Legal Journey of Section 377- A Relentless Battle of Expression and Recognition

By Abhiudaya Verma, Research Associate, Policy

The legal fight in Singapore against Section 377A of Singapore Penal Code, which can be called a close counterpart of the Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), is set to go further. On March 30th, 2020 the High Court of Singapore dismissed the plea to declare section 377A of Singapore Penal Code as unconstitutional. While upholding the law that criminalises homosexual activities between males in Singapore, the country’s Supreme Court judge also made few remarks in the Indian context saying ” I am unable to agree with the reasoning of the Indian Supreme Court given that the court appeared to have accepted a wider meaning of what constitutes “expression”, extending beyond verbal communication of ideas, opinions or beliefs”. The Indian Supreme Court on 6th September, 2018 ‘read down’ Section 377 of the IPC, making consensual sexual activity between adults no longer a criminal offence, regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity. For a country like India where public decency and morality plays a major role in deciding judgements, it was a fairly long and tough legal battle for arriving at this historic judgement. We have tried to trace the origins and the path that this legal battle took against Section 377 by enlisting a brief  history of its legal journey. (more…)

Water Law Reform: A Necessity?

By Shashank Shekhar Shukla, Banaras Hindu University, Uttar Pradesh.

Water is the most critical resource issue of our lifetime and our children’s lifetime. The health of our waters is the principal measure of how we live on the land.”

Our Constitution contains several provisions regarding water. Water is a State subject covered under the seventh schedule of our Constitution. Article 51A(g) provides that it will be a fundamental duty of every Indian citizen to protect and improve the natural environment including lakes and rivers. Article 39(b) of the Constitution casts a duty on the State to direct its policy towards ensuring that the “ownership and control of the material resources of the community are so distributed as best to subserve the common good”. Article 47 provides that improvement in public health will be the duty of the State. Our Supreme Court has declared the right to access to clean water as part of the fundamental rights under Article 21. (more…)

Noise Pollution in India

A Critical Study of Laws on Noise Pollution in India: Prospects and Limitations

By Debokarsho Dutta, Jadavpur University, Kolkata.

Pollution in many ways seems like an inevitable curse of human civilization. With greater emphasis on material structures of progress, focus on the indisputable logic of “urbanization” as a manifestation of that progress and a seemingly perplexing lack of consideration for the immaterial, the spiritual and the metaphysical seems to have brought us to a point where the consequences of pollution appear to have surpassed the limits of acceptability and the only thing left is for us to experience the disastrous consequences of those far-reaching changes for our unfortunate future generations. (more…)

Rohingya Deportation Issue: Revamping the right to life?

By Kaushiki Kar, South Calcutta Law College, Kolkata.

Right to life is one of the basic human rights and not even the State has the authority to violate that right. Protection of life and personal liberty in India means: No person shall be deprived of his life or personal liberty except according to procedure established by law. In Maneka Gandhi vs UOI, 1978, it was established that Article 21 though couched in negative language, confers on every person the fundamental right to life and personal liberty which has become an inexhaustible source of many other rights. These rights are as much available to non-citizens as to citizens (National Human Rights Commission vs. State of Arunachal Pradesh (1996 ). (more…)

Zero Hunger Programme: A Step to Remove Nutritional Deficiency in India

By Arifa Khan, Post Graduate College of Law, Osmania University, Hyderabad.

Every day, men and women across the globe struggle to feed their children a nutritious meal. In a world where we produce enough food to feed everyone, one in nine – still goes to bed on an empty stomach each night. The second most populous country in the world, India has a steady economic growth and has achieved self-sufficiency in grain production in recent years. Despite this, high levels of poverty, food insecurity and malnutrition exists. About 21% of the population lives on less than US $1.90 a day and levels of inequality and social exclusion are very high. India is home to a quarter of all undernourished people worldwide, making the country a key focus for tackling hunger on a global scale. (more…)

Juvenile Justice Act 2015: A Ground-breaking Adoption or a Dicey Alteration

By Anjana Mohan, Symbiosis Law School, Pune.

After years of constant discussion and arguments on whether to replace the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000 and giving an apt description to who is a child and how can a child in conflict be tried under different scenarios of committing heinous crimes after the infamous gang rape that took place in Delhi in 2012 and how the juvenile involved was treated, the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015 was finally adopted on the 15th of January 2016. The following gives a brief about the various rules and regulations introduced by the new Act and the analysis of the same to find out if there lies a need to substitute the existing rules with more acclimated ones to suit the morality of law. (more…)

To Die or Not to Die, is the Question

By Pragya Dhoundiyal, Law Center-1, Faculty of Law, Delhi University.

Right to Life is a right of wide import. This right has always been a bone of contention because defining its limits and the ingredients of this particular right depends on the interpretation and understanding of life of the person who is analyzing it. (more…)

Moral Policing in India

By Priyanka Agarwal, Chaudhary Charan Singh University.

Moral police is a term which some vigilante group and police use to cover their actions which they perform in order to protect the deemed morality and Indian culture.

The moral policing instead of becoming a good thing has become more like a trend which some vigilant groups and the police follows. They judge every situation by themselves and act accordingly so as to protect the so-called culture of India. They seem to work to protect and establish a sense of morality but in reality they do not protect the deemed morality, rather they interfere with the basic Fundamental Right which the Indian Constitution has provided to every citizen of the nation i.e. Article 21- Right to Life and Personal Liberty. (more…)

Water Pollution: An Overview

By Amrita Dasgupta, South Calcutta Law College.

In today’s world of practicality, pollution free water is a global crisis. As the world started developing with escalation of industries, agriculture, and trade and commerce, the water throughout the world turned poisonous with the dumping of garbage, industrial chemicals, oil pollutions, etc. Not only the living organisms in water are affected by this pollution, but it is also detrimental to the health of human lives. (more…)