0

Delhi High Court Upholds Cancellation of School Security Tenders: Key Takeaways and Compensation Rights   

Case Title: M/S Bombay Intelligence Security India Ltd. v. Government of NCT of Delhi & Ors. 

Date of Decision: 27th September, 2023

Case Number: W.P.(C) 12314/2023 

Coram: Hon’ble the Chief Justice and Hon’ble Mr. Justice Sanjeev Narula 

 

Introduction 

 

This case involves a dispute between three security services companies (Petitioners) and the Government of NCT of Delhi (GNCTD) regarding the cancellation of tenders issued by the Directorate of Education (DoE) for the deployment of security personnel in government schools in Delhi. The Petitioners had won these tenders, but the DoE annulled the process, leading to the cancellation of the contracts. The Petitioners challenged this decision in the High Court of Delhi. 

 

Factual Background 

 

  • DoE issued tenders for security services in government schools in Delhi.  
  • Petitioners emerged as successful bidders in the tender process.  
  • Previous legal challenges were raised against the initial tenders, but the DoE decided to reissue new tenders.  
  • Petitioners submitted bids and were awarded contracts.  
  • Deployment was scheduled to start on 10th August 2023.  
  • The DoE halted the process and later canceled the tenders on the grounds that certain bidders had provided false information regarding their qualifications.  

   

Legal Issues 

 

The key legal issues in this case are:  

  1. Whether the cancellation of the tender process by DoE was justified. 
  2. Whether the Petitioners are entitled to compensation for the losses incurred due to the cancellation. 

   

Contentions of the Parties 

 

  • Petitioners argued that DoE’s decision to cancel the tenders was arbitrary and lacked justification.  
  • DoE contended that the cancellation was necessary due to misleading information provided by certain bidders, which compromised the integrity of the process.  

   

Observation and Analysis 

 

The court’s analysis focuses on the integrity of the tendering process, emphasizing that transparency, fairness, and competitiveness are fundamental values of any tendering process. It highlights the fact that some bidders had provided misleading information, leading to the inclusion of unqualified participants in the competition. The court finds that this compromised the integrity of the entire procedure and justifies the DoE’s decision to cancel the tenders. It also noted that the Petitioners’ claim for compensation should be pursued through civil proceedings.  

   

Decision of the Court 

 

The High Court upheld the DoE’s decision to cancel the tenders, finding it justified given the compromised integrity of the process. The Court disposed of the petition, allowing the Petitioners to seek compensation through civil proceedings. 

 

“PRIME LEGAL is a full-service law firm that has won a National Award and has more than 20 years of experience in an array of sectors and practice areas. Prime legal fall into a category of best law firm, best lawyer, best family lawyer, best divorce lawyer, best divorce law firm, best criminal lawyer, best criminal law firm, best consumer lawyer, best civil lawyer.” 

 

Written by – Ananya Chaudhary 

Click here to view judgment

0

Delhi High Court Upholds Travel Restriction in Bail Conditions: Balancing Freedom and Investigation Integrity   

Case Title: Disha A. Ravi vs. State (NCT of Delhi) 

Date of Decision: 26.09.2023 

Case Number: CRL.M.C. 5914/2023 & CRL. M.A. 22214/2023 

Coram: Hon’ble Ms. Justice Swarana Kanta Sharma 

 

Introduction 

 

Disha A. Ravi, the petitioner, sought the setting aside of an order dated 09.08.2023 passed by the Additional Sessions Judge, Patiala House Courts, New Delhi. This order sought the modification of bail conditions imposed on the petitioner earlier in a case arising from FIR No. 49/2021 registered at the Special Cell, New Delhi, under Sections 124A/153/153A/120B of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 (IPC). 

 

Factual Background 

 

The case originated from allegations of a concerted campaign by banned terror organizations to disrupt the Republic Day national ceremony. A Google Document (“toolkit”) was shared on Twitter, allegedly containing plans for a larger conspiracy against India. The toolkit promoted material circulated by a Canada-based organization, and it called for protests outside Indian Embassies. Vandalism occurred outside the Indian Embassy in Rome, Italy, and violence erupted in Delhi on Republic Day, causing substantial damage. The petitioner was arrested on 13.02.2021, granted bail on 23.02.2021, and had been required to seek court permission before traveling abroad. 

 

Legal Issues 

 

The primary issue before the court was whether the condition of obtaining prior court permission for foreign travel, as imposed in the bail order, violated the petitioner’s fundamental right under Article 21 of the Indian Constitution. 

 

Contentions of the Parties 

 

  • The petitioner argued that the condition of seeking court permission for foreign travel was inconvenient and sought modification to inform the court instead.  
  • The State contended that the condition was necessary to ensure cooperation during ongoing investigations and to prevent any hindrance to future investigations. 

 

Observation and Analysis 

 

  • The court analyzed the allegations against the petitioner and the conditions imposed in the bail order.  
  • It emphasized the balance between an individual’s right to travel and the State’s interest in conducting investigations and protecting the proceedings.  
  • The court noted that the right to travel abroad is not absolute and may be subject to reasonable restrictions, especially in criminal cases.  
  • It referred to precedents highlighting that inconvenience to the accused cannot be the sole reason for deleting a reasonable condition imposed by the court.  
  • The court concluded that the condition was a rational restriction meant to secure the petitioner’s presence and ensure the integrity of the investigation.  

 

Decision of the Court 

 

The court rejected the petitioner’s request to delete the bail condition requiring prior court permission for foreign travel. However, it directed that the petitioner should apply for permission at least one month in advance, allowing the court to consider the plea and the State’s response promptly. The court clarified that its decision did not express any opinion on the merits of the case. 

 

“PRIME LEGAL is a full-service law firm that has won a National Award and has more than 20 years of experience in an array of sectors and practice areas. Prime legal fall into a category of best law firm, best lawyer, best family lawyer, best divorce lawyer, best divorce law firm, best criminal lawyer, best criminal law firm, best consumer lawyer, best civil lawyer.” 

 

Written by – Ananya Chaudhary 

Click here to view judgment 

0

Delhi High Court Upholds Mother’s Custody Right: Balancing Work and Welfare in Custody Battles 

 Case Title: Tirpat Singh Bansal v. Jagwant Kaur 

Date of Decision: September 26, 2023 

Case Number: MAT.APP.(F.C.) 32/2023 

Coram: Hon’ble Mr. Justice Suresh Kumar Kait and Hon’ble Ms. Justice Neena Bansal Krishna 

 

Facts 

   

  • The appellant, Tirpat Singh Bansal, challenged an order dated 17.01.2023 passed by the Family Court, Delhi, in a case titled “Jagwant Kaur vs. Tirpat Singh Bansal.” The order granted interim custody of their minor daughter to the respondent-wife, Jagwant Kaur.  
  • The parties were married on 01.11.2017, and they had a daughter born on 08.01.2019.  
  • The appellant alleged that the respondent-wife, a geologist with the Geological Survey of India, had a demanding work schedule, which led to their separation. He claimed that she left the child with him and subsequently wanted a divorce and custody of the child.  
  • Various legal proceedings were initiated, including guardianship petitions, virtual visitation orders, and interim custody orders. 

 

Issues 

   

  1. Whether the Family Court’s order granting interim custody of the minor child to the respondent-wife was correct? 
  2. How should the visitation rights of the appellant-husband be determined for the welfare of the child?

 

Contentions 

 

  • The appellant alleges that the respondent-wife, who works as a geologist, often travels to remote areas for work, making it difficult for her to provide proper care and education to the child. He claims that he is better equipped to care for the child as he works from home. The appellant also asserts that he has borne all the expenses related to the child’s upbringing. 
  • The respondent-wife, on the other hand, argues that she should be granted custody based on Section 6 of the Hindu Minority & Guardianship Act, 1956, which typically favors the mother’s custody for children under the age of five. She states that she has been the primary caregiver since the child’s birth and that her work commitments should not be held against her. She also points out that she has good financial stability and access to medical facilities. 

 

Observation of the Court 

 

The court observed that the primary consideration in such cases is the welfare of the child. It noted that the child had been in the custody of her mother since birth, with brief exceptions due to official obligations. The court also discussed the provisions of Section 6 of the Act and cited relevant Supreme Court precedent in the case of Githa Hariharan Vs. Reserve Bank of India, (1999) 2 SCC 228 regarding the definition of “natural guardian.” 

 

Legal Principles Applied 

   

  • Section 6(a) of the Hindu Minority & Guardianship Act, 1956, stipulates that the interim custody of a child below the age of five years should ordinarily be with the mother.  
  • The welfare of the child is the paramount consideration in custody disputes.  
  • Courts may consider deviating from the mother’s custody only for strong reasons, and it can be replaced by another guardian if it is in the child’s best interest. 

 

Decision of the Court 

 

The court upheld the Family Court’s decision to grant interim custody to the respondent-wife, considering the child’s age, the mother’s capability, and the fact that the child had been primarily in her care. The court modified the visitation rights of the appellant-husband to ensure the child’s welfare. 

 

“PRIME LEGAL is a full-service law firm that has won a National Award and has more than 20 years of experience in an array of sectors and practice areas. Prime legal fall into a category of best law firm, best lawyer, best family lawyer, best divorce lawyer, best divorce law firm, best criminal lawyer, best criminal law firm, best consumer lawyer, best civil lawyer.” 

 

Written by – Ananya Chaudhary 

Click here to view judgment

0

Navigating the Transition: Delhi High Court’s Decision on Transfer of Winding Up Proceedings to NCLT under IBC   

Case Title: Uma Sharma v. Octagon Builders & Promoters & Anr. 

Date of Decision: 21st September 2023 

Case Number: CO.PET. 147/2014 & CO.APPLs. 858/2018, 301/2023, OLR 211/2019, OLR 293/2019 

Coram: Justice Prathiba M. Singh 

 

Introduction 

 

Uma Sharma (the petitioner) filed a petition under Section 433(e) and Section 439 of the Companies Act, 1956, seeking the winding up of Octagon Builders & Promoters (the respondent company). Multiple petitions were filed against the respondent company on the grounds that payments made to the company had not been returned. The court appointed an Official Liquidator (OL) for CO.PET. 147/2014 and disposed of the other petitions, allowing the petitioners to file claims before the OL. However, proceedings evolved as the company went into liquidation, and the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 (IBC) was enacted. 

 

Factual Background 

 

Several petitions were filed before the High Court against Octagon Builders & Promoters, alleging non-repayment of amounts paid to the company. The court appointed the OL for CO.PET. 147/2014 and disposed of the other petitions, granting the petitioners the right to file claims. Meanwhile, a petition was filed in the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT), Allahabad Bench, related to the same company. The court considered the implications of the IBC and pending proceedings under Section 434 of the Companies Act, 1956.  

   

Legal Issues 

 

  1. Whether winding up proceedings under Section 434 of the Companies Act, 1956 should be transferred to the NCLT due to the enactment of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016? 
  2. How should the pending winding up petitions be dealt with, considering the objectives of IBC and the stage of proceedings?

 

Observation and Analysis 

 

The court considered the provisions of IBC and the Supreme Court’s guidance regarding the transfer of winding up proceedings. It noted that IBC aims to revive corporate debtors, and liquidation should be the last resort. The court reviewed Rule 5 of the Ministry of Corporate Affairs’ notification, which determined the transfer of winding up cases to NCLT. It emphasized that cases not at an advanced stage should be transferred.  

   

Decision of the Court 

 

The court recalled the order appointing the Liquidator for CO.PET. 147/2014 and transferred the petition to NCLT, Allahabad Bench. It allowed the claimants to pursue their claims before the NCLT. The court emphasized that transactions post-petition filing would be subject to NCLT proceedings and would not prejudice the claimants’ interests. The court also ordered the transmission of electronic records to the NCLT and allowed another claimant to implead in the case.  

   

“PRIME LEGAL is a full-service law firm that has won a National Award and has more than 20 years of experience in an array of sectors and practice areas. Prime legal fall into a category of best law firm, best lawyer, best family lawyer, best divorce lawyer, best divorce law firm, best criminal lawyer, best criminal law firm, best consumer lawyer, best civil lawyer.” 

 

Written by – Ananya Chaudhary 

Click here to view judgment 

0

Delhi High Court’s Ruling on APARs and Government Guidelines for Promotions   

Case Title: Nirmal Kumar Chawdhary v. Union of India 

Date of Decision: September 25, 2023 

Case Number: W.P.(C) 6885/2021 

Coram: Hon’ble Mr. Justice V. Kameswar Rao and Hon’ble MR. Justice Anoop Kumar Mendiratta  

 

Introduction 

 

The case involves a petitioner, Nirmal Kumar Chawdhary, challenging an order passed by the Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) in Original Application (O.A.) No. 4437 of 2017. The petitioner sought promotion to the post of Grade IV in Pay Band 4, arguing that he was unjustly denied promotion by the Departmental Promotion Committee (DPC) due to a below benchmark Annual Performance Appraisal Report (APAR). 

 

Factual Background 

 

The petitioner, Nirmal Kumar Chawdhary, filed an O.A. in the CAT seeking promotion to the Grade IV position with a particular pay scale. The DPC had recommended the names of 39 officers for promotion, but Chawdhary was not among them due to below benchmark APAR ratings for the preceding five years. Specifically, his APAR for the second half of 2013-2014 was rated as “Good,” which did not meet the “Very Good” or above benchmark required for promotion. Chawdhary contended that he was not informed of this adverse grading in the APAR, making it impermissible for the DPC to rely on it for the promotion decision. 

 

Legal Issues 

 

  1. Whether the petitioner’s promotion deferral due to the below-benchmark grading in one of his APARs was justified?
  2. Whether the non-communication of the below-benchmark grading in the APAR of the petitioner’s second half of 2013-2014 was valid?

 

Contentions 

 

The petitioner argued that the DPC wrongly considered an un-communicated below benchmark APAR in making its promotion decision, which was contrary to established legal principles. He also contended that the delay in communicating the below benchmark grading rendered it invalid, citing government instructions. The petitioner relied on the Supreme Court and High Court judgments to support his position.  

   

On the other hand, the respondent argued that the DPC was justified in not promoting the petitioner based on the below benchmark APAR. They asserted that the rejection of the petitioner’s representation did not affect the validity of the APAR and that, in accordance with government instructions, the grading must be communicated before promotion considerations. 

 

Observation and Analysis 

 

The High Court noted that the rejection of the petitioner’s representation against the below benchmark APAR grading was communicated after the dismissal of the O.A. by the CAT. While considering this rejection, the Court analyzed various judgments, including those from the Supreme Court and the CAT, regarding the validity of APARs in the context of promotions. 

 

The Court emphasized the importance of communication of grading and the need for reasoned rejection of representations. It also referred to government guidelines specifying the treatment of APARs when certain reports were missing or unavailable. 

 

The Court referred to guidelines in Chapter 54 of the Manual on Establishment and Administration for Central Government Offices, emphasizing that if one or more CRs or APARs have not been written or are not available for any reason, the Departmental Promotion Committee (DPC) should consider CRs of the years preceding the period in question or CRs of a lower grade to complete the required number of CRs for assessment. 

 

Decision and Conclusion 

 

The High Court set aside the CAT’s order and directed the respondent to re-consider the petitioner’s promotion case. The Court instructed the respondent to follow government guidelines, which stipulated that APARs must be considered for a specified number of years and that the absence of certain reports required alternative considerations. The Court ordered the respondent to calculate the petitioner’s promotion on a notional basis and recalculate retiral benefits accordingly, with no interest on arrears. The respondent was given three months to comply with these directions.  

 

In conclusion, the High Court found in favor of the petitioner and ordered a re-evaluation of his promotion case based on relevant government guidelines and principles established in previous judgments. 

 

“PRIME LEGAL is a full-service law firm that has won a National Award and has more than 20 years of experience in an array of sectors and practice areas. Prime legal fall into a category of best law firm, best lawyer, best family lawyer, best divorce lawyer, best divorce law firm, best criminal lawyer, best criminal law firm, best consumer lawyer, best civil lawyer.” 

 

Written by – Ananya Chaudhary 

Click here to view judgment 

1 2 3 4 5 16