Stringent Implementation of Cyber Laws in India – The Need of the Hour

Cyber laws deal with cybercrime viz. the relationship of the internet with electronic and technological elements like computers, hardware, software, and related information’s systems. The law is devised to control and stop cyber crimes like online frauds and scams, hacking, computer system attacks, identity thefts, prohibited or illegal content. Cybercrime can not only cause financial issues but also upset victims extremely on a mental level. There are two types of cyber crimes one is with the computer as a target and the other using the computer as a weapon. Cyber laws include copyright, defamation, freedom of Speech as well as harassment and stalking, contracts and employment, trade secrets and more.

Here are a few examples of cyber crimes in India.
For example, Google and other online search engines spend a great deal of time developing algorithms for search results. They also spend a lot of time and resource on developing maps, intelligent assistance and more. Cyber laws help these companies protect their trade secrets and take legal action with the help of cyber lawyers against cybercrime.

Online eCommerce scams are not new. There are many cases coming to light where people ask for transferring an amount of money against the transfer fee for winning a big lottery amount. Many people fall prey to the high lottery prizes and transfer. Once the money is transferred by the victim, they receive nothing. Now, you can take help of the cyber law to trace such frauds. In 2012 a 32-year-old man was arrested by the Cyber cell for duping a student from Kandivali for Rs 1.2 lacs through a lottery scam. The Mumbai cyber cell cracked this scam.

There have been many instances popping out in the media about leakage of personal Aadhar card details and more. It’s not that India does not have any cyber law. The law is very much there and comes under the Information technology Act, 2000 or IT act as they call it. Though the internet has brought forth a lot of complex legal issues while the existing laws could be old school. The notorious cyber hackers hence try to tweak these laws taking disadvantage of the glitches and use it to their own benefit. Even today with millions of Internet users in India, don’t have an email ID that is considered to be a legal email ID. There is not legalization done for email IDS even today as there is no law to do so. As the times are changing rapidly and the country is digitizing, enabling of a legal support substructure to fit the current times is absolutely necessary.

The rate at which Cyber-crimes are increasing in India, it is high time that stringent cyber laws are brought into effect to control the further rise and even the existing rate of Cyber-crimes like online frauds, scams, hacks and more.

 

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Pregnancy Termination Law For Women

Pregnancy is the herald of new birth and new life but it is not always a good news for the mother or parents. Sometimes it is unplanned or unwanted. Sometimes it is wrapped up in complications that could be life threatening. So, the Indian Government has listed out some laws related to pregnancy decisions that benefit women because they are the ones who carry the fetus for nine long months and give birth as well.

Pregnancy Termination Law For Women

Child birth is associated with many aspects be it social or financial and an unwanted pregnancy could lead to repercussions of still more serious kind. So, as per section 3(2)b(i) the law mentions these words with respect to pregnancy of a women – ‘grave injury to mental health’. A women owns her body and she has right over it. It emerges from the fundamental rights under article 21 of the Indian Constitution where a woman has every right to live with dignity in the society as a human being. She can terminate her pregnancy under the Pregnancy termination act of 1971. Hence, even a practitioner has to ensure that there is no injury possibility physically or mentally to the pregnant women when terminating the pregnancy.

Termination of pregnancy is a difficult situation for the women and could be the result of considering the growing financial requirements and limitations to sustain the needs of the new born. Also, as per the law, human rights are applicable only on birth and not before that, hence, an unborn fetus does not have the rights to take any decision and only the mother can do so as the pregnancy takes place within her.

The law also indicates the all pregnant women need to be given equal treatment even if they are prisoners. As for prisoner women, they have to be kept under observation as well even if under prison by the medical officer of the prison. Termination of pregnancy by women could be a result of a lot of reasons like working mother, complications, financial issues to name a few. A prisoner needs to be sent to the civil hospital for termination in case she wants to on an immediate basis.

Crime and Its Concepts – A short Description

Before talking about the concepts of crime, lets just define crime first. Crime by definition means an act that is capable of being followed by criminal proceedings. Sir William Blackstone defines crime in two ways. One, as an act committed or omitted in violation of public law commanding or forbidding it. Though the definition is limited in the sense that it is only applicable to bulk of criminal law segment that covers political offenses and was modified later. Though the definition of concept of crimes showcases traceable difficulties with respect to the concept, it can still be defined or rather can make sense based on four different frame works.

concepts of crime

Social construction is one of them. As culture varies across the length and breadth of the country, it is difficult to create a standard definition of crime as it could vary from culture to culture.

Religious authority is another. Now, there is this huge conflict across religions when it comes to considering something as crime. While it may be a crime in one religion, it may not be in another. Example – women in middle east are not allowed to drive as per the Sharia law of Saudi Arabia. It is considered to be a crime even today, however absurd it may sound in other part of the world. Another example is honor killings and domestic violence which is allowed in certain religions while in certain it is considered as crime as per the basic state law.

Another example is holocaust of Germany wherein Hitler in Nazi Germany ordered a systematic slaughter of the Jewish race, which was not considered a crime then. But today when reviewed, the holocaust is known to be the greatest crime in history of Germany. Even when the trial was carried out only a few officers that were closed associated were held responsible. As for others they were not held responsible as they were only following orders of their seniors and did not commit crimes willingly. This again throws light on the definition of crime and its affects on not only the situation but people involved in the situation.

Thus, as we may see based on the four frameworks explained above including the examples of holocaust, Saudi Sharia law, domestic abuse and honor killings, it can be understood that the definition varies as per time and the ever changing needs of the society. There are more example which can prove that crime as an act is not the same everywhere. For example liquor sale and consumption is a crime in Gujarat but in many other states of India it is not.

Thus, we can clearly see that the definition and concept of crime ranges from individual and personal to historical and social circumstances and hence it is difficult to have one single definition for it.

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All About Courts in India

ALL ABOUT COURTS IN INDIA

Though if one has to wish for something related to court proceedings, one would rather wish of staying away from getting into the same, due to its time and money consuming repute. But, when you have to you have to, there is no way else where or out. So, why not be aware about the court and its hierarchy. The first step here begins at the judicial body, village courts, the district court, going up to the high and finally the supreme court.

Village Courts or Panchayats
Better known as gram, lok or nyay panchayats, these courts are set up at village level to resolve disputes arising in villages or rural areas.

District Courts
These courts are for the urban populace. People at town or city levels can knock their door to seek justice or resolve their dispute. It has a district judge and is supported by many subordinate courts. Every district does have separate courts for labour and families as well as special courts that deal with narcotic drugs, substances act falling under essential commodities.

High Courts
Every state has their own high court and its generally situated in the capital of the respective state. Many states also have bench courts which refers to high court branches. In the same way, union territories have high court benches of the nearby state. The high court comes into action only if the lower courts cannot hold a trial due to territorial and pecuniary jurisdiction issues.

Supreme Courts
This is the highest of all the courts in hierarchy and stands at the top. The powers it has form original advisory jurisdiction and appellate powers. There is also a facility for citizens to directly file a suit with the supreme court in case of fundamental rights violation. At times even the President of India asks advisory jurisdiction for advise on certain issues. Supreme court judgments and laws are to be abide by every court in the hierarchy of India.

Some of us aren’t aware about the difference between tribunals and courts. Tribunals and courts are totally different bodies though they work in parallel and tribunals are not a part of the court hierarchy. Apparently, the hierarchy is forms on the basis of the constitutional structure and the reason behind its formation is to ably handle the mammoth population of the country and its problems and issues in a streamlined manner.

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Marriage, Divorce and Name Change in India

While marriage is an auspicious and life changing event in one’s life, divorce is also life changing but heartbreaking. India is one country where most of the females change their surnames to that of their spouses post marriage. They even change it in their identity document like Voters ID, Pan card, Aadhar Card and more. Though, it is not mandatory to do so for a female and is done as a gesture of companionship, doing it and undoing it post a divorce is a matter of choice and involves a systematic legal procedure. Here is a sneak peek into the procedure to change name post a marriage and a divorce.

Name Change in India

Post Marriage
As a proof of your marriage you need to submit the marriage certificate along with the application to state government gazette office. You can get the form from the office or the online website of State government. It is chargeable and post verification of the proof attached, your name change appears in the published gazette. Copies of the same are couriered to you and you may use them as a legal proof. You also have to publish the name change news in the local newspapers, English and local language preferably.

Post Divorce
Post divorce if you want to retain your earlier identity, you will have to apply for the same with a divorce order copy.

Name Change
In India there is freedom of having any name of your choice and changing it while following legal procedures. You can not only change your name, surname, but a female can use two surnames as well one her maternal and one post marriage together as well. Furthermore, you can even change the surname of your child post divorce unless your husband approves of it.

Having said that, due care has to be taken to ensure the name change is applicable in all the legal and official documents.

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Dissolving of Intellectual Property Rights

Many brands and companies protect their products with copyright, trademark or other intellectual property rights, the recent one being the Taj Mahal hotels. It is now protected with Trademark under private construction category. But, many of us are not aware of the twist to the law wherein once the property is sold, wherein the rights that it had prior to the sale are nullified.

Intellectual Property Rights

Here is a simple example to explain the law. For example a well known company sells house paints. Once the cans of the paint are purchased by customers, used and discarded, there’s this other company that collects to cans, refills them with a low quality of paint and resells them at a much lower rate. Now, the inventor of the paint or the authentic owner faces competition and is likely to come up with attractive offers and discount to fight the competition back as he cannot do anything about it. There are no repercussion on what happens once the product is sold. The patent rights extends only through production, creation, manufacture to sale. Once someone purchases the product, the patent is exhausted.

There has been a lot of misconception or confusion with the law of intellectual property rights and due to the same a lot of infringement cases wherein the exhaustion principle applied to products once they were sold become invalid. The supreme court has even re-explained the whole exhaustion principle in a short format that clearly states that the exhaustion principle is applicable to products that are purchased and resold later. But, they have to get into a contract with the customer under refill to do the same and comes with restrictions like one time use and no resell of container or sharing of the ink container, but to name a few.

To combat this issue many companies have adopted various methods like return policy’s around used products. In case of ink as a product, some companies have gone to the extent of installing a chip to track the location of the refilled ink container.

To fight an infringement case in a way that the outcome is positive the company or person filing the infringement needs to keep the design or the item and prove to the court that the design or the process was stolen, copied or reproduced. A legal counsel needs to be hired to litigate. The claim only proceeds after the litigation is attempted through a legal counsel and shows signs of clear violation of intellectual rights. Otherwise if is against to what the Supreme court has explained and re-explained, the case is rejected.

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Legal Education Reforms in India with respect to Globalization

Globalization has by far affected every stream of education and has led to reformation in the fields of higher education across the globe. Reformation in legal education being need of the hour as well, requires focus on making it even more flexible by giving more freedom to the legal education organizations and establishing law schools of international standards besides addressing fundamental issues related to legal education including necessary amendments and changes in the existing law education curriculum and methodologies. The academic standards need to be raised besides providing state of the art infrastructure and research facilities. It also includes providing a good governance model and better job opportunities to the passing out law students. Legal Education Reforms in India

Well, the challenges for reformation in legal education are big particularly when it comes to promotion of judicial and legal reforms. Apparently, for establishing a rule of law society, the lawyers and judges have to play a crucial role in the future, towards governance. It thus requires the law students in law schools to be imparted with quality training in the present. A re examination of each of them needs to carried out so that these future lawyers and judges sync in well with the undergoing socio-economic transformation.

The times when the focus of legal education institutions was on issues relating to India and Indian law only are long gone. Today, students are inquisitive and interested in studying international law as well as comparative law. Obviously, there is a dire need to make reformations in the existing legal education of Indian law through excellence in teaching and research but at the same time it is vital to focus on globalization challenges.

Keeping up with the need, even law schools today are shifting their focus on incorporating international law curriculum, with an objective of providing a fair mix of programs that strike the right balance on Indian and foreign laws. Even students are highly alert and informed about the latest in law on the international circuit due to the vast exposure available through international moot competitions. The information base of students on international law varies from dispute resolution topics to marine time law, humanitarian law and more.

Thus, it can be aptly said that establishment of law schools of global standards has become necessary today. Setting up law schools with world class infrastructure would also mean attracting students from across the world and the best faculty in law because even today sourcing good faculty with experience and expertise in the field isn’t easy. The law schools for long have been facing issues in acquiring or sourcing qualified faculties, not only in India but abroad as well. But, these issues can be resolved by offering better incentives and promotion of institutional initiatives and legal education reforms mentioned above.

As the possibilities of international interactions increase with time, law schools need to get all set to match-up. This includes activities like setting up a legal database for reference to the students from across the world and keeping it updated consistently, conducting knowledge exchange programs with legal education colleges worldwide and more.

Having said that, realizing all these reforms is not child play and requires mammoth funding. Hence, creating philanthropic initiatives for acquiring funds becomes one of the preliminary steps to be taken in the direction of raising the legal education bar in India.

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Professor and Dean at NEWYORK’S Cornell Law School

For technology to thrive, law is vital were the words of the Eduardo Penalver, Law Professor and Dean at the New York’s Cornell Law School. He said this during his talk on the role of legal system in technology while addressing the law students in India.
He harped upon the significant role that Legal education plays in protecting the law rule and also brought to the light the fact that overseas, the students were not opting for law education even though the job market has shown a genuine rise.
He also emphasized that law has to be consistent, intelligible, public and accessible to all. He added, Law to be applied at a equal level and be coherent internally. He urged that the need for lawyers was more than ever now and hence the young generation take up the career to secure the future of the society. Law as a career he said, was interesting, challenging as well as motivating.
He also mentioned that the possibilities of India being a sought after destination for Law Education were good and on the rise because of the quality of education and affordability aspect. The enhancement of infrastructure though was one area that needed to be looked after to realize these possibilities.