EVENTS

What is F.I.R and Its Procedure

F.I.R. – Brings Law in motion

First Information Report Commonly known as F.I.R is first and foremost important step to set the criminal law in motion. Though the term F.I.R is nowhere mentioned in the code of criminal procedure but information given under Section 154 of Crpc is popularly known as F.I.R. What is F.I.R and Its Procedure

Provision of section 154 makes possible that any person aware of the commission of any cognizable offence may give information to the police and may, thereby set the criminal law in motion. Such information is to be given to the officer –in –charge of the police station having jurisdiction to investigate the offence. The information so received shall be recorded in such form and manner as under provided in Section 154. This section is intended to ensure the making of an accurate record of the information given to the police.

An analysis of S.154 brings out the following points:
(1) The information is to be given to an officer in charge of a police station having jurisdiction for investigating the case[S.154 (1)].

(2) If the information is given orally to such officer, it shall be reduced to writing by the officer himself or under his direction [s.154 (1)].

(3) The information, if given in writing, or if reduced to writing as aforesaid, shall be signed by the Informant [S.154 (1)].

(4) The information as taken down in writing shall be read over to the Informant [S.154 (1)]].

(5) The substance of the information is then to be entered by the Police officer in a book kept by him in the prescribed form [S.154 (1)]. This book is called Station Diary or General Diary (S.44 of the Police Act.1861).

 

(6) The informant then shall forthwith be given a copy of the information as recorded in the aforesaid manner [S.154 (2)].

Refusal on part of police to register F.I.R.

The principal object of the first information report from the point of view of the Informant is to set the criminal law in motion. And the police cannot refuse to register the complaint nor this power be usurped by the magistrate. This object will be defeated if the police officer in charge of the police station refuses to record the information as required by the above stated  provision of S.154(1).
Here S.154(3) comes into picture which provides that if any person is aggrieved by a refusal on the part of the police officer in charge of a police station to record the information, he may send by post the substance of such information in writing to the Superintendent of police(S.P) concerned. If the Superintendent is satisfied that the information discloses the commission of a cognizable offence, he shall either investigate the case himself or direct an investigation to be made by a subordinate police officer in the manner provided by the code. Sub section (3) of S.154 further provides that such subordinate police officer investigating the offence shall have all the powers of an officer in charge of police station in relation to that offence.

by Ruchika Surana

 

Top 10 Demands Raised by the Lawyers on Nationwide Lawyers Agitation on February 12

  1. Insurance cover upto Rs 20 lakh for lawyers and their families (dependants) Mediclaim.
  2. Free medical treatment of every type of disease in best hospitals of India and other countries (if needed) for the advocates.
  3. Lawyers should be provided a special card for this purpose to be able to avail the benefit of the scheme anytime, anywhere.
  4. Stipend (minimum Rs 10,000 per month) for needy new entrants at the Bar upto 5 years of their practice.
  5. Scheme for pension for old/indigent advocates and provision for family pension in case of untimely death of advocates (minimum Rs 50,000). Advocates Protection Act to be enacted.
  6. All the bar associations of the country should have adequate building/accommodation/sitting facilities with well-equipped libraries, e-libraries, toilets etc., and facilities for lady advocates. Interest-free housing loans, loans for library, vehicle for needy advocates.
  7. Government should acquire land at cheaper rates for housing of advocates. Legal Service Authority Act – Amendments and necessary changes should be made in the Act so that functions under this Act could be discharged by the Lawyers (and not the judges or judicial officers only.
  8. All the Acts (which provide for appointment of retired judges/ judicial officers as the presiding officers/ members of different tribunals, Commissions or Forums should be amended so that competent advocates (and not only judges) could also be appointed on these places.
  9. In case of untimely death of any advocate (below 65 years of age) due to accident, murder, any disease, the government should grant the family/ dependants at least a sum of Rs 50 lakh.
  10. Further, the minutes of the joint meeting, held on February 2, recorded the anguish expressed by those present, over the government’s alleged attempts to throttle democratic institutions, such as MCI. The members also expressed their disapproval with the “frequent criticism of the judiciary and judges of apex court by some lawyers and few other people with vested interests”.

Furthermore, the minutes appealed to the Executive Committee and members of the Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) to “consider the pitiable conditions of the lawyers of the country” and support the cause. This was after several representatives of different State Bar Councils and High Court Bar Associations claimed that the SCBA does not usually participate in such agitations. The resolution also attached a draft resolution to be passed by the State Bar Councils and the Bar Associations on or before February 12th, supporting the letter addressed to the PMO. It added that the demonstration to be held on February 12 would begin from the High Court premises to the respective Governor Houses. The lawyers are expected to be in their full dresses during the protest.

 

Top 5 Important judgments on Intellectual Property Rights cases

  1. Bajaj Auto Limited Vs. TVS Motor Company Limited JT 2009 (12) SC 103

IPR Law- Dispute over Patent for the Use of Twin-Spark Plug Engine Technology – Speedy disposal of Intellectual property rights cases- The Supreme Court of India by this landmark judgment has directed all the courts in India for speedy trial and disposal of intellectual property related cases in the courts in India. In two-year-old dispute involving two companies, which have been locked in a patent dispute over the use of a twin-spark plug engine technology, the Supreme Court observed that suits relating to the matters of patents, trademarks and copyrights are pending for years and years and litigation is mainly fought between the parties about the temporary injunction. The Supreme Court directed that hearing in the intellectual property matters should proceed on day to day basis and the final judgment should be given normally within four months from the date of the filing of the suit. The Supreme Court further directed to all the courts and tribunals in the country to punctually and faithfully carry out the aforesaid orders.

 

  1. Bayer Corporation Vs. Union of India 162(2009) DLT 371

IPR Law– Bayer Corporation, instead of filing a suit for infringement, filed an inventive writ petition in the Delhi High Court desiring that since the applications of Cipla “SORANIB” allegedly infringed its patent, its (Cipla’s) marketing approval application under the Drugs Act should not even be processed or entertained. It is for the first time that an attempt is made to link drug approval to patent infringement in India. However, the Delhi High Court, denying the injunction, imposed a substantial cost of Rs. 6.75 Lakh to deter any such future attempts.

Bayer relied on the argument that a combined reading of Section 2 of the Drugs and Cosmetic Act along with Section 48 of the (Indian) Patent Act, 1970 establishes a Patent Linkage Mechanism under which no market approval for a drug can be granted if there a patent subsisting over that drug. It also claimed that CIPLA’s “SORANIB” is a “Spurious Drug” as defined under the Drugs Act, for which market approval cannot be granted.

The Hon’ble High Court of Delhi held that there is no Drug- Patent Linkage mechanism in India as both the Acts have different objectives and the authority to determine patent standards, is within the exclusive domain of the Controller of Patents. Moreover, the patent linkage will have undesirable effect on the India’s Policy of Public Health. It further held that the market approval of a drug does not amount to infringement of patent. Therefore, the patent infringement cannot be presumed, it has to be established in a court of law. Such adjudication is beyond the jurisdiction of Drug Authorities.

On the issue of “SORANIB” being a spurious drug, the court held that CIPLA’s “SORANIB” cannot come under the category of spurious goods as there is no element of passing off like deception or imitation present in CIPLA’s drug”.

 

  1. Clinique Laboratories LLC and Anr. Vs. Gufic Limited and Anr. MANU/DE/0797/2009

IPR Law- Suit for infringement by a registered trade mark owner against a registered trade mark holder: Conditions-The present dispute was between the registered trade mark of the plaintiff as well as defendant. It is interesting to note that before filing the suit the plaintiff i.e. Clinique had filed a cancellation petition before the Registrar of Trade Marks, India, against the defendant for cancellation of the defendant’s trade mark CLINIQ. As per the Section 124(1) (ii), of the Indian Trade Marks Act, 1999 a suit is liable to be stayed till the cancellation petition is finally decided by the competent authority.

However, under Section 124(5) of the Act, the court has the power to pass interlocutory order including orders granting interim injunction, keeping of account, appointment of receiver or attachment of any property.

In this case, the court held that a suit for infringement of registered trade mark is maintainable against another registered proprietor of identical or similar trade mark.

It was further held that in such suit, while staying the suit proceedings pending decision on rectification/cancellation petition, the court can pass interim injunction restraining the use of the registered trade mark by the defendant, subject to the condition that the court is prima facie convinced of invalidity of registration of the defendant’s trade mark. In this case the court granted an interim injunction in favour of the plaintiff till the disposal of the cancellation petition by the competent authority.

  1. The Coca-Cola Company Vs. Bisleri International Pvt. Ltd Manu/DE/2698/2009

IPR Law- Infringement: Export: Threats: Jurisdiction – The Delhi High Court held that if the threat of infringement exists, then this court would certainly have jurisdiction to entertain the suit.

It was also held that the exporting of goods from a country is to be considered as sale within the country from where the goods are exported and the same amounts to infringement of trade mark.

In the present matter, the defendant, by a master agreement, had sold and assigned the trade mark MAAZA including formulation rights, know-how, intellectual property rights, goodwill etc for India only. with respect to a mango fruit drink known as MAAZA.

In 2008, the defendant filed an application for registration of the trade mark MAAZA in Turkey started exporting fruit drink under the trade mark MAAZA. The defendant sent a legal notice repudiating the agreement between the plaintiff and the defendant, leading to the present case. The plaintiff, the Coca Cola Company also claimed permanent injunction and damages for infringement of trade mark and passing off.

It was held by the court that the intention to use the trade mark besides direct or indirect use of the trade mark was sufficient to give jurisdiction to the court to decide on the issue. The court finally granted an interim injunction against the defendant (Bisleri) from using the trade mark MAAZA in India as well as for export market, which was held to be infringement of trade mark

  1. Novartis v. Union of India [CIVIL APPEAL Nos. 2706-2716 OF 2013 (ARISING OUT OF SLP(C) Nos. 20539-20549 OF 2009]

IPR Law- Rejection of a patent for a Drug which was not ‘inventive’ or had an superior ‘efficacy’- Novartis filled an application to patent one of its drugs called ‘Gleevec’ by covering it under the word invention mentioned in Section 3 of the Patents Act, 1970. The Supreme Court rejected their application after a 7 year long battle by giving the following reasons: Firstly there was no invention of a new drug, as a mere discovery of an existing drug would not amount to invention. Secondly Supreme Court upheld the view that under Indian Patent Act for grant of pharmaceutical patents apart from proving the traditional tests of novelty, inventive step and application, there is a new test of enhanced therapeutic efficacy for claims that cover incremental changes to existing drugs which also Novartis’s drug did not qualify. This became a landmark judgment because the court looked beyond the technicalities and into the fact that the attempt of such companies to ‘evergreen’ their patents and making them inaccessible at nominal rates.

CAN SCREENSHOTS BE SUBMITTED AS EVIDENCE IN COURTS

What is the evidence?

At the time when need to go to a court relating to a case we produce information to the judge called evidence and the judge will decide our case. In case we are not hiring an attorney we should gather the right and relevant information that is shreds of evidence to the court in a right way. The judges reach to the decisions depends upon the information that we provide. The information must not be a gossip or guesswork. Here we are discussing if we can submit the text messages, screenshots, or audio messages as proof or evidence in the court.  As per our knowledge, we can submit the screenshots as the evidence in court, because it is part of the electronic evidence. By submitting the screenshot as evidence we should submit the details of our phone and the date in which it is taken.

Electronic Evidence

When we are submitting the electronic evidence the validity of it totally depends upon the clarity or quality of the evidence. the framework of the nature of the electronic device. 1. The information that produced on the court as the e-document it should be derived from the source that is information fed into the computer in a regular way.

Section 3 in The Indian Evidence Act, 1872

3 Interpretation clause. —In this Act, the following words and expressions are used in the following senses unless a contrary intention appears from the context:— “Court”. —“Court” includes all Judges 1 and Magistrates 2,  and all persons, except arbitrators, legally authorized to take evidence. “Fact”. —“Fact” means and includes—

(1) anything, state of things, or relation of things, capable of being perceived by the senses;

(2) any mental condition of which any person is conscious. Illustrations

(a) That there are certain objects arranged in a certain order in a certain place, is a fact.

(b) That a man heard or saw something, is a fact.

(c) That a man said certain words, is a fact.

(d) That a man holds a certain opinion, has a certain intention, acts in good faith, or fraudulently, or uses a particular word in a particular sense, or is or was at a specified time conscious of a particular sensation, is a fact.

(e) That a man has a certain reputation, is a fact. “Relevant”. —One fact is said to be relevant to another when the one is connected with the other in any of the ways referred to in the provisions of this Act relating to the relevancy of facts. “Facts in issue”. —The expression “facts in issue” means and includes— any fact from which, either by itself or in connection with other facts, the existence, non-existence, nature, or extent of any right, liability, or disability, asserted or denied in any suit or proceeding, necessarily follows. Explanation.— Whenever, under the provisions of the law for the time being in force relating to Civil Procedure, 3 any Court records an issue of fact, the fact to be asserted or denied in the answer to such issue, is a fact in issue. Illustrations A is accused of the murder of B. At his trial the following facts may be in issue:— That A caused B’s death; That An intended to cause B’s death; That A had received grave and sudden provocation from B; That A at the time of doing the act which caused B’s death, was, by reason of unsoundness of mind, incapable of knowing its nature. “Document”.

“Document” 4 means any matter expressed or described upon any substance by means of letters, figures or marks, or by more than one of those means, intended to be used, or which may be used, for the purpose of recording that matter. Illustrations A writing 5 is a document; Words printed, lithographed or photographed are documents; A map or plan is a document; An ins c r i p tion on a metal plate or stone is a document; A caricature is a document. “Evidence” .— “ Evidence” means and includes—

(1) all statements which the Court permits or requires to be made before it by witnesses, in relation to matters of fact under inquiry, such statements are called oral evidence;

(2) 6 [all legal documents including electronic records produced for the inspection of the Court], such documents are called documentary evidence. “Proved” .—A fact is said to be proved when, after considering the matters before it, the Court either believes it to exist or considers its existence so probable that a prudent man ought, under the circumstances of the particular case, to act upon the supposition that it exists. “Disproved”. — A fact is said to be disproved when, after considering the matters before it, the Court either believes that it does not exist, or considers its non-existence so probable that a prudent man ought, under the circumstances of the particular case, to act upon the supposition that it does not exist. “ Not proved”. — A fact is said not to be proved when it is neither proved nor disproved. 7 [“ India ”. —“ India ” means the territory of India excluding the State of Jammu and Kashmir .] 8 [the expressions “Certifying Authority”, 9 [electronic signature], 9 [Electronic Signature Certificate], “electronic form”, “electronic records”, “information”, “secure electronic record”, “secure digital signature” and “subscriber” shall have the meanings respectively assigned to them in the Information Technology Act, 2000 (21 of 2000).]

What Is Personal Data Protection Bill, 2018

The Committee of Experts entrusted with creating a Framework for Data Protection in India has released the much awaited Personal Data Protection Bill, 2018. The committee was constituted in August, 2017 by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, Government of India to examine issues related to data protection, recommend methods to address them and draft a data protection bill.After years of deliberations and a series of public consultations, the committee chaired by retired Supreme Court Judge, Justice B.N. Srikrishna has released the much awaited draft. The title of the draft bill was“A Free and Fair Digital Economy Protecting Privacy, Empowering Indians”which provides context to the deliberations of the committee. The bill defined personal data as any data which can be used to identify an individual either directly or indirectly. Also, under the bill sensitive data is defined as any data which is related to intimate matters where there is higher expectation of privacy i.e. caste, religion and sexual orientation of the individual. Therefore, with the data protection bill, the committee sought to distinguish personal data protection from the protection of sensitive data, since its processing could result in greater harm to the individual.

The Data Protection Authority of India (hereinafter referred to as‘DPA’) is charged with the responsibility to enforce the law effectively and efficiently. The categorization of certain fiduciaries as significant fiduciaries is done by DPA on the basis of their capability to cause greater harm to data principals as a consequence of their data processing activities.Further, if the data fiduciaries are found to be in contravention of law, the DPA has the power to cease, desist or temporarily suspend their business or activities. The significant data fiduciaries categorized by DPA are required to undertake obligations such as:-

a. They are required to register themselves with the DPA
b. They have to assess Data Protection Impact
c. They are required to do audits on routine basis and maintain the records for the same.
d. Appointment of Data Protection Officer.

The committee has recommended that the law should be applicable to processing of personal data if the data has been shared, disclosed or processed in India. The law will be applicable to any fiduciary that are not present in India but having a business connection to India and are engaged in activities such as profiling. Further, the law shall be applicable to any company incorporated under Indian laws and engaged in collecting sharing, disclosing and processing of personal data. It is not necessary for the data to be actually processed in India. However, the center has the power to exempt companies who are engaged in processing the personal data of foreign nationals not present in India.

Some of the main points in the bill are:-
# The new draft bill will be applicable on all the foreign data processors having a business connection to India or are engaged in carrying activities involving profiling of individual in India. It means that the draft bill has extra-territorial application.

# Differential obligations have been imposed on Personal Data and Sensitive Personal data i.e. imposing obligations should be based on criticality of data.

# The data controller i.e. Data Fiduciary is charged with the responsibility of Purpose Limitation, Collection Limitation, maintaining data quality, storage limitation etc.

# The bill was intended to be made applicable to both the private parties as well as the state.

# The bill defined child as someone who is less than 18 years of age and prohibited profiling, tracking or behavioral monitoring of or targeted advertising towards children.

# The bill laid down rights related to data subjects. The rights include right to data correction, data portability etc.

# The bill introduced the concept of data breach and privacy by design.

# The bill mandated registration requirements to all the data processors who are engaged in conducting high risk data processing.High Risk Data Processors are required to implement trust scores, data audits as well as a Data Protection Impact Assessment.

# The Government through the Data Protection Bill has retained the power to exempt storage of copies of Sensitive Personal Data in exceptional cases. Also, it is required that the copies of all the personal data must be stored in India and the government may notify certain types of personal data that should be mandatorily processed in India.

# The bill mandated the use of model clauses and possible adequacy requirements for consent cross border transfers i.e. the approval of government is required for cross border data flows.

# All the codes of Practices will be provided and endorsed by the “Data Protection Authority of India”.

# The bill provides GDPR style penalties up to 4% of global turnover in some cases. Also, the bill introduced criminal penalties in limited cases.

Top 8 Countries With The Strictest Animal Welfare Laws In The World

It is really painful to see an animal being mistreated and different countries have their own different ways to deal with animal abuse. Animal Welfare Laws

Here Are The Top 8 Countries With The Strictest Animal Welfare Laws In The World

1. Austria

The Austrian Animal Welfare Act 2004 equates the importance of animal life to that of human life.

Austria is considered one of the best countries for animals all over the world. The Austrian Animal Welfare Act 2004 suggests that the protection and well being of animals should be held to a value that is equal to humankind. The anti-cruelty law, one of Europe’s harshest, bans pet owners from cropping their dogs’ ears or tails, forces farmers to uncage their chickens, and ensures that puppies and kittens no longer swelter in pet shop windows.

Source: souvenirfinder

Violators are subjected to fines of $2,420, and in cases of extreme cruelty they could be fined up to $18,160 and have their animals seized by the authorities.

2. Switzerland

Switzerland became the first country with a provision to protect animals’ dignity.

Switzerland is a leader in improving the living and working conditions of animals. In 1992 Switzerland became the first country to constitutionally recognize animals, with a provision warranting the protection of ‘the dignity of the creature’. Activities that are deemed degrading to the dignity of animals are forbidden here by law.

 The Swiss government also recognises some animals as social animals and orders them to be kept in pairs. Stopping a dog from barking is also considered illegal here and pet owners are required to attend classes to learn to take care of their pets.

3. United Kingdom

UK’s Animal Welfare legislation has strict penalty of a 51 week jail term for cruelty and negligence of animals.

The Animal Welfare legislation of UK has stricter penalties for both cruelty and negligence of animals. Punishments include a lifetime ban from owning pets, a 51 week maximum jail term, and fines amounting up to £20,000.

Source: holidogtimes

4. Germany

In Germany, animals are protected by the Constitution.

The German Constitution reads, “The state takes responsibility for protecting the natural foundations of life and animals in the interest of future generations.” Germany thus became the first country in the European Union to give animals constitutional protection.
Source: World Atlas

5. Netherlands

Netherlands prohibits use of great apes for experiments as well as testing cosmetics

The  Animal Welfare Act of Netherlands features anti-cruelty and duty of care provisions that also include farm animals. The use of great apes for experiments is prohibited as well as testing cosmetics on animals as per the EU Animal Welfare Rules.

Source: Pixabay

6. Sweden

Sweden grants legal protection to her animals – both, wild and domestic.

In Sweden, the slaughter of domestic animals must be done following sedation of the animal. Swedish animals live in much enriched environments as compared to other countries. Also, the cattle and pigs in Sweden must be fed straw and the dairy animals should be allowed to venture out for grazing during summer months.

Source: NorFor

7. Denmark

Animal protection laws in Denmark don’t allow slaughtering of animals.

Animal welfare laws in Denmark were recently modified to take precedence over religion when the country declared that it won’t allow live slaughtering of animals. Their Animal Welfare Law also has specific provisions for farm animals.

Source: Livekindly

8. Hong Kong

A fine of 200,000 dollars is imposed for violating animal protection laws in Hong Kong.

The animal welfare laws in Hong Kong govern the welfare of food animals, companion animals, and laboratory animals. Cruelty can be inflicted in the form of abuse, neglect, inappropriate transport, and fighting. Those found violating the law are liable to a fine of 200,000 Hong Kong dollars and imprisonment for three years.

Source: oceanpark
While India too has several laws in place for protection and welfare of animals, much still needs to be done for their right understanding & implementation.
Source – Scoopwoop

Suman Bodani Becomes The First Female Hindu Civil Judge of Pakistan

Ms. Suman Pawan Bodani has become the first Hindu woman to be appointed as a civil judge in Pakistan. She secured 54th rank in the merit list and will serve in her native district of Qambar-Shahdadkot. As per reports, Ms. Bodani passed her LLB. examination from Hyderabad and did her masters in law from Karachi’s Shaheed Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto Institute of Science and Technology (SZABIST). She then practiced law for two years, under renowned advocate Justice (R) Rasheed Rizvi’s law firm.

 

She now wishes to provide free legal assistance to the poor in Sindh’s Qambar-Shahdadkot. “I have entered the field of law because I know that in the backward areas of Sindh, poor people need a lot of advice and assistance in legal matters,” she was quoted as saying. She also reportedly faced resistance from her community, as they do not approve of girls working in the field of law. However, she recalled that her family extended their full support and did not pay any heed to what people said.

Last year, Justice Syeda Tahira Safdar made history after becoming the first woman chief justice of a high court in the country. As for Hindu judges, Justice Rana Bhagwandas was actually the first judge from the Hindu community in the Muslim-majority Pakistan. He served as the acting chief justice for brief periods between 2005 and 2007.

Everything You Want to Know About Right to Disconnect Bill

INSIGHTS OF THE BILL

The “Right to Disconnect” Bill has triggered a debate in a country. The first ever nationwide survey on mental health covering 28 states in 2015- 2016 gives us a better idea about the prevalence of anxiety disorders in India.

Every employee shall have the right to disconnect out of work hours. For the purpose of this section-

(a) ‘right to disconnect’ means that while the employer may contact the worker after work hours, the employee is not obliged to reply or shall have right to refuse to answer such calls; and

(b) In case an employee refuses to reply any call during out-of-work hours, such employee shall not be subject to any disciplinary action by the employer.”

A Governing Authority proposed is expected to consist of Minister of State, Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology as its Chairperson ex-officio and the Minister of State, Ministry of Communication and Ministry of Labour and Employment as the Vice-Chairmen ex-officio.

1.  This Authority is then expected to form a charter which outlines the conditions which needs to be negotiated between employees and employers of a company or society, within one year from the date of its constitution.

2.  The companies with more than 10 employees mandated to draft their own policy towards employees to periodically negotiate specific terms with their workers.

3.  The Right to Disconnect Bill also proposes to set up an “Employees’ Welfare Committees” in every company to assist the employees in such negotiations.

4.  The Bill also provides such provisions which ensures that the negotiations must take place at regular intervals, to keep up with changing business demands.

5.  The Right to Disconnect Bill impose sanctions at the rate of 1 % of its total employees’ remuneration, for any non-compliance with the provisions of the Bill.

OTHER KEY POINTS

1.  With the implementation of “Right to Disconnect” Bill 2018, employees would have the right to disconnect or not to answer calls/e-mails beyond work hours.

2.  The employees for this cannot face disciplinary action.

3.  Employers under the “Right to Disconnect” Bill can negotiate on out-of-work hours with employee.

Tracing the Origin of the Right to Dis-connect

France was the first country in the world to introduce a proper legal framework protecting a person’s “right to disconnect”. It all started back in 2001 when the French Supreme Court ruled that no employee is under obligation to bring the office work at home and with time as the technology developed the Court continued to modernize its ruling.

On 1st January 2017, France introduced the El Khomri law i.e. a kind of revised Labor code, Article 55 of the code mandates that the companies with more than 50 workers must have a negotiation of obligations with the employees and guarantee them the “the right to disconnect” or ignore the phone calls outside the office hours. The law is reasonably vague and doesn’t restrict after-hours work communication, but rather obliges organizations to negotiate these terms clearly with prospective employees.

Recently Italy has also incorporated a very similar right to disconnect law, again simply requiring contractual clarity over an employee’s responsibility to communicate outside of general work hours basically a contractual clarity regarding employee’s duty to communicate outside the office hour is needed.

In Spain, each and every company regardless of the number of employees, have the “right to disconnect” policies. The culture of “Right to disconnect” is crawling all over the world and New York in such case is no longer behind. It is also contemplating over a bill similar to “Right to disconnect” bill. The bill not only limits to ‘Out of Work Hours’ but also to the vacations.

Germany is another country that has been struggling with these questions for several years that how to reduce work-related stress and strive for a better work-life balance. The Employment Minister of Germany Mr. Andrea Nahles, came up with a research in 2017 revealing some serious facts that workers tend to retire early because of constantly in stress and has been calling for “anti-stress” laws similar to “Right to Disconnect” since 2014.

Many of the Companies in Germany have hopped ahead of the phase, thinking that it might be good for overall work culture to self-regulate some of these matters. Among many companies, Volkswagen was first to institute a rule in company to freeze all emails related to work during no-working hours. For this the company make such arrangements that there internal servers never route an email to individual accounts.

WHY THERE IS NEED OF SUCH LEGISLATION?

  1. Anxiety Disorder: In many surveys it has been found that people having high imbalance in work life and personal life tend to suffer from anxiety related disorders more frequently as comparison to those who have better life balance. Heart related problems, Loss in appetite and obesity are major health issues found among people because of long working hours as they sit continuously for long 8-10 hrs per day. Anxiety disorders are among one of the most prevalent mental, emotional and behavioral problems in the world, estimated to affect 3.6% of the global population as of 2015, or about 264 million people, according to WHO figures So, its only home where a person can relax and can get some time free from work related stress, and if in that time he/she gets work related calls , messages or emails, he is bound to get disturbed. Sometimes to such an extent that the person starts distancing himself from socializing very often.
  2. Weakening Social relations: Relations can be built only through communication and spending time with people around you. And when one is not able to give much needed time to family and close ones, the relationship starts weakening. Today work pressure is so high that people rarely have time to socialize with other. Taking them for granted when one is too engrossed in work activities even when at home creates disturbances in relations. According to a survey, it is found that 90% of the divorce and separation cases arise in families where people have less time to spend with each other without being disturbed.
  3. No Down Time: Every one of us at some point need relaxation from work life. One is not supposed to work continuously without a break. There is always a need of entertainment and fun in life to rejuvenate. How one can relax when boss is constantly reminding you of the pending work or a presentation next day. To be able to enjoy and find relief one needs free mind which isn’t possible now-a-days due to work pressure.
  4. Too much screen time: After spending the entire day brooding at the computer screen, one needs some no-technology time. Due to constant staring at computer and mobile screens, eye drying and itching are some common problems faced by people, not to mention the bigger issues we hear about every other day on the drawbacks of overusing technology. People can for once ignore other attractions that their alluring smart phones offer but once it comes down to work, there is no denying attention. They actually get our undivided attention which is meant for anything but work after office hours.
  5. Lack in Performance: People can only perform best when there is a proper balance between work and private life. Until and unless there is high work pressure they are not capable of performing to their best capability. It has been found that people who disconnect work after office hours and spend good time relishing with friends and family or enjoying a sport of their choice, actually performed better than those who put in extra hours to work and stayed connected even while at home. If any country needs better workforce, then there is a need to give workers the much needed “Right to Disconnect” from work after office hours.

AT WHAT COST

Although, with so much positive about the “Right to Disconnect” Bill it is not behind in costing so much from the managers and employers who would probably going to have a hard time facing employees with long pending works. Because as a matter of fact it is clear that not everybody is punctual and disciplined in their work, not everyone work as per the deadlines and schedules. Where “Right to Disconnect” Bill calls for total disconnection of work calls and emails in non-working hours, it will create a wave of stress among managers and employers who already have a bad time in pushing employees to make them work in given time. There is no denying that there are too many of people who need constant pushing to get them do their work on time.

According to Indian perspective the biggest impediment in implementation of the Right to Disconnect Bill 2018, is our developing economy, we are not among the developed countries we are still struggling to get in line, so the work attitude in India is quite competitive in every factor either it is production or top/bottom line performances. Being a developing country, India still depends on global market. This makes it difficult to have a uniform work policy across all sectors.

By the ‘Right to Disconnect” Bill lazy people going to have their gala time in working as well as in non-working hours.

Another backdrop of the “Right to Disconnect” Bill is the employers would not be able to keep a track on the important works as work emails at home are usually reminders of an important deadline or guideline that needs to be kept track of. One cannot simply ignore the duties bestowed upon him and for a matter of fact there are certainly some professions like doctors, Fireman, technical support, security staff who needs to be on duty 24 *7 * 365 any moment and ‘Right to Disconnect” is a kind of hurdle in between.

CONCLUSION

Are you longing for sitting back, unwinding and putting your telephone on silent mode when the workday is finished or even put it on airplane mode, in case you’re feeling rebellious? These expectations might be untimely as it’s a private member’s bill, and no such bill has turned into an Act since 1970. France is as yet bantering on the privilege to disengage totally from work messages when at home. As recommended by the promoters of those that started this discussion, it won’t be effective until directors and supervisors decrease the work weight on representatives.

In India, it would be immensely hard to decide whether such a standard would be appropriately actualized regardless of whether it is passed. Employers would find out some alternate means for staying connected with their work force, it could be via a waiver clause in the employment contract or by any other express or implied means.

Top 10 Popular Indian Penal Code (Sections) in India

  1. 302 : If you were ever a movie buff, you would recall it in a second. Its for “Punishment of Murder”. Maximum punishment is death. It is cognizable, non-bailable and non-compoundable.
  2.  420 : It is for cheating and dishonesty. Maximum imprisonment is 7 years. It is cognizable, non-bailable and compoundable (Will Explain Later).
  3. 144 : Joining unlawful assembly with armed weapon (Jhadu not counted however,recall AAP rallies). Maximum punishment is Fine & Imprisonment for 2 years. It is cognizable, bailable and non-compoundable.
  4.  354 : This Section is undergoing changes and is related to Sexual Harassment of Women (not Men). The latest modification is 354D which is related to Stalking. The maximum imprisonment is 3 years for 1st conviction. It is cognizable, bailable and compoundable.
  5. 376 : Punishment for Rape of Women (not Men). Requires considerable changes and punishment varies.
  6. 377 : Unnatural offences for eg. Homosexuality. This was recently in news. Maximum imprisonment is Life imprisonment. It is cognizable, non-bailable and non-compoundable.
  7. 497 : Adultery . If a man has sexual intercourse with wife of other Man, he has committed adultery (even if women is abettor). Wife is not punishable. Imprisonment is 5 years. It is non-cognizable, bailable and non-compoundable.
  8.  498A : Dowry law. Maximum punishment is 3 years for Husband or family members with hefty fines. It is Cognizable, non-compoundable and non-bailable. The conviction rate is 2% as most cases are false.
  9. 509 : Gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of Women (not Men). Imprisonment is 3 years with fine. It is Cognizable, bailable and compoundable.

     10. 510 : Misconduct by drunken person. It is comical because fine is 10 rupees +/or imprisonment for 1 day. It is non-cognizable, bailable and non-compoundable.

*Cognizable : Police officer can arrest without warrant.
*Bailable : Whether bail is possible or not.
*Compoundable : Any committed crime, which can be settled by making up for damages.

 

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