Top 9 Judgments Delivered By Supreme Court Of India In 2019

Published on 07 Jan 2020 by Shivi

The Supreme Court of India delivered numerous landmark judgments in the year 2019, with some being a topic of debate even after the verdict, and some providing relief to the public at large. Here’s a look at top 9 most important judgments delivered by the Supreme Court of India in 2019:

Ayodhya Verdict

The verdict took 27 years to finally settle the matter of demolition of Babri Masjid in Ayodhya. The title suit over the disputed land was filed 69 years ago, and in a unanimous decision, a five-judge Bench held that the 2.77-acre disputed land was to be awarded to the deity Ram Lalla, and 5 acres of alternative land was to be allocated to the Sunni Waqf Board in Ayodhya to build a mosque.

Striking Down Of Section 87 Of Arbitration & Conciliation Act

A Supreme Court bench of 3 judges struck down Section 87 of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 that was a part of the 2019 Amendment Act. The section provided for an automatic stay on enforcement of the award once the opposite party challenged the award in court. The apex court, in the writ petition, held that defending these cases took around 6 years and the money remained stuck for such a long period. 

Retrospective Effect Of Section 148 Of NI Act

The Supreme Court held that Section 148 of the Negotiable Instruments Act as amended would have a retrospective effect and will be applicable on the appeals against the order of conviction and sentence for the offence under Section 138 of the NI Act even when the criminal complaints under Section 138 for cheque bounce case were filed before the 2018 Amendment Act which came into effect from September 1, 2018. 

RERA Registration Of Amrapali Builder Cancelled

As a relief to suffering homebuyers, the Supreme Court cancelled the registration of Amrapali group under Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act 2016 and directed the National Building Construction Corporation to take over its pending construction projects in Greater Noida and Noida. 

The Amrapali group siphoned off homebuyers’ money in Greater Noida and Noida while the authorities took no action to prevent it. The Court directed the Enforcement Directorate to proceed with legal action against the directors of Amrapali group and Noida authorities under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act and Foreign Exchange Management Act.

ALSO READ: History Of Amrapali Group's Legal Fiasco: What Went Wrong

SC/ST Act Dilution

Previously, regarding the dilution of the provisions of the SC/ST Atrocities Act, 1989, the Supreme Court said that anticipatory bail can be granted in such matters if courts are of the view that no prima facie case was made out. However, the apex court recalled its decision of diluting the Act and restored the earlier position of the law.

Constitutional Validity Of Insolvency And Bankruptcy Code

The apex court upheld the constitutionality of the IBC Code, 2016 and rejected the petitions that challenged its constitutional validity. The court held that distinction between operational creditors and financial creditors were based on intelligible differentia.

Treatment Of Homebuyers As Financial Creditors Under IBC

The Supreme Court dismissed the petitions of hundreds of builders and upheld the IBC Amendment that treats homebuyers as financial creditors of builders. Builders challenged the claims of homebuyers in NCLT on the grounds that homebuyers were not creditors of the builders and this treatment led to the violation of rights under Article 14.

MUST-READ: NCLT Insolvency Petition Against Builder By Homebuyers

Gratuity To Teachers

The Supreme Court recalled its previous judgment and held that teachers are entitled under the Payment of Gratuity Act to claim gratuity from their employers. Previously, the court said that teachers, irrespective of the type of educational institute they are working, are not an 'employee' under Section 2(e) of the Payment of Gratuity Act and, therefore, have no right to claim gratuity from the employer. Later, the court observed prima facie error in this judgment and stayed the operation of the judgment.

Consumption Of Liquor In Private Vehicle 

The Supreme Court held that a private vehicle is not exempted from the definition of 'public place' under the Bihar Excise (Amendment) Act 2016 and consumption of liquor within a private vehicle in a public place will be an offence under the prohibition laws in Bihar. 

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