Aadhaar to Section 377: 8 cases of national importance to be heard by Supreme Court from today
New Delhi, Jan 17: All eyes will be on the Supreme Court, beginning from Wednesday, as its five-judge constitution bench, comprising Chief Justice of India (CJI) Dipak Misra, and justices AK Sikri, AM Khanwilkar, DY Chandrachud and Ashok Bhushan, will start hearing eight cases of great national importance.
The eight important matters, the fate of which will be decided by the apex court's constitution bench include, the validity of the Aadhaar act to scrapping of the Section 377 which criminalises gay sex between consenting adults.
The eight cases have come before the Supreme Court at a time when the apex court itself is facing serious questions about its independence after four topmost judges recently questioned the CJI over assignment of cases.
The constitution bench will hear the contentious issue relating to the ban on the entry of women between 10 and 50 years of age in Kerala's Sabarimala temple and also resume the hearing on a legal query on whether a Parsi woman would lose her religious identity if she married a man from a different religion.
The other contentious matter relates to the challenge to the validity of a penal law on adultery, which only punishes a married man for having an extra-marital sexual relationship with a woman married to someone else.
The other issue which would be dealt with by the constitution bench includes the pleas, which have raised a question as to when will a lawmaker, facing a criminal trial, stand disqualified.
All these matters were earlier referred to larger benches for adjudication on important legal issues by separate benches of the top court. These matters will come up for hearing from Wednesday.
In an unprecedented move, four senior-most judges of the top court -- justices J Chelameswar, Ranjan Gogoi, M B Lokur and Kurian Joseph -- at a press conference on Friday, had mounted a virtual revolt against the CJI, listing a litany of problems, including the assignment of cases.
They had said that there were certain issues afflicting the country's highest court and warned that these could destroy the Indian democracy.
Here is the list of eight cases to be heard by the five-judge constitution bench of the Supreme Court:
1. Justice KS Puttaswamy (Retd) versus Union Of India [Aadhaar Or No Aadhaar]
2. Joseph Shine versus Union Of India [Adultery Law Outdated?]
3. Indian Young Lawyers' Association versus the State Of Kerala [Sabarimala Women Entry]
4. Navtej Singh Johar versus Union Of India [Revisiting Criminalisation Of Homosexuality]
5. Goolrokh M Gupta versus Sam Rusi Chothia and Ors [Religious Identity Changes With Marriage?]
6. Public Interest Foundation versus the Union Of India [Whether A Legislator Is To Be Disqualified At The Stage Of Framing Of Charge Against Him]
7. M/s Shanti Fragrances versus Union Of India [Tax Issue And Revisit Of Prevailing Rule Of Precedence]
8. New India Assurance Co Ltd versus Hillli Multipurpose Cold Storage (P) Ltd [Commencing Point Of Limitation For Filing Opposite Party Version In Consumer Case]