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Wednesday,30-November-2022
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Intra-party dispute, not falling within the scope of defection: Shinde cou+nsel to Supreme Court

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Eknath Shinde (1)

Chief Minister Eknath Shinde’s counsel on Wednesday told the Supreme Court that there is no split in the political party rather, there is a dispute over its leadership, which can be said to be an “intra-party” dispute, not falling within the scope of defection. Shinde’s counsel added, “no two Shiv Senas, two groups in a political party…”

A bench headed by Chief Justice N.V. Ramana and comprising Justices Krishna Murari and Hima Kohli was hearing petitions filed by the Shiv Sena and its rebel MLAs on constitutional issues of splits, merger, defection, and disqualification.

After hearing arguments, the top court asked Shinde’s counsel to redraft the submissions on petitions filed by the Uddhav Thackeray faction on constitutional issues, which arise out of the political crisis in Maharashtra.

Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, representing the Thackeray faction, said the rebel MLAs, Shinde’s faction, can save themselves from disqualification under the tenth schedule of the Constitution only by merging the splinter group with another party, otherwise there is no defence for them. He added that the rebel group violated the chief whip, and they are disqualified as per the tenth schedule.

Senior advocate Harish Salve, representing Eknath Shinde, said there can be a dissenting member in the political party and there has to be democracy within the party. He said, “No two Shiv Senas, two groups in a political party…”

Salve argued that there is no split in the party, instead there is a dispute over its leadership, which can be termed an “intra-party” dispute, not falling within the scope of defection. He said the anti-defection law will apply only to those who have given up the membership of a political party, and his client has not given up the original membership of the party.

Salve said anti-defection law is not a weapon for leaders to lock up members after losing the majority.

He added that if there are a larger number of MLAs who are not satisfied with the way the chief minister is functioning and want a change, why can’t they say there should be a fresh leadership contest? And, changing CM is not anti-party, rather intra-party.

Chief Justice queried Salve, can you form a new party saying the leader did not meet you? Salve replied, “I am within the party…I am the dissenting member within the party,” and also cited the split in Congress in 1969.

The Chief Justice further queried Salve, “What is the purpose of you approaching the ECI (Election Commission of India)?” Salve said after Thackeray resigned there were political developments and municipal elections were near, and who should get the symbol?

Salve added that it is not the case that the MLAs have voluntarily given up their party’s membership. “Not a case of defection… Today it is the case of intra-party rebellion and nobody has given voluntary membership from the party,” he submitted.

The top court, asking Salve to redraft the questions of law, scheduled the matter for further hearing on Thursday.

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Delhi HC declares ITC Maurya’s ‘Bukhara’ a well-known trademark

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The Delhi High Court has declared ITC Limited’s ‘Bukhara’ as a well-known trademark under Section 2(zg) read with Section 11(2) of the Trade Marks Act and also directed the Registrar of Trademarks to add the same to the list of well-known marks following the completion of required formalities.

The court observed that the attribute of certain trademarks attaining the status of ‘well-known marks’ had been acknowledged by courts in India for about three decades.

ITC had filed a case against a Gurgaon restaurant claiming that the usage of the mark ‘Balk Bukhara’ is an infringement of its trademark. Additionally, ITC sought a declaration of its mark ‘Bukhara’ as a well-known mark.

Justice Prathiba M. Singh also observed that there is no doubt that ‘Bukhara’ was a well-known mark as the restaurant has won numerous awards and has had celebrities visiting from across the globe.

Defending ‘Balm Bukhara’, Advocates Peeyoosh Kalra and Nikita Anand informed the court that the mark ‘Bukhara’ had not been protected by courts in the USA.

Whereas, the court said as the mark ‘Bukhara’ originated in India, the judgments from USA courts would not be applicable in India’s context.

“It enjoys substantial goodwill and reputation not only among Indians but also among foreigners who travel to India and carry back the said reputation,” said the court.

Further, the court restrained the defendants from using the mark ‘Balk Bukhara’ or any other similar mark in any form and directed them to change the items or places where the mark appears before December 31, 2022.

The defendants, however, agreed not to use the mark or any other mark with the word ‘Bukhara’ for their hotel, restaurant, or other hospitality services.

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BJP claims better performance than UPA govt in economic domain

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The political tussle between Congress and BJP has intensified with respect to the ‘politics of performance’. While Congress is constantly trying to put the Modi government in the dock regarding the economic condition of the country and rising inflation, BJP claims that their government has fared much better in the domain of economy.

Comparing the size of the country’s economy in the tenures of UPA and NDA governments, BJP expressed on twitter that during 10 years of the UPA government, India moved up just one notch as the world’s largest economy. On the other hand, the Indian economy has climbed up five places to become the world’s fifth largest economy in just eight-and-a-half years of under Modi.

India moved from 11th to 10th largest economy in ten years of UPA while India has moved from 10th to 5th largest economy in eight and half years of BJP-led NDA.

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Mumbai Police takes underworld don Chhota Shakeel’s relative Salim Fruit’s custody

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The Anti extortion cell (AEC) of the Mumbai Police on Tuesday said that it has arrested Underworld gangster and Dawood Ibrahim’s close aide Chhota Shakeel’s relative Salim Qureshi alias Salim Fruit in a fresh case of land grabbing.

The police said a family based in South Africa had filed a complaint saying that their property in the Umerkhadi area of South Mumbai was allegedly grabbed by preparing fake documents. A case under relevant sections of the IPC was registered by the Economic Offence Wing of the city police and it was later transferred to the AEC.

Initial investigations revealed the involvement of five people including Salim Fruit in the matter following which the police arrested the suspects, an official said.

The police said the complainant had said that his property which is worth over Rs 25 crore was grabbed by making fake documents. The property was originally owned by his father.

“Salim Fruit was lodged in jail. He had been arrested by the NIA in a previous case. With the court’s permission, we have taken him into our custody and he is arrested in the matter,” said DCP Prashant Kadam.

The police said the arrested suspects were produced before a court that sent them to police custody. Further investigations into the matter are going on.

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