Thursday, May 21, 2015

Pothole Free Road is fundamental right - Bombay High Court

Year 2006-
High Court a two-judge bench in 2006 said, citizens' right to pothole-free roads is a fundamental right under right to life which creates corresponding obligation in all the authorities which are "state" under the Constitution

Year 2013 –
Bombay High Court took the suo motu PIL 
Justice Gautam Patel wrote to Chief Justice Mohit Shah to highlight the plight of motorists and pedestrians in Mumbai given the "pathetic'' condition of its potholed roads.

In a landmark interim order, the Bombay high court held that right to good roads is a fundamental right of citizens under right to life and held that it was the state's statutory obligation to provide good roads.
"It is high time that all concerned clearly understand that a right to have properly maintained roads is a part of the fundamental right guaranteed by Article 21 of the Constitution of India and in the event any loss is caused due to its violation, the citizens have a right to seek compensation,''

Bench directed the civic administrations in Mumbai, Thane and three other municipalities in Thane district, as well as the Mumbai Metropolitan Region Development Authority (MMRDA), Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation (MSRDC) and Mumbai Port Trust (MbPT) to maintain all roads under their control and keep them pothole-free.

The HC laid down a detailed mechanism outlining legal obligations of all the authorities. On the duty to maintain smooth roads, the HC directed that "it is the mandatory duty of municipal corporations and other authorities like MMRDA and MbPT to construct, maintain and improve public streets.''

Citizens have a right to complain about poor roads, especially potholes on the roads.
"There has to be a dedicated website to receive and track complaints and their effective redressal,'' 

"The third aspect is of the use of proper technology for the construction of the roads, for maintenance and for filling the potholes,'' 

"The legal obligation of MSRDC is to maintain the roads and bridges in proper condition and to repair the same effectively. 
It is its obligation to address the grievances of the citizens and to ensure the same are redressed if not within 15 days, but at least within a reasonable time,''

The HC directed that the BMC and all other authorities must construct roads and fill potholes "scientifically" and while permitting digging of any road, the agency's name and duration must be prominently displayed at the site.

 All municipal corporations as well as the MMRDA, MSRDC and MbPT shall provide a mechanism for citizens to complain about poor road conditions through mails and photos at designated centres, toll free numbers, and dedicated websites and SMS services through the year

The HC called for compliance with regard to a set of directions by July 6. The agencies which will have to report back include the BMC, 
MbPT, the MSRDC and MMRDA.


Pothole-free roads and properly levelled footpaths are fundamental rights of every citizen, guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution, and in the event any loss caused due to its violation, the citizens have the right to seek compensation."

 "It is the obligation of the authorities concerned to maintain the footpaths properly levelled and in such a condition that it can be conveniently used by pedestrians. This aspect cannot be taken lightly by any authority," the High Court said.

As of now the BMC has a helpline that operates for just four months (June 7-Oct 7). This, the court held, was not correct. The government and agencies should act on the complaint withing two weeks and post on the websites the action taken report. "Unless there is an effective mechanism provided to the citizens to file complaints they will not be in a position to enforce their constitutional as well as legal right to have well-maintained streets," the bench observed.
The court held that the authorities cannot put the blame on monsoon for the bad roads as the monsoon is normally heavy in the city. It directed the government to file affidavits to state the measures taken to ensure quality of the road maintenance works. It also directed the state and authorities to issue a circular to its officials dealing with the works that the failure to maintain the public roads, footpaths and bridges may lead to loss of precious lives, loss of valuable working hours and fuel, apart from causing inconvenience to the public. The circular should also caution that disciplinary action will be initiated against the erring officials.
The High Court will further hear the matter on July 10.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

ISIS– Largest, Richest $2Billion Terror-Based Enterprise: Financial Sophistication Rivaling Wall Street

ISIS– Largest, Richest $2Billion Terror-Based Enterprise: Financial Sophistication Rivaling Wall Street

Here’s how Phillips said the ISIS oil operation works: ISIS sells oil to consumers in territory it controls, roughly the size of Maryland, inside Syria and Iraq. The terrorist group also sells oil to network of smugglers that developed in the 1990s during Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein’s rule; that network smuggled oil out of Iraq to Turkey to avoid sanctions imposed by the UN. ISIS also reportedly sells oil, through middlemen, to Assad regime… When it comes to making a fast buck, the Middle East has no shortage of ‘strange bedfellows’ willing to do business with each other…
The growth of ISIS has been quite incredible: They are armed with– modern weapons, large fighting army, and an effective organization. All of which is bought and paid with real money supplied through a highly sophisticated funding strategy… According to Senator Rubio; ISIS’s criminal activities– robbery, extortion, and trafficking– have helped them become the best funded terrorist group in history. The wealth has helped expand their operational capacity and incentivized both local and foreign fighters to join them… ISIS has the resources, weaponry, and operational safe havens to continue to threaten the stability of the region, as well as;  U.S., Europe, other nations’ national security interests…

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Erroneous Calculations in Ms Jayalalithaa's Wealth?

Public prosecutor BV Acharya says Jayalalithaa judgement has glaring errors


The judge CR Kumaraswamy says that Jayalalithaa had received loans worth Rs 24 crore. But the actual figures come up to only Rs 10 crore, so there is a mistake of about Rs 14 crore, said Acharya.

According to Acharya Jayalalithaa's total disproportionate assets (DA) is Rs 16.34 crore and not Rs 2.82 crore as the High Court judge said. The assets are 76% disproportionate and not just 8.12% as per HC, Acharya said.

BV Acharya, who actually built a very strong case against Jayalalithaa during his previous tenure as the Special Public Prosecutor said, "In page 852, judge says prosecution has not taken into account the income part of accused by obtaining loans from nationalised banks. Have given particulars of loans from different banks from which loans were rejected. The judge says total loans received are Rs 24 crore. There is some mistake in adding up. Actual figure comes to only Rs 10 crore. Thus there is a mistake to the extent of about Rs 14 crore. The DA will come to Rs 16.34 crore, as against Rs 2 crore. Therefore, there is a glaring arithmetical error in terms calculation."

"Fundamental mistake is in totalling 10 items of the loan. Since this glaring mistake has come to my notice, I am considering all options available. If the Supreme Court appeal is decided, this will be an excellent point to prove that acquittal of Jaya is wrong," he added.

When asked if he is asking for stay on the judgment, Acharya said, "It is a matter of deep consideration. I can't say anything positive now."

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Milk Adulteration to be Punishable with Life Imp.

In a significant statement with wide implications, the Centre on Wednesday told the Supreme Court that it has formed a highlevel committee to consider if to make the offence of milk adulteration punishable by life imprisonment. It has agreed to the view of the court that the present penalty of six months in jails "was hardly a deterrent" for the menace which was most acute in Delhi and Uttar Pradesh.

An affidavit in the court by Rakesh Nayal, a senior official in the Union health ministry said the panel, headed by R.K. Jain, secretary of the National Disaster Management Authority, and representatives from Food Safety and Standard Authority of India will take a decision within 45 days.

The court had on December 12, 2014 taken serious exception to Centre's refusal to amend the law to make the offence punishable with life term. 
"What are you doing about it? In March we had given an ultimatum to the Centre to inform us if you are amending the law and we are now in December,"
the Bench said when Anurag Tomar, the lawyer for the petitioner in the PIL, pointed out the delay.

"After perusing the reports submitted by various states, prima-facie we are of the opinion that milk is being laced with white paint, caustic soda, detergent, shampoo, urea, starch and blotting paper and the practice is going unabated. The Centre must come out with necessary amendment to the Act with all seriousness to curb adulteration. We hope the government will take appropriate decision during the winter session of Parliament," the court had said.
The Bench had earlier said it would be foolish to go lightly on adulterators just because no grievous illness or death has been reported immediately after someone drinks milk laced with such poisonous substances. 
"The poisoning in the body is gradual and once it happens people think they are afflicted with cancer and nobody blames milk. Are you waiting for them to add cyanide in milk? Only then instant death will be caused for you to take action," 
the court had said.

The Bench suggested an amendment to the law after the Uttar Pradesh government said they faced a hurdle in prosecuting adulterators under the IPC and seeking their life imprisonment after the Allahabad High Court ruled in 2010 that the IPC cannot be invoked when the FSSA should prevail.

Source: India Today