Important Legal News | 30 October

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UP School Teacher Faces Potential Legal Action Under IPC Section 295A for Inciting Violence

The Uttar Pradesh government has informed the Supreme Court of India that the school teacher accused of encouraging students to assault a Muslim classmate may be charged under Section 295A of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). Section 295A addresses deliberate and malicious acts aimed at outraging religious feelings and is punishable by law. The state government is awaiting approval to proceed under this section rather than Section 153A, which deals with promoting enmity between groups.

The court ordered an immediate decision regarding sanction and is considering involving professional agencies like Tata Institute of Social Sciences for counseling the victim and classmates. The case was brought before the Supreme Court by Tushar Gandhi, seeking a time-bound and independent investigation and remedies to address violence against religious minority students.

Earlier, the court had expressed concerns about the handling of the case by the Uttar Pradesh Police and government, directing the investigation to be led by a senior Indian Police Services officer nominated by the state government and emphasizing the need for proper counseling for the victim and classmates.

Supreme Court Urges States to Fill Vacancies in Information Commissions to Preserve RTI Act

The Supreme Court of India has directed all state governments to promptly fill long-standing vacancies within their respective Information Commissions. The Court expressed concerns that the persistence of such vacancies would undermine the objectives of the Right to Information Act (RTI Act).

The Bench, led by Chief Justice DY Chandrachud, emphasized the importance of initiating the selection process for State Information Commissioners without delay, unless steps have already been taken. Additional Solicitor General of India Aishwarya Bhati was tasked with compiling responses from the states. The directive came in response to a plea by RTI activist Anjali Bhardwaj, who raised concerns about vacancies in the Central Information Commission and several State Information Commissions.

Advocate Prashant Bhushan, representing the petitioner, highlighted issues in states like Telangana, where information commissions were virtually non-functional and in some states, appeals were not being accepted. Earlier this month, the Court ordered state information commissions to establish a hybrid system for handling complaints and appeals under the RTI Act, offering parties the choice of hybrid hearings and streamlining electronic filing.

Delhi High Court Orders FranchiseByte to Remove Wow! Momo Trademark Content

The Delhi High Court has issued an order restraining FranchiseByte from utilising the ‘WOW! MOMO’ trademark and mandated the removal of all videos and content associated with Wow! Momo from its website and YouTube channel.

The court’s decision, issued by Justice C Hari Shankar on October 20, found that FranchiseByte not only infringed on the trademark but also engaged in fraudulent activities by using Wow Momo’s trademark. Wow! Momo had filed a lawsuit alleging trademark infringement and passing off, contending that FranchiseByte misrepresented its relationship with Wow! Momo and falsely claimed to offer franchises for Wow! Momo.

The court also directed FranchiseByte to disclose information regarding the individuals to whom it granted purported franchises and the revenue generated from such activities. Wow Momo Foods Private Limited was represented by Ankur Sangal, Partner, Khaitan & Co, while FranchiseByte did not have legal representation.

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