22-November-2020 to 29-November-2020
Case Reports: Courts of India
RIGHT TO CHOOSE A PARTNER OF CHOICE IS A FUNDAMENTAL RIGHT: ALLAHABAD HIGH COURT
Salamat Ansari v state of U.P
In this recent judgement, The court said that, the right to live with a person of his or her choice irrespective of religion is intrinsic to the right to life and liberty and also observed that, Interference in a personal relationship would constitute a serious encroachment into the right to freedom of choice of two individuals.
The court stated,
“We fail to understand that if the law permits two persons even of the same sex to live together peacefully then neither any individual nor a family nor even the state can have an objection to the relationship of two major individuals who out of their own free will are living together.”
A division bench of justices Pankaj Naqvi and Vivek Aggarwal also stated that a recent single-judge order of the court under Priyanshi & Anr. v. State of U.P by dismissing a writ petition filed by an interfaith married couple seeking police protection on grounds that the conversion just for the purpose of marriage was unacceptable, was not laying good law.
In Gian Devi v Superintendent, a three- judge Bench observed that where an individual is over eighteen years of age, no fetters could be placed on her choice on where to reside or about the person with whom she could stay.
MAHARASHTRA GOVERNMENT ANNOUNCED FINANCIAL AID FOR SEX WORKERS WITHOUT ID PROOF
The Maharashtra Government has announced a financial aid of Rs. 5,000/- per month for women whose livelihood depends on sex work, without requirement of an identity proof. The Government will also provide Rs. 2,500/- to their children.
The decision comes in light of the directions issued by the Supreme Court in Budhadev Karmaskar v. State of West Bengal & Ors., urging the Centre and State Government to urgently consider providing relief to sex workers, distressed on account of the ongoing pandemic, in the form of dry rations, monetary assistance as well as masks, soaps and sanitizers without insisting on proof of identity.
UP GOVERNOR PROMULGATES ANTI CONVERSION LAW
The Governor of Uttar Pradesh, Anandiben Patel has promulgated the Uttar Pradesh Prohibition of Unlawful Conversion of Religion Ordinance 2020 (Uttar Pradesh Vidhi Viruddh Dharm Samparivartan Pratishedh Adhyadesh 2020). The ordinance makes religious conversion a cognisable and non-bailable offence, inviting penalities of upto 10 years.
SOME KEY POINTS:
Preamble– “To provide for prohibition of unlawful conversion from one religion to another by misrepresentation, force, undue influence, coercion, allurement or by any fraudulent means or by marriage and for the matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.”
Section 3: if any person reconverts to his immediate previous religion, shall not be deemed to be a conversion under this Act.
Punishment: Violation of the law would invite imprisonment for a term, which shall not be less than one year but which may extend to five years and shall also be liable to fine (not less than rupees 15,000)
Section 6: If any marriage is done for the sole purpose of unlawful conversion or vice versa, by the man of one religion with the woman of another religion either by converting himself before or after marriage or by converting the woman before or after marriage may be declared void by the family Court.
Voluntary conversion: One who desires to convert his religion voluntarily, he/she shall give a declaration in the form prescribed in Schedule I at least 60 days in advance, to the District Magistrate.
It has to be clearly stated in the form that the conversion is being done out of free will and that the person wishes to convert his religion without force, undue influence, coercion, allurement. Failure to do so will invite imprisonment for a term which shall not be less than six months, but may extend to 3 years and shall also be liable to fine. Section 9: He/She has to state that he belonged to a particular religion and now he/she has converted to another religion. Failure to do so shall have the effect of rendering the said conversion illegal and void.
HUMAN RIGHTS COURT IN EACH DISTRICT DESIGNATED BY DELHI GOVERNMENT
The Department of Law, Justice and Legislative Affairs of the Delhi Government has issued a notification to designate the court of Additional Sessions Judge-02 in each District in the National Capital Territory of Delhi as a Human Rights Court.
SECTION 30: Human Rights Courts.—For the purpose of providing speedy trial of offences arising out of violation of human rights, the State Government may, with the concurrence of the Chief Justice of the High Court, by notification, specify for each district a Court of Session to be a Human Rights Court to try the said offences: Provided that nothing in this section shall apply if—
(a) a Court of Session is already specified as a special court; or
(b) a special court is already constituted, for such offences under any other law for the time being in force.