Justice Sanjib Banerjee who was recently transferred to Meghalaya High Court was abstained from hearing a petition which challenged the validity of rule 29(4) of the Copyright Rules of 2013. The reason is that a transferred judge hearing such cases would go against Constitutional Propriety. Justice Banerjee adjourned the petition filed by radio broadcaster 'Next Radio' He said that it may not be within the constitutional propriety for a judge who has a transfer order to take up such matters.
According to Rule 29, the information prescribed under Rule 29(4) has to be furnished to the copyright holder five days before the proposed broadcast. The second condition to rule 29 permits broadcasters to furnish information within a day after the broadcast as well, if any unseen circumstances arise. The High Court issued notice on the petition in August and granted interim relief to the petitioner. Justice Banerjee expressed his unwillingness to take up the matter given his transfer.
The SC Collegium recommended the transfer of Justice Banerjee to the Meghalaya High Court on September 16. It was later cleared by the Centre on November 15. Justice Banerjee's transfer was being sent to the High Court of lesser prominence because he ruled against various ruling exclusions. The Advocates of the Madras High Court had a silent protest outside the Court seeking a review of the decision by the Supreme Court Collegium.
Before the protest, nearly 237 lawyers who were practising before the Madras HC had written a letter to the Collegium registering their protest against its recommendation to transfer Justice Sanjib Banerjee of the Madras High Court to the Meghalaya High Court.
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