rudraprayag district of Uttarakhand Twitter: @indialegalmedia Website: www.indialegallive.com Contact: editor@indialegallive.com UNI
  5. 5. ContentsVOLUME XII ISSUE29 JUNE3,2019 OWNED BY E. N. COMMUNICATIONS PVT. LTD. A -9, Sector-68, Gautam Buddh Nagar, NOIDA (U.P.) - 201309 Phone: +9 1-0120-2471400- 6127900 ; Fax: + 91- 0120-2471411 e-mail: editor@indialegalonline.com website: www.indialegallive.com MUMBAI: Arshie Complex, B-3 & B4, Yari Road, Versova, Andheri, Mumbai-400058 RANCHI: House No. 130/C, Vidyalaya Marg, Ashoknagar, Ranchi-834002. LUCKNOW: First floor, 21/32, A, West View, Tilak Marg, Hazratganj, Lucknow-226001. PATNA: Sukh Vihar Apartment, West Boring Canal Road, New Punaichak, Opposite Lalita Hotel, Patna-800023. ALLAHABAD: Leader Press, 9-A, Edmonston Road, Civil Lines, Allahabad-211 001. Chief Patron Justice MN Venkatachaliah Editor Inderjit Badhwar Senior Managing Editor Dilip Bobb Deputy Managing Editor Shobha John Executive Editor Ashok Damodaran Contributing Editor Ramesh Menon Deputy Editor Prabir Biswas Senior Writer Vrinda Agarwal Art Director Anthony Lawrence Deputy Art Editor Amitava Sen Senior Visualiser Rajender Kumar Photographers Anil Shakya, Bhavana Gaur Photo Researcher/ Kh Manglembi Devi News Coordinator Production Pawan Kumar CFO Anand Raj Singh Sales & Marketing Tim Vaughan, K L Satish Rao, James Richard, Nimish Bhattacharya, Misa Adagini Circulation Team Mobile No: 8377009652, Landline No: 0120-612-7900 email: indialegal.enc@gmail.com PublishedbyProfBaldevRajGuptaonbehalfofENCommunicationsPvtLtd andprintedatAcmeTradexIndiaPvt.Ltd.(UnitPrintingPress),B-70,Sector-80, PhaseII,Noida-201305(U.P.). Allrightsreserved.Reproductionortranslationinany languageinwholeorinpartwithoutpermissionisprohibited.Requestsfor permissionshouldbedirectedtoENCommunicationsPvtLtd.Opinionsof writersinthemagazinearenotnecessarilyendorsedby ENCommunicationsPvtLtd.ThePublisherassumesnoresponsibilityforthe returnofunsolicitedmaterialorformateriallostordamagedintransit. AllcorrespondenceshouldbeaddressedtoENCommunicationsPvtLtd. Senior Content Writer Punit Mishra (Web) 6 June 3, 2019 LEAD 12The Politics of Oil America’s directive to India to not lift Iranian oil leaves the new Modi government with tough choices. It can neither afford to lose US markets nor jeopardise ties with Iran and the crucial Chabahar Port link 17Short-lived Relief The Supreme Court has passed a stay against a Delhi High Court order which granted relief to Gautam Khaitan, one of the accused in the AgustaWestland case SUPREMECOURT 18Not Above Suspicion The EC has been performing the difficult and challenging task of conducting polls in a generally non-partisan manner, but can the same be said of the 2019 general elections? A critical analysis NATIONALPOLITICS
  6. 6. HEALTH Banking on Brands Retaining the brand name in a new drug formulation is misleading and harmful for patients, and state drug controllers can crack down on companies which do so | INDIA LEGAL | June 3, 2019 7 REGULARS Followuson Facebook.com/indialegalmedia Twitter:@indialegalmedia Website:www.indialegallive.com Contact:editor@indialegallive.com Cover Design: ANTHONY LAWRENCE Ringside............................8 Courts ...............................9 Is That Legal...................10 Media Watch ..................39 Satire ..............................50 CYBERSECURITY 40 Misplaced Priorities The Zero Draft EIA notification of 2019 from the environment ministry takes ease of doing business to an extreme even when the crisis of climate change is looming 26 COLUMN Looming Threat It is time to regulate the Dark Web which is not accessible through regular browsers and where terror activities and cyber attacks are planned 24 Trump’s New Immigration Policy Indians could be beneficiaries of President Donald Trump’s preference for a skill-based new immigration policy instead of the current Green Card family-based approach 32 GLOBALTRENDS Soft Targets A recent study shows that racism tops the litany of complaints from hundreds of people from the Northeast in Bengaluru 48 No Hard and Fast Rule While the maxim “ignorance of law is no excuse” cannot be entirely done away with, in a recent interpretation, the Supreme Court has shown that it need not be used bluntly and in all cases 28 LEGALEYE Ruling with an Iron Fist 34 A new, stringent law in Singapore which gives the government extensive powers to police online media and free speech has drawn flak Collective Win 36 Concerted efforts by the Sikh community in the UK have ensured that the Offensive Weapons Bill does not impact their right to buy, own and use kirpans for religious reasons Far from the Truth 42 As the government hides data and refuses to look at the reality of leprosy cases increas- ing, it is getting ready to declare that India has eliminated it. This can have ill effects STATES CSR for Fodder 45 As rampaging and hungry cattle invade fields and roads, the Uttar Pradesh government has asked district magistrates to rope in corporates to run cow shelters as part of their CSR activities Biased Referee? Despite the magnitude of the NDA’s win, many ordinary people continue to debate about whether the incumbent Chief Election Commissioner, Sunil Arora, has lived up to the standards set by his predecessors 21
  7. 7. 8 June 3, 2019 “ RINGSIDE “Institutions are fine, and these insti- tutions are built over the years. I do believe only a bad workman quarrels with his tools. A good workman knows how to utilise these tools.” —Former President Pranab Mukherjee on EVM controversy “I will not do any- thing with the ill in- tention.... I may ma- ke mistakes. I will not do anything for myself but I assure you, every moment of my life and every cell in my body will work... to ensure... country keeps mov- ing forward.” —PM Modi after the BJP returned to power at the centre “This is condem- nable...Mahatma Gandhi is father of nation and people will not like if any- one talks about Godse in this man- ner. We should not tolerate such things.” —Bihar CM Nitish Kumar on the comment by BJP’s Pragya Singh Tha- kur that Nathuram Godse was a patriot “Whom are you (media) trying to help by misusing our name. I am thinking of bringing in a law. What have you thought of us politicians?.... You are belittling us. Do we look like cartoon characters to you?....” —Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kuma- raswamy on regulat- ing news channels “Sometimes what appears to be funny and harmless at first glance to one, may not be so to others. I have spent the last 10 years empower- ing...underprivileged girls, I can’t... think of being disrespect- ful to any woman.” —Actor Vivek Oberoi on Twitter after delet- ing an offensive meme on Aishwarya Rai Bachchan “Everybody knows the success stories of Shah Rukh Khan, Amitabh Bachchan, Akshay Kumar... how they became mega stars...no one knows about those who failed...neither does anybody want to know....” —Actor Rakesh Bedi to The Indian Express “There are two schools of thought— one represented by Narendra Modi and the BJP and the other by the Cong- ress.... But we will have to accept that... Modi and the BJP have won in this election.” —Rahul Gandhi after the Congress lost the Lok Sabha polls “You will always have a couple of individuals stepping up every game, but without team support, you can’t do much. Just because of one individual, you can’t win a tournament. No way. Unless others chip in at every crucial stage. If that doesn’t happen, there will be disappointment.” —Sachin Tendulkar, on India's chances of winning the cricket World Cup Anthony Lawrence The New Chowkidars
  8. 8. Courts | INDIA LEGAL | June 3, 2019 9 Twitter: @indialegalmedia Website: www.indialegallive.com Contact: editor@indialegallive.com —Compiled by India Legal Team HC relief for Jeetendra in sexual assault case The Himachal Pradesh High Court quashed an FIR filed against actor Jeetendra in connection with a sexual harassment case. The complainant had mentioned in the FIR that the actor was the son of her aunt and that in January 1971, when the complainant was 18 years old, the actor allegedly committed sexual assault on her in a hotel room in Shimla. Justice Ajay Mohan Goel quashed the FIR, saying that “the alleged incident dates back to the month of January 1971 and there is an inordinate delay in filing the FIR”. SC dismisses the plea of ex-Kolkata CP The Supreme Court refused to set up a special bench to hear the plea of former Kolkata Police Commissioner Rajeev Kumar seeking extension of his protection from arrest in connection with the probe in the Saradha chit fund scam cases. Kumar had approached the apex court for relief, citing the ongoing lawyers’ strike in West Bengal. His request was placed before Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi who, acting in his administrative capacity, declined to grant the urgent listing. On May 17, a three- judge bench headed by the CJI had vacat- ed the interim protection given to Kumar from arrest by the CBI. The bench had granted Kumar seven days’ time to seek legal remedies. Kumar has been charged by the CBI with tampering with evidence in the Saradha chit fund scam cases. The Supreme Court ter- med as “extraordinary” the situation in West Ben- gal where lawyers have been on strike since April 29, thereby impacting the fundamental right of life and liberty of citizens to even seek bail from courts. A vacation bench of Justices Indira Banerjee and Sanjiv Khanna said this while hearing the bail pleas of eight persons, who have been arrested under the provisions of the West Bengal Gambling and Prize Competition Act. The bench said the “call for cessation of work given by the Bar Council of West Bengal” on April 29 was coming in the way of seeking relief for the petitioners who were arrested on April 23 in connection with an alleged IPL betting racket. The bench directed the petiti- oners to be produced before the Calcutta High Court in connection with their bail pleas. SC calls lawyers’ strike in West Bengal extraordinary After a long time, the Supreme Court will function at its full strength of 31 judges as four new judges have been elevated to the apex court. Their swear- ing-in ceremony took place on May 24 after President Ram Nath Kovind cleared their appointments on May 22. The new appointees are (L-R) Justice BR Gavai, judge of the Bombay High Court; Justice Surya Kant, chief justice of the Himachal Pradesh High Court; Justice Aniruddha Bose, chief justice of the Jharkhand High Court; and Justice AS Bopanna, chief justice of the Gauhati High Court. The names of Justice Gavai and Justice Surya Kant were recommended to the president by the Supreme Court col- legium nearly three weeks ago. At the same time, the collegium also reiterated its recommendation to elevate Justice Bose and Justice Bopanna to the apex court. It may be recalled that the centre had, on May 7, returned the proposal forwarded by the collegium for their ele- vation. The centre had reportedly sought the reconsideration of the recommenda- tion to maintain the principle of proper regional representation. 4 new judges take oath; SC strength at 31
  9. 9. ISTHAT What is a Public Interest Litigation? A Public Interest Litigation, or PIL, is a plea filed in a court of law to seek justice on an issue of larger public interest. The whole idea is to protect public interest and it must be clear that the person filing a PIL has no vested interest. A PIL can be filed in a court either by an individual, an NGO, or any other rights group. However, the Judi- ciary has taken a serious note of many frivolous and irresponsible PILs being filed in courts and exempla- ry fines have been imposed in such cases. Under Order XXXVIII Rule 12 of the Sup- reme Court Rules, 2013, a PIL may also be taken up suo motu by any court. A court may also decide to convert a plea into a PIL depending on the issue at stake. —Compiled by Ishita Purkaystha For Protecting Public Interest Ignorance of law is no excuse. Here are answers to frequently asked queries regarding matters that affect us on a day to day basis What is the role of an amicus curiae in courts? An amicus curiae is a person who is not a party to the case but is appointed by a court to assist it in the case. He/she pro- vides necessary information and facts on the case, unbiased opi- nion on the issue involved and even gives suggestions on ques- tions of law to help the Court decide a matter. However, it is the discretion of the Court whe- ther to accept the advice or not. The role of an amicus curiae is also sought when an accused is not represented by a lawyer and a petition is made in this regard. In this case, an amicus curiae is appointed by the Court to defend the accused. It can also appoint an amicus curiae in any matter of public interest. A Friend of Court ? Twitter: @indialegalmedia Website: www.indialegallive.com Contact: editor@indialegallive.com Can consumers get justice for poor quality of goods or ineffi- cient service? A consumer complaint can be filed with the district forum under Section 12 of the Con- sumer Protection Act, 1986. However, the chances of red- ressal in a matter involving complex questions of law increase if the case is filed in a civil court. Appeals against an order from the district forum should be filed with the state com- mission and then with the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commi- ssion (NCDRC). A consumer can also directly approach the Supreme Court under Section 23 of the 1986 Act if he/she is dissatisfied with the order given by the NCDRC. According to Order XXIV of the Supreme Court Rules, 2013, such appeals must be presented within 30 days from the date of the order. Getting Justice for Consumers 10 June 3, 2019 On what grounds can a person request the Supreme Court to reconsider its verdict in a case? Whenever a person feels aggrieved by an order of the Supreme Court, he or she can file a Review Petition in the Court. However, the plea must state the grounds on which the Review Petition is being sought—it could be an important point/aspect missed by the Court, an error which needs to be rec- tified, and so on. The prem- ise of entertaining a Review Petition is to prevent gross miscarriage of justice. According to the laws laid down by the Supreme Court, the Review Petition must be filed within 30 days of the judgment, and as far as practicable, it is to be circu- lated, without oral argu- ments, to the same bench of judges who delivered the judgment or order sought to be reviewed. In case the Court sticks to the same conclusion in the Review Petition, a Curative Petition can be filed within a reason- able timeframe stating the same grounds. Judicial Re-examination Of a Case
  10. 10. Lead/ US-Iran Imbroglio 12 June 3, 2019 EST Asia is once again in turmoil. The sabre rattling between the US and Iran has increased tension in the region and led to fears of a possible war there. Though Saudi Arabia, UAE and other US allies have not hiked oil prices and there is plenty available at the moment, American directives to India and China not to lift Iranian oil have now kicked in. The fact that Iran is a major supplier of oil and both the Asian giants buy large quantities of it makes the situation even more complex. The angry war of words between Washington and Tehran has not helped to calm an already volatile situation. Despite the rhetoric, an immediate military confrontation is ruled out. But experts believe that with the entire re- gion armed to the teeth, an accidental slip by one or the other may lead to an all-out war. Waiting on the sidelines and The Politics of OilAmerica’sdirectivetoIndianottoliftIranianoilleaves thenewgovernmentwithtoughchoices.Itcanneither affordtoloseUSmarketsnorjeopardisetieswithIran andthecrucialChabaharPortlink By Seema Guha W en.eghtesadonline.com
  11. 11. | INDIA LEGAL | June 3, 2019 13 rooting for US action against Iran are Saudi Arabia and Israel, both close con- fidants of the Trump White House. Add to this US National Security Adviser John Bolton who had for long been pushing for war and a regime change in Iran. The US has already dispatched the USS Arlington, an amphibious ship with a Patriot missile battery, to join the USS Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group and a bomber task force in US Central Command to the Gulf. The show of mili- tary might is a warning to Iran that the US is ready to strike if needed. US President Donald Trump’s tweet on May 20 ratcheted up the war of words: “If Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran,” he tweeted. “Never threaten the United States again!” In reply, Iran’s foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, posted his own message on May 21 on Twitter: #Econo- micTerrorism & genocidal taunts won’t “end Iran”. #NeverThreatenAnIranian. Try respect—it works! T rump wants to cut Iran down to size and change the contours of West Asia to reflect a new reality where America’s interests and its allies call the shots. Having walked out of the nuclear deal with Iran, Trump is looking to rework it to America’s advantage and ensure that Iran does not challenge American allies in the region. Though all major countries including Iran, the US and Saudi Arabia profess they do not want war, the atmosphere is surcharged with threats and counter-threats. Israel and Saudi Arabia had, like Trump, bitterly opposed the nuclear deal of 2015. The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action negotiated between Iran and the P5+1 (China, France, Germany, Russia, the UK and the US), the hall- mark of President Barack Obama’s sec- ond term in office, was a major diplo- matic triumph for the world. Iran ag- reed to give up its nuclear programme INTENSE LOBBYING Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (left) with Indian counterpart Sushma Swaraj MAJOR CONCERN (Facing page) An oil facility in Iran which is a major supplier to India and China; US President Donald Trump wants to cut Iran down to size to suit US interests UNI UNI
  12. 12. 14 June 3, 2019 in return for the lifting of crippling sanctions which had been slapped on it for decades. The deal led to great opti- mism across the world and strengthen- ing of moderate elements in Iran. Its cit- izens looked forward to a boom in busi- ness and opportunities as foreign com- panies could now invest in the country. U nfortunately, the hopes were quickly belied. Obama left off- ice and Trump who had always regarded the nuclear deal as a sell-out to Iran, made no bones about going back on America’s commitment. Trump wants to bring Iran to its knees through sanctions and get Tehran to the negotiating table to work out a fresh nuclear deal in accordance with Washington’s interests. Israel and Saudi Arabia are delight- ed. As Trump got his son-in-law, Jared Kushner, to work on a Middle East Peace Plan, Washington, always a close ally of Saudi Arabia, grew even closer to Saudi king Salman and his son, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Israel and Saudi Arabia are partners in the US venture to reshape the Middle East. The Trump administration has called for a Peace to Prosperity confer- ence in Bahrain at the end of June to work at a solution to the Israeli- Palestine problem. Unfortunately, after having announced the shift of the US embassy to Jerusalem, which means a virtual endorsement of the Israeli posi- tion, it is unlikely that this initiative would succeed. But this is part of the big US push in the Middle East. For the Palestinians, America is no longer an honest broker as it has already compro- mised its position on Jerusalem. As in his Middle East peace plan which is heavily tilted towards Israel, Trump’s policy towards Iran veers towards Israel and Saudi Arabia. Whether there is threat of war or not, India’s immediate concern is that Iranian oil is now out of bounds. Buying oil from it now will mean that Indian companies will be under US sanctions. This entails closure of US markets and financial institutions not just for India, but other countries, including China. No nation can afford to be cut off from the American financial system and its high- tech industries. So while India had always said that it does not abide by sanctions slapped by individual nations and respects only UNSC sanctions, in reality, it has little room to manoeuvre with the US at the moment. The US introduced sanctions against Iran in November 2018, but gave a six- month waiver to eight nations, includ- ing India, which allowed them to import some Iranian oil. The irony is that the US after walking out of an international LuckilyforIndia,oilpricesatthemoment arearound$70abarrel.Withthe worldeconomyslowingdown,the demandisnothighandthereareenough oilsuppliesintheworldmarket. Lead/ US-Iran Imbroglio HARD DECISION US President Barack Obama with Gulf Cooperation Council members in US in 2015, allaying their concerns over Iran’s nuke deal UNI
  13. 13. India’s global status, would prefer to confine Delhi to South Asia, but we need to expand every which way and play an important part in the world.’’ He believes India needs to take a hard look at its strategic interests and lay out its foreign policy vision clearly. Vandana Hari, founder, Vanda In- sights, a Singapore-based provider of macro-analysis on the global oil mar- kets, made the same point as Ahmad on dumping Iran: “Longer-term, India risks jeopardising its relations with Iran by staying away from its oil. Those rela- tions are deep-rooted in history, impor- tant for both countries and go far beyond the oil trade.” Luckily for India, oil prices at the moment are around $70 a barrel. With the world economy slowing down, the demand is not high and there are en- ough supplies in the world market. Though India buys most of its petrole- um from Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and other countries in the region, it has also tried to diversify by buying shale oil from the US. Earlier, some amount also came in from Nigeria, Mexico and Venezuela, but the transport costs are exorbitant due to the distance. So India relies on West Asia for its oil needs. But Hari said: “India loses on multi- ple fronts by being forced to halt Iranian crude purchases. These barrels made up around 7 percent of India’s total crude imports for the past six months and a higher proportion before that. Replace- ment supplies of similar quality crudes are indeed available from Saudi Arabia and some of its Arab neighbours with spare capacity. However, as we have seen from the premiums set by Saudi Arabia and Iraq for their June exports to Asia, the alternatives are coming at a cost.” Due to banking sanctions imposed by the US for doing business with Iran, India and Iran have been carrying out trade through a rupee account in UCO Bank which has limited exposure in the US. This was done earlier too when Iran was under sanctions. India deposits pay- ments in rupees in Iran’s account for the oil purchased and that is then used to | INDIA LEGAL | June 3, 2019 15 agreement endorsed by the Obama gov- ernment has decided to punish Iran with sanctions and the rest of the world despite anger against the US, is not in a position to defy Trump. I ndia was allowed to buy an average of 3,00,000 barrels per day of oil during November-April, but actual volumes varied from month to month due to lack of ships after foreign ship- ping lines backed out of Iranian deals under pressure from US sanctions. In April, Washington asked buyers of Ira- nian oil, mostly in Asia, to halt purchas- es or face sanctions. Zarif flew in to Delhi earlier this month to discuss the sanctions and met External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj. But he was told that she could give him no commitment as national elections were on and the decision would have to be taken by the next gov- ernment in power. Talmiz Ahmad, former ambassador to Saudi Arabia and an expert on West Asia, told India Legal: “Our relations with Iran are not focused on oil alone. India and Iran have long-term interests and we cannot reduce everything to a buyer-seller relationship.” India’s strategic interests involve the Iranian port of Chabahar, which gives Delhi access to Afghanistan and opens up markets in Central Asia. Pakistan does not allow access through its territo- ry for Indian goods to landlocked Afghanistan. The US, however, is not stopping India from expanding and modernising in Chabahar. America is keen to stabilise Afgha- nistan and get its troops out of that country. So work on Chabahar can con- tinue. But it is unlikely that Tehran will be interested in doing so at a time when Delhi is choosing to stand with the US on sanctions. “We need to think through our for- eign policy. We need a vision and a strategy to protect our long-term inter- ests,” said Ahmad. “Worry about China is pushing us closer to US, but India needs to deal with China in its own terms. Western powers, despite talk of “OurrelationswithIranarenotfocused onoilalone.IndiaandIranhavelong-term interestsandwecannotreduceevery- thingtoabuyer-sellerrelationship.We needtothinkourforeignpolicy.” TalmizAhmad,formerambassadortoSaudi Arabia,andanexpertonWestAsia “Longer-term,Indiarisksjeopardising itsrelationswithIranbystayingaway fromitsoil.Therelationsaredeep-root- edinhistory,importantforbothandgo farbeyondtheoiltrade.” VandanaHari,founder,VandaInsights, thatoffersmacro-analysisonoilmarkets
  14. 14. 16 June 3, 2019 Twitter: @indialegalmedia Website: www.indialegallive.com Contact: editor@indialegallive.com make payments to Indian exporters of goods to Iran. According to reports, there is around `12,000 crore to `15,000 crore currently in the rupee account. Most of this will have to be paid for oil purchases in the last two months. Another fallout is that basmati prices in the local markets are crashing because Iran is no longer buying rice. Iran will need this money to buy medi- cines and other essentials now. Politically, relations with Iran are bound to plummet as Tehran will keenly watch countries that abandon it in its time of hardship. According to Hari, India will have to pay what experts term as the “sanctions premium”. Iranian oil was priced lower. She said that Asian refiners are having to pay the price for having provided the biggest market for Iranian crude and now being the most in deficit as a result of the loss of those barrels. Iran was offering crude at bigger discounts and generous credit terms compared with its peers in an effort to retain its mar- kets while under US sanctions, she explained. India has been buying shale oil from the US. However that cannot replace Iranian oil as Indian refineries are designed to refine petroleum from the Middle East countries. Shale oil was once touted as the big new find, though it is extremely difficult to extract. It also needs large quantities of pure fresh water sources. Except for the US, few countries have attempted to extract shale oil. And the supplies are expected to dry up in the US by 2025. Perhaps India will be able to deal with not buying oil from Iran for the short term. But the balancing act which successive Indian governments have succeeded in treading may be difficult with a person like Trump in the White House. His motto, much like that of George Bush after the 9/11 terror strikes would be: “You are with us or against us.” India has to soon make up its mind on whether it wants to go wholly to the US camp with China in mind or work as it did earlier for a bi-polar world togeth- er with European partners, as well as China and Moscow. There is a strong lobby in the government veering towards the US. But there is also a section that is uneasy about moving closer to America. No self-respecting country should be in a position that most of the world is in now. Do business with Iran at your own peril. It is time the world stood up unitedly against Trump on issues such as punitive sanctions which affect not just Iran but countless other countries both in Europe and Asia. Lead/ US-Iran Imbroglio READY FOR WAR? (Left) The US has already dispatched the warship USS Arlington to join the USS Abraham Lincoln Strike Group in the Gulf; (below left) the Chabahar port in Iran MCSA Shelby M. Tucker/ UN Navy Alireza Numberone/ commons.wikimedia.org
  15. 15. | INDIA LEGAL | June 3, 2019 17 Supreme Court/ AgustaWestland Case HE Supreme Court on May 21 stayed an order of the division bench of the Delhi High Court granting relief to lawyer Gautam Khaitan in a matter pertaining to the AgustaWestland chopper scam and alle- gations of depositing black money into an offshore account. Khaitan is one of the accused in the `3,600-crore Agusta- Westland chopper scam case and is currently out on bail. In 2015, the government enacted a law—the Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Imposition of Tax Act, 2015—to deal with black money after it was found that there were increasing deposits of unac- counted for money in offshore accounts. The objective of the Act was: “An Act to make provision to deal with the problem of black money that is undisclosed for- eign income and assets, the procedure for dealing with such income and assets and to provide for imposition of tax on any undisclosed foreign income and assets held outside India and for matters connected therewith or incidental there- to.” Khaitan was charged retrospectively. However, the Delhi High Court recently granted him relief. The prose- cution had alleged that he deposited `6,000 crore in offshore accounts. The criminal miscellaneous application was argued by senior counsel PV Kapur and Siddharth Luthra. The contention of the petitioner was that the Act itself came into effect on April 1, 2016, and hence, a retrospective effect to the provision through a notification cannot be prom- ulgated from April 1, 2015. The counsel for the respondents, appearing on behalf of the finance ministry, stated that Sec- tions 85 and 86 of the Act were specifi- cally enacted to remove the difficulty in the execution of the Act. Hence, the authorities had the power to apply the effect of the Act retrospectively. The bench of Justices Anu Malhotra and Siddharth Mridul said: “Parliament in its wisdom enacted the said Act and expressly provided therein that save as otherwise provided in the said Act, it shall come into force on the 1st day of April, 2016. There is, therefore, no gain- saying the legal position that, the power to make Rules or remove difficulties under the provisions of Sections 85 and 86 of the said Act, could only be exer- cised by the Central Government, once the said Act came into force on 1st April, 2016, the date expressly stipulated by Parliament in this behalf, and not prior thereto.” Accordingly, they stayed the proceedings against Khaitan. The government decided to move the Supreme Court against the order of the High Court on May 20. A vacation bench of Justices Indira Banerjee and Sanjiv Khanna agreed to hear the case after Solicitor General Tushar Mehta mentioned the matter for urgent hear- ing, saying that the High Court ruling would “affect all ongoing cases under the Black Money Act”. The Supreme Court stayed the order and allowed the government and authorities to proceed in the matter as per law. —Furkan Ahmed No Reprieve Yet ThecentrehasmovedagainstaHighCourtorderwhichgranted relieftoGautamKhaitanwhowasoneoftheaccusedinthiscase T MULTIPLE CHARGES Gautam Khaitan has been accused of money laundering and possession of black money Twitter: @indialegalmedia Website: www.indialegallive.com Contact: editor@indialegallive.com Inandoutofjail Gautam Khaitan, managing partner of OP Khaitan & Co, had first been arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in September 2014 after a raid on his premises in Delhi. He was wanted in connection with his alleged involvement in and his board membership of a company related to the AgustaWestland scam. He was later remanded to judicial custody where he remained for sever- al months despite repeated attempts to secure bail on various grounds. In November 2014, the ED filed a charge sheet naming Khaitan, his wife, Ritu, Chandigarh-based firm Aeromatrix and two Italian middle- men, Carlo Gerosa and Guido Haschke, as accused in the case and booked them under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act. Khaitan was finally granted bail in January 2015 for a personal bond of `10 lakh after spending more than three months in Tihar Jail. In July 2018, the ED filed supple- mentary charge sheets against Khaitan as well as ex-IAF chief SP Tyagi and his family and several other alleged middlemen. Khaitan was again arrested by the ED on January 25, 2019, following fresh black money allegations unrela- ted to the AgustaWestland scam. He was released on bail on April 16 after paying a personal bond of `25 lakh. hwnews.in
  16. 16. 18 June 3, 2019 HE meandering seven- stage process of the 17th Lok Sabha elections lasting six weeks has drawn to a close. With 900 million voters, India’s election is heralded as the “greatest show on earth”, because of its massive scale, size and diversity. “Show” means game and India’s elections are indeed super-mega events, even exceeding the scale of the Summer Olympics and World Cup football. How do we evaluate such a humon- gous event? Here, Grantland Rice’s famous quote comes to mind: “For when the One Great Scorer comes to score against your name, He writes—not that you won or lost—but HOW you played the Game.” The game was played by the political parties seeking to capture power by hook or by crook. And the umpire was the Election Commission of India (ECI). How the game of Election-2019 was played and how it was umpired became a subject of intense debate all over the country. Though the game (electoral process) had laws, rules, regulations and codes, political parties that played the game had none. So, for them, and especially for the ruling party, it was a free-for-all with all kind of abuses and violations. Therefore, the Herculean task of enforc- ing rules and regulations so as to ensure free and fair elections fell on the shoul- ders of the umpire, which is a creature under Article 324 of the Constitution. How did the umpire function during this election? There are six distinct activities in an election—ensuring elec- toral rolls don’t leave out one eligible voter; the nomination process; cam- paigning in accordance with the laws, rules and codes; actual polling; safe storage of the EVM-VVPATs; counting; Waiving The Rules Thepollbodyhasperformedthetaskofconductingpastelectionsinabyandlargenon-partisan manner,butthesamecannotbesaidofthe2019LokSabhaelections.Acriticallook National Politics/ Election Commission/ Column MG Devasahayam REGISTERING PROTEST Opposition leaders N Chandrababu Naidu, Arv- ind Kejriwal, Kanimozhi, Derek O'Brien, Ghulam Nabi Azad and others after meeting the CEC T Photos: UNI
  17. 17. | INDIA LEGAL | June 3, 2019 19 and declaration of results. All these are challenging tasks which successive ECIs have been performing under huge stress, but by and large in a non-parti- san manner. The same cannot be said about this election. Let us critically look at each of these: Electoral Rolls: The biometric identi- ty database of Aadhaar is an instrument of surveillance and has turned out to be a tool for exclusion, not inclusion. Using it to streamline the electoral rolls, the basic database of any democracy, was inviting trouble. This is what happened with the ECI’s National Electoral Roll Purification and Authentication Programme relying on Aadhaar to check the veracity of voters’ lists. This led to largescale exclusion of voters. Karnataka is a typical case wherein allegations came up regarding targeted exclusion of a minority community (Muslims) from the electoral rolls. But the worst was the alleged dele- tion of the names of around 40,000 Christian voters from 42 coastal villages in Kanyakumari parliamentary con- stituency just before the polling day. A local sub-collector level desk inquiry was done and it was found that about 10,000 voters were deleted. This was a number that could decide the outcome in the event of a tight race. Yet the ECI ignored it as if nothing had happened. Since this amounted to disenfran- chisement of the minority community, civil society got together and sent a memorandum to the ECI demanding an immediate formal inquiry by involving the aggrieved citizens who had been denied the right to vote. The possibility of deletion being the outcome of a pre- meditated conspiracy was also men- tioned in the memorandum. Yet the ECI did not budge as if deliberate disenfran- chisement of thousands of Christian minority voters just did not matter. Nomination process: This is more the job of returning officers at the dis- trict level rather than the ECI and is to be carried out as per Standard Oper- ating Procedure (SOP). So, barring some complaints, like in Varanasi where the ex-BSF jawan was not allowed to contest, it was a normal process. Campaigning and the Model Code of Conduct (MCC): It is here that this ECI failed miserably. This prompted the Constitutional Conduct Group compris- ing over 150 former civil servants (IAS, IPS, IFS, IA&AS etc.) to write to the president of India and the ECI on April 9, 2019, two days before the commence- ment of the poll (Phase I). The letter pointed out specific instances of serious and serial violations of the MCC and the ECI’s partisan attitude towards the rul- ing politicians. Despite this timely cautioning, cam- paigning in this election descended to the lowest standards of discourse. Humans were classified as termites and sections of them have been threatened with expulsion from the country. Blatant appeals were made to divisive religious sentiments and politicians went so far as to warn voters of the consequences of not voting for them. The sacrifices by security forces were made to serve as election fodder. Vicious personal attacks were the order of the day and serial offenders from previous elections dis- played their dubious talents freely. Equally galling has been the brazen pro- motion of a single personality through multiple media modes without any hint of embarrassment or concern for con- vention. We were also treated to the dis- gusting spectacle of a self-styled sadhvi denigrating the memory of a senior police officer who died in the Mumbai 26/11 attacks. And this woman became the flag-bearing MP candidate of the ruling party! Even though the MCC has a moral rather than punitive force, Article 324 of the Constitution, backed by various Supreme Court rulings, gives the ECI plenipotentiary powers to enforce its writ in grey areas where the law is silent. But the ECI did nothing and instead went on issuing “clean chits” to the Nar- endra Modi and Amit Shah combine as if it is a self-washing laundry. The TheoneElection Commissioner— AshokLavasa— whodissented wasisolated andvirtually ostracisedin theECI! EXERCISING THEIR RIGHT Voters queuing to cast their votes at a polling station in Kolkata
  18. 18. National Politics/ Election Commission/ Column/ MG Devasahayam 20 June 3, 2019 Election Commissioner—Ashok Lavasa—who dissented was isolated and virtually ostracised in the ECI! Another area where the ECI failed is in reining in the abhorrent practice of political parties buying votes and people selling them. This is a clear violation of the Representation of the People Act and the MCC. Rule 16A of the MCC empowers the ECI to either suspend or withdraw the recognition of the political party violating this code after giving the party reasonable opportunity to show cause. Let alone taking such harsh action, the ECI did not even initiate normal legal measures against this deplorable practice despite deploying an army of general and expenditure observers, spending tax-payers’ money. Actual Polling: Like in the nomina- tion process, polling is conducted by the chief electoral officer in the states, returning officers and other election staff as per a well laid-down SOP. But this time around there have been several complaints of defective EVMs and their malfunctioning impacting the integrity of these machines as a tool of democrat- ic election. Safe storage of EVM-VVPATs: This hardly used to be an issue in earlier elec- tions. This time there have been reports of several security breaches in EVM strongrooms. Vehicles were allowed to enter the premises of the counting cen- tres where EVMs were stored. In some places, EVMs were brought to counting centres without security. There are also reports of official delay in depositing the EVMs in strongrooms. Incidents of security breaches were reported from Ghazipur, Chandauli, Jhansi, Mau in Uttar Pradesh, Saran in Bihar, Fatehabad in Haryana and Madurai in Tamil Nadu. The ECI delayed its response but ev- entually said all matters were resolved. This did not convince many. Even a nor- mally reticent former CEC SY Quraishi said that the ECI, instead of giving vague replies, should clearly state its findings in each case of complaint. Counting and declaration of results: The seven-stage, six-week-long election process is an oxymoron in the sense that after taking so long to record the vote of the electorate, the ECI wanted to count it quickly. In this activity ECI did not function as a constitutionally mandated institution. Despite evidence to the con- trary and widespread negative percep- tion about the integrity of EVMs, the ECI continued to serenade the machines and virtually became marketing agents for these contraptions. The ECI never realised that in the public domain “truth is not the truth, perception is the truth”. In any case elec- tions are an exercise in democracy, not a display of technology. But, the ECI had no concern for the democracy principles in elections whatsoever. As if part of a pre-set agenda and in utter disregard for voter confidence, the ECI has been consistently hostile to any cross-verification of electronic counting with manual counting of VVPAT slips. The ECI’s EVM worship was so deep and despicable that the deputy election commissioner in charge of EVMs stated falsehoods and committed perjury in the Supreme Court. He even resisted its order to increase the VVPAT slip count from the dismal one booth per assembly constituency to a minuscule five. Even this, the ECI did not implement proper- ly, i.e., verifying upfront before the main electronic counting to establish the integrity of the EVMs. It outrightly rejected the fervent plea of 22 opposition parties in this respect. In essence, instead of upholding the integrity of the electoral process, the ECI severely damaged it. It is a typical case of the “fence eating the crops”. —The writer is a former Army and IAS officer Twitter: @indialegalmedia Website: www.indialegallive.com Contact: editor@indialegallive.com SAFETY UNDER THREAT? Polling officials putting labels on VVPAT and EVM cases at a distribution centre in Agartala Thistimearoundtherehavebeenseveral complaintsof defectiveEVMsand theirmalfunctioningimpactingthe integrityofthesemachinesasatool ofdemocraticelection.
  19. 19. DespitethemagnitudeoftheNDAwin,manyordinarypeoplecontinuetodebateabout whethertheincumbentCEChasliveduptothestandardssetbyhispredecessors By India Legal Bureau | INDIA LEGAL | June 3, 2019 21 National Politics/ Election Commission/ CEC Sunil Arora OVERNMENTS routinely make appointments that end up being controversial. The appointment of Sunil Arora, a retired Rajasthan- cadre IAS officer, as the chief election commissioner (CEC) was one such that raised many eyebrows. Six months after his appointment, he has just presided over the most contentious general election that the country has ever seen. The very nature of the CEC’s job is such that it is simply not possible to keep everyone happy. But Arora’s ac- tions, or rather, the lack of them, have ensured that his tenure will go down in history as the most controversial ever. Former President Pranab Mukherjee was only partially right when he praised the Election Commission (EC) on May 20 for the conduct of elections, and then in less than 24 hours, lent his voice to the chorus of protests against the alle- ged tampering with the electorate’s ver- dict. His turnaround came even as 22 Opposition parties as well as citizen groups in many parts of the country drew the EC’s attention to reports of what appeared to be suspicious EVM movements in several constituencies. They demanded verification of VVPAT slips before counting of votes and not after the last round of counting. Social media was flooded with pictures and videos of EVMs allegedly being shif- ted around. These were brought to the EC’s notice but little was done about it. This left Opposition leaders wondering if there was a level playing field. Controversial Referee? G LENIENT STAND? CEC Sunil Arora's approach in dealing with MCC complaints from the Opposition parties raised criticism UNI
  20. 20. 22 June 3, 2019 Earlier this month, the EC, without batting an eyelid, had disposed of a complaint against the prime minister (PM) for allegedly misusing the facilities and personnel of the NITI Aayog, the government think-tank that replaced the Planning Commission in 2015, dur- ing the campaign. The Congress party’s complaint was that the PMO had direct- ed the NITI Aayog to write to bureau- crats at places where the PM was sched- uled to campaign, and ask them to send local area knowledge ahead of his visits there. This was specifically in three con- stituencies in Maharashtra--Gondia, Wardha and Latur. But, addressing a press conference in mid-May, Deputy Election Commissioner Sandeep Saxena said that the EC found no merit in the complaint as the PM by virtue of ins- tructions issued on October 7, 2014, is permitted to combine his official and electioneering visits. It later came to light that the clean chit was given despite one of the ECs, Ashok Lavasa, seeking further clarification on the mat- ter from NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant on whether they had actually fol- lowed the PMO directive and whether such information was used during the visit of Modi. The complaint was, how- ever, dismissed as both Arora and the third EC, Sushil Chandra, were of the opinion that the “instructions” issued in October still stood and hence the char- ges were infructuous. H owever, the same circum- stances prevailed during the time of Indira Gandhi too and she was punished for her misdemea- nour. Justice Jagmohan Lal Sinha of the Allahabad High Court declared her elec- tion to the Lok Sabha in 1971 void and disqualified her from Parliament and banned her from holding any elected post after her opponent, Raj Narain, filed a petition challenging her election for violating the Representation of the People Act, 1951. Chapter XV111, section 1.1 of the RPA, clearly states that “gov- ernment officials at all levels.....should maintain an attitude of strict impartiali- ty in relation to elections....that no Government officials should do any act (other than the giving of vote) which could be interpreted as furthering the prospects of any party or candidate at the election.” Narain’s contention was that her polling agent, Yashpal Kapoor, was a government servant and by using a public servant for personal election- related work, she was guilty of electoral malpractices. The crux of the recent charges agai- nst the EC was that it had chosen to be a silent spectator to excesses of the BJP while being too eager to wield the stick against the Opposition. The violations, in fact, began immediately after the EC announced the schedule for the seven- phase elections. Leading from the front was the PM himself, followed closely by his party president, Amit Shah. They invoked the armed forces by asking vot- ers to keep their “sacrifice” in mind. Former Karnataka CM BS Yeddyurappa even went to the extent of saying at a rally that the Balakot airstrikes would bring a lot of votes into the BJP kitty. The EC’s reluctance to act despite the Supreme Court making the poll body conscious of its powers emboldened leaders and candidates. But invariably, those from the ruling side managed to get away while those from the Opposi- tion were not so lucky. Consider these: Samajwadi Party lawmaker Azam Khan was quoted com- menting about his opponents’ undergar- ments for which he was promptly ban- ned from campaigning for three days. But when UP CM Yogi Adityanath invoked religious sentiments and took Bajrang Bali’s name as a counterpoint to Ali or referred to the Indian Army as “Modiji’s Sena”, he got away with a mi- nor rap on the knuckles. Rahul Gandhi was pulled up for misquoting Modi, but the latter was cheered when he ques- National Politics/ Election Commission/ CEC Sunil Arora RAISING DOUBTS The EC was accused of inaction when social media was flooded with pictures and videos of EVMs being allegedly shifted Twitter
  21. 21. Hussain, all ministers who held the avi- ation portfolio. Nirvachan Sadan has had controver- sial CECs before. Yet, they were different and never so openly partisan. Former CECs, such as TN Seshan and James M Lyngdoh, were also efficient administra- tors. Seshan held office between 1990 and 1996, six years that saw elections being cleaned up. A no-nonsense officer, he endeared himself to the aam aadmi by wielding the stick against politicians, however high and mighty. But he had his downside too. He was a favourite of Rajiv Gandhi and at his bidding, kept a hawk’s eye on VP Singh’s Janata Dal and was known to have even deferred or cancelled elections where Singh’s party had frontrunner status. Seshan was also unpredictable. He displayed this trait by cancelling the Punjab assembly elections when only a few hours were left for the polling to begin. In 1992, a few Opposition parties called for impeachment proceedings against him, but the then PM, PV Nara- simha Rao, would have none of it. His unpredictable and arrogant na- ture finally led to the government ex- panding the EC to three members in 1993. Seshan challenged the appoint- ment in the Supreme Court, but the Court not only held the appointments valid, but directed that in order for any decision of the EC to be valid, it must have the backing of at least two mem- bers. As CEC in 2002, Lyngdoh, too, had a run-in with Narendra Modi, then Gujarat CM, which finally saw the Supreme Court stepping in. Seshan, Lyngdoh and others who followed did not bend before the pow- ers that be and ensured that the play- ing field was level and everyone adhered to the spirit and letter of the law. Despite the NDA’s spectacular win, millions of ordinary Indians will con- tinue to harbour new doubts about the system and the process. | INDIA LEGAL | June 3, 2018 23 Twitter: @indialegalmedia Website: www.indialegallive.com Contact: editor@indialegallive.com tioned the presence of “Pakistani flags” in Wayanad, the second seat Rahul was contesting, besides Amethi. Modi had said that Rahul was afraid to contest from a Hindu-majority constituency and had therefore chosen the seat in Kerala where Muslims outnumber the Hindus. Modi was to repeat his “minority-major- ity” jibes against Rahul on many occa- sions. For that and his invocation of Balakot, complaints were lodged with the EC. The Congress alone had given 37 representations to the EC against Modi and Shah, of which 10 can be cate- gorised under “hate speeches, virulent, divisive, polarising” by Modi and Shah. A nd what was the action taken? A clean chit to the PM and his lieutenants. However, this led to a rift within the EC after the CEC ref- used to place on file the dissenting re- marks of Lavasa. Lavasa, a retired Har- yana-cadre IAS officer, had recused himself from the meetings to discuss alleged violations of the model code of conduct as a mark of protest against the exclusion of his minority view in the EC’s official orders. While EC rules are silent on the matter of recording dissent, former CEC OP Rawat felt that “if an opinion is recorded that differs from the final decision, the differing opinion is recorded as dissent”. Ex-CEC SY Quraishi too tweeted: “The dissenting note need not be included in the order but it should be a part of office proceed- ings. And be made public if the commis- sioner concerned wants it.” But it made little dent. Arora’s elevation as CEC last Dec- ember at a politically critical juncture wasn’t entirely surprising considering that his career graph has witnessed upswings under BJP governments, be it at the centre or in his cadre state of Rajasthan. He has had brushes with controversy, the most notable being in 2009 when the infamous Radia tapes caught him chatting with Niira Radia about corruption in the Judiciary. Arora was heard telling the corporate lobbyist about a Supreme Court judge’s role in the Delhi land sealing cases and of another judge from the Delhi High Court being paid `9 crore by a middle- man in exchange for a favourable verdict in a case. Similar conversations caught on tape have led to powerful people, including some in the media, losing their jobs. But Arora, then an additional secretary-rank officer, went unscathed yet again. Earlier, as Indian Airlines’ chairman-cum-managing director, he survived several skirmishes with Praful Patel, Rajiv Pratap Rudy and Shanawaz ChiefElectionCommissionerslikeTNSeshan(left),JamesMLyngdohandothersdid notbendbeforethepowersthatbeandensuredthattheplayingfieldwasleveland thateveryone,includingthehighandmighty,adheredtothespiritandletterofthelaw.
  22. 22. Cyber Security/ Dark Web 24 June 3, 2019 ITIZENS normally use that part of the web which is called the “Surface Web” where information is freely available through search engines and publicly in a state of anonymity. As we dive deeper, we encounter what is called the “Deep Web” where normal search engines may not be able to reach. The Deep web is not used for any illegal activities but is accessible under authentication. However, there is a third category called the “Dark Web” which is hidden from the civilised world and used for criminal activities. It is the “under- world” in cyber society. Dark Web users use the same tools of connectivity as Surface Web and Deep Web users such as connected computing devices but engage in criminal activities. The Dark Web today also sustains the drug trade, illegal arms trade and major bank heists. Sometimes, its users execute assignments for cyber terrorists and cyber warfare. This Web creates tools of crime and sells them to other small-time criminals. “Crime as a Service” is the motto of leaders of the Dark Web, quite like the mafioso. If somebody creates a crude bomb, throwing it does not require any skill. Similarly, if malware tools are appropri- ately designed, there could be many criminals who can use them. All cyber criminals who get caught by the police are not mem- bers of the Dark Web. They only interact with the agents of the Dark Web. Members of the Dark Web make money by selling crimeware and avoid coming on the radar of law enforcement agencies. The economy of the Dark Web is strong and supported by crypto cur- rencies like Bitcoin. By cultivating friends among the corrupt, Dark Web mafia try to get their under- world currencies like Bitcoin inte- grated with currencies of the Meta Society so that they can enjoy their ill-gotten wealth. Unsuspecting and ill-informed persons think that crypto currencies and anonymity are symbols of a free society and should be encouraged. The gullibility of such people is exploited by Dark Web dwellers in getting crime-friendly regulations, making the task of law enforcement difficult. It is essential for the sur- vival of civilised society that we take whatever steps are necessary to regu- late this monster so that it is chained and rendered harmless. The general topography of the internet is that every device has a unique ID issued by a regulatory agency and its identity should be part of every communication that goes out as data packets. This is the IP address with which we should be able to track every internet activity. The device ID can be optionally a part of such com- munication. This helps law enforcement detect any activity on the web and enforce law on such players. The Dark Web, however, creates a system of “Onion Routers” where mes- sages are transmitted with layers and layers of transmission along with strong encryption. The routing is through many dummy systems to hide the IP address. Unravelling it requires several layers of the routing to be peeled (like onion skins) and also decryption. The surface communication that is available Mafioso of the Wired World Itistimetoregulatethispartofthewebwhichisnot accessiblethroughregularbrowsersandwherenefarious activitiesandcyberattacksareplanned By Na Vijayashankar C Anthony Lawrence
  23. 23. | INDIA LEGAL | June 3, 2019 25 to law enforcement is actually a false IP address and prevents them from identi- fying the users of the system. Data accessible in the Dark Web is stored in servers managed by its mafia and is often hosted in countries where the governments are supportive of the criminal activities for their own selfish reasons. Data is encrypted and access is managed through a strong access con- trol system. Many servers of the Dark Web do not provide hosting accounts unless the applicant proves his hacking credentials. Further, the onion routing system hides the identity of the servers in messages. I t may not be out of place to mention here that the origin of the Dark Web concept can be traced to Swit- zerland which created “Numbered Swiss Bank Accounts” which enabled crimi- nals to hide their wealth. It took years to persuade Swiss authorities to cooperate with other nations to reveal secret bank account data at least where criminality is proven. We can, therefore, appreciate how hard it would be to convince rogue nations not to allow hosting of Dark Web servers. At the user level, there are specia- lised browsers like “Tor” browsers which can be downloaded by anybody in the Surface Web and used. A combination of the Tor browser and the secure host- ing in a friendly rogue country can help Dark Web activities to be technically enabled. Despite the difficulty and enormity of the task, there is no excuse not to attempt regulation of the Dark Web with a view to mitigating its adverse im- pact on society. Some of the solutions that civil society needs to consider along with legal enablement are: Choke the economy of the Dark Web by banning crypto currencies at a global level. Let the transactions come to the Surface Web where they can be netted. Replace the concept of total anonymi- ty with the concept of “Regulated Anonymity”. Regulated Anonymity as a concept is where the identity of a data user is de- identified and the de-identification algo- rithm is controlled in a decentralised framework that avoids governmental control. But it is still open for law enforcement under a due process which is acceptable both for privacy activists and governments. Declare Dark Web activities as “terror- ism” and declare the countries which host Dark Web servers as “terror-sup- porting countries”. Tighten intermediary regulations to ensure that “agents of the Dark Web” are punished adequately. Regulate the use of Tor browsers and other tools of encryption that assist the Dark Web through a system of voluntary registration. Create a “Secure Surface Web” where every participant is identified (KYC grade) and transfer all the finan- cial transactions above a reasonable limit from the surface web to a secured Surface Web. This will be a trusted web to be used voluntarily by interested persons. Device ID should be made part of the Transmission Control Protocol/IP com- munication protocol and Surface Web intermediaries should reject packets not accompanied by verifiable device IDs. There is no doubt that many mem- bers of the Surface Web are sympathis- ers of the Dark Web. And just as remo- val of corruption and black money in the Meta Society has insurmountable chal- lenges, the war against the Dark Web would also be challenging. However, challenge need not deter us if our goal is clear—to have a trusted digital society. And here, there is no place for the Dark Web. —The writer is a cyber law and techno-legal information security consultant based in Bengaluru Twitter: @indialegalmedia Website: www.indialegallive.com Contact: editor@indialegallive.com TheeconomyoftheDarkWebisstrong andsupportedbycryptocurrencieslike Bitcoin(left).TheDarkWebalsosustains thedrugtrade,illegalarmstrade(below) andbankheists.Itcreatestoolsofcrime. UNI
  24. 24. Column/ Zero Draft EIA Notification of 2019 Debi Goenka 26 June 3, 2019 N the midst of electioneering, the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) had quietly circulated a Zero Draft of the Environment Impact Assess- ment (EIA) Notification, 2019. A barely readable copy of the notification running into 129 pages was sent to all states for their comments and they have been asked to respond within one month. Given the fact that the notification is highly technical, and most government officers were busy with elections, I won- der if the ministry has timed it to ensure that they do not receive any response? The fact that the draft is partially illegi- ble, over-written by hand in some places, and not searchable, seems to indicate that the first casualty of this process will be transparency. It seems that the MoEF&CC has also learnt no lessons from the past—the most easily implemented laws are those that are short and simple. The best example that exists is the Forest Conser- vation Act, 1980. This entire Act com- prises five clauses and runs into less than two pages. The original EIA notifi- cation of 1994 was 33 pages long, and the EIA notification of 2006 ran into 42 pages. The 2019 draft is definitely more complex and more difficult to under- stand. However, the intent is clear—it is less environmental-friendly and more aligned to serving the interests of proj- ect proponents who have little concern for the environment. Besides the lack of transparency, the MoEF seems to have forgotten why it was created. Its sole mandate was to protect the environment and this man- date remains unchanged even today. But over the years, starting with the Vaj- payee government, followed by the Manmohan Singh one and now the Modi government, all that has happened is that continual efforts have been made to dilute our environmental laws and notifications. It seems that the ease of doing business outweighs the need to protect the environment even when the crisis of climate change is impacting the lives of every living being on the planet. It is not that the ministry is not aware of the impact of climate change. In fact, the first draft Coastal Regulation Zone notification of the MoEF issued in 1988 mentioned climate change and included a proviso that areas vulnerable to sea level rise caused by climate change should be kept free of all “devel- opment”. However, 31 years later, the ministry has completely lost the plot. This is even more surprising given the fact that the first chief minister (CM) to include climate change in his state’s environmental agenda was Narendra Modi when he was in Gujarat. When he became prime minister in 2014, one of the first things that hap- pened was that the Ministry of Envi- ronment & Forest (MoEF) became the MoEF&CC. Yet, despite the fact that the climate change crisis is increasing in intensity and has been universally accepted as the biggest global crisis fac- Losing the Plot Thedraftfromtheenvironmentministrytakeseaseofdoingbusinesstoanextremeevenwhenthe crisisofclimatechangeisloomingandgivesextensivepowerstodistrictauthorities I Anil Shakya BEING RELEVANT President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani (waving) at the consultative loya jirga in KabulPresident Whatisparticularlyshockingisthat theZeroDraftincorporatesclauses alreadyproposedasamendmentstothe 2006EIAnotificationandthesehave beenstayedbyvariouscourts.
  25. 25. to grant environmental clearances for up to five hectares of individual mining lease of minor minerals and 25 hectares in clusters to the District Environmental Impact Assessment Authority (DEIAA). This is chaired by the district collec- tor/district magistrate and whose mem- ber secretary is the sub-divisional officer of the district. As revenue officers, both of them are directly responsible for granting these leases. By and large, none of these officers have either the environ- mental background, the expertise or the time to scrutinise such proposals. Also, after having granted the lease, can these officers independently assess the envi- ronmental impact and cancel the leases? This decision to delegate powers to the DEIAA was challenged in the National Green Tribunal and was finally set aside. Similarly, the powers to delegate the grant of environmental clearance of con- struction projects and area development projects to local planning authorities has also been challenged in the past and stayed by the courts. Yet, the same amendments find their way back in Zero Draft 2019. There is also the vexed issue of transparency. Despite numerous requests to make the draft EIA Reports available on the websites of the MoEF&CC, the State Pollution Control Boards and the Project Proponents, all that is uploaded is the summary of the EIA Report and not the entire draft EIA Report. There is no provision for trans- lating the EIA Reports in the local lan- guage. The Zero Draft has nothing to say about how the written comments submitted by NGOs at the public hear- ings will be dealt with. It makes no pro- vision for the submission of written rep- resentations electronically via email. What I find even more shocking is the fact that the participation of non- governmental representatives on the numerous committees has been drasti- cally curtailed. Despite huge problems regarding non-compliance with the environmental clearance conditions, there is no new provision built into the notification to ensure better compliance. The empanelment of institutions of national repute to monitor compliance is rife with potential conflicts of interest as almost all of them are involved in the process of preparing EIAs. Nothing is said about what is to be done if the envi- ronmental clearance conditions are not complied with. One can only hope that wiser counsel will prevail and the MoEF&CC will hopefully be rebooted to carry out its mandate—that of protecting the envi- ronment, the country and the planet for future generations. —The writer is Executive Trustee, Conservation Action Trust | INDIA LEGAL | June 3, 2019 27 ing mankind, the mandarins of Parya- varan Bhawan and their technical experts seem oblivious of the fact that the “business as usual” model is a sure- fire recipe for disaster. But the new model being proposed is even worse—it is business as usual with relaxations and dilutions, and of such complexity that it will keep the batteries of EIA consult- ants and lawyers in business for years to come. W hat is particularly shocking is that this Zero Draft incorpo- rates clauses that have already been proposed as amendments to the 2006 EIA notification that have already been stayed by various courts. For example, the MoEF&CC had, on March 15, 2016, delegated the authority UNI Twitter: @indialegalmedia Website: www.indialegallive.com Contact: editor@indialegallive.com NO CONCERN FOR ENVIRONMENT (Facing page) The Aravali hills in Gurugram; (right) Paryavaran Bhawan; (below) climate change was a major agenda of talks between PM Modi and Secretary General of the UN Antonio Guterres on the side- lines of the G20 Summit in 2018
  26. 26. Legal Eye/ Interpreting the Law 28 June 3, 2019 HE Latin maxim, Ignorantia juris neminem excusat, translated into English means “ignorance of law is no excuse for breaking it”. This is one of the cardinal principles of jurisprudence. The rationale behind this principle is that if ignorance was an excuse, a per- son charged with criminal offence or involved in a civil suit would merely claim that he was unaware of the law in question in order to avoid liability, even if he actually knew what the law in question was. The doctrine first shows up in the Bible in Leviticus 5:17. It says that if a person sins and does what is forbidden in any of the Lord’s commands, he is guilty and will be held responsible even though he does not know it. The pre- sumed knowledge of law imputes that one is bound by law even if one does not know of it. Ignorance Is Not Bliss, But... Whileitcannotbeentirelydoneawaywith,inarecentinterpretation,theSupremeCourtshowed thatthemaxim“ignoranceoflawisnoexcuse”neednotbeusedbluntlyandinallcases Justice Bhanwar Singh and Dr NK Bahl TRIGHT TO KNOW A legal assistance-cum- awareness camp in Delhi. Citizens should not only be aware of their rights but also have sufficient knowledge about various laws dslsa.org
  27. 27. | INDIA LEGAL | June 3, 2019 29 However, it is impossible, even for someone holding graduation, post-grad- uation or even a doctoral degree in law, to be aware of each and every legal pro- vision in operation. This is the price paid to ensure that wilful blindness can- not become the basis of expulsion. We have so many forms of laws— civil, criminal, revenue, personal, family, taxation, international, to name a few— but it is well settled that ignorance of any law cannot become an excuse for breaking it. Nobody is permitted to plead ignorance as a defence to escape the rigours of law. If it were, it would be very easy for any person to take the plea of ignorance though he was actually aware of the law and its consequences. The defence of ignorance is based on negative facts, which is very difficult to prove as one has to study the mental position of the law-breaker which is really a difficult exercise. Perhaps be- cause of all these reasons, the policy of law has always been not to accept the plea of ignorance of law. The maxim that “ignorance of law is no excuse for breaking it” has developed from ancient Roman law. In the good old days, the laws were numbered and thus could be easily remembered and understood. The number of laws in that period was very small and one could have counted them. Therefore, in those circumstances, the maxim may be said to be justified. N ow in our country thousands of laws are enacted by Parliament and state legislatures. Rules are also framed by the Executive under vari- ous Acts. The Supreme Court and 25 High Courts have framed rules of their respective procedures. Besides these rules, various notifications and circulars are also issued under relevant legisla- tion. Judicial precedents in the form of ratio decidendi are also consistently fol- lowed by the courts in view of Article 141 of our Constitution. Thus, it is humanly impossible to remember, much less understand, the chunk of laws stacked before citizens. In India, laws are framed in English and Hindi, with their translations in vernac- ular languages. But what about illiter- ates or those who can’t understand English or Hindi? Therefore, there is a sound justification for relaxation or dilution of the maxim. The doctrine of merger of judgments also offends this maxim. We know that the judgments of courts, lowest in the hierarchy, are quite often reversed by the first appellate courts. Similarly, the judgments of first appellate courts are reversed by the High Courts which, in turn, are reversed by the Supreme Court. Is it because the first appellate court or High Court is ignorant of the laws? If High Court is aware of the law then why does the Supreme Court reverse the judgment of the High Court? Can it be said that the High Court was ignorant of the laws? Sometimes even the apex court itself overrules its own decisions. Can it be then said that the top court was ignorant of the law while deciding the case at the first instance? This assumes that the law in ques- tion has been properly promulgated, published in government gazettes and distributed amongst the public for gen- erating awareness. The distribution may be in the form of its availability in news- papers or on TV or on the internet, or printed in volumes available for sale to the public at an affordable price. Article 35A of our Constitution was unknown to everyone except for the last year or so. One can’t find the Article printed in any of the Bare Acts of the Constitution or in the latest textbooks written by famous authors. Article 35A was added by the Constitution (App- lication to J&K) Order, 1954, by Presi- dent of India on May 14, 1954, exercis- ing the powers conferred by Article 370(1) of the Constitution and with the concurrence of the government of J&K. The absence of this article in statute books is proof of its non-publicity and Themaximthat“ignoranceoflawisno excuseforbreakingit”hasdeveloped fromancientRomanlaw.Thenthelaws werefewandcouldbeeasilyremem- beredandunderstood. LITTLE-KNOWN LAW? Article 35-A of our Constitution was unknown to everyone except in the last year or so UNI
  28. 28. Legal Eye/ Interpreting the Law 30 June 3, 2019 non-promulgation. To obtain the binding force of a par- ticular law, it must be applied to the men who are ruled by it. This is done by promulgating the law so that the people who are affected by it can acquire knowledge about it. T he Supreme Court of India has recently weakened the maxim that ignorance of law is no excuse in Drug Inspector vs Mani Maran (Cri. App. No. 1493 of 2018) decided by the Court on November 30, 2018. When the concerned drug inspector inspected the chemist shop of Mani Maran on Dec- ember 17, 2008, it was found that the shop was running without a valid drug licence required under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940. Consequently, the shop was seized and a charge sheet under the Act was filed by the inspector. The trial court convicted Maran and sentenced him to jail for one year with fines of `5,000 and `500 under differ- ent provisions of the Act. The first appeal against the judg- ment was dismissed by the sessions court and thereafter the High Court acquitted the accused. The accused in his arguments had admitted that he had purchased the retail shop from one Jayanti and had shifted the shop to the current location. The licence of the current shop expired on December 31, 2007. The accused also informed the court that there was no licence for the inspected premises and that he was not aware of the Act. Later on, he apologised for his mistake and requested that a licence be issued in his name. The Supreme Court set aside the judgment of the High Court and found the accused guilty. But it reduced the sentence of the accused based on three factors. One, the offence was committed in 2008, about 10 years back. Two, the accused had no previous history of con- viction. Three, the accused had stated that he was not aware that he had to obtain a licence for the sale of drugs. Considering the facts and circum- stances of the case, the Supreme Court while invoking the proviso to Section 27 (b)(ii) of the Act, reduced the jail sen- tence from one year to three months. But the fine of `5,000 was upheld. However, nothing was said about the fine of `500 imposed by the trial court. That too seems to be waived. A close reading of the Supreme Court judgment reveals that the accused has got two reliefs. Firstly, his sentence of imprisonment was reduced to three months instead of one year and second- ly, the fine of `500 was also deemed waived partially in view of his ignorance of law. The jurists have found good justifica- tions in diluting the maxim in other countries as well. In England and Rome, the courts have refused to apply this doctrine blatantly so as to do complete justice and provide adequate relief whenever the courts considered it on the basis of justice, equity and good conscience. Justice Maula in Martindale vs Falkner (1846) 2 CB 706 observed that “there is no presumption in this country that every person knows the law and it would be contrary to common sense and reasons if it were so.” Justice Lush in R vs Tewkesbury (LR 3 Q. B. 629) observed that “there is no maxim which says that for all intents and purposes a person must be taken to know the legal consequences of his acts.” Lord Atkin also found good justifica- tion in diluting this maxim in Evans vs Bartlam, (1937) AC 473 HL. His Lord- ship reacted in these words: “The fact is that there is no and never has been a presumption that everyone knows the law. There is the rule that ignorance of the law does not excuse, a maxim of very different scope and application.” The exception carved out of the maxim, “ignorance of law is no excuse” proved to be a bliss in Maran’s case. We have to collectively doff our caps to the Supreme Court for taking a lead in this direction. —Justice Bhanwar Singh is a former judge of the Allahabad High Court and Dr NK Bahl is Director, Judicial Training Academy, and Dean, DME School of Law, Noida Twitter: @indialegalmedia Website: www.indialegallive.com Contact: editor@indialegallive.com TheSChasinoneofitsverdicts weakenedthemaximthatignoranceof lawisnoexcuseforbreakingit.Although theCourtheldtheaccusedguilty,it reducedhisjailtermsignificantly. Anil Shakya
  29. 29. BRINGING YOU THE STORIES THAT COUNT An ENC Publication To Stay Abreast With Today, Pick Up Yesterday’s India Legal Don’t miss a single issue of this independent, scintillating new weekly magazine and get special discounts for yourself and your friends NDIA EGALEEL STORIES THAT COUNT ` 100 NI www.indialegallive.com May 20, 2019 A tribute to Prof NR Madhava Menon known worldwide as the doyen of modern legal education. He was not only a great teacher but also a creator of jurisprudence. Prof Upendra Baxi’s homage to him along with excerpts from articles he penned specially for this magazineThePassingofaGiant Supreme Court: Credibility crisis Banks and Ethics: No legal oversight 1935-2019 NDIA EGALEEL STORIES THAT COUNT ` 100 I www.indialegallive.com April 29, 2019 AnexclusiveresearchpaperforIndiaLegalquestionsIndia’sGDPfigureswhichseem manipulatedtopresentarosypicture.Thisisreflectedindecreasedeconomicactivityinmany otherspheres.LossoffaithinGovtdatacanhaveseriousrepercussionsforfuturegrowth ThePoliticsofEconomics National Security: Politicising the armed forces SCBA Event:No bar on talent NNNN bA tribA tribA trib toute toute toute to ProfProfProf NR MadNR MadNR Madhava Mhava Mhava M kenon kenon kenon k wnnown wnown wnown worldwiorldwiorldwide asde asde as the dothe dothe do ofyen ofyen ofyen of mmm wHe wasHe waswHe wasHe was otnot onot onot onot onot o y anly anly anly anly anly a g eagreatgreatgreatgreatgreat teacheteacheteacheteacheteacher bututr butr butr but alsoalso aoalso aalso a creacreatcreatcreatcreat r oor ofor ofor ofor of j ispjurispjurispjurispjurispjurisp dencrudencrudencrudencrudencrudence.e.ee magehomageomahomagehomagehomag hito hito hito hto hi alonalonm alonm alonm alonm alo g wig witg withg withg withwit cxcexcerexcerxcerce p spts frppts frpts frpts f mom artmom artom artm articlesiclesiclesicles pene penhe penhe penhe penhe pen d sed spned spned spd spned s alecialciecialecialecial TTTTTTTTTThhhhhhhhhheeeeeeeeePPPPPPPPPaaaaaaaaassssssssssssssssssiiiiiiiiinnnnnnnnnggggggggggoooooooooffffffffffaaaaaaaaaGGGGGGGGGGiiiiiiiii preSupreme Come Court:Credibility crisis Banks and Ethio leNo legal ogal ov 1935-1935 20192019 iiiiiiiiiiiiaaaaaaaaaannnnnnntt icsss: meme urCourCour hat hat has ors or rederedered thd the cee central b rrr mememememehTh pprprprSuprS aanntttttaanntttttt oon ron ron reporeportsts f b ectictiectiectioooppppeeeennnnnttttttnnnnnttttt RRRBBBIII::UUUUUUnnnnnddddddeeeeerrrrr tttttthhhhhh UUUUUUUUUUUU HHHHHHHHHaaaaaaaaammmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmeeeeeeeee AutosAutos: ByeB byediesel? 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An analysis of the potential impact. RBI: Under the Hammer Autos: Bye bye diesel? Sri Lanka Blasts: India connection? FULL DISCLOSURE EVERY WEEK INDIA LEGAL WILL BRING YOU NEWS, ANALYSES AND OPINION FROM THE SHARPEST INVESTIGATIVE REPORTERS AND MOST INCISIVE LEGAL MINDS IN THE NATION ON MATTERS THAT MATTER TO YOU NNNDDDDDDDD erreeeessseear rreeessseeennt .LLLLooossssso PPPPPPPPooo NationNationNational Secal Secal Securityurithe arthe arthe arthe arthe armed fofomed fomed fomed fomed f rcrceesrcrr ereere manipmanipulateulateddto rereseseerepreeseepreseentntntn ..LLLoLoossssLLLLLoooLoosssssssoooo NDIA EGALEEL STORIES THAT COUNT ` 100 I www.indialegallive.com May6, 2019 JET-LAGGEDJitenderBhargava,formerExecutiveDirectorofAirIndia,analysesthe reasonsforthecollapseofoneofIndia’smostcelebratedairlines Chief Justice Gogoi:In the Dock Loan Write-offs:Who pays for it? 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  30. 30. Global Trends/ US/ New Immigration Policy 32 June 3, 2019 HERE are hundreds of thou- sands of Indians currently estimated to be in the United States on H1b tem- porary work visas, most of them in the IT sector. Estimates are that they send good amounts of money back to their families on a monthly basis. With President Donald Trump talking about unveiling his new immigration policy, Indians, especially those with technical skills, hope that the changes will make it easier for them to land jobs in the country. But wait. What you have been read- ing about is a fake policy proposal by President Donald Trump in tweets, without anything in writing and with lit- tle or no consultation with the various government and political players who have a stake in immigration policy. Trump, who spent his entire life running an inherited real estate business, does not understand the concept of consen- sus management that underpins policy, especially when it has international implications. His lack of any political experience has resulted in loud shouts about policy and quiet retreats when federal courts and political reality stepped into the issue. Trump is not anti-immigrant; he wo- uld just like fewer non-whites from nati- ons he has publicly scorned as terrible places. Indians are welcome because th- eir role in support functions within high tech and emerging technologies is well understood. That is why he suggests a skills-based system instead of the cur- rent Green Card family-based approach, not withstanding that his wife Melania’s family came from Slovenia on the basis of family chain migration. Opposition to Trump’s immigration efforts is solid along political fault lines, civil society organisations and a majority of Americans, according to polling data from multiple sources. Remember, shut- ting down the government for six weeks did not get him the money he demand- ed to build the wall along the Mexican border. Republicans cannot agree on resolving the status of the “Dreamers”, small children brought to America by parents who stayed, worked and raised them to adulthood without citizenship. The Administration’s belief that separat- ing children from parents of asylum seekers would discourage other asylum seekers has failed on multiple levels. Asylum seekers kept coming. Moreover, holding children in cages and makeshift housing without information on reunit- ing them with their parents brewed widespread condemnation and revulsion within America. The current Trump focus on trade tariffs on Chinese products is hurting American farmers and giant agri-busi- nesses, where Trump had significant support in the 2016 election. The elephant in the room is what the Republican-controlled Senate will do acting as a “jury” if the Democrats in the House of Representatives vote to impeach Trump for behaviour docu- mented in the partially disclosed Mueller Report. Jumping The Queue IndianscouldbebeneficiariesofPresidentDonaldTrump’spreferenceforaskills-based systeminsteadofthecurrentGreenCardfamily-basedapproach By Kenneth Tiven in Washington T UNI WAITING FOR ENTRY Activists protest against the Trump Adminis- tration’s policies on immigrants in Manhattan