Chennai: The Madras High Court on Thursday allowed Sun TV group to participate in the auction of FM radio licences.
The interim order came on a petition filed by the media group’s companies challenging the central government’s decision to bar it from participating from the auctions on the grounds they did not secure the security clearance from the union home ministry.
The auctions for the FM licences are expected to start next week.
The Sun TV group approached the court requesting it to stay the auctioning of airwaves and also allow the group companies to participate in the auction.
According to Sun TV Network, the central government’s decision is illegal, arbitrary and abuse of power.
The petition said the reasons stated for denial of security clearance are relating to cases which are either in FIR stage or in the stage of charge sheet.
Only a director of the company is allegedly involved in the case and the company is not a party.
Aug 22, 2017: The Apex Court today has made a historical verdict by imposing a ban on triple talaq calling it ‘unconstitutional’. Supreme Court also upheld the validity by stating that it is not the violation of Article 14, 15, 21 and 25 of the Indian Constitution.
A bench of five judges, directed by Chief Justice J S Khehar, declared a split verdict. The verdict of five judges also came from five faiths. Justices Uday Lalit (Hindu), Joseph Kurien (Christian) and Rohinton Nariman (Parsi) decreed that triple talaq is unconstitutional. Chief Justice JS Khehar(Sikh) and Justice Abdul Nazeer(Muslim) supported the validity of triple talaq. Chief Justice also asked the government to bring enactment within the period of six months and proposed all political parties to decide on the issue collectively.
What is “Triple Talaq”?
Triple Talaq (Talaq-e-Biddat) is a verbal divorce where a Muslim husband can divorce his wife by merely uttering “Talaq Talaq Talaq”. A divorced woman is not allowed to remarry her divorced husband unless she first marries another man under the practice called Nikah Halala.
Origin of Sharia Law
Prior to Independence, British Judges were assisted by Muftis and Qazis for the performing of executive functions in India. In 1880, Qazis were deprived of their judicial powers through ‘The Qaziz Act’. On the other hand, the British started pronouncing judgments on Muslim Personal Law. Keeping the whole scenario in consideration, the establishment of Sharia courts was demanded in the first quarter of 20th century, however, the demand was not conceded. Later in 1920, the first sharia court was established in Bihar.
Many mosques in the country are functioning on Sharia courts based on Muslim Shariat law. The source of Muslim Personal law is the 1937 act of Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) application, which was also an attempt by British India to win over Muslim clergy. These extra-constitutional bodies had the power to function as courts parallel to Indian courts.
Abdur Rehman, a Muslim NRI from the UK had approached sharia court named Makkah Masjid Sharia Council in Chennai to get reunited with his wife. However, instead of reuniting the couple, Sharia court pressurized him to divorce his wife after he uttered talaq thrice. The man pleaded that he has changed his mind and he wants to reunite with her. After facing refutation from Sharia court, Abdul approached to Madras High Court begging for the same. He even said in his appeal that many blameless Muslim brothers or wives face the same problem across Chennai and Tamil Nadu on the whole because of the functioning of such forums that claim them to be judicial forums.
The High Court judgment said: “If a place of worship – whether it be a temple, mosque or church – is used for purposes other than prayers, and more specifically to create extra-constitutional forums, certainly the authorities are duty-bound to action against them.”
It ordered the state government to ensure that such courts do not function. This order was not specific to Muslims, and it empowered the police authorities to close down such extra-constitutional court, whether run by Hindu, Christian or Muslim.
Although the judgment did pronounce on the behalf of the sufferers of sharia law, there were still some ambiguities that led to confusion among such extra-constitutional bodies. A large number of Sharia courts which were supervised by imams and Islamic scholars operated from places that were not Mosques. It was not clear that whether the order applies to only sharia courts performing from mosques or to those who operate from Madrassas and non-religious places. Hence, a further detailed clarification was needed.
In 2014, Supreme Court declared the functioning of Sharia courts illegal and can be challenged in the court of law. On the contrary, Madras High Court did not make it clear owing to which the ambiguity in the Tamil Nadu state remained.
Supreme Court Verdict (2014)
A Delhi based advocate, Vishwa Lochan Madan challenged the validity of the parallel courts run by institutions such as Dar-ul-Qaza, Darul-Iftaa and Dar-ul-Uloom Deoband which issued fatwas. Under his appeal, he highlighted the plight of a woman, Imana, who was asked by Dar-ul-Uloom, Deoband to leave her husband and children and live with her rapist, father-in-law in her case. Madan argued that Sharia courts meddles with the personal affairs and obstructs the religious and social freedom of Muslims.
According to Supreme Court, Islamic judges, who interpret religious law can only come into power when individuals submit voluntarily to them and that their decisions or fatwas are not legally binding. It also curtailed the forums like Dar-ul-Qaza, Darul-Iftaa and Dar-ul-Uloom Deoband to issue fatwas on the basis of complaints by strangers.
The Supreme Court stated, Religion cannot be allowed to be merciless to the victim. Faith cannot be used as a dehumanizing force. Fatwas touching upon the rights of an individual at the instance of rank strangers may cause irreparable damage and therefore would be absolutely uncalled for. It shall be in violation of basic human rights. It cannot be used to punish innocents.
The Madras Court’s ruling was the result of a petition filed by K Veeramani. Mr. Veeramani, interestingly, was unsuccessful in clearing the written test in the process of recruiting teachers because of a question related to the National song, mentioned PTI.
In an objective type question, K Veeramani selected Bengali as the original language in which national song was written. This answer was considered wrong by the board. Veeramani scored 89 while the cut off was 90. For this one mark and “wrongfully” missing the opportunity to work, he petitioned to the High Court.
And he was right. Advocate General R Muthukumarswamy agreed to K Veeramani’s claim. The National Song was originally penned in the Bengali Language.
PTI reports Justice M V Muralidharan gave no actual reasons behind this verdict. The Justice also said that Monday and Friday should be the ideal days.
Justice M V Muralidharan’s ruling is backed by Article 226 of the constitution; The High court posses the power to pass orders within their juridicial territory upon any individual or group. The Judge also stated, “If people feel it is difficult to sing the song in Bengali or in Sanskrit, steps can be taken to translate the song in Tamil. The youth of this country are the future of tomorrow and the court hopes and trusts that this order shall be taken in the right spirit and also implemented in letter and spirit by the citizenry of this great nation.”
– prepared by Saksham Narula of NewsGram. Twitter: @Saksham2394
The court of justice has asked the Centre to file its response giving it the period of 15 days
Centre had put a ban on the purchase and sale of bovine animals from animal markets for the purpose of slaughtering on May 26
The Supreme Court has fixed the next date of hearing for the case on July 11
New Delhi, Jun 15, 2017: A vacation bench in the Supreme Court comprising Justices R K Agrawal and S K Kaul has issued a notice to the Centre on Thursday to file response on its pleas. The Centre had put a ban on the purchase and sale of bovine animals from animal markets for the purpose of slaughtering on May 26.
Under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, the ban was initiated through an Environment Ministry notification- ‘Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Regulation of Livestock Markets) Rules, 2017’.
The court of justice has asked the Centre to file its response giving it the period of 15 days on two separate petitions challenging that notification and has fixed the next date of hearing for the case on July 11.
According to the PTI, an additional Solicitor General P S Narasimha was assigned by the Centre who appeared in the court on its behalf and told the court about the intentions of presenting the notification. The notification was bought with a sight to introduce a regulatory establishment on cattle trade across India. He also informed the law guardians that interim stay has been recently granted on the notice by the Madras High Court.
There was a claim by one of the petitioners who challenged the notification calling it as unconstitutional. The notification has offended the basic fundamental rights which include the freedom to religion, freedom to conscience and the right to livelihood.
– prepared by Himanshi Goyal of Newsgram, Twitter: @himanshi1104