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Top landmark judgements in India’s Supreme Court passed in 2018

In his final week as chief justice, Dipak Misra has passed numerous judgments on important cases, ranging from the one on the constitutionality of Aadhaar to the case on the entry of women into the Ayyappa temple at Sabarimala.

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Best Verdict in Supreme Court of India

Top Judgements in Supreme Court of India: In his final week as chief justice, Dipak Misra has passed numerous judgments on important cases, ranging from the one on the constitutionality of Aadhaar to the case on the entry of women into the Ayyappa temple at Sabarimala. Some of the judgments have been unanimously hailed. Others have been welcomed by some and criticized by others. Interestingly, those welcoming some judgments are the very people criticizing some others. This is a clear indication that the court has not taken sides or played favorites.

Euthanasia Case verdict in SC

The right to dignity is a fundamental right, this decision has come to mind. The bench of the Supreme Court upheld the euthanasia and gave permission to give directions about this by making a pre-planned will and said that it would be legally valid. The court also said that it is also part of the life of dignity that is a fundamental right and similarly it is a terrible disease, and there is no chance of recovery.

“The right to life and liberty as envisaged under Article 21 of the Indian Constitution is meaningless unless it encompasses within its sphere of individual dignity. With the passage of time, this Court has expanded the spectrum of Article 21 to include within it the right to live with dignity as a component of the right to life and liberty”.

The Bench also held that the right to live with dignity also includes the smoothening of the process of dying in case of a terminally ill patient or a person in Persistent vegetative state with no hope of recovery.

A failure to legally recognize advance medical directives may amount to non-facilitation of the right to smoothen the dying process and the right to live with dignity. Further, a study of the position in other jurisdictions shows that Advance Directives have gained lawful recognition in several jurisdictions by way of legislation and in certain countries through judicial pronouncements.

Supreme Court proceedings live

The direct trial of the proceedings of the Supreme Court is directly in the interest of the public. The bench of the Supreme Court said that the rules for this will be decided soon under Article 145 of the Constitution. “Sunlight is the best disinfectant”, the bench said while allowing live streaming of court proceedings.

Lynching Case Verdict in Supreme Court

The court condemned the killing of people across the country by the crowd and issued guidelines for this. A bench headed by Justice Dipak Mishra said that the horrific activities of the crowd mechanism can’t be allowed to dominate the country.

Judge Loya case in Supreme Court

A bench of the Supreme Court dismissed the petition filed to start the investigation about the death of the judge Loya. Under the chairmanship of Chief Justice of India Justice Dipak Misra, the bench of three judges, Justice DY Chandrachud and AM Khanvilkar dismissed the plea for an independent inquiry of this case while hearing the petitions filed in the case of the Special Judge of the CBI.

“We have come to the conclusion that there is absolutely no merit in the writ petitions. There is no reason for the court to doubt the clear and consistent statements of the four judicial officers. The documentary material on the record indicates that the death of Judge Loya was due to natural causes.

There is no ground for the court to hold that there was a reasonable suspicion about the cause or circumstances of death which would merit a further inquiry”

Validity of GST

The bench of the Supreme Court of comprising AK Sikri and Ashok Bhushan upheld the object and service tax (compensation to the states) Act, 2017. Court also upheld the Item and Service Tax Compensation Charge Rule, 2017.

“When Constitution provision empowers the Parliament to provide for Compensation to the States for loss of revenue by law, the expression “law” used therein is of wide import which includes levy of any cess for the above purpose. We, thus, do not find any merit in the submission of the learned counsel for the petitioner that Parliament has no legislative competence to enact the Compensation to States Act, 2017,” it concluded.

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To Prevent Misuse Of SC/ST Act

Supreme Court’s bench comprising Justice AK Goel and Justice UU Lalit issued guidelines for prevention of the misuse of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989. In order to investigate the provisions of this Act, the court said that in order to stop the misuse of this Act, the government employees can’t be arrested under this Act without prior Sanction.

We direct that in absence of any other independent offence calling for arrest, in respect of offences under the Atrocities Act, no arrest may be effected, if an accused person is a public servant, without written permission of the appointing authority and if such a person is not a public servant, without written permission of the Senior Superintendent of Police of the District.

Such permissions must be granted for recorded reasons which must be served on the person to be arrested and to the concerned court. As and when a person arrested is produced before the Magistrate, the Magistrate must apply his mind to the reasons recorded and further detention should be allowed only if the reasons recorded are found to be valid. To avoid false implication, before FIR is registered, a preliminary enquiry may be made whether the case falls in the parameters of the Atrocities Act and is not frivolous or motivated“.

CJI Is The Master Of Roster

Dismissing the petition of Advocate Shanti Bhushan, a bench of the Supreme Court said that the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court is the owner of the roster and he has full authority to form the backing and the division of the cases. Very Senior Advocate Shanti Bhushan filed a petition on the regulation of the rights of the CJI.

Ex-CMs Not Entitled To Govt Bungalows

Supreme Court has given non-statutory agreement to the amendments made in section 4 (3) of the wages, allowances and additional provisions of the state ministers of Uttar Pradesh, and ended the provision of giving bungalow to the former Chief Ministers under it. The court said no former Chief Ministers in India is entitled to government accommodation.

FROM THE JUDGMENT “Whether retention of official accommodation by the functionaries mentioned in Section 4(3) of the 1981 Act after they had demitted office violate the equality clause guaranteed by Article 14 of the Constitution of India?

The preamble to the Constitution of India embodies, inter alia, the principles of equality and fraternity and it is on the basis of these principles of equality and fraternity that the Constitution recognizes only one single class of citizens with one singular voice (vote) in the democratic process subject to provisions made for backward classes, women, children, SC/ST, minorities, etc.

A special class of citizens, subject to the exception noted above, is abhorrent to the constitutional ethos“.

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