Violation of the Right to Privacy in the Digital Space through Interception of Conversations by the Government

Section 5(2) of the Indian Telegraph Act, 1885 and Section 69 of the Information Technology Act, 2000 govern lawful interception and surveillance activities of electronic conversations by the government of India. The author argues that the inherent arbitrariness and vagueness present in these provisions are violative of the proportionality standard of Article 21, which ensue into an infringement of the Right to Privacy of the citizens. It is further argued that the knowledge of surveillance results in self-censorship, leading to a violation of the Right to Freedom of Speech and Expression. The absence of judicial review in these provisions lead to an unconstitutional control of executive over the lives of citizens, causing a curtailment of natural justice. The author points out the imperativeness of expounding upon the illegitimate terms used in the interception laws in order to strengthen liberty in the digital space.

Retaining the Exclusivity Of The Supreme Court: A Constitutional Argument Over Court Of Appeal In Four Regions

The Supreme Court started functioning on 26th January, 1950 with 8 Judges. The drafters hoped that manning the Supreme Court with 8 Judges would effectively handle the flow of judges. Cases filed in S.C have increased exponentially since 1950. Major contributor is Special Leave Petitions (SLPs) under Article 136 of the Constitution. 67 % of cases filed in the S.C are SLPs. S.C also remains inaccessible because the seat of the S.C is in Delhi. Voices are rising from several quarters to establish the National Court of Appeal. S.C was never intended to be a regular Court of Appeal, a troubling aberration given its original purpose to adjudicate important questions of law. The casualty is palpably right to speedy justice in light of humongous pendency. Access to justice is also hampered largely by the fact that the seat of S.C is in Delhi. The Constitutional provisions buttresses the proposition that a cassation bench can be created within the confines of the Constitution.

GitHub Onus in the Bulli Bai Episode: A Silent Trail

On the internet, gender imbalance is a constant problem. When a woman appears to be invading a man’s cyberspace, especially when they share their opinions on politically sensitive matters, patriarchy is at work. The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) reported that India has over 825 million internet users by the end of March 2021. As evidenced in the example of Sulli Deals and Bulli Bai Application, an open-source application for “auctioning Muslim women” put on the online platform GitHub and advertising them as “deals of the day,” certain deviant users may wreak havoc on society, its politics, economy, and personal and professional life. This blog discusses cyber laws in relation to the current Sulli Deals and Bulli Bai Application instances. It touches upon the legal framework highlighting the liability of GitHub as an intermediary in light of issues such as moderated content, intermediary safety filter mode and indirect horizontality. Finally, the blog concludes by suggesting measures for reform with the hope that this violation can be eliminated efficiently.

Proposed E-Commerce Rules vis-à-vis their impact on E-Commerce

The author in this piece dives in deep into the provisions of the Consumer Protection (E-Commerce) Rules, 2020 under the Consumer Protection Act, 2019 as released by the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food, and Public Distribution, Government of India on June 21, 2021. The rules suggest amendments related to back-to-back flash sales, cross-selling, fall back liability etc. It is an analysis of the amendment (draft) rules in reference to the intent and purpose of the Consumer Protection Act, 2019 which suggests that they reek certain overreach and thereby needs a re-visit. The author, further, emphasizes on the fact that the government shall find a way to balance out the interests of the consumers as well as the e-commerce entities for fulfilling the very purpose for which they were made for.

The Many Facets of Legal Research – From the Classroom to the Courtroom

The piece is an excerpt from the address delivered by Senior Advocate Siddharth Aggarwal who graced the Inaugural Ceremony of the VIPS Law Blog. This blog underscores the very foundation of commencing a blog and the inherent responsibility that comes while disseminating the idea of well - research ideas. I have pressed upon the importance … Continue reading The Many Facets of Legal Research – From the Classroom to the Courtroom

Minors as Partners: No Benefit Allowed?

The Indian Contract Act,1872 governs all the contractual transactions in India, and the law pertaining to partnerships is The Indian Partnership Act,1932. A minor is somebody who has not reached the age of majority under the applicable law. The Indian Majority Act, 1875, governs the age of majority in India. Section 11 of Indian Contract Act and Section 30 of Indian Partnership Act focus on minors. Both sections, when read together, will help us determine whether minors may be partners in a partnership firm. Additionally, they will aid us in assessing if minors can be entitled to any benefits in a partnership firm. In this article, an examination of the pertinent sections and relevant case laws will be undertaken to address both the issues.

Multiwindow Courthouse: Getting India ODR ready

Technology is changing the realms of human interaction, which in turn is rapidly transforming the way through which people resolve disagreements and disputes. Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) is a modern tool of how to judiciously utilize technology to help parties settle their disputes. Revolutionary ODR techniques are getting hype and feathers from all over the world, but they are still the last resort of dispute resolution in India. The pandemic has, however, resulted in leveraging the ODR mechanism. The authors in the blog have discussed how unboxing different ODR techniques are giving wings to the pending files in a corner of a courtroom, and primarily, how to reduce cases to be introduced in courtrooms at the first instance. Technology is changing the realms of human interaction, which in turn is rapidly transforming the way through which people resolve disagreements and disputes. Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) is a modern tool of how to judiciously utilize technology to help parties settle their disputes. Revolutionary ODR techniques are getting hype and feathers from all over the world, but they are still the last resort of dispute resolution in India. The pandemic has, however, resulted in leveraging the ODR mechanism. The authors in the blog have discussed how unboxing different ODR techniques are giving wings to the pending files in a corner of a courtroom, and primarily, how to reduce cases to be introduced in courtrooms at the first instance.

NOTA – A False Promise or an Effective Solution

The blog looks at the controversial system of NOTA in India. While observing the judicial and legislative journey of the concept, the blog addresses why NOTA in its present form is ineffective and will not change the political landscape in India. The blog discusses the methods undertaken by states in India to recognize NOTA practically and also addresses the need for the same. To conclude the blog recommends right to recall and right to reject to apply in consonance and also recommends India to follow the Indonesian method of dealing with NOTA.

Competency of Child Witness under Section 118 of the Indian Evidence Act, 1872

The author in this article discusses the essential conditions of a child’s competency as a witness under Section 118 of the Indian Evidence Act. The competency of a person is considered as an essential requirement to admit the credible evidence of the person. Whether a witness is competent depends on his capacity to understand. It is considered as a rule of prudence than law that the evidence given by child witness must be accompanied by a corroborative evidence. When the child witness is proved to be both competent and credible then only his evidence can be admitted in the court of law.

Poetic Expressions used while delivering a Judgement: a Subject Matter of Copyright Protection?

Copyright protection and doctrine of fair use are the two broad wings giving a “smoothly- turbulent” flight to the Copyright law in India. A creative mind results in blossoming of one of the artistic expressions, the poetry. Judgments, on the other hand, are placed on a totally different pedestal. Poetry may find its way even to a judge’s mind. This article is an attempt of looking at and analyzing an entirely novel interface between poetry and judgment whereby the former is protected under Section 13(1)(a) of the Copyright Act as forming part of literary work, the latter constitutes fair use under Section 52(1)(q)(iv) of the said Act; the article is an attempt to present certain sets of plausible analysis to answer the question- Do poetic expressions used while delivering a judgment form a subject matter of copyright protection in India?

Digital Evidence and Cyber Forensics

Cyberspace and a slew of digital devices have become targets for varied crimes. To combat crimes that necessitate a new perspective and technique for recording and evaluating evidence from what we now refer to as "electronic record," the law has had to take on a new shape. The Information Technology Act, 2000 was enacted to answer the growing demand for cyberspace legislation. The Indian Evidence Act, 1872 defined "electronic record" as "evidence," allowing digital evidence’s admissibility in courts. The process of obtaining and analyzing digital evidence in order to conceptualize it is called cyber forensics. Despite the procedures and rules set forth by numerous statutes to support the relevance of digital evidence allowed in our courts, India's lower judiciary is still technologically inept. This is due to a lack of modernity and a general lack of knowledge about the legitimacy of digital evidence. Everything is now digitally connected, including education, communications, banking, and travel records, etc. It is critical that we recognise the importance of not only a strong legal framework but also a strong technological framework. Therefore, it's imperative to comprehend the processual complexities of assisting courts in obtaining fair trials when it comes to electronic evidence admissibility.

A Critical Examination of ‘Second-appeal’ Under the Code of Civil Procedure Juxtaposed with Finding of Facts as Substantial Question of Law

The expression 'Appeal' has nowhere been elaborately discussed in the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908. The first appeal after the pronouncement of an order, decree, or judgment holds the status of the universal basic requirement. The present article explicitly deals with the provision of 'Second Appeal' tracing its footprints through various judicial pronouncements. The author further tries to delve into the intricacies and answer the pertaining question vis-a-vis whether the perversity of the finding of facts can be accounted as a ‘Substantial question of law’ by critically studying section 103 of CPC.

Strengthening the Competition Regime during COVID-19 Pandemic

Apart from being a global health concern, COVID-19 is having major consequences on the world economy. The onslaught of the pandemic has compelled enterprises to modify their business strategies and come up with cost-cutting measures to respond to the sudden fluctuation in the supply chain as well the overall consumer demand. Cognizant of the measures that may be adopted by certain enterprises to adapt to the pandemic, be it to shore up their revenues or to meet consumer demand for certain essential items. This article examines some typical situations where co-operation between competitors may be lawful or pro-competitive and discusses the main challenges that competition authorities face in analysing or dealing with them. Also, how the Competition Regime in India evolved during the pandemic and directed the market players to operate during the pandemic by regularly releasing advisory notes and market studies. The Competition Commission of India (CCI) has always been committed to fostering a healthy competitive culture in India.

PCMA Bill 2021- A Far-Fetched aim that needs a Reality Check

The article mentions the unsteady plan of the government to increase the marriageable age of girls from 18 to 21 years through the PCMA Bill 2021 without addressing the ground reality problems of the child marriage system in India. The current legislation on child marriage overlooks the flaws which proves to be detrimental in the constant fight against child marriage in India. The article highlights the legal and sociological problems that exist in India which remains unaddressed by the legislation on child marriage. With the upcoming bill on child marriage, we need to have a reality check of the current situation in India. The increment in the age limit for girls is not sufficient enough to bring parity when at the ground level, the discrimination still persists.

Air Taxis: Technicalities Of Drones

We are living in times where technology is growing faster than lives and sci-fi based tech is closer to being a reality than just a fantasized concept. With flying cars being commercialized, drones are already supplementing them with much boost given by major economies. India wishes to be a drone hub by 2030 and it has already laid its foundation stone for it by introducing the Drone Rules, 2021 and further incorporating them into widespread usage, be it for aiding farmers or for Beating Retreat Ceremony, 2022 at the Rashtrapati Bhawan. Furthermore, UAS/ Drones (‘Unmanned Aircraft System’), are supposedly here to take on cabs with its swift flying technology aiding faster travel along with aiding the world achieve its climate goals. In this article, the author discusses some issues related to air taxis. Re-imagining human flight requires vehicles that are “road legal” and safe to fly, but also a public willing to fly in them.