Thursday October 18, 2018
Home India Tussle betwee...

Tussle between Tripura HC, Government over law secretary continues

0
//
302
Republish
Reprint

Agartala: The conflict between the Tripura High Court and the government over removal of Law Secretary Data Mohan Jamatia from his post continues with the law minister shooting off a fresh letter to Chief Justice Deepak Gupta. Indian-Government

The state government had expressed its inability to relieve Jamatia of his responsibilities. A contempt of court case against Jamatia is pending in the Supreme Court.

A high court notification, issued on July 14, transferred Jamatia and posted him as a district and sessions judge of Unakoti district.

The court also asked him to take over the new assignment on August 3 and asked Chief Secretary Yashpal Singh to choose a new law secretary.

Last week, Law Minister Tapan Chakraborty, in a letter to Chief Justice Gupta, expressed the state government’s inability to relieve Jamatia as law secretary as he is looking after various pending cases in the Supreme Court and upcoming elections to local bodies.

The fresh letter came after the high court on July 23 turned down the law minister’s plea and stick to its decision.

Minister Chakraborty said: “Yesterday (Thursday), I have sent another letter to the chief justice to retain Jamatia in his post at least for another six months.”

Chakraborty, however, refused to divulge the contents of the letter.

An official with the law department, on the condition of anonymity, told IANS: “The minister told the chief justice that Jamatia has been looking after the state government’s appeal to the Supreme Court against the high court’s dismissal of 10,323 government teachers by an order on May 7 last year.”

“Besides, the law secretary’s service is urgently required by the state government in smoothly conducting elections to various urban local bodies, including Agartala Municipal Corporation, in December and elections to 527 village committees under the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council in March next year,” the official said quoting the letter.

A division bench of the high court in April wanted contempt of court charges to be framed against Jamatia for making a derogatory remark about the judiciary in an official note to Chief Minister Manik Sarkar.

Jamatia, who denied making any derogatory remarks against the high court, filed a petition before the Supreme Court against the high court decision.

The official said the law minister also raised questions over the appointment of Unakoti District Session Judge Gautam Debnath as officer on special duty (OSD) in the high court.

“The high court may appoint OSD but the post has to be created by the state government before any posting is made, as otherwise financial and other complications will arise in future,” the law minister said in his letter.

(IANS)

Click here for reuse options!
Copyright 2015 NewsGram

Next Story

Adultery Law Gets Scrapped: Another Progressive Step In India

Misra is stepping down as chief justice next week when he turns 65, the mandatory retirement age for Supreme Court judges. 

0
India
A gardener works on the lawns of the Supreme Court in New Delhi, India, Aug. 22, 2017. India's Chief Justice of the Supreme Court has presided over a string of verdicts in recent weeks that grant more rights to women, gay couples and religious minorities as he prepares to retire from the bench next month. VOA

The chief justice of  Supreme Court of India has presided over a string of recent rulings that grant more rights to women, gay couples and religious minorities, challenging deeply conservative Indian society before he retires next month.

In the latest decision Thursday, Chief Justice Dipak Misra and the rest of the five-member court struck down a 158-year-old law that treated adultery in certain cases as a criminal offense punishable by up to five years in prison.

The court called the law, which did not allow wives to prosecute adulterous husbands, unconstitutional and noted that a “husband is not the master of woman.” Adultery can still be grounds for divorce in India, the verdict said, but a criminal penalty violated women’s protection to equal rights under the law.

Accolades for ruling

The verdict was hailed by activists and left-of-center members of India’s Parliament.

“Excellent decision,” tweeted Sushmita Dev, a lawmaker and president of the opposition Congress party’s women’s wing. She said “a law that does not give women the right to sue her adulterer husband … is unequal treatment and militates against her status as an individual.”

India
Participants displays a rainbow flag and cheer as gay rights activists and their supporters march during a gay pride parade in New Delhi, India. VOA

Amnesty International India said the decision was “a progressive judgment” and the old law was a “remnant of a time when a woman was considered to be the property of her husband.”

The scrapped law allowed men to file charges against other men who had affairs with their wives. Women having affairs could not be prosecuted, but they also couldn’t file a complaint against cheating husbands.

media

Gay couples, religious minorities

Earlier this month, the Misra-led court also struck down a colonial-era law that made gay sex punishable by up to 10 years in prison. The 1861 law, a relic of Victorian England that hung on long after the end of British colonialism, was “a breach of the rights of privacy and dignity,” the court ruled. It added that “history owes an apology to the members of this community and their families, for the delay in providing redressal for the ignominy and ostracism that they have suffered through the centuries.”

On Thursday, the court also decided not to reconsider a 1994 decision that would have delayed proceedings in a case over the ownership of the site of a mosque that Hindu hard-liners demolished in 1992.

India
Indian Muslim women talk while walking through a market in Ahmadabad, India. VOA

Fast pace for India

The court’s recent pace of decisions speaks to another feature of Misra’s tenure: expediting cases in a country where they routinely take decades to resolve.

There are 33 million court cases pending in India, government figures show.

Misra is stepping down as chief justice next week when he turns 65, the mandatory retirement age for Supreme Court judges.

Also Read: What Would Be The Outcome of The Judgement on Homosexuality with BJP at The Centre?

He joined India’s highest court in 2011. His 13-month tenure as chief justice has won him accolades from advocates of disadvantaged groups but drawn unprecedented criticism from other members of the bench.

In January, the four most senior justices held a news conference against Misra, who as chief justice controls the court’s roster and decides who will take which cases, listing a litany of problems that they said afflicted the court and risked undermining India’s democracy. Misra met with the dissenting judges, who continued on the bench. (VOA)