I recently wrote about how much a £1,000 annual investment in Lloyds Banking Group (LSE:LLOY) would currently be worth. I talk in more detail about it there, but in short I’d be out of pocket several hundred pounds. This isn’t surprising, given that the Lloyds share price has been in a slow downward trend for the last four years.But after hitting a low last September, the price has moved almost 70% higher. So is another 25% move (taking it to 50p) really out of the question?5G is here – and shares of this ‘sleeping giant’ could be a great way for you to potentially profit!According to one leading industry firm, the 5G boom could create a global industry worth US$12.3 TRILLION out of thin air…And if you click here we’ll show you something that could be key to unlocking 5G’s full potential…The case for 50pIn order for the Lloyds share price to take another leg higher, I think we’d need to see strong quarterly updates later this year. These would need to build on the full-year 2020 results from last month. There were several key elements from the results that give me optimism for 2021.Firstly, the reduction in impairments needed on the loan book. In July 2020, the bank was estimated to need to set aside £4.5bn–£5.5bn in provisions due to the pandemic. The actual year-end figure was £4.2bn. Going into 2021, if new provisions are again lower than expected, this will give investors more confidence that bad debt won’t be a big issue going forward.Secondly, the Lloyds share price could gain thanks to the outlook for dividend payments. These were resumed with an expected dividend of 0.57p per share. If we assume a share price around 40p for when the dividend gets paid, it’s a yield of 1.4%. Nothing spectacular, but definitely a start. Lloyds used to be a popular stock for income investors. So should the yield move higher in 2021, more could buy in for this purpose.Why Lloyds shares might struggleThe current CEO, António Horta-Osório, is handing over the reigns after a decade at the helm. This isn’t fresh news, and the market digested this months ago. However, now comes the time where the real uncertainty begins. The new CEO, Charlie Nunn, has experience with HSBC. Yet this is still a big change for Lloyds and so any teething problems this year with the changeover could spell trouble for the Lloyds share price.Another element that I’ve mentioned before is that the outlook for interest rates isn’t positive in the UK. If anything, rates could fall from 0.1% down to 0% this year. This squeezes the net interest margin that’s the traditional way a bank makes money.For 2020, the net interest margin fell from 2.88% to 2.52%. It might not sound much, but if it falls by a similar amount in 2021, it’s bad news for Lloyds shares. Lower margins means lower profits, unless the bank can offset this by other divisions. However, given the lack of a sizeable presence in investment banking or trading in capital markets, it looks like Lloyds will continue to rely on retail banking. My forecast for the Lloyds share price is that it can reach 50p by the end of the year. However, I expect a lot of this move to come towards the end of the year. The bedding in period of the new CEO, and the time needed to increase the dividends, could weigh on the share price in the short term. Our 6 ‘Best Buys Now’ Shares I would like to receive emails from you about product information and offers from The Fool and its business partners. Each of these emails will provide a link to unsubscribe from future emails. More information about how The Fool collects, stores, and handles personal data is available in its Privacy Statement. Lloyds share price forecast: is 50p obtainable this year? See all posts by Jonathan Smith jonathansmith1 has no position in any of the shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has recommended Lloyds Banking Group. Views expressed on the companies mentioned in this article are those of the writer and therefore may differ from the official recommendations we make in our subscription services such as Share Advisor, Hidden Winners and Pro. Here at The Motley Fool we believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. Click here to claim your copy now — and we’ll tell you the name of this Top US Share… free of charge! Jonathan Smith | Wednesday, 10th March, 2021 | More on: LLOY Renowned stock-picker Mark Rogers and his analyst team at The Motley Fool UK have named 6 shares that they believe UK investors should consider buying NOW.So if you’re looking for more stock ideas to try and best position your portfolio today, then it might be a good day for you. Because we’re offering a full 33% off your first year of membership to our flagship share-tipping service, backed by our ‘no quibbles’ 30-day subscription fee refund guarantee. “This Stock Could Be Like Buying Amazon in 1997” Simply click below to discover how you can take advantage of this. Enter Your Email Address Image source: Getty Images I’m sure you’ll agree that’s quite the statement from Motley Fool Co-Founder Tom Gardner.But since our US analyst team first recommended shares in this unique tech stock back in 2016, the value has soared.What’s more, we firmly believe there’s still plenty of upside in its future. In fact, even throughout the current coronavirus crisis, its performance has been beating Wall St expectations.And right now, we’re giving you a chance to discover exactly what has got our analysts all fired up about this niche industry phenomenon, in our FREE special report, A Top US Share From The Motley Fool.
SHARE Facebook Twitter Previous articleRyan Martin’s Indiana Ag Forecast for October 3, 2016Next articleSliding Down the Slippery Slope Hoosier Ag Today Facebook Twitter Most Consumers Say They Lack Access to Information about Food New research by the from The Center for Food Integrity shows consumers want more information about food and how it is produced. The research, announced last week, shows only 28 percent of consumers strongly agree they have access to all the information they want regarding food, how it is produced, and its safety. Charlie Arnot, CEO of CFI, says, “The industry still has work to do.” The results show that consumers want transparency in very specific areas, including the impact of food on health, food safety, animal well-being, and the environment.Furthermore, the research says consumers want fair and honest information. CFI also found that third-party verification is important, particularly when it comes to animal well-being and food safety.Source: NAFB News Service Home Indiana Agriculture News Most Consumers Say They Lack Access to Information about Food By Hoosier Ag Today – Oct 2, 2016 SHARE
WhatsApp Local NewsBusinessWorld News Twitter Facebook Facebook By Digital AIM Web Support – February 15, 2021 Twitter TAGS Previous articleOAT021521_winter_wildart_47Next articleThe Latest: Osaka takes court in Australian Open quarters Digital AIM Web Support Pinterest WHO authorizes AstraZeneca’s COVID vaccine for emergency use FILE – In this file photo dated Friday, Feb. 12, 2021, Doses of AstraZeneca vaccines for COVID-19 sit in vials at the Fiocruz Foundation after being bottled in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The World Health Organization Monday Feb. 15, 2021, granted an emergency authorization to the coronavirus vaccine made by AstraZeneca, a move that should allow its partners to ship millions of doses to countries worldwide as part of a U.N.-backed program to stop the pandemic. WhatsApp Pinterest
Columns’Anti-Defection Law: Need For Reforms And A Better Interpretation Of Law To Serve The Objectives Dr. M. Asad Malik28 July 2020 7:35 AMShare This – xThe strength of Indian Parliamentary Democracy lies in its people’s commitment towards being active participants in the electoral foray by utilizing their right to universal adult sufferage for Legislative Assemblies and Parliament, every five years. These elected representatives are forebearers of the will of the people in the House and they enact laws for the welfare of the people….Your free access to Live Law has expiredTo read the article, get a premium account.Your Subscription Supports Independent JournalismSubscription starts from ₹ 599+GST (For 6 Months)View PlansPremium account gives you:Unlimited access to Live Law Archives, Weekly/Monthly Digest, Exclusive Notifications, Comments.Reading experience of Ad Free Version, Petition Copies, Judgement/Order Copies.Subscribe NowAlready a subscriber?LoginThe strength of Indian Parliamentary Democracy lies in its people’s commitment towards being active participants in the electoral foray by utilizing their right to universal adult sufferage for Legislative Assemblies and Parliament, every five years. These elected representatives are forebearers of the will of the people in the House and they enact laws for the welfare of the people. In these elected members resides the spirit of the sovereign people. What bring an order and ornganisational structure to what could have easily turned into a chaotic interplay of various forces are the political parties. The political parties play a pivotal role in the representative democracy. Each political party representing distinct ideological and aspirational aspects field their candidates in the general elections with its symbol and manifesto. However, any person can contest election as an independent candidate if s/he fulfils the qualification enlisted. The main objective of the elections is to capture political power and to form a government. As per the convention, The party which get the largest number of seats is invited to form government. However, in recent times, India has been witnessing some departure from the established conventions whereby elected representatives from one party have been switching sides and helping a party that otherwise lacks the requisite number, to form government. This process of Defection has been defined by Soli J. Sorabjee as “the abandonment or disloyalty to duty or ideology. In political term the ‘defectors’ not only violate the credibility of political party on whose ticket they were elected but also betrays the electors who had voted for them. It commits a breach of faith not only to the party on whose ticket the member has been elected but also commits a breach of faith with electorates whose votes were secured on the basis of affiliation with the party.” The 10th Schedule was inserted in the constitution to curb this menace of defection and to reduce the power of money used for alluring the elected members to break or topple government and to ensure that elected members remain loyal to the party on whose ticket he/she has been elected as well as electors. This article explores the rationale behind the insertion of the 10th Schedule while examining its efficacy in achieving its desired objective. Despite the presence of a thriving multiparty system in India, till 1967 the political system was predominantly controlled by the Grand-Old Congress Party, both at the Centre as well as at State level. Eminent Political Scientist, Rajni Kothari termed it as the ‘Congress System’. With the passage of time and the emergence of regional political parties, this system saw vibrant changes whereby the regional political parties due to their numerical strength could propel themselves to the centre stage and play a significant role in the government formation. While this strengthened the desired diversity in the political arena, it also created the nuisance of defecting representatives who, devoid of any altruistic idealism and driven solely by their self-centred greed, were more than willing to switch sides thus eroding the very legitimacy of the electoral process. It must be clarified here that, though the problem of defection was nothing new the act was primarily on the basis of political issues and ideological differences. In addition to this, political morality was at low ebb and scourge of corruption was increasing. Political differences had ceased to be issue-based.[iv] Ethical considerations in the resolution of issue based political differences were pushed into background and defection provided the opportunity to achieve overambitious goals of power hungry politician. The situation between 1967 to 1971 was so grave that jokingly this phase has been termed as that of ‘AYARAM GAYARAM’ when as many as 142 MPs and over 1900 MLAs changed their political parties.[v] In this context of weakening democratic ethos, there was a dire need to create mechanisms that would discourage these tendencies and discipline the legislators and for this objective on December 8, 1967, the Lok Sabha constituted a high-level Committee (Known as “Committee on Defection”) under the chairmanship of then Home Miniter Y. B. Chavan. The Committee in its report dated January 7, 1969, made certain recommendations for outlawing defections. Keeping in view these recommendations, the Constitution (Thirty-second Amendment) Bill, 1973, was introduced in the Lok Sabha on May 16, 1973, but the Bill lapsed on account of the dissolution of the House. Thereafter, the Constitution (Forty-eighth Amendment) Bill, 1979, was introduced in the Lok Sabha containing similar provisions. But, it was opposed by ruling as well as opposition parties at the stage of introduction of the Bill, resulting in its withdrawal.[vi] But in Jammu and Kashmir, there was a provision under the Jammu and Kashmir Representation of the People Act, 1957 in section 24G that “any person can be disqualified if having been elected voluntarily gives up the membership of the political party on whose ticket he/she contested election.” In Mian Bashir Ahmad and Etc. v. State Of J. & K. and Ors.,[vii] the constitutional validity of section 24-G was challenged and the court held that “Section 24-G of the Jammu and Kashmir Representation of the People Act, 1957 is constitutionally valid.” After the assassination of Prime Minister Shrimati Indira Gandhi, the Congress Party came in power with 401 seats and Rajiv Gandhi became the Prime Minister . The President of India, while addressing the Pariament assured that “the government is bringing a law to curb the menace of defection” and consequently the Parliament by the Constitution (Fifty-second Amendment) Act, 1985, added 10th Schedule (Popularly known as Anti-defection Law) in the constitution with the aim “to curb defection to bring the political stability and to discourage the practice of defection of members from one party to another after their election.” It came into force on March 1, 1985. The basic object[viii] of this law was to discipline the legislators but to what extent this law could achieve its desired goal it is a matter of debate even today in 2020. To maintain and sustain the process of democratic governance the Fifty-second Amendment Act, 1985, made necessary changes in Articles 101, 102, 190 and 191, besides adding the Tenth Schedule in the Constitution.[ix] It contains provisions as to disqualification on the ground of defection along with certain exceptions. Paragraph 2 of the Tenth Schedule provides that “a member of a House belonging to any political party shall be disqualified for being a member of the House- (a) if he voluntarily gives up his membership of such political party; or (b) if he votes or abstains from voting in such House contrary to any direction issued by the political party to which he belongs, without obtaining the prior permission of such political party.” Such direction (i.e., whip) may be issued by the political party or any person or authority authorised by it, in this behalf. The court in Ravi S. Naik case[x] held that “the words “voluntarily given up his membership of such political party” are not synonymous with “resignation” and would have a wider connotation, even in the absence of a formal resignation from membership, an inference could be drawn from the conduct of a member that he had voluntarily given up his membership of the political party to which he belonged.”[xi] Thus, the act of voluntarily giving up the membership of the political party, may be express or implied, non-fulfilment of formalities for joining a party is of no consequence.[xii] Clause (2) of Paragraph 2 provides that an independent member[xiii] shall be disqualified for being a member of the House if he joins any political party after such election. There were three exceptions in 10th Schedule, one Paragraph 3 (If 1/3 member of a party through split change party), two, Paragraph 4 (If 2/3 member of a political party merge with another political party) and Paragraph 5 (If a member after being elected as Speaker or Deputy Speaker resign and rejoin political party if he demits that post.) Para 3 was repealed by the 91st Constitutional Amendment Act, so now there are two exceptions in Para 4 and 5.. Under Paragraph 6 of 10th Schedule, the Speaker has power to disqualify a member on the ground of defection and his/her decision shall be final but while s/he is exercising the power to disqualify members, s/he acts as a Tribunal and validity of the orders thus, can be questioned in the writ jurisdiction of the Supreme Court or High Courts.[xiv] The scope of judicial review in this matter is limited and the orders can be challenged on the ground of ultra-vires or malafides or having been made in colourable exercise of power based on an extraneous and irrelevant considerations. The order would be a nullity if rules of natural justice are violated.[xv] The Speaker while functioning under the 10th Schedule had no power to review his/her own decision on the question of disqualification and the same can only be corrected by judicial review.[xvi] The constitutional validity of 10th Schedule was challenged in the Apex Court in the case of Kihota Hollohon v. Zachilhu.[xvii] The Apex Court upheld the constitutional validity of 10th Schedule but struck down Paragraph 7 on the ground that it takes away the power of judicial review and thus, violates the basic structure. The Court said that “the provisions are salutary and are intended to strengthen the fabric of Indian Parliamentary democracy by curbing unprincipled and unethical political defections.” The provisions have been held not violative of the basic structure of the Constitution or any rights or freedoms under Articles 19, 25, 105 and 194. But Anti-defection law failed to curb the menace of defection. On the contrary, it has rather increased the mass defections due to exception in Paragraph 3 which proved to be its Achilles Heel. Politicians started to change party in groups to avoid disqualification and mostly used to be appointed as ministers. Taking note of the recommendation of the National Commission to Review the Working of the Constitution (NCRWC), the government tried to make Anti-defection law more efficient and the 10th schedule was amended by the Constitution Ninety-first Amendment) Act, 2003,[xviii] and Paragraph 3 have been repealed. Article 75 (1A) limited the total number of ministers upto 15% of the total number of House of Peoples, Article 75 (1B) put the limitation on the disqualified person to be appointed as a minister. Same kind of limitation was also imposed at state level through Article 164 (1A) and Article 164 (1B). Article 361-B was also inserted in the Constitution. Article 361-B debars “a Member of the House of any Legislature, who is disqualified on the ground of defection under the 10th Schedule, from holding any public office as a minister or any other remunerative political post, for the duration of the period commencing from the date of his disqualification till the date on which the term of his office as such member would expire or till the date on which he contests an election to a House and is declared elected, whichever is earlier.” The government through this amendment put the limitation on the number of ministers so that frequent defections in lure of office can be prevented and also an attempt was made to prevent defectors to hold any public offices such as ministership or any other remunerative post. Thus, a defector neither can be appointed as a minister nor will hold any remunerative post from the date of disqualification till the date on which the term of his office as such member would expire or where s/he contests any election. This well-intentioned attempt however, lacked sustainability and failed to curb the menace of defection in India. The problem was that this law basically applies when any legislator after being elected change political party and join another political party. However, Indian politicians were far too creative to transverse across these complications by just before election as there is no such law in our country to control it. In recent past, we also saw cases where legislators first resign from the party membership and as MLA/MP and then joined another political party. Because of this, the entire purpose of the 91st Constitutional Amendment seems to be frustrated. In Madhya Pradesh almost all the defectors have been inducted in the Cabinet even without being elected. It could be possible because we have no such law to prevent the entry of such defectors. There is also an example of Arunachal Pradesh[xix] where almost all of the Congress Party legislators merged with another political party. The whole object of Anti-defection law was to discipline the legislaors but it seems that this law could not contain defection, the politicians continuously changing their party affiliation and this system of political turncoats has become rampant, especially after 2014. Defections also undermines the power of ballot because voters through election give mandate to any political party to form the government. Defectors by changing their party affiliation allow other political party to form government which was rejected by the voters in the election. The ensuing changes in the government composition following defection in Arunachal Pradesh (2016), Goa (2019), Manipur (Manipur), Karnataka (2019), Madhya Pradesh (2020) and currently the ongoing power struggle in Rajasthan are some of the illustrations of this assertion. Defectors have no fear as they mostly join the ruling party and the Speaker who has the power to disqualify belongs to the ruling party, therefore, the chances are too remote that the Speaker being political person will decide against the will of his/her political party. In 2019, 17 Congress Party MLAs in Karnataka submitted resignation to the Speaker followed by their disqualification. The matter reached the Apex Court where a 3-judge bench of NV Ramana, Sanjiv Khanna, and Krishna Murari, JJ had upheld “the decision of Karnataka Speaker’s to disqualify 17 rebel MLAs on the ground of defection. However, it set aside the part of order that disqualified members can’t contest elections till the end of the current Assembly term i.e. the 15th Legislative Assembly of Karnataka. It, hence, directed that these 17 Karnataka MLAs can contest the by-elections in the state”[xx]. Out of the 17 defecting Congress-Janata Dal (Secular) MLAs, 11 were re-elected on a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) ticket. Earlier they were MLAs on the ticket of Congress Party and now they are MLAs on the ticket of ruling BJP and most of them are ministers. This reflects the ineffectiveness of the Anti-Defection Law. There is no fear of Anti-defection law in the mind of such defectors and this trend is more dangerous. Earlier the legislators used to change party after being elected for getting the berth in the Cabinet. But now they are toppling the government of their party and joining another party after resigning from the membership of the party and MLA/MP. They are contesting by-election on the ticket of newly joined party. Because of all these defections, there is an undue burden on the government exchequer. Such people should not be allowed to contest election for at least 5 years. This judgment will help the defectors to change parties because they know that after some period of gap, they may be elected again for the same Assembly/Parliament. Unless there is a thorough contemplation and reconsideration on this judgment, the desire to have disciplined politicians would always remain a chimera. In Keisham Meghachandra Singh v. The Hon’ble Speaker Manipur Legislative Assembly & Ors.,[xxi] the Supreme Court has held that “Speaker of the Legislative Assembly should decide on a petition seeking disqualification of a member under 10th Schedule of the Constitution within a period of three months, in the absence of exceptional reasons. The bench also acknowledged the problem of Speakers acting in a partisan manner due to their political loyalties. Therefore, the bench suggested that “the Parliament should amend the Constitution to provide for an independent mechanism, such as a Permanent Tribunal headed by retired judges, to decide disputes under Tenth Schedule.”[xxii] Currently, there is confrontation between the judiciary and legislature on the issue of show cause notice by the Speaker of Rajasthan Legislative Assembly to 19 MLAs for not attending Congress Legislature Party meeting. These 19 MLAs challenged the show cause notice in the Rajasthan High Court which has given a decision in Prithviraj Meena v. The Hon’ble Speaker, Rajasthan Legislative Assembly Jaipur Rajasthan, to follow status quo while awaiting the proceedings before the Supreme Court which shall be hearing the matter next on 27th July 2020. Even in Kihota Hollohon case, the Court held that “having regard to the constitutional scheme in the 10th Schedule, judicial review should not cover any stage prior to the making of a decision by the Speakers/Chairman. No interference would be permissible at an interlocutory stage of the proceedings.” It can be concluded that this legislation has proved to be completely ineffective in curbing the menace of defection. It is really difficult to prevent defections because politician mostly join ruling the party in the House to which even the Speaker belongs to. The lack of non-partisan and ethical conduct by those in privileged positions such as that of the Speaker further jeopardizes the efficacy of the Anti-Defection Law in India. Some hope could be seen in the Apex Court’s suggestion given in Keisham Meghachandra Singh case, whereby it stated that “the power should be vested in independent tribunal” as also suggested by the different Commissions in the past. The government should do the needful in this direction while adopting a more stringent approach. To check unprincipled defections these measures may be effective: One, on the pattern of Lily Thomas case, the Apex Court should issue directions that the defected person automatically should be treated as disqualified and s/he should not be allowed to be elected for either house at least for 5 years. Such defectors should also not be allowed to be appointed as a minister even for a single day. In addition to this, the benefit of Article 75 (5) and Article 164 (4) should not be available to the defectors. Two, if any person resgins from the membership of a party and the membership of Assembly/Parliament and joins another political party, there shall be a limitation of their chance (including spouce) to contest by-elction on the ticket of another political party. Unless such defector complete suitable cooling period in that party. Three, there is a need to amend law that no person should be allowed to change party after announcement of elections. If s/he joins another political party just before election for contesting election, should not be allowed to contest unless s/he complete suitable cooling period in newly joined party. In existing law, there is no provision to check such defections just after an announcements of election. Not overruling the possibility of the inherent intentional and unintentional delay in formulating and adopting of such a law, the author would like to call upon the Judiciary to rise to the occasion while asserting itself as the custodian of the constitutional values and democratic ethos of the country and issue direction in this regard. Four, in this era of politics of prepoll alliance, if any party contested election as a partner of prepoll alliance, after an election they should not be allowed to quit from prepoll alliance. If they quit, they should be disqualified under the Anti-defection law. To change the dynamics of a toothless tiger to an effective piece of legislation completely fulfilling its desired objectives, there should also be provisions dealing with such actions by political parties. This suggestion originally given by the Administrative Reforms Commission becomes significant especially in the era of coalition politics and formation of prepoll alliances. If defections is not prevented, the definition of the democracy, ‘Government of the people by the people for the people’ will be replaced with, ‘government of the defectors by the defectors for the defectors.’ To maintain the sanctity of the electoral process it is absolutely necessary now to take proactive measures in this direction. Views are personal only. (Author is a Associate Professor at Faculty of Law, Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi. E-mail: asad_malik [email protected] and [email protected]) [i] The term political party was used first time in the 10th Shedule of the Constitution. [ii] Dr. Subhash C. Kashyap, Anti-Defection Law and Parliamenary Privileges, v Forward (2003). [iii] Rajni Kothari, ‘The Congress ‘System’ in India’, Asian Survey, 4 (12), 1161-1173. [iv] Verma, J.S., New Dimensions of Justice, 210 (2000). [v] https://www.prsindia.org/theprsblog/politics-defection [vi] Supra note 2 at 2-3. [vii] 13 November, 1981 Jammu & Kashmir High Court [viii] “An anti-defection clause enables a political party to prevent defections of its elected members, thus ensuring that they continue to support the party under whose aegis they were elected. It also prevents parties in power from enticing members of small parties to defect from the party upon whose list they were elected to join the governing party.” See, KuldipNayar v. Union Of India &Ors, AIR 2006 SC 3127 [ix] Supra note 2 at 5-6. [x] Ravi S. Naik v. Union of India, AIR 1994 SC 1558 [xi]Ibid. Also see, Rajendra Singh Rana v. Swami Prasad Maurya (2007) 4 SCC 270, Dr. Mahachandra Prasad Singh v. Chairman, Bihar Legislative Assembly (2004) 8 SCC 747, Jagjit Singh v. State of Haryana, AIR 2007 SC 590 and G. Viswanathan v. Speaker, T.N. Legislative Assembly, AIR 1996 SC 1060. [xii] Jagjit Singh v. State of Haryana, AIR 2007 SC 590. [xiii] It means any person elected as a member otherwise than as a candidate set up by any political party. [xiv] Kihota Hollohon v. Zachilhu (1992) 1 SCC 309. [xv] Jagjit singh Case para 11.Also see, Balchandra L. Jarkilioli & Others v. B.S. Yeddyurappa & Others, 2011 (6) SCALE and Raja Ram Pal v. Hon’ble Speaker, Lok Sabha and Others, (2007) 3SCC 184 [xvi] Kashinath G. Jalmi v. The Speaker, AIR 1993 SC 1873. These observations were reiterated with approval in Jagjit Singh v. State of Haryana, AIR 2007 SC 590 [xvii] (1992) 1 SCC 309. [xviii] This Amendment came into force on 1st January, 2004. [xix] Khandu and 43 of 44 Congress MLAs joined the PPA. See, Samudra Gupta Kashyap, In Arunachal, CM Pema Khandu wins musical chairs game for BJP, 1&2, Indian Express (January 1, 2017). [xx] Shrimanth Balasaheb Patil v. Hon’ble Speaker, Karnataka Legislative Assembly and others [xxi] Decided on January 21, 2020. Also see, Shri T.N. Haokip v. Shri Thounaojam Shyamkumar, Spaeker Tribunal , SC, March 28, 2020, Khumukcham Joykishan Singh V. The Hon’ble Speaker & ors., The Manipur High Court on June 8, 2020, Deepak Singh v. Chairman Legislative Council Uttar Pradesh & Ors., June 12, 2020, R. Sakkrapani v. The Secretary, TN Legislative Assembly, July 08, 2020 SC. <[xxii] Ibid. Next Story
News UpdatesKerala Actor Assault Case: Prosecution Seeks To Stop Trial; Alleges Bias By Judge LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK16 Oct 2020 4:07 AMShare This – xThe prosecution said that they are approaching the HC to transfer the case to another court.The sensational case relating to the abduction and sexual assault of a Malayalam film actor witnessed a dramatic twist on Thursday when the Prosecution sought to stop the trial proceedings, expressing no-confidence with the presiding judge.Stating that the conduct of the trial court is “highly biased” and “detrimental to the entire judicial system and to the entire prosecution”, the…Your free access to Live Law has expiredTo read the article, get a premium account.Your Subscription Supports Independent JournalismSubscription starts from ₹ 599+GST (For 6 Months)View PlansPremium account gives you:Unlimited access to Live Law Archives, Weekly/Monthly Digest, Exclusive Notifications, Comments.Reading experience of Ad Free Version, Petition Copies, Judgement/Order Copies.Subscribe NowAlready a subscriber?LoginThe sensational case relating to the abduction and sexual assault of a Malayalam film actor witnessed a dramatic twist on Thursday when the Prosecution sought to stop the trial proceedings, expressing no-confidence with the presiding judge.Stating that the conduct of the trial court is “highly biased” and “detrimental to the entire judicial system and to the entire prosecution”, the Special Public Prosecutor in the case, A Suresan, filed an application under Section 309 of the Code of Criminal Procedure seeking to postpone the ongoing trial proceedings.The trial is progressing before the court of Special CBI Judge at Ernakulam, Honey M Varghese, to whom the High Court of Kerala had assigned the case last year considering the request of the victim of the crime for a woman judge to handle the matter. Prominent Malayalam film actor Dileep is accused of hatching the criminal conspiracy behind the abduction and the sexual assault of the victim, also an actor, in a moving vehicle in the outskirts of Cochin city in February 2017.The prosecution has so far examined 55 witnesses in the case, including certain prominent actors of the Malayalam film industry. Some of them have reportedly turned hostile. The victim of the crime has also given her statement.The Special Prosecutor took exception to certain statements and remarks said to have been made by the judge during the course of witness examination.”The prosecution honestly believes that the prosecution as well as the victim will not get fair trial and justice from this court”, the application said.The Special Prosecutor said that it was approaching the High Court to transfer the case to another court.”The prosecution intends to approach the honourable High Court for transfer of the trial of this case from this Honourable Court to any other court. Therefore, it is humbly submitted that the prosecution is not in a position to conduct the trial of the above case before this court on the above grounds and also on several other grounds which are not to be mentioned here to protect the interests of justice”, the plea stated.The prosecutor also added that the victim in this case “represents the Indian society at large, and any kind of damage to the image and trust of the system existing in the minds of the public at large will do considerable harm to the entire judicial system”.In November 2019, while rejecting Dileep’s plea for a copy of the memory card allegedly containing the visuals of the sexual crime, the Supreme Court had ordered that the trial in the case should be completed expeditiously, “preferably within six months”.The Kerala Police had arrested Dileep in July 2017 alleging that he was the mastermind of the crime. After 88 days of custody, the High Court granted him bail.The prosecution recently filed an application seeking cancellation of his bail stating that he was influencing and intimidating the witnesses in the case.In March 2020, the trial court had passed a gag order prohibiting the media reportage of the proceedings in the in-camera trial in the case. However, the court had allowed the reporting of matters as permitted by the Nipun Saxena judgment of the Supreme Court in 2017.As far as reporting on in-camera proceedings, the SC observed in Nipun Saxena case :”This is not to say that there can be no reporting of such cases. The press can report that the case was fixed before court and some witnesses were examined. It can report for what purposes the case was listed but it cannot report what transpired inside the court or what was the statement of the victim or the witnesses. The evidence cannot be disclosed”.Subscribe to LiveLaw, enjoy Ad free version and other unlimited features, just INR 599 Click here to Subscribe. All payment options available.loading….Next Story
‘Is Protesting In Streets The Way To Respond When Matter Is Considered By Court?’ : Calcutta HC Asks In Narada Case Against Trinamool Leaders
Top Stories’Is Protesting In Streets The Way To Respond When Matter Is Considered By Court?’ : Calcutta HC Asks In Narada Case Against Trinamool Leaders LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK19 May 2021 4:39 AMShare This – xThe Calcutta High Court on Wednesday asked if it was appropriate to have public protests against the arrests of four TMC leaders when their bail applications were being heard by the Court. A Division Bench of Acting Chief Justice Rajesh Bindal and Justice Arijit Banerjee was hearing the CBI’s case against the bail granted to TMC leaders Firhad Hakim, Madan Mitra, Subrata Mukherjee and Souvan Chatterjee in the Narada Scam case.Advertisement The CBI is seeking to transfer the bail applications from the Special CBI Court to the High Court, citing the “unprecedented mob pressure” exerted by the protests of Chief Minister Mamanata Banerjee and Law Minister Moloy Ghatak along with their supporters.The bench is also hearing the applications filed by the arrested TMC leaders seeking recall of the order passed by the High Court on May 17 to stay the bail granted by the Special CBI judge.Advertisement After hearing Solicitor General Tushar Mehta for the CBI, Senior Advocates Dr Abhishek Manu Singhvi and Siddharth Luthra for the accused for over two hours, the bench adjourned the case till tomorrow 2 PM for further hearing. During the hearing, Acting Chief Justice Rajesh Bindal asked if protests are a way to respond when the matter is being considered by a Court of Law. He also asked if political leaders have a duty to not incite their followers. Advertisement Advertisement Senior Advocate Dr Abhishek Manu Singhvi, appearing for three of the four arrested TMC leaders, said that the protests were peaceful expressions of outrage against “unlawful arrests” and that they did not impede neither the functions of the CBI nor the proceedings in the Special CBI Court.Singhvi stressed that the Chief Minister had made an appeal for peaceful protests and that there were no exhortations for violence. He dubbed the Chief Minister’s protests “Gandhian”.Advertisement Advertisement Advertisement “You say CM went to CBI office to protest..Gandhian protest..peaceful protest. But is it the way to respond when the matter is considered by Court? By protesting in streets?”, Acting Chief Justice asked.Acting Chief Justice : You say CM went to CBI office to protest..Gandhian protest..peaceful protest. But is it the way to respond when the matter is considered by Court? By protesting in streets.#NaradaCase #CalcuttaHighCourt— Live Law (@LiveLawIndia) May 19, 2021 To this, Dr. AM Singhvi appearing replied that the case can be fought legally on merits and the issue of political vendetta can be protested democratically. “It would be negation of democracy to say that just because the matter is before court you cannot peacefully protest outside. Merely because a matter has gone to Court, it will not stop democratic dissent,” he added.Singhvi : Merely because a matter has gone to Court, it will not stop democratic dissent.#NaradaCase #CalcuttaHighCourt— Live Law (@LiveLawIndia) May 19, 2021 “If there is a perception of unlawful arrest, there is a right to protest, so long as the lawful functions of the agency are not restrained,” he argued.He added that there was an outrage amongst people against such unlawful arrests, and there is a right to feel outraged.”That is the meaning of democracy. There was expression of anger against arrest after 7 years…” he said.He added, “As it happens in democracy, there was protest by co-ministers, co-MLAs. But there was no hindrance to the CBI. The protestations are being used as an excuse by CBI now”. “For 5-6 hours CM remains in CBI office. Do you deny that the law minister going to court was systemic?” ACJ asked. He stated that there is a difference in status once MLA becomes a Minister. “You are not a simple MLA,” the ACJ said. Singhvi responded, “Does the CM going to CBI create a situation where a judicial order cannot be passed by a court of law after a virtual hearing of 4 hrs?”It is also his case that mere presence of protestors outside Trial Court did not affect the judicial proceedings as the hearing was virtual. “The Special Court has not expressed any difficulty… Special Judge has not made any remotest suggestion of being over-awed,” he said.At this juncture, ACJ Rajesh Bindal intervened, “The Special Judge should have recorded that he was being pressurized?””At least there should be a hint, a suggestion,” Singhvi responded.He insisted that the Special CBI Judge heard the matter judiciously and the protest is not connected with the judicial order which was passed after hearing and recording reasons. “In what manner it is said that he impeded the administration of justice. What is the fact which shows that the law minister standing in the court complex influenced the judge? Did he (judge) even know if the minister was there? There were many people. It is natural,” he said.”It is not natural,” ACJ responded.Dr.Singvhi also highlighted that the proceedings in the Special Court happened through video-conferencing. The CBI suppressed from the High Court that the Special Court’s heard the matter for over four hours through virtual mode, he added.Singhvi argued that the test for Section 407 application is if the judge was not able to hear the matter or the counsels were prevented from arguing. “There is no mention of any obstruction to hearing. The order records matter was heard virtually on consent of both sides,” he submitted.In this context, he referred to the criminal cases against Salman Khan, Sanjay Dutt. “There will be outpouring of emotions in such cases…It does not mean that the administration of justice has been impeded,” he argued.”The grant of bail and the protests were not connected. There is an attempt to connect two un-connected things,” he urged. So far as arrests are concerned, Justice Banerjee noted that a chargesheet has already been filed in the matter. “Do you have a case that they did not cooperate?” Justice Banerjee asked CBI. He suggested that in these times of pandemic, Court may put more stringent conditions on the Respondents. “Is it necessary to put them in jail or correctional homes? You have to address us on that issue,” he said. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta appearing for CBI urged that the Respondents must be kept in custody to prevent them from influencing witnesses. “The question of bail is not necessarily about they cooperating or not cooperating. The question is linked to their ability to influence the investigation or trial… All the four accused are highly influential and can influence the witnesses or the further investigation,” he responded. He assured the Court that if the accused have medical issues, they will be properly dealt with. Separate account of the Solicitor General’s submissions may be read here.Full live account of the hearing may be read here. Factual Matrix A case was registered against the accused persons under the Prevention of Corruption Act, allegedly for accepting illegal gratifications from one sting operator namely Mathew Samuel. They were arrested on Monday morning and were thereafter produced before Special CBI Court. It was immediately after their arrest that a significant number of followers gheraoed the CBI office and did not allow the CBI officers to move out of their office to enable them to produce them in court. Moreover, Chief Minister of the State, Mamata Banerjee also arrived at the spot and sat on dharna along with the followers seeking an Unconditional release of the accused persons was sought from the CBI office. Subsequently, a Special CBI Court granted bail to the accused TMC Leaders on May 17. This order came to be stayed by a Division Bench of the High Court in an urgent sitting held that night, taking exception to the presence of state law minister Moloy Ghatak, with 2000-3000 supporters in the premises of the trial court which was hearing the bail applications. “Confidence of the people in the justice system will be eroded if such incidents occur, while political leaders arrested, are being produced in the Court,” the High Court had said. CBI has filed an application for transfer of proceedings under Section 407 of CrPC. It has also invoked the writ jurisdiction of High Court under Article 226 of the Constitution and Inherent Powers under Section 482 of CrPC, seeking to declare Trial Court proceedings of May 17 void and non-est in law. CBI stopped from doing its job: SG Mehta It is the CBI’s case that in light of “unprecedented pressure tactics and hooliganism” adopted by the Respondents in the form of overcrowding, both at the Trial Court and outside its offices, the proceedings before the Special CBI Court dated May 17 stand vitiated. The SG submitted that the incident was an “orchestrated attempt” of the Respondents to frustrate the course of justice and to stop CBI from discharging its functions. “There were unprecedented extraordinary circumstances… I don’t think anywhere else in the country such shocking incidents have happened where a premier investigating agency, which has been entrusted with the investigation by this court, is stopped from doing its job,” he said. He further submitted that the bail was granted by the Trial Court on the first day and the CBI was not given an opportunity to respond to the application. “We could not even place the case-diary before the court because we were physically restrained,” SG said referring to the huge gathering outside its offices due to the CM’s dharna. He added, “All this was happening in an orchestrated manner to stop the CBI from seeking police custody of the accused approaching the court… Thousands of party workers laid a seige on the CBI office. There was stone-pelting and officers were heckled and threatened. Due to these circumstances, the accused could not be medically examined and could not be physically produced before the Court, and CBI could not submit the records before the Court. Therefore, accused were produced only virtually.” He continued that that the CBI did not seek policy custody of the arrested accused because of the ‘terror’ situation created by the mob. “CBI did not think seeking police custody was safe,” he remarked. Further referring to the gathering outside the Trial Court led by Law Minister Moloy Ghatak, SG submitted, “The Law Minister reached the court premises with his supporters and remained there throughout the hearing. This had a terrorizing effect not only on the prosecution but also on the administration of justice. The agency was terrorized not to effectively oppose the bail and not to seek police custody. The agency was prevented from producing the case diary before the Special Court. Therefore, the prosecutor could not effectively oppose bail.” He stated that the CBI has also invoked Section 482, which is applicable against abuse of process of law. “If this is not abuse of process of law, I don’t know what can be abuse of process of law. They now want to vacate this order, so that their orchestrated and well-designed attempts to frustrate justice are successful,” he said opposing the recall petition. No obstruction was caused, hearing was Virtual: Singhvi & Luthra Senior Advocate Dr. AM Singhvi appearing for the TMC leaders vehemently opposed CBI’s appeal. “What is the urgency for arrest seven years later…Supreme Court has directed to release even hardened criminals taking note of COVID,” he submitted. He stated that a wrong impression was given to the High Court regarding overcrowding in Trial Court and consequent intimidation, as the CBI was arguing ‘virtually’ before the Special Court. “The Special Court has not expressed any difficulty… Special Judge has not made any remotest suggestion of being over-awed,” he said. At this juncture, ACJ Rajesh Bindal intervened, “The Special Judge should have recorded that he was being pressurized?” “At least there should be a hint, a suggestion,” Singhvi responded. Senior Advocate Sidhharth Luthra also submitted, “The learned Special Judge was hearing the case through VC. The Special Judge was not confronted by anybody.” At this juncture, ACJ Rajesh Bindal said that it is CBI’s case that it was unable to produce the accused before the Trial Court because people were sitting outside its office. “There is a charge sheet filed. There is a remand application filed on the same day. It has no mention of law and order situation,” Luthra responded. Right to Protest against unlawful arrest: Singhvi Senior Advocate Singhvi alleged that the arrests were a reaction to “bitter election results” and CBI did not obtain sanctions from the Speaker, before effecting the arrest. He argued that if there is a perception of unlawful arrest, people have a right to protest, so long as the lawful functions of the agency are not restrained. “In this context, there was outrage. There is right to feel outraged. That is the meaning of democracy. There was expression of anger against arrest after 7 years… As it happens in democracy, there was protest by co-ministers, co-MLAs. But there was no hindrance to the CBI. The protestations are being used as an excuse by CBI now,” he submitted. He stated that CM Mamta Banerjee went to the CBI in the capacity as an MLA. “What power she has over the CBI or Special CBI Court? CBI is not required to take orders from CM. If CM says ‘North’, CBI will say ‘South'” he said when ACJ inquired about the CM’s presence at the site. Read more here: Narada Case- “Do You Deny CM Sitting In Dharna In Front Of CBI Office”? Asks Court, “It Was A Means Of Democratic Protest”: Dr Singhvi Don’t leaders have a duty to not incite followers: ACJ Bindal As Singhvi argued that CBI is using the protests as an excuse to subvert the grant of bail and that the gathering did not affect Court proceedings, ACJ Bindal inquired, “What is the duty of the leaders? Should they stand to disperse the followers or to incite them?” Dodging the query, Singhvi responded, “I will answer as a lawyer. I keep Chinese walls between by different roles. No leader should do anything to impede the course of justice.” He added, “There is a democracy tax. Protests will have something disorderly or chaotic. That is the price we pay for democracy.” Singhvi informed the Bench that the Chief Minister had appealed for peaceful protests. “CM’s dharna was a ‘Gandhian way of protest’ without any exhortation of violence,” he said. “Stone-pelting is Gandhian?,” ACJ asked. “Certainly not. I can show video of Minister getting down from car and asking protestors to maintain calm and make way. None of these told by CBI. That is why it was important to issue notice (on recall application)” Singhvi responded. Unconvinced, ACJ remarked, “You say CM went to CBI office to protest…Gandhian protest…peaceful protest. But is it the way to respond when the matter is considered by Court? By protesting in streets.” To this, Singhvi submitted that the response van be both legally and democratically. “The case can be fought legally on merits and the issue of political vendetta can be protested democratically,” he said. “It would be negation of democracy to say that just because the matter is before court you cannot peacefully protest outside. Merely because a matter has gone to Court, it will not stop democratic dissent,” he added. In this context, he cited the example of farmers protests. Transfer application not maintainable: Singhvi & Luthra Senior Advocate Siddhrth Luthra argued that CBI’s application for transfer under Section 407 CrPC was not maintainable and the stay order could not have been passed. Adding to this, Singhvi claimed that the CBI did not mention of the transfer application in the letter served on them. “Section 407 mandates the filing of an affidavit which was not present in the case,” he said. He stated that they were not even given notice of hearing before the High Court. “No court can stay interim-bail without giving notice to the accused,” he argued. He alleged that “Principles of natural justice were violated. Aged persons are arrested in a 2014 sting. The stay order was obtained by complete false representation and suppression of facts.” Singhvi insisted that the correct course would have been to challenge the order of Special Court. “My learned friend is entitled to appeal against the bail order. But the majesty of law requires that the wrong committed by CBI by moving the court in parallel must be corrected by releasing them forthwith,” he said. Police custody not required after filing of Charge sheet Senior Advocates Singhvi and Luthra urged the Court to recall the stay on bail as the investigation in the case is complete and charge sheet as already been filed. “Accused are in hospital. Where can they run away?” Singhvi said. Luthra added that the investigation against the accused are over and chargesheet has been filed. He told the Court that even voice samples of four accused were collected and sent to Forensic test. “On the day of filing chargesheet, they were arrested. Police custody is needed only for investigation. Where is the question of police custody after chargesheet? You have not arrested us for four years. Where is the need for arrest on the day of filing chargesheet?” Luthra remarked. Senior Advocate Kalyan Bandhopadhyay, who appeared for the accused before the Special CBI Court, told the Bench that before Special Court, CBI asked for police custody. “The Magistrate asked them thrice if they were asking police custody. CBI said yes. Later they changed the stand during the course of hearing.” He also said that CBI had sought for sanction from Governor in the month of January 2021, when the government was there. Sanction was finally given on 9th May. “If the Governor keeps the matter for five months, what is the need for custody now?” he remarked. Accused’ Health conditions warrant bail Singhvi and Luthra also cited the health conditions of the accused to plea for bail. The Bench was informed that Subrata Mukherjee is 75 years old and has been an MLA for 50 years. “There is no flight risk. Other accused are also aged with comorbidities,” Singhvi said. Luthra submitted that his client Sovan Chatterjee is in custody and he is a COPD patient and a high-risk case for COVID. “He is not an MLA and not a person in power,” he submitted. Opposing these grounds, SG Mehta submitted that the accused are under 24-hours medical supervision.Tags#Calcutta High Court Mamta Banerjee CBI Court #Narada Scam Mamata Banerjee Dharna TMC Leaders Trinamool Congress Party (TMC) Justice Rajesh Bindal Justice Arijit Banerjee Subscribe to LiveLaw, enjoy Ad free version and other unlimited features, just INR 599 Click here to Subscribe. All payment options available.loading….Next Story
iStock/ChiccoDodiFCBy: IVAN PEREIRA, ABC News(NEW YORK) — A North Carolina officer was fired and is under criminal investigation after he allegedly gathered a group of people and tried to break into a teen’s home while searching for a missing person, prosecutors said.New Hanover & Pender County District Attorney Ben David charged Jordan Kita, a former deputy with the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office, with “forcible trespass, misdemeanor breaking and entering, and willful failure to discharge duties,” for the incident that took place on May 3, David’s office said. Monica Shepard told reporters that her son Dameon answered loud knocks to the door of their Pender County home and were allegedly confronted by Kita and other men, who were armed. Shepard and her son are both black; Kita and the group that confronted them are white.Kita, who was off-duty but allegedly had his weapon and uniform, said they were looking for a missing girl and came to the address looking for a suspect with a different name, according to the mother and son. Dameon Shepard said he was confused since there was a sign on the lawn that announced his graduation from Laney High School with his name on it.“I’m just like, ‘My name is Dameon. My name is Dameon. I go to Laney High School. I graduated. My sign’s on the lawn,” the teen told ABC affiliate WWAY-TV.Monica Shepard said she tried to step in and told Kita he had to leave. The officer allegedly said, “Well, I’m just going to step inside and close the door and talk to you guys,” and put his foot in the door, according to Shepard.The officer and the crowd eventually left after they realized they had the wrong address, and the unidentified girl was found safe, according to the DA’s office. The New Hanover County Sheriff fired Kita on Friday while the investigation continues.Austin Wood, who was in the crowd, was charged with “going armed to the terror of the public,” DA David said.“Please remain calm and know that committed professionals will see that justice is done in a courtroom,” he said at a news conference.Attorney information for Kita and Wood weren’t immediately available.David said more arrests were pending and asked members of the public to provide more details about the incident. He could not give more information on the officer’s motivation or actions but did say there appears to be a “familial relation” between Kita and the missing girl.“One thing we absolutely make certain of is that anyone who’s violating the law is treated the same,” David said.Monica Shepard told WWAY-TV she’s thankful that the incident didn’t end violently. She is mulling civil action against the officer, according to her attorney, James W. Lea.Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.
Back to overview,Home naval-today Royal Australian Navy gets new navigators March 9, 2016 View post tag: Royal Australian Navy Navigators aboard HMAS Warramunga have completed a two week deployment to New Zealand as a final stage of the Surface Combatant Navigation Course. Navigators from the Royal Australian and Royal New Zealand Navies conducted precision pilotages around the coast of New Zealand during which the ship also conducted port visits to Auckland and Wellington.The New Zealand component was the culmination of 13 weeks of theory and practical activities covering advanced navigation techniques, warfare and ship handling theory.Each phase aims to teach students the appropriate skills to support a major fleet unit’s warfare fighting capability, and to safely handle the ship in a range of operational and environmental challenges.The five week practical component includes one week at the Port Ash ship handling facility, in New South Wales, where students practice ship handling and tug work in a range of environmental challenges.The pilotage phase consists of one week in the Bridge Simulator at HMAS Watson, a week in the Navigation Training Vessel Mercator in Sydney Harbour and Broken Bay, before the most challenging phase at sea, this time conducted in New Zealand in Warramunga.The sea assessment period for the navigators involved almost 80 pilotage runs within the Hauraki Gulf, Pelorus and Queen Charlotte Sounds, as well as pilotage and tug handling exercises conducting in Auckland and Wellington. After two weeks of intensive navigation training the port visit to Wellington marked the end of the rigorous testing regime, resulting in four Navigators graduating from course.Royal New Zealand Navy officer, Lieutenant Seager Clarkson said the course was both challenging and rewarding.“I found the ship handling practice at Port Ash the highlight of the course,” Lieutenant Clarkson said.“We do not have facilities like that in New Zealand so it was beneficial to practice berthing and tug work in difficult situations whilst getting advice from experienced pilots.”A graduation ceremony was held for the students of the demanding and intensive course at HMAS Watson on March 2 in the presence of guest of honour Commodore Training, Commodore Mick Rothwell. Also in attendance was Secretary of the Australian Institute of Navigation Air Vice Marshall Kym Osley (Rtd), along with many members of the navigation community, including Advanced Navigators from Principal Warfare Officers’ Course 52, who made a special effort to welcome the students.The students will soon join their respective fleets as the next generation of Surface Combatant Navigators. View post tag: Royal New Zealand Navy View post tag: HMAS Warramunga Royal Australian Navy gets new navigators Share this article Authorities
Undergraduates at St Peter’s College are to be collectively warned about their behaviour after a group wore t-shirts bearing homophobic and racist comments while on a pub crawl.When challenged by offended onlookers, they claimed to be from Teddy Hall.The pub crawl, which took place on Thursday of Freshers’ Week, involved the first years being given t-shirts on which they could write, and then being split into three groups.As the evening progressed, the writing on some of the t-shirts of one group became increasingly offensive, with accompanying second years advising them to turn their t-shirts inside out, or scribble over the writing.When challenged, some of the students claimed to be from Teddy Hall, a college with whom St Peter’s College has a longstanding rivalry.Charlie Southern, the St Edmund Hall JCR President, has called their behaviour, “totally unacceptable.”He continued, “the fact that when challenged the students claimed to be from Teddy Hall is pretty pathetic to be honest, and it will only come back to harm them to an even greater extent in the end.”St Peter’s JCR President, Sanjay Nanwani, called the incident “regrettable”, and said that it was “unfortunate that it happened”, conceding that some of the material was offensive.He stressed that in organising the event, the Freshers’ Committee had abided by all decanal rules and regulations, that the incident was down to a minority of freshers, and put their claims to be from Teddy Hall down to “a moment of frivolity, not malice.”“The JCR obviously does not condone racism, homophobia or anti-Semitism. We are very tolerant,” Nanwani said. “I want to stress that we have every respect for St Edmund Hall.” He added that he was confident there would be no disciplinary action taken against students involved and that the Dean was to send an email to all St Peter’s freshers warning them about their conduct.The Dean of the college, Dr. Roger Allen, who was unaware of the incident until it was brought to his attention by Cherwell, said that, “St Peter’s takes a very serious view of any offensive behaviour on the part of its students”, and that the President “has the College’s full confidence and support in the way he and the JCR committee are dealing with this incident.”He said that he has since discussed the incident with the Junior Deans and the JCR President.