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Denial of Equal Pay for Equal Work Offends Article 14 and 21 of Constitution: Andhra Pradesh HC

The Andhra Pradesh HC passed an Order on 4th of August, 2022 ruled that denial of equal pay for equal work offends Articles 14 and 21 of the Constitution. This was seen in the case of Vallepu Naga Raju vs The State Of Andhra Pradesh (Writ Petition No. 3129 OF 2021) and the case was presided over by The Honourable Justices A.V. Sesha Sai and G. Ramakrishna Prasad

FACTS OF THE CASE

The bench of was dealing with the, which calls in question the proceedings of State Government(SG) issued vide Letter No.838/Courts, & the consequential proceedings of Registrar (Administration), HC of Andhra Pradesh.

In this case, Petitioners were working as Computer Assistants in various District Courts in the Andhra Pradesh on a contract basis. By way of a letter the Registrar General, Andhra Pradesh HC sought permission from the SG to appoint 29 Computer Assistants on a contract basis by adopting the procedure as which was done in the case of the Computer Personnel.

The SG, vide Letter No.838/Courts, turned down the request for enhancement to Rs.31,460/- on par with the min time scale fixed for Data Processing Officers (DPOs) on the ground that there is no scale of pay to the post of Computer Assistant in the Revised Pay Scales, 2015, & the posts are sanctioned on a contract basis with consolidated remuneration only.

Sri M. Vijay Kumar, Counsel for the petitioners presented that the action challenged in the present Writ Petition is highly illegal, arbitrary, unreasonable & violative of Articles 14 & 21 of the Constitution & opposed to the principle of ‘equal pay for equal work’.

Sri N.V. Sumant, Counsel for the respondent presented that there is absolutely no illegality nor there exists any infirmity in the challenged action & in the absence of the same, the interogated orders are not amenable for any judicial review under Article 226 of the Constitution.

JUDGEMENT

The issue for deliberation before the bench was:

“In case the respondent authorities are justify in denying the min time scale to the petitioners & in case the petitioners are entitled to a min in the time scale of pay Rs.31,460/- attached to the post of DPOs with effect from 1st April 2019?”

The HC relied upon the case of State of Punjab & others v. Jagjit Singh & others where it was stated that:

“An employee engaged for the same work, can’t be paid less than another, who discharges the same duties & responsibilities. Assuredly not, in a welfare state. Such an action other than being humiliating strikes at the very foundation of human dignity. Anyone, who is impel to work at a lesser wage, does not do so themselves. Any act, of payment of low wages, as compared to others similarly situate, forms an act of exploitative, harassing, enslavement, emerging out of a domineering position. With no doubt, the action is very oppressive, suppressive & coercive, as it compels involuntary subjugation.”

The bench stated that the challenged action of denial of benefit to the petitioners offends Articles 14 & 21 of the constitution & the principle of equal pay for equal work.

In view of the above, The HC allowed the petition & directed the respondents to extend the benefit of enhancement of remuneration to the petitioners @ Rs.31,460/- with effect from 01.04.2019, i.e., min time scale attached to the post of DPO. 

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JUDGEMENT REVIEWED BY YAKSHU JINDAL.

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No prosecution of customer for mere visit to brothel house for prosecution: Andhra Pradesh High Court

The Andhra Pradesh High Court, passed a Judgement on 21st April 2022 were This was seen in the case of Chennuboina Raj Kumar vs. State of Andhra Pradesh CRIMINAL PETITION NO.2900 OF 2022, that the petitioner is only client who went bordello for whoredom on payment made to other accused and as per the settled law in this regard, client is not liable for prosecution for any of the offences for which the F.I.R. is registered. Therefore, allowing the proceedings to be continued against the petitioner in the facts and situations of the case would amount to abuse of process of Court. & the case was presided by The Hon’ble Sri Justice D. Ramesh

FACTS OF THE CASE

Learned counsel for the petitioner prayed for quash of the proceedings against the petitioner. Learned counsel further submits that this is a capped in view of the earlier order passed by this Court in Criminal Petition No.3727 of 2020, this court in case of Sri Roopendra Singh v. State of Karnataka has quashed the proceedings against the accused therein, who went the bordello for whoredom, on the ground that they are mere clients and not liable for prosecution. Therefore, in view of the above stated order of this Court & for the reasons stated therein, this Criminal Petition is allowed. This Criminal Petition under Section 482 of “Cr.P.C.”, is filed seeking quash of the proceedings in on the file of the Special JMFC for Mobile, Guntur.

Learned counsel for the petitioner would submit that based on the information received on 19th October 2020, the police registered crime against the petitioner & after conducting investigation, Charge Sheet was filed before Special JMFC for Mobile, Guntur, which is under confinement stage. The allegation is that at the time when the police raided the bordello, they found the petitioner in the said bordello as client who went for whoredom on payment of money to other accused.

Learned counsel for the petitioner submits that the petitioner is only client who went the said bordello for whoredom on payment made to other accused & as per law in this regard, client is not liable for prosecution for any of the offences for which the F.I.R. is registered. Therefore, he would submit that allowing the proceedings to be continued against the petitioner in the facts & situations of the case would amount to abuse of process of Court. Therefore, prayed for quash of the said proceedings against the petitioner.

Learned counsel for the petitioner further submits that this is a covered matter whereby, this court in case of Sri Roopendra Singh v. State of Karnataka, has quashed the proceedings against the accused therein, who went bordello for whoredom, on the ground that they are mere clients & not liable for prosecution.

JUDGEMENT

Therefore, in view of the aforesaid order of this Court & for the reasons stated therein, this Criminal Petition is allowed & the aforesaid on the file of the Special JMFC for Mobile, Guntur, registered against the petitioner, is hereby quashed. Miscellaneous Petitions, if any pending, in this Criminal Petition, shall stand closed.

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JUDGEMENT REVIEWED BY YAKSHU JINDAL.

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‘He Was Kind Enough To Leave Rape Victim Alive’, Madhya Pradesh High Court modifies it’s statement after facing criticism saying it was an inadvertent mistake- Madhya Pradesh High Court

The Madhya Pradesh High Court, modified it’s recent judgement of he was kind enough to leave the prosecutrix alive to that he did not cause any other physical injury to the victim saying it be an inadvertent mistake.

This was seen in the case of RAMU @ RAMSINGH VS. STATE OF M.P[CRIMINAL APPEAL NO.555 OF 2009], which was presided by Justice Abhyankar and Justice Satyendra Kumar Singh.

FACTS OF THE CASE

On 18.10.2022, The Madhya Pradesh High Court made the statement that the rape convict was “kind enough to leave the prosecutrix alive”, modified its statement to “considering the fact that he did not cause any other physical injury to the victim”, after facing criticism throughout the nation.

The appellant was convicted in 2009 under Section376(2)(F) IPC for raping a 4-year-old girl in 2007. While deciding the convict’s appeal, the division bench made it’s judgement as follows-

The earlier statement was as follows-

In such circumstances, this Court does not find any error in appreciation of evidence by the trail Court and considering the demonic act of the appellant who appears to have no respect for the dignity of a woman and has the propensity to commit sexual offence even with a girl child aged 4 years, this Court does not find it to be a fit case where the sentence can be reduced to the sentence already undergone by him, however, considering the fact that he was kind enough to leave the prosecutrix alive, this court is of the opinion that the life imprisonment can be reduced to 20 years’ rigorous imprisonment. Accordingly, the criminal appeal is partly allowed and the appellant be made to suffer the period of 20 years in accordance with law.”

The modified statement is as follows-

In such circumstances, this Court does not find any error in appreciation of evidence by the trail Court and considering the demonic act of the appellant who appears to have no respect for the dignity of a woman and has the propensity to commit sexual offence even with a girl child aged 4 years, this Court does not find it to be a fit case where the sentence can be reduced to the sentence already undergone by him, however, considering the fact that he did not cause any other physical injury to the victim, this court is of the opinion that the life imprisonment can be reduced to 20 years’ rigorous imprisonment. Accordingly, the criminal appeal is partly allowed and the appellant be made to suffer the period of 20 years in accordance with law.”

JUDGEMENT OF THE CASE

The bench held that, it is “apparent” that the “mistake” is “obviously inadvertent” in the context as the court had already held the act of appellant as “demonic”.

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JUDGEMENT REVIEWED BY VYSHNAVI KRISHNAN.

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A wife’s mere roaming along with any male other than the husband does not constitute a presumption of adultery against the wife- Madhya Pradesh High Court

The Madhya Pradesh High Court observed that that a wife’s mere roaming along with any male other than the husband does not constitute a presumption of adultery against the wife.

This was observed in the case of Veeram v. Shaitan bai [F.A.No.355/2004] and the case was presided over by Justice Vivek Rusia and Justice Amar Nath (Kesharwani).

FACTS OF THE CASE

Appellant filed application seeking the dissolution of the marriage on the ground of adultery and cruelty. Appellant filed an application under section 13(1)(1)(1a) of the Hindu Marriage Act alleging that the respondent is residing with another man in adultery. She assaulted his mother for which an FIR was lodged against her, therefore, he is entitled to divorce on the ground of adultery and cruelty.

Appellant filed an application under section 10 of the Guardian and Wards Act in 2003, the application was allowed and the custody of child was given to the appellant.

According to the appellant the respondent had assaulted his mother for which an FIR was lodged against her, therefore, he is entitled to divorce on the ground of adultery and cruelty.

Respondent filed a written statement disputing the aforesaid facts and allegations. According to her, the appellant was interested in the second marriage, therefore, he deserted her.

She is still willing to reside with him as wife and to perform the marital obligations.

 

JUDGEMENT OF THE CASE

The learned Additional District Judge has held that the appellant has failed to prove the allegation of adultery as well as cruelty, therefore, he is not entitled to dissolution of marriage.

It settled the law that mere roaming along with any male other than the husband does not constitute a presumption of adultery against the wife. There must be direct evidence to establish that she was seen in a compromising position or adultery with other than her husband then only the charge of adultery can be said to have been established. Merely meeting or roaming with a person other than the husband does not constitute adultery, therefore, the trial Court has rightly held that

the allegation of cruelty has not been established.

So far the cruelty in respect of registration of criminal case concerned, that was filed by the mother of the appellant against the respondent,in which she has been given the benefit of the   Probation of Offenders Act, therefore, that does not constitute cruelty against the appellant.

 

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JUDGEMENT REVIEWED BY VYSHNAVI KRISHNAN.

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Materials must be presented to the court to show the progress of the investigation and reasons for the remand or extension of remand: Madras High Court

Materials must be presented to the court to show the progress of the investigation and reasons for the remand or extension of remand is upheld by the Madras High Court in the case of T. Keeniston Fernando v. State of Madras (Crl.A.Nos.393 & 479 of 2022) through Justice P.N. Prakash and Justice RMT Teekaa Raman.

FACTS OF THE CASE

In the instant case, the public prosecutor filed a report under the first proviso of Section 43-D (2) of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (‘UAPA’) for the extension of the remand period after the Court noted that the ninety days remand anticipated by Section 167 of the Code of Criminal Procedure was set to expire on December 31, 2021.

By ruling dated 3.01.2022, the Special Court approved the public prosecutor’s report and prolonged the remand to a new period of 90 days beginning on December 31, 2021. The appellants further claimed that the order from January 3, 2022, was made without hearing from the accused. Thus, a criminal appeal was filed challenging the extension of the remand period from 90 days to 180 days and for grant of bail to the appellants.

JUDGMENT

The claim made by the appellants that the Special Public Prosecutor had not filed a report in accordance with the proviso to Section 43-D(2) is factually incorrect, according to the Court’s analysis of the pertinent records, which show that the report required by the first proviso to Section 43-D(2) of the UAPA has been submitted by the public prosecutor.

The Court cited the ruling in Selvanathan v. State, 1988 in support of its observation that the accused will not be entitled to a copy of the requisition for remand. The Court noted that the appellant submitted an application for default bail on the same day that the NIA finished its investigation and submitted a final report. The current appeal, which contests the ruling from January 3, 2022, was only submitted on April 4, 2022. Therefore, the unassailable right to default bail was terminated once the final report was filed on March 29, 2022.

Referring to the decision in State of Punjab v. Okara Grain Buyers Syndicate Ltd., (1964), it was determined by the Court that even if the language used in the two enactments were identical, which is not even the case here, the same conclusion would not necessarily follow having regard to the differing scopes of the two pieces of legislation. As a result, the criminal appeals were rejected as being without merit.

Accordingly, the Court held that materials must be presented to the court to show the progress of the investigation and reasons for the remand or extension of remand.

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JUDGEMENT REVIEWED BY NISHTHA GARHWAL

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