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The Delhi High Court has granted permission for a US citizen convicted under POTA to go to Chicago due to his elderly father’s illness.

Title:  Mohd. Yasin Patel Alias Falahi v. State

Decided on:  26th July, 2023

+  CRL.A. 585/2003

CORAM: HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE SURESH KUMAR KAIT & HON’BLE MS. JUSTICE NEENA BANSAL KRISHNA 

Introduction 

The Delhi High Court recently granted permission to an American citizen who was previously convicted under Section 20 of the Prevention of Terrorism Act (POTA) and Section 124-A of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) to travel to Chicago, U.S.A. for a period of four weeks. The applicant’s request was based on the grounds that his elderly father was suffering from ailments, and he wanted to visit him. The Court allowed the travel subject to certain conditions and surety bonds.

Facts

The appellant had been convicted for offenses under POTA and IPC and was sentenced to five years of imprisonment along with a fine of Rs. 25,000. The sentence, however, had been suspended. The appellant was found guilty of pasting a poster and propagating issues mentioned on the poster, which advocated for the establishment of “KHILAFAH STUDENTS ISLAMIC MOVEMENT OF INDIA” and the destruction of nationalism.

The appellant approached the High Court seeking permission to travel to Chicago for four weeks to visit his 89-year-old father, who was an American citizen and was suffering from various old-age ailments. The appellant’s mother, also an American citizen, was 86 years old. Due to his father’s deteriorating condition, he sought permission to visit him for a limited period.

Analysis

The High Court considered the submissions made by the appellant’s counsel and the Additional Public Prosecutor representing the State. The prosecutor suggested that certain conditions be imposed on the appellant to ensure that he complies with the granted permission. The Court found merit in the appellant’s application and decided to allow the travel subject to certain conditions.

Held

The Delhi High Court granted permission to the appellant to travel to Chicago, U.S.A. for four weeks to visit his ailing father. However, the Court imposed certain conditions for the appellant’s return to India. He was required to furnish a personal bond of Rs. 1,00,000 and his wife, two sons, and one daughter were also required to furnish surety bonds of the same amount each with the Register General of the Court. The Court made it clear that if the appellant does not return within the stipulated time, the surety bonds would be forfeited, and a Look-Out Circular (LOC) would be issued against his family members.

The High Court directed the prosecution to release the appellant’s passport within two days and instructed him to book his ticket to Chicago within one week. Being an American citizen, the appellant was further directed to apply for a visa for his return to India. He was required to submit his itinerary, address, and phone number in Chicago to the concerned Police Station/Investigating Agency through the learned Additional Public Prosecutor. The Court disposed of the application in light of these directions and conditions.

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Written by- Ankit Kaushik

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[POCSO Act] The absence of injuries to a victim’s private parts does not rule out penetrative sexual assault, according to the Delhi High Court.

Title: Ranjeet Kumar Yadav v. State of NCT of Delhi

Decided on:  14th August, 2023

+  CRL.A. 50/2022

CORAM: HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE AMIT BANSAL 

Introduction

The Delhi High Court recently delivered a significant judgment regarding the interpretation of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act. The case involved the conviction of an appellant for sexual offenses against a young victim. The central issue revolved around the absence of injuries on the victim’s private parts and its implications on the nature of the assault.

Facts

The appellant was convicted under Section 6 of the POCSO Act, along with sections 363 and 342 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), for sexual offenses against a four-and-a-half-year-old victim. The defense argued that there were contradictions in the victim’s statements and that the prosecution’s case rested solely on the victim’s testimony, lacking sufficient corroboration. They contended that the absence of certain injuries suggested a lesser offense of “touching” rather than penetration under the POCSO Act.

Analysis and Held

Justice Amit Bansal, upholding the conviction, clarified that the absence of injuries on the victim’s private parts cannot automatically negate the possibility of a penetrative sexual assault under the POCSO Act. He emphasized that injuries are not necessary in every case of sexual assault. The Court referred to previous judgments and established that the mere lack of injuries should not undermine the credibility of the victim’s testimony.

The Court addressed the alleged inconsistencies in the victim’s statements, noting that minor contradictions, particularly considering the young age of the victim, do not render her testimony unreliable. The Court highlighted the statutory presumption under Section 29 of the POCSO Act, which places the onus on the accused to rebut the presumption by leading evidence or discrediting the prosecution’s case.

In conclusion, the Delhi High Court held that the absence of injuries does not automatically disprove the occurrence of a penetrative sexual assault under the POCSO Act. The Court underscored the importance of evaluating the victim’s testimony in its entirety and considering the overall context of the case. The conviction of the appellant was upheld, and the appeal was dismissed.

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Patents Act| Revocation Petition Under Section 64 Is Not A Suit Under Section 10 Of The CPC- Delhi High Court Rules

Title: Dr Reddys Laboratories Limited & Anr. vs The Controller of Patents & Ors.

Decided on:  3rd August, 2023

+  C.O.(COMM.IPD-PAT) 3/2021

CORAM: HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE C.HARI SHANKAR

Introduction

A recent ruling by the Delhi High Court, presided over by Justice C Hari Shankar, addressed the question of whether a revocation petition under Section 64 of the Patents Act can be considered a “suit” under Section 10 of the Code of Civil Procedure (CPC). The court held that a revocation petition cannot be treated as a suit for the purposes of Section 10 of the CPC.

Facts

The case pertained to a revocation petition (CO (Comm. IPD-PAT) 3/2021) filed by the petitioners challenging a patent held by respondent Boehringer Ingelheim International GmbH under various clauses of Section 64 of the Patents Act, 1970. Respondent Boehringer had also filed a lawsuit (COMS 5/2021) accusing the petitioners of patent infringement based on the same patent. The petitioners argued that the issues in both the revocation petition and the lawsuit were identical.

Counsel J Sai Deepak represented the petitioners, while CGSC Harish Vaidyanathan Shankar represented the respondents.

Analysis

The central issue was whether a revocation petition can be considered a “suit” under Section 10 of the CPC, which deals with the stay of proceedings in a suit. The court examined the provisions of the CPC and observed that Order IV Rule 1(1) of the CPC indirectly defines a “suit” as a plaint presented to a court or its appointed officer.

The court noted that a revocation petition under Section 64 of the Patents Act cannot be treated as a suit unless there is a provision deeming it so. It emphasized that the creation of deeming fictions is typically the prerogative of the legislature and cannot be undertaken by the court.

Held

The Delhi High Court held that a revocation petition under Section 64 of the Patents Act cannot be considered a suit for the purpose of invoking Section 10 of the CPC. Section 10 does not bring proceedings to a halt; it only stays the trial of a suit. The court clarified that even if Section 10 applies, the court hearing the later suit can still issue interlocutory orders. The court cited previous cases to support its position and concluded that the revocation petition should not be treated as a suit under Section 10 of the CPC.

Furthermore, the court observed that even on merit, a case existed for staying the revocation petition pending the outcome of the suit filed in the High Court of Himachal Pradesh.

In essence, the Delhi High Court’s ruling clarified that a revocation petition under Section 64 of the Patents Act cannot be equated with a suit for the purpose of applying Section 10 of the CPC.

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SEBI’s Direction Under Section 11B(1) of the 1992 Act Cannot Prevent Bank From Auctioning Defaulter’s Property In Line With Bank’s Rights Under SARFAESI: Delhi High Court

Title:  ICICI Bank v. Deputy General Manager and Ors.

Decided on:  21st July, 2023

+  W.P.(C) 3796/2022

CORAM: HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE PURUSHAINDRA KUMAR KAURAV

The Delhi High Court has clarified the scope of SEBI’s powers under Section 11B of the SEBI Act, 1992, stating that SEBI can issue directions to any person or class of persons, including banks, under this section, irrespective of whether they are registered with SEBI under Section 12. However, the court emphasized that SEBI’s powers should be exercised in a manner that does not conflict with or curtail the effect of other laws. The court ruled that SEBI’s direction under Section 11B(1) cannot restrain a bank from auctioning a defaulter’s property according to the bank’s rights under the SARFAESI Act, 2002.

Facts

The case revolved around the petitioner bank and the third and fourth respondents who had borrowed a home loan from the bank and mortgaged a property. The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) initiated an investigation against a company in which the third and fourth respondents were directors. SEBI ordered that the respondents not dispose of or alienate any assets without prior permission. Meanwhile, the bank noted the respondents’ default in loan repayment, classified their account as a Non-Performing Asset, and issued a demand notice under the SARFAESI Act, 2002. The bank also sought to auction the mortgaged property.

Senior Advocate Sanjiv Sen represented the petitioner, while Senior Advocate Arunabh Choudhury appeared for the respondent.

Analysis

The court analyzed the interplay between SEBI’s powers under the SEBI Act and the rights of banks under the SARFAESI Act. It noted that SEBI’s powers must be exercised carefully to avoid conflicting with other laws. The court pointed out that SEBI’s directions cannot change the material terms of the direction and should not be applicable to those to whom it is not intended.

The court emphasized that the SARFAESI Act prioritizes the debts of secured creditors over other dues. It highlighted the insertion of Section 26E in the SARFAESI Act to protect banks from interference by the state machinery in realizing their dues.

Held

The Delhi High Court held that the SEBI Act’s powers are legitimate and legal as long as they do not breach the mandate of other laws. In this case, the SARFAESI Act’s provisions took precedence over SEBI’s directions. The court concluded that the bank’s actions to realize its secured asset were not connected to the securities market and were governed by the SARFAESI Act. The SEBI Act’s directions were applicable to a broader set of assets and situations.

Thus, the court held that the bank’s rights under the SARFAESI Act should not be curtailed by SEBI’s directions, and the bank could proceed with the auction of the mortgaged property in accordance with the SARFAESI Act.

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In a trademark infringement suit, the Delhi High Court awarded Sun Pharma a five-lakh-rupee penalty for its 2001 “Oxiplat” trademark.

Title:  Sun Parma Laboratories Ltd. v. Mylan Laboratories Limited & Anr.
Decided on:  2nd August, 2023

+  CS(COMM) 1098/2016 & I.A.1395/2023

CORAM: JUSTICE PRATHIBA M. SINGH 

Introduction

The Delhi High Court, presided over by Justice Pratibha M Singh, has awarded costs of Rs. 5 lakhs in a trademark infringement suit to Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Limited. The case was brought forth by Sun Pharmaceuticals against two pharmaceutical companies over their registered mark “Soxplat”, which was alleged to infringe upon Sun Pharmaceuticals’ registered mark “Oxiplat”. The court’s decision was based on the substantial sales and investments made by Sun Pharmaceuticals in promoting and using the “Oxiplat” mark.

Facts

Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Limited filed a trademark infringement suit in 2016 against two pharmaceutical companies that had registered the mark “Soxplat” in 2014. Sun Pharmaceuticals had coined the mark “Oxiplat” back in 2001, which was used for medicinal preparations containing Oxaliplatin. The company sought a permanent injunction against the use of the “Soxplat” mark.

The Court noted that Sun Pharmaceuticals’ sales of medicinal formulations under the “Oxiplat” mark were substantial, with a sales turnover of approximately Rs. 26.5 crore at the time of filing the suit. The company had also invested significantly in advertising and promoting the mark.

During the course of the proceedings, the defendants’ trademark “Soxplat” was canceled, rendering them no longer registered for the mark.

Analysis

The Court took note of the substantial sales and investments made by Sun Pharmaceuticals in relation to the “Oxiplat” mark. It observed that the defendants had canceled their trademark “Soxplat” during the proceedings, indicating that there was no longer any dispute between the parties concerning the use of the mark. The Court refrained from expressing an opinion on the similarity of the two marks “Oxiplat” and “Soxplat,” as the defendants had abandoned the latter mark.

Held

The Delhi High Court awarded costs of Rs. 5 lakhs to Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Limited in the trademark infringement suit. The Court’s decision was influenced by the substantial sales and investments made by the plaintiff in relation to the “Oxiplat” mark and the subsequent cancellation of the defendants’ “Soxplat” mark. The defendants’ decision to abandon the mark led the Court to conclude that there was no longer any dispute regarding the marks’ similarity.

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