Increase in strength of Supreme Court Judges

Dr. M.Veerappa Moily, Minister of Law and Justice informed the Rajya Sabha in a written reply that the Lok Sabha passed the Supreme Court (Number of Judges) Amendment Bill, 2008 on 22nd December, 2008 and it received the assent of the President on 5th February, 2009.

The Supreme Court Registry has informed that “the Judges have not been elevated to the Bench of the Supreme Court so far due to non-availability of accommodation and that delay in appointment of Judges is resulting in accumulation of cases” the Minister informed the Rajya Sabha.

PIB

High Court orders CVC inquiry into Prasar Bharati issue

New Delhi- The Delhi High Court ordered a Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) inquiry into alleged financial irregularities in Prasar Bharati Corporation and appointed a former judge to supervise Board meetings of the public broadcaster.

A bench headed by Chief Justice A. P. Shah directed the Board to convene its meeting within 15 days. The bench, also comprising Justice Manmohan, passed the order after the government failed to bring reconciliation between the Chairman of the Board, Arun Bhatnagar, and CEO B S Lalli, who have been at loggerheads.

The court said that day-to-day work of the Public Broadcaster would be handled by the CEO, Member (Finance) and Member (Personnel) of the Board.

Apex court declines to hear PIL on EVM functioning

New Delhi- The Supreme Court declined to entertain a PIL, questioning the functioning of Electronic Voting Machines and seeking a direction to the Election Commission to withhold using them till the machines are made tamper proof.

A Bench headed by Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan while declining to hear the PIL, directed the petitioner, V. V. Rao, to make a representation before the Election Commission in connection with the matter.

Rao, in his petition, said several experts and election watch groups have claimed that EVMs could be manipulated. They have analysed electronics results of several constituencies and indicated that there is something drastically wrong with the EVMs, it said.

The existing EVMs are vulnerable and should not be used for any election till the time the machines are made tamper proof, Rao claimed in his petition.

Chinese chocolates banned in India: Anand Sharma

New Delhi- India has banned import of chocolates and chocolate products from China. Commerce Minister told the Lok Sabha today.

India had banned import of milk and milk products from China in September last year and the ban has been extended to chocolate and chocolate products, Anand Sharma said during Question Hour.

He said the ban was imposed after it was found that some dairy products imported from China contained melamine, consumption of which is harmful for humans.

Similar action was taken on import of toys, which contained high lead content, he said. “Only those toys that meet international standards are being allowed to be imported to India,” he said.

Madras HC upholds reservation for women

The Madras High Court has upheld the provision of reservation of 30% of posts for women in the Tamil Nadu State and Subordinate Services and said the rule was in consonance with Article 15 (3) and cannot be said to be in any way a violation of Article 16 (2) of the Constitution.

Dismissing a writ petition challenging the reservation, the First Bench, comprising Chief Justice H. L. Gokhale and Justice D. Murugesan, said it did not find any substance in the petition. Rule 21 of the Tamil Nadu State and Subordinate Services Rules, was fully constitutional.

In his petition, G Vijayaraghavan of Tirumangalam here, a law graduate, who belongs to the Most Backward Caste (MBC), submitted that he desired to enter government service as a Group-I officer.

Now SIT can question Modi as High Court rejects plea

The Gujarat High Court rejected a petition seeking to restrain the Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team from proceeding against Chief Minister Narendra Modi and others in a 2002 communal riots-related case.

Judge D.H. Waghela also rejected a plea by the petitioner to at least grant a stay on the SIT investigations to allow him time to move the Supreme Court against the judgment.
The SIT would now be free to question Mr. Modi and others named in the complaint of Zakia Jafri, wife of the former Congress MP Ehsan Jafri, who was among those burnt alive in the Gulberg Society massacre, alleging their complicity in the post-Godhra riots.

Supreme Court directive on bail in Shopian case

The Supreme Court asked the two senior police officers arrested in connection with the alleged rape and murder of two women in Shopian to approach the Sessions Court in Jammu and Kashmir for bail.

A Bench, comprising Chief Justice K. G. Balakrishnan and Justice P. Sathasivam, passed the order while disposing of special leave petitions filed by Superintendent of Police Javed Iqbal Mattoo and DSP Rohit Baskotra, praying for bail and challenging the High Court order directing their arrest.
When senior counsel Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for the petitioner, said the bail applications would be filed before the Shopian Sessions Court on Saturday, senior counsel Harish Salve and counsel Anil Suhrawardy for the State saidobjections would be filed by Monday and the Investigating Officer would be present with the case diary in the Sessions Court on July 27.

Jharkhand police chief served showcause notice

Ranchi- Jharkhand police chief Vishnu Dayal Ram has been served a showcause notice by the state government after the Accountant General (AG) recently sought a probe into the unusually heavy withdrawl by him of money meant for paying informers.

Ram has been given 15 days time to reply, the official sources said. The show cause was served three weeks after Chief Secretary A K Basu wrote to the Governor’s office for necessary intervention after he got a letter from the AG seeking an investigation into the withdrawl in which the possibility of embezzlement of government funds could not be ruled out.

The AG said Rs 5.60 crore was drawn in cash from Project Building Treasury