2nd Dr Gurjeet Singh Memorial National Moot Court Competition 2018

Day I – Inauguration, Registration & Researcher’s Test, and Exchange of Memorials

1:00 P.M – Welcome to the 2nd edition of Gurjeet Singh Memorial National Moot Court Competition 2018 organised by National Law University and Judicial Academy Assam, Guwahati! We would bring live updates throughout the course of the competition, so stay tuned for further updates!

2:00 P.M – The teams have arrived for registration, and 27 teams have registered:

  1. ADAMAS University, School of Law and Justice
  2. Aligarh Muslim University, Faculty of Law
  3. Amity University, Kolkatta
  4. Christ University, School of Law
  5. CNLU, Patna
  6. DSNLU, Vishakhapatnam
  7. GNLU, Gandhinagar
  8. ICFAI University, Dehradun
  9. ICFAI University, Tripura
  10. Jalpaiguri Law College
  11. JCC Law College
  12. Jorhat Law College
  13. KLE Society’s Law College
  14. Lloyd’s Law College, Greater Noida
  15. MNLU, Mumbai
  16. MNLU, Nagpur
  17. NUSRL, Ranchi
  18. O.P. Jindal Global University
  19. Sastra Deemed University, School of Law
  20. Symbiosis Law School, Pune
  21. Tezpur Law College
  22. TNNLS, Trichy
  23. UILS Panjab
  24. University of North Bengal, Department of Law
  25. University School of Law Research
  26. UPES Dehradun, Faculty of Law
  27. Uttranchal University, Law College Dehradun

3:18 P.M – Teams are welcomed and the chief guests; Prof. (Dr.) J.S. Patil, Vice Chancellor of National Law University and Judicial Academy Assam,  Mr. Manveen Singh, Assistant Professor of Law of O.P. Jindal Global Law School, Prof. (Dr.) Yugal Kishore, Professor of Law of National Law University and Judicial Academy Assam, and Mr. Miftahuddin Ahmed (ACS), Registrar of National Law University and Judicial Academy Assam are felicitated.

3:21 P.M – Ceremonial Lamp lighted by the Chief Guest, and the Moot Court Competition begins!

3:22 P.M – In memory of the namesake of this competition, Late Prof (Dr.) Gurjeet Singh, Founding Vice Chancellor of National Law University and Judicial Academy Assam, a heart-warming video of his farewell speech was shown, where he reminded the Staff and students values which they have to inhibit.

3:37 P.M – The Registrar of National Law University and Judicial Academy Assam, Mr. Miftahuddin Ahmed (ACS) gives a Welcome speech.

3:42 P.M – The Vice Chancellor of National Law University and Judicial Academy Assam, Prof (Dr.) J.S. Patil, gave a speech welcoming the Guest of Honour and talked about the contribution of Prof (Dr.) Gurjeet Singh in shaping the formation of this University.

3:53 P.M – The Guest of Honour, Mr. Manveen Singh, Assistant Professor of Law of O.P. Jindal Global Law School, talked about his father (Prof. (Dr.) Gurjeet Singh) as a father and an academician. He highlighted the failure of the Indian legal educational system in ignoring the practical aspects of law. Furthermore, he talked about extra-curricular activities along with social service and their importance in shaping of a budding lawyer. He also emphasised the crucial role played by academicians in guiding law students and taking forward the Indian legal system to new horizons. In the end he wished the teams best of luck for the competition and their future.

Mr. Manveen Singh motivating the participants in his special address

4:08 P.M – The Convenor of the Moot Court Committee of the University, Mr. Krishnakant Jain, gave a vote of thanks

4:13 P.M – The Inauguration Ceremony came to an end, the guests have proceeded for high tea and the teams have been apprised of their schedule.

5:30 P.M – The participants have now gathered for the draw of lots and the memorial exchange, as well as the researcher’s test in the designated location.

Day II – Preliminary Rounds & Quarter Finals

10:00 A.M – We are now back for the second day of the 2nd Dr. Gurjeet Singh Memorial National Moot Court Competition 2018. The judges have arrived, and the teams are locked and loaded for their rounds!

Here is the list of match ups for the 1st Preliminary Round:

  1. ICFAI University, Dehradun v DSNLU, Vishakhapatnam
  2. MNLU, Nagpur v UPES Dehradun, Faculty of Law
  3. Uttranchal University, Law College Dehradun v UILS Panjab
  4. JCC Law College v Lloyd’s Law College Greater Noida
  5. CNLU Patna v Jorhat Law College
  6. Tezpur Law College v Aligarh Muslim University, Faculty of Law
  7. TNNLS Trichy v Symbiosis Law School, Pune
  8. Jalpaiguri Law College v MNLU Mumbai
  9. Christ University, School of Law v Sastra Deemed University, School of Law
  10. University of North Bengal, Department of Law v NLUJA Assam (Dummy Team)
  11. ICFAI Tripura v University School of Law Research
  12. GNLU Gandhinagar v KLE Society’s Law College
  13. Amity University, Kolkatta v O.P. Jindal Global University
  14. ADAMAS University, School of Law & Justice v NUSRL Ranchi

Preliminary Round – I

TNNLS Trichy Symbiosis Law School Pune

The Counsel 1 from the side of petitioner has approached the bench and started off by taking the permission to state the brief facts of the case. The judges have been quite patient while listening to the arguments made by Counsel 1 and are questioning the counsel once in a while in between, and the responses given by the counsel seems to satisfy the judges.

Counsel 2 has now approached the dais. Counsel 2 has been quite fluent with her arguments and seems to be really comfortable in arguing before the judges. The judges are also not intervening much and letting the arguments flow as it seems they are satisfied with the argumentation of the counsel. The counsel is asking the judges every once in a while as to if they have any queries or not. The judge has asked a question if the counsel is aware of the law of precedence? To which the counsel is trying to answer and seems like the judges are not entirely satisfied by the answer provided. Counsel 2 has exceeded her time limit and has now asked for 1 minute extension which the judges have given. The judges have asked the counsel to directly come to the relief that the client seeks and with this the arguments by the petitioners come to an end.

Counsel 1 of the respondents have started off with the arguments after approaching the dais. The counsel has stated that she will be dealing with the first 5 issues of the matter while the rest 2 issues will be dealt by her co-counsel. The judges also ask the counsel to back up her arguments with certain case laws. Also, it has been asked by the judges as to why the counsel’s arguments has no backing up of any Supreme Court precedents.

Counsel 2 has started off with the arguments by taking the permission to approach the dais.The judges asked questions in regards to the contentions put forward by the petitioner already and the counsel for respondent has answered it very well and seems to have satisfied the judges by her answer. However, Counsel 2 has exceeded her time, and she asks for permission to move on to the prayer for which she has been granted the same.

The petitioners ask for the permission to approach the dais for rebuttals. The petitioners rebut the respondents on 3 points. But due to paucity of time, the judges interrupt the counsel rebutting from the side of the petitioner stating that her time has lapsed.

Christ University, School of Law v Sastra Deemed University, School of Law

On the Petitioner’s side the Counsel 1 approaches the dais.She has begun with the submissions on maintainability of the case. The speaker is courteous and precise but seems to be caught off guard on a tricky question posed by the judges. But she calmly answers the question referring to the essential questions of law at hand. The judges seem satisfied. The judges again ask her to clarify the submissions being made.However by the time allotted to  Counsel 1 is over.

Now Counsel 2 approaches the dais. The judges have permitted Counsel 2 to complete the submissions left by Counsel 1. Counsel 2 is soft spoken, but faces a lot of questions on the submission regarding ‘child in need of care and protection’. However the Counsel while answering the questions she seems to get a little flustered. The judges now grill Counsel 2 on her submission regarding ‘custody of the child in the hands of Grandparents’.  The judges do not seem satisfied with the answers and attempt to seek further elaboration. Lastly, Counsel 2 is submitting the last issue. The speaker’s style and manners are great. She confidently makes her submissions. Judges question Counsel 2 regarding the objectives of CRC. She answers the questions but seems to get a little flustered. Furthermore, the judges raps the researcher for not attaching the list of statutes to their memorial. By this time the Counsel seems confused and is asked to conclude.

On the Respondent’s side, Counsel 1 seems to be well mannered and gets done with formalities with ease. The judges question the counsel regarding the custody of the child. She confidently answers the question and seeks permission to proceed further. Counsel 1 submits that CRC has acted in good faith. She is referring to a number of case laws. The judges seem satisfied and have asked to clarify the difference between the custody of the child and the restoration of care and protection. The Counsel has answered the question confidently. The judges have now asked for the definition of custody. The counsel seeks permission to answer the question at the time of rebuttals due to shortage of time. Now, Counsel 2 has approached the dais.  He is confidently making his arguments. He seeks permission to proceed with the submissions which is, ‘whether grandparents should be given preferential rights over the rights of the Respondent’. But the judges grill the counsel regarding CRC’s position to pass an order. The counsel  is making his final submission. The judges seem satisfied.

Jalpaiguri Law College v MNLU Mumbai

From the petitioner’s side, Counsel 1 approaches the dais. The counsel is starts on a good note by giving well structured arguments but ultimately falters under the questioning of the judges and is unable to create a strong ground for her contention. The judges do not seem to be satisfied by the counsel’s reasoning. After Counsel 1 ends her arguments, Counsel 2 steps in, and has a better grasp of the arguments submitted but is unable to resolve the judges’ doubts and queries conflict and fails to establish as to whether Muslim personal laws would prevail over the codified law in the present case.
From the respondent’s side, overall both the counsels appear to have better control over the case. After approaching the dais, Counsel 1 has started on a strong note, continuing her momentum she has gained an upper hand. On replying the judges’ queries, the Counsel calmly gives a concise elaboration of the matter in hand, and succeeds in keeping the continuity of the arguments intact. Likewise, Counsel 2 keeps the equilibrium intact, and is equally well versed with the issues in hand, and concluded by ending their arguments on a confident streak.
ICFAI University, Dehradun v DSNLU Vishakhapatnam

From the petitioner’s side, Counsel 1 approaches the dais and starts off by introducing the case and moves to present their first argument.

The judges are intently listening to the argument. The counsel relies on cases and arguments in the compendium and the memorial, respectively to substantiate his points.  The judges proceed to ask a  question regarding the maintainability and power of challenging orders under the Juvenile Justice Act. The Counsel wavers and is not able to provide an answer to the satisfaction of the judges. Counsel 2 then proceeds with the second issue.  There is a confusion between the Counsel and the judges with the issues presented. The judges now  start asking questions, the counsel seems to be nervous and is not able to answer the question satisfactorily and seeks permission to answer it subsequently through his arguments. The judges are not satisfied with the authorities referred by the counsel in his argument. Furthermore, the counsel is not able to complete the argument within the time allotted. The judges permit them to wrap up their arguments and proceed with the prayer.  The judges also question the researcher with regards to not including the issues as framed in the memorial as well as further questions related to the facts of the case.

From the respondent’s side, Counsel 1 confidently approaches the dais but rushes with the arguments presented. The judges proceed to question the counsel. The counsel answers the questions confidently and the judges seem to be satisfied. After listening to the arguments the judges start to ask more tricky questions by contradicting the arguments presented by the Counsel. The counsel is tries hard to maneuver the argument in their favour but the judges do not seem satisfied.

Counsel 2 proceeds to present the other arguments. She proceeds confidently and the judges are intently listening to her. The judges are asking question in between the arguments and seem satisfied with the answers. She proceeds with the arguments; she has been asked questions on various points between the arguments. She  is then bombarded with questions at the end of her arguments.  She is confidently justifying her arguments however, is not able to convince the judges.  She has been permitted extra time to answer the questions asked, some answers seems to have satisfied the judges while others have not. She quickly wraps up the arguments and presents the prayer.

CNLU Patna v Jorhat Law College

The Counsel 1 on behalf of the Petitioner has  seeks the permission of the judges to proceed.

The counsel has started to explain the finer points of their arguments with assertion. The judges tried to waver the confidence of the counsel however it seems that the counsel was prepared for that as those arrows from the side of excellence were dealt eloquently with by the counsel. The court is well involved in the orals now, listening intently to the arguments being presented by the counsel. Though the counsel tries to substantiate the questions of the excellencies, the judges are not satisfied with the authorities submitted.

Counsel 2 has now approached the dais and carries forward the zeal left by the Counsel 1, however, the sparkle seems to dim as the judges continue to grill the counsel on the facts and the counsel fails to enlighten the court with the same.

The Counsel 1 of the Respondents has now approached the dais. The judges attack the counsel with a volley of questions which makes the counsel lose his course of argument due to anxiety.

Now, the Counsel 2 has approached the dais, beginning to elaborate with the arguments. But,  the counsel seems to have confused with his own written submissions leading to a plethora of questions. The counsel is trying his best to answer these questions in a manner that the curiosity of the judges be satiated, however, the questions of the excellencies are wavered by the counsel.

The rebuttals has now begun and the Petitioners seem to be very clear about the facts and the statutes and counters the very viability of the respondent’s argument with gusto while the respondents seems to sum up their  oral arguments in the rebuttals.

University of North Bengal, Department of Law v NLUJA Assam (Dummy Team)

The Counsel 1 from the side of Petitioner has approached the bench and started off by stating the brief facts of the case. The pressure of breaking the silence of the court is quite evident from the nervous voice of the counsel. The judges have started questioning the counsel on the facts of the case and they seem to be quite inquisitive. The judges are grilling the counsel on the application of law and the response by the counsel doesn’t seem to be to the satisfaction of the judges. Due to the shortage of time, the counsel is struggling very hard to make his point noted. Counsel 2 has now approached the dais and sounds confident. After giving some time to the counsel to get on his feet, the bench starts with the questions. But the counsel is unable to answer the questions of the judges successfully and the confidence of the agent seems to be wavering. The counsel has exceeded his time limit but the bench is considerate and has allowed him to explain his contentions.

The Counsel 1 from the respondent side has started off the argument in a systematic manner. The counsel is very clear in her contentions and the bench seems to agree. The judges have started their questioning in reference to the authorities cited and the explanation given by the counsel seems to be to the satisfaction of the judges. The judges are for the time being not intervening much, letting the arguments flow smoothly. The counsel 2 from the respondent is faring equally well and answering to the pertinent questions raised by the bench to their satisfaction.

After the conclusion of the arguments from the Respondent’s side, the Petitioners look excited and confident for rebuttals. The Petitioners have raised important discrepancies and are putting their points in a very systematic manner. However, the Bench seems unsatisfied and unimpressed. The counsel from the Respondent is formidable and very precise in her arguments and the Bench seems to agree to the same.

MNLU Nagpur v UPES Dehradun, Faculty of Law

The arguments have started with the Counsel 1 of the Petitioners starting by stating the facts of the case. The Bench interjects with the issue of maintainability of the case. The Bench asked the Counsel to demonstrate the irregularities and illegalities of the case. With the continuous grilling by the Judges, the Counsel has been considerably rattled despite her persistent assertions that her case has a standing. The judges questioned the Counsel with respect to questions of law versus questions of fact in the present case. With this, Counsel 2 takes in place of the previous counsel. She starts with the issues assertively and has also answered the preliminary questions of the Bench satisfactorily. The Bench pointed out the discrepancies in the memorial of the Petitioner.

Counsel 1 of the Respondents has started off with the issues of the case. The judges have been grilling the Counsel with regard to the facts of the case under which the revision petition has been brought before the Court but they do not seem satisfied with the answers. Meanwhile, mild passing of chits ensues between the counsel and the researcher. Counsel 2 confidently continues with the remaining issues. The Counsel is answering the questions of the Judges and is citing authorities to substantiate her answer. The Bench has taken steps to elaborate on the present facts and circumstances of the case along with the relevant laws with respect to the same.

The round ends with the rebuttals from both the sides. The Bench has given the both the teams the feedback on their presentations. They have also pointed out the discrepancies of both teams and appreciated the hard work and the updated work of the Respondents and the attempts of both the teams.

Tezpur Law College v Aligarh Muslim University, Faculty of Law

Counsel 1 of the Petitioner side is already on the dais. The judge asks the speaker to move to the first issue. The speaker pleads that the Child Welfare Committee has no right to pass any laws with regard to the child in concern. The Judge questions that the second child is not even one year old therefore, the CWC has some obligation to direct the Petitioner. The Counsel contends that it should be left to the mother of the baby as a mother is the natural Guardian. The judge questions again as to why the father is not capable enough. The Counsel beautifully puts forth that the father has never been very interested in the welfare of the child. The Speaker cites a case of Honorable High Court of Kerela. The timer shows that the time is over but the judges still have some unaddressed queries. The judges are very curious about the provision under which the Petitioner can approach the High Court. The speaker confidently quotes the sections and then the Judges counter that if the knowledge is correct why not mention it in the memorial when it is such an important point.
Counsel 2 approaches the dais. The counsel deals with an issue which points that the passing of mandates by the CWC was outside their ambit of their jurisdiction. The Speaker contends that the Muslim Personal Law speaks otherwise and that the Personal Law should be followed rather the impugned mandates of CWC. The principle of “Hizanat” is under very grim discussion. The judges contend that the Statement of Jurisdiction is wrong and then permits the Counsel to take its seat.

Then the respondent’s Counsel 1 proceeds towards the dais.The Counsel argues that there has been no disregard of any of the National and International Covenants which the country is signatory. The Judges ask about the alternative jurisdiction but the speaker contends that it should be dealt with subsequently. The Counsel proceeds that the respondent suffers from anxiety and was distraught after the death of his beloved wife. The in-laws took away the children and when the Respondent tried to lodge an FIR it was turned down by the Police Station because of the Political connections of the wife’s relativesThe speaker has wonderfully put forth that a want of the male heir in no way proves that the father was less considerate for his daughters. The judges query that the contention of the Respondent to hold the CWC as a legit forum to decide the matter then what can be the alternative jurisdiction of the case? The speaker pleads ignorance. The Counsel is very well prepared and cites cases after cases to fight for his Respondent. He also contends that the father should be given the custody because he is “nearest kin” to the daughters. The second speaker approaches the dais and straightaway argues that the allegations are baseless and any are no character certificate of a person. The Doctrine of “Innocent until proven guilty” is of paramount necessity. The judges seem very interested and have gone way beyond the stipulated time limit to question the speakers and seek answers. The respondents pray that the custody be delivered to the father and the CWC’s order of restraining the father to move out the country be quashed.

ICFAI University, Tripura v University School of Law and Research

Counsel 1 of the petitioner begins on a hesitant note.

The Honorable Judges seems to be verifying facts but the counsel seems firm and confident. With the clock ticking, the counsel seems likely to regret taking too much time in pondering over the facts. The Judges have now bombarded the counsel with some fundamental questions as they feel it hasn’t been included in their memorial.

Counsel 2 approaches before the judges with a lot at stake. She has to also deal with the issue leftover by Counsel 1 in addition to her own issues. She sounds confident and well versed with the issues. The Honorable Judges are now pelting the Speaker with legal loopholes primarily basing their questions on CWC’s jurisdiction. The Speaker faces a little grilling but somehow manages to save the day!

From the respondent’s side Counsel 1 makes a cautious start but now seems to take pace. It looks like bumpy ride ahead for the counsel as the Honorable Judges are now questioning every legal provision that has been taken up. The counsel however, somehow survives the scare!

Counsel 2 has arrived with a lot of enthusiasm and confidence. There seems to be a laudable effort from the counsel in trying to convince the Honorable Judges by playing with the facts but is stopped in between for the want of further clarity. The Honorable Judges have been persistent in their effort to picking an area that would satisfy the legal as well as the logical aspects and having been asking questions pertaining to the same purpose. The counsel has been patient and calm throughout in dealing with the questions.

Uttranchal University, Law College Dehradun v UILS Panjab

Counsel 1 appearing for the side of the Petitioner has approached the bench.
At the outset, the facts of the case have been briefly enunciated by the counsel for the assistance of the judges. The question of whether the Revision petition is maintainable is being discussed by the counsel. He has not, however, effectively related the facts of the present case with the precedents cited as authority by him. The respondents have been swift enough to have raised the point that the counsel did not mention the Statement of Jurisdiction and hence have failed on a procedural requirement. To this, the Counsel 2 of the Petitioner side has pointed out that the question of jurisdiction is to be raised by the Bench if it so desires and the judges are in consensus with this answer. The judges have not raised any questions to the counsel as of now.

With this, Counsel 2 on the side of the Petitioner has commenced her arguments on the subsequent issues. She has been consistently stressing on the point that the “best interest of the child and utmost welfare” is the universal point of focus in cases of custody of a child. The facts of the present case have been woven along with the arguments efficaciously by the counsel. She has cited a plethora of precedents to support the argument that the “welfare of the child should be of paramount consideration for the Court. On the final issue, the balance of the interests of the mother and the unborn has been scrutinised by the counsel in her argument in support of which she has also referred to the International Conventions on the particular subject matter. The prayer has not been put forth by the counsels for the Petitioners.

The judges have put forth the question of which is the first landmark judgment of the Courts in India on the matter of “best interest of the child”. The second important question asked is whether the Family Courts in India are functioning as “full-fledged” courts or “designated” courts in all the States. The counsel has been obliged to answer all the questions forwarded by the judges.

Counsel 1, representing one of the Respondents, has commenced the arguments with preliminary objections that the legal provisions that have been cited by the Petitioners are not stand alone provisions.

The Counsel moves forward with the maintainability of the Review Petition. The Counsel has confidently argued on the Issue and consistently backed his arguments with the relevant provisions of law. The facts of the case as stated by the Petitioners have been disputed by the Counsel. The counsel has placed before the Bench the irreparable harm that would be caused to the Respondents if the petition is allowed by the Bench. The contention is submitted by the Speaker to be false and malicious. Therefore, in conclusion, the counsel has prayed to the Bench that justice has been delayed and denied because of the frivolous and malicious petition filed by the Petitioner. The judges have raised the question of who is the natural guardian of the child where the parents of the child are absent. Surprisingly, the Speaker seems to have forgotten to seek for extra time while answering the questions of the judges. Hope remains that he does not lose all the hard-earned points through his spontaneity because of the penalty on the extra time as taken. The researcher of the Respondents has effectively aided the Speaker in answering the questions forwarded by the judges.

Counsel 2, started with the argument that “best interest and welfare of the child is of paramount importance” and the instant case is one of “restoration” rather than “custody” of the child. The Speaker contends that all allegations of criminal records of the Respondent are based on personal vengeance and stand nullified with the universal principle of criminal jurisprudence “innocent until proven guilty”. The Speaker in consonance with the co-speaker has time and again stated that the Petitioners have falsely and incorrectly used legal provisions. The facts of the present case have been discussed in the arguments along with the relevant provisions. The Speaker has concluded the arguments by placing the prayer before the Bench. The judges have asked the recent judgments of the Honourable  Supreme Court in regards to the welfare of the child to which the Speakers have failed to produce an answer. The subsequent question of the judges on the interpretations of the relevant schemes on juvenile justice as stated by the Speaker has been answered with authority

The Speaker for the Petitioner has made rebuttals on the arguments of the Respondents and have tried to answer the preliminary objections stated by Speaker 1 of the Respondents. The Petitioners failing to have stated the prayer earlier chose to place it at the end of the rebuttals to which the Respondents have promptly raised a procedural objection.

With this, Preliminary Round I comes to an end! The teams have performed well to the judges’ tricky questions and various issues of the moot problem.

Preliminary Round – II

NUSRL Ranchi v Tezpur Law College

The Counsel 1 of Petitioner has approached the dais.

The judges seem to be very patient and are allowing the counsel to go with the flow. The counsel is well adept with the precedents. The judges let the counsel deal with all the issues in the stipulated time slot and move over to the other issues which were to dealt with the second counsel. Counsel 2  has approached the dais and the judges seem to be more interested in the issues which have been dealt with by the Second Counsel. They argued on the total of seven issues and have been fluent in all of them. They finally pray that the CWC’s impugned order be declared ultra vires and that the custody of children with the mother.

Counsel 1 of the Respondent is already on the dais. The judges seem to be very curious with the Respondent’s side and are questioning the first counsel on a loop. The judges are querying on basic definition where the Respondents seem to be faltering. The Judges are curious to know that how can it be proven that the children are under threat in the home of her Maternal Grandparents. The Judges have been asking for justifications but the counsel seems under-confidant to address the same. The second counsel has approached the dais and is smartly arguing and defending the Respondent. The Respondents finally pray that the  custody of the children remain with the father and the order against the father be quashed.

 

 

Symbiosis Law School Pune v Amity University Kolkatta

 From the petitioner’s side, Counsel-1 has approached the dais. She has begun with the submissions on the maintainability of the case. The judges immediately questioned the counsel on her submission regarding the power of CWC as a civil court. She answers the question referring to the essential questions of law at hand. The judges seem satisfied.

She then makes the submission regarding the competence of the Respondent for the guardianship of the children. Counsel-2 has approached the dais. Counsel-2 is very soft spoken. Her submission regarding the overriding effect of statutory law on the personal laws faces a lot of questions. Judges have asked Counsel-2 to clarify, which law should prevail in case of a conflict between the personal law and the statutory law. Judges are grilling Counsel-2 on her submission regarding the second class citizens.

Respondent Counsel-1 has approached the dais. She submits that the present case is purely maintainable. The judges seem satisfied.

Counsel-1 is making the submission regarding CWC’s power to accept the ambit of the welfare of the child. The judges immediately asked whether the definition of the welfare of the child has anywhere been mentioned under the statute.  Counsel-1 answers the question but seems to get a little flustered. Judges are grilling Counsel-1 on the question whether the father is fit for the responsibility of custody of the child. Judges are grilling on her submission regarding income being one of the criteria for father being fit for the responsibility of custody of the child. Judges have asked her to conclude her submission within a minute.

 Counsel-2 has approached the dais. Judges are grilling her submissions regarding how one can claim that the consent of the father should be taken after the death of the mother.  Judges have asked Counsel-2 for the source of authority which mentions that the biological parents should have the custody of the child. The judges have asked her to state the difference between ratification and signing of a Convention.

 Rebuttal rounds have started. The Petitioners have raised a very important question.

 The Respondents are confidently answering the questions raised by the Petitioners. The judges seem satisfied.

 

UILS Panjab v MNLU Nagpur

The counsel for the Petitioners begin their argument

Counsel 1 approaches the dais and introduces the case. The judges start their questions before the counsel begins with his issues. The judges are satisfied with the answers and allow the counsel to proceed with the argument. He is confidently presenting his arguments and the judges are intently listening. The counsel is relying on number of authorities attached to their compendium to justify his points. The judges are intently listening to the arguments presented. The counsel is able to answer the question of the judges to their satisfaction.

Counsel 2 approaches the dais and starts with his arguments. The judges are intently listening to the arguments and the counsel is confidently proceeding. The judges proceed to question him, and the judges don’t seem to be much satisfied with his answer. The arguments continue. The counsel is addressing the questions of the judges and he is not able to satisfactorily answer the questions. The counsel concludes all his arguments and wraps up by presenting the prayer.

The counsel for the Respondents begin their arguments

Counsel 1 approaches the dais and introduces the issues. The judges are intently listening. The judges proceed to ask questions contradicting the arguments of the counsel. The judges seem to be not much satisfied with her arguments. She proceeds with the subsequent issues.   She is interrupted in midst of her arguments with questions and they seem satisfied with her response.

Counsel 2 approaches the dais and starts with the arguments of the remaining issues. She is questioned by the judges and she is able to satisfactorily answer it.  She proceeds with her arguments. Further questions are asked by the judges and they seem satisfied with her arguments. She completes her arguments and wraps up with the prayer.

During the rebuttal, Counsel 1 of the petitioner confidently proceeds with the rebuttals. The judges question him over the clarification he presents over the Respondents arguments and they are satisfactorily responded to. The judges seem to be impressed the rebuttals presented.

 

OP Jindal Global University v JCC Law College

Counsel 1 on the side of the Petitioner side, has approached the Bench stating that it is a matter of honour to argue before the Bench. As the judges are acquainted with the facts of the case, the Counsel has moved ahead with the Issues and Arguments as per their written submissions. The Counsel has argued on the maintainability of the Review Petition stating that there is locus standi of the party to file the Review Petition. He has cited few cases to support the arguments but has been successful in relating the facts of the instant case with the precedents cited. On one of the questions forwarded by the judges, the Counsel answered that it would be elaborately dealt with by his co-counsel. Counsel 1 has placed the arguments on Issue I and given a summary of the subsequent Issues.

Counsel 2 has been permitted by the Bench to continue with the following Issues and arguments. The Counsel has focused on the due regard that is to be given to the personal laws of the child. She has also stressed on the right of the natural guardian to get custody in the absence of the parents of the child. The right of the maternal grandmother to attain the custody of the child has been asserted by the Counsel. On the questions raised by the judges in regards to the reflection of the principle of best interest of the child in the legislations leaned on by the Counsel, she has effectively answered them to the satisfaction of the judges. The crux of the submissions made by the Counsel is that “paramount welfare of the child is of utmost importance” and that under the Hannafi School, the maternal grandmother is the rightful guardian of the children in the absence of the parents.  As the Counsel has exceeded the time permitted, she quickly concluded with the relief prayed for.

From the respondent’s side, the Counsel 1 eagerly approaches the dais.

Counsel 1 on the side of the Respondents has commenced on the point that an alternative forum would have assured a better remedy in the present case as there already exists a special legislation that supports the facts of the case. The Counsel does not seem to follow the usual mannerisms as is done in any Moot Court Competition and has been very expressive with movements of her hands, perhaps hoping to be more impressional on the judges. The terms used confidently by the Counsel have been questioned by the judges and has been condemned for passingly using terms in her arguments. The Counsel sadly does not seem to be well aware of the laws and has stated that the “motive and intention” are not relevant to the crimes stated by her. The judges seem to be amazed at the ignorance of the Counsel in regards to the basic principles of the Penal and Procedural Codes when she has strongly asserted a varied number of crimes against the Petitioners. There came up confusions on the facts of the case which the Counsel was to a certain extent successful in clarifying. The Counsel “rested their case” to which her co-counsel disagreed that “why would you rest our case now”?

Counsel 2 assertively started with the crux of their submissions being “whether the custody of the child should be given to a legal guardian or to somebody who has deceitfully taken away the child?” The Counsel has constantly been asking questions to the Petitioners rather than putting forth her arguments. This may be, is a new trend in mooting, which one is unaware of. The approach and mannerisms of the Counsel are aggressive to an extent that may go on to cost her points from the judges who are constantly amused by her way of arguing. As she had exceeded her time limit, she quickly summed up her arguments and moved on with the relief sought.

The rebuttals by the Counsels of the Petitioners were made on the errors, legal and factual, of the Respondents. As a closing remark, the Counsel form the side of Petitioners thanked the Counsel 2 of the Respondents for their client has not committed a criminal offence, which was taken as a defence by them. The Counsels of the Petitioners raised an objection to a factual inaccuracy to which the contributions were “thanked” by each of the parties. This lead to a minor argument whereby the judges had to step in to stop the teams. With this, the round came to an end with all of us hoping that the teams do not end up in a fight while they await results!

 

 

University School of Law & Research v University of North Bengal, Department of Law

From petitioner side, Counsel 1 approaches the dais, he started on a good foot but has been questioned by the judges on the contention of the criminal background of the respondent, to which he was able to answer somewhat but not to a satisfactory mark and has been cut short in his arguments. After the Counsel 1 steps down, Counsel 2 approaches the dais. Judges have been quite inquisitive and been asking questions at a fast pace. The counsel is being pressured to stand ground and prove if Muslim personal laws prevail over codified law how is it for the welfare of the minors.

From respondents side, Counsel 1 appears to have a stronger stand and argues for the decisions of the CWC being right and High Court cannot interfere according to the procedures. Another ground being taken by the Counsel 1 agreeing that CWC decision is an interim order and but till the criminality or guilt of the respondent is not proven the CWC decision stands. Counsel 2 approaches the dais and has presented his arguments confidently in furtherance of the contentions of Counsel 1. The respondents have been submitting to the judges substantive proofs to support their arguments. The Judges have raised the question whether Special Marriage Act has any provision regarding the custody of children to support their case.

There has been some debate during the rebuttal round and whether the researcher on the discretion of the judges can be allowed to rebut. The counsel 1 from the petitioner has decided to present the rebuttal. In the rebuttal round has come to a completion ending on a good note.

 

 

UPES Dehradun v GNLU Gandhinagar

The round starts on a high note where the counsel 1 seems to be really confident and everyone is mesmerised with the counsel’s clarity and coherence. The submissions of the speaker is not like a monologue at all as the judges are very engaging from he very moment of the submissions made by the counsel. The counsel, however, could not satisfy the Bench with one of the contentions and pleads ignorance. 

Notwithstanding, how the counsel ended, the second counsel of the petitioner approached the dais and looks quite assertive. It seems that the judges are done being nice and are extensively grilling the counsel. But, the counsel looks well versed with all the facts and cases cited and seems to satisfy the bench with all the queries raised. However, in the end the judge stated that the  Respondents don’t have to pray before this Honourable Court because of the faux pas  the Petitioner made.  

The Respondents have now approached the Dais and began with the submissions but the judges seems to be unsatisfied with the contentions placed before the Honourable Bench and shoots the counsel with a deluge of questions. 

The counsel 2 starts with the submissions but it seems that the judges are apprehensive and has reservations against the submissions made by the counsel. As the counsel is not able to satisfy the Bench it leads to a heated argument between the judge and the counsel. 

The rebuttals goes on in full swing by both the Petitioner and the Respondents. However, the respondents when moves forward with their incomplete contention, the court restrains them with the same. It seems to be a close call between the two.  

 

KLE Society’s Law College v Jalpaiguri Law College

With a few inspiring words from the Bench, Counsel 1 for the Petitioners approaches the dais. The Judges have asked the Counsel to skip the stating of facts. The Judges have begun questioning the Counsel on the issues. They have dug into the basics of law by asking the distinction between appeal and revision. The Bench is grilling the Counsel intensely with several hypothetical scenarios that might have arisen within the facts of the case. The Bench is also referring to the basics of Family Law with regard to Muslim personal law. The Counsel has been answering the questions with much composure. The Bench has induced a humorous undertone with the questions asked and built a lively atmosphere in the courtroom including relevant references to movies and children’s stories.

Counsel 2 for the Petitioner has also started with his issue with much composure. The Bench has invalidated a reference from an article in an international journal on the ground that it has no binding authority over the Court albeit certain books can be agreed to have a binding authority. The answers of Counsel 2 to the questions have satisfied the Bench to an extent. The Bench continues to interject questions between the arguments. The Judges eventually ask the Counsel to conclude his arguments within the time frame but suo motu allows an extra minute on the ground that several questions have been asked.

After a grueling and confident round by the Petitioners, Counsel 1 for the Respondents approaches the dais and start with the facts of the case. The Bench has been asking questions based on the basics of law, such as the priority of special laws over general law, as well as questions regarding the specific facts of the present case before the Court. The Bench asks the Counsels to substantiate their claims with evidentiary papers. The Judge notes the patriarchal standpoint of the Counsel in her arguments while appreciating her professionalism towards her clients.  Counsel 2 continues with the remaining issues while the questioning continues. He calmly proceeds to answer the questions while categorically refusing to answer questions they are not aware of.

The Petitioners have refused to rebut and the round ends. The judges proceed to provide feedback to both the teams.

 

MNLU Mumbai v ICFAI Tripura

The counsel 1 for petitioners has approached the bench and started off by taking the permission to proceed with the arguments directly as the judges are already aware of the facts of the case. Counsel 1 is dealing with the first 4 contentions out of the 7 contentions the petitioners have put forward. One of the judges points out the mistake that the counsel is making again and again and ask her to justify her point as well. The judges have been continuously questioning the counsel to which she is trying her best to answer. The counsel has exceeded her allotted time and now has asked for permission for more time for which she has been given 2 more minutes by the judges.

Counsel 2 has now approached the dais with the judges’ permission. Counsel 2 is quite fluent with her arguments and seems to be really comfortable in arguing before the judges. The judges caught her off guards on the submissions of her first issue. The judges are continuously shooting the questions at the counsel to judge her knowledge about the facts of the case and the laws that she has been citing.

Counsel 1 of the respondents have started off with the arguments after taking to approach the dais. The counsel has stated that the respondents will be taking up 5 issues in total. The counsel is left speechless by the judges on getting caught on the issue of maintainability itself.

Counsel 2 has now approached the dais and has started with the with the arguments by taking the permission of the judges.The judges have pointed out that the cases cited by the respondents majorly base their arguments on the interim order of the judgments that have been cited. The judges seem to be quite  disinterested in the arguments made by the counsel of respondent as they are not satisfied by the way her arguments are being presented. The counsel is citing facts from the cases to support her arguments.The judges are asking the counsel to proceed with the arguments as they are well aware of the facts.The counsel has exceeded her time and seeks permission for some more to which the judges allow her to take 60 more seconds. The judges ask the counsel to directly skip to her prayer as she is taking more than the allotted time.

The petitioners ask for the permission to approach the dais for rebuttals. The judges allow only 2 minutes for rebuttals. Judges counter the petitioner’s counsel on the points of rebuttals as well., and do not let them let down their guard even in the end!

DSNLU Vishakhapatnam v TNNLS Trichy

Petitioner Counsel 1 starts with his arguments. The Counsel seems to be a confident and has given nothing away to the Honorable Judges so far. The Judges have been patient listeners. It has been composed and calm display by the Counsel from the beginning to the end.

Counsel 2 looks more aggressive than the predecessor. She had been convincing so far, successfully directing the Judges to listen to only what she wants them to listen. Add to that the fact that she has been able to convince the Judges seems to be working in her favour. The Judges have now started with their share of questions mostly relating to the merit of the legal provisions used, but the Counsel has been answering it well it a fumble here and there. Overall, the citations have been apt and the judges seems quite convinced with the answers.

Respondent Counsel 1 has started off with a mixture of cautiousness and confidence. She has been trying to justify her part of the facts with the legal provisions. She has also brought the aspect of Golden Rule of interpretation. The Judges are now pelting their question as there appears to be clearly some confusion regarding the legal provisions of the prayer that was made before the CWC. The Counsel’s persistent efforts to convince the judges has started inviting more and more questions. Just as the Counsel seemed to have got into her groove in the final minutes of her submission there has been interruption from the judges primarily demanding further clarity with questions mostly relating to the facts of the case.

Counsel 2 has started with her arguments primarily dealing with the final two issues. The time management by both the teams have been spot on! Just when everything was moving smoothly for the Counsel, the Judges have raised an issue mostly questioning the persuading value of the cases used, as they are mostly old ones. The Counsel has however deflected the questions well and has now continuing with her submissions. It has been some time now since the Counsel has gained her momentum and is trying to stamp her authority over the case in the dying minutes of her submission. The Judges have now put up questions on the concept of ‘Shared Parenting’ and are asking for Supreme Court judgments that highlight the doctrine of vested interest.

The round ends with the rebuttals from both the sides. The Bench has given the both the teams the feedback on their presentations.

 

Sastra Deemed University, School of Law Uttranchal University, Law College Dehradun

Permission sought and the counsel 1 approached the Dias. The Court has granted the permission to skip the facts. The counsel 1 from the petitioner therefore started off confidently with the issues of the case but the constant inflexible grilling of the judges seem to have shaken her stance in forming the arguments.

The second counsel had started off by elaborating the claims given by counsel one. the constant grilling of the judge had led him to put forth a number of cases some of which the facts was not known to him. The judges were not satisfied with the argument of the counsel and since the time lapses, the counsel decided to proceed with  the prayer.

The counsel is having a rough time out there. The bench seems to be relentless in their approach.

The Counsel seemed to fumble, with the constant queries of the judge. There is a lot of confusion about the appropriate court under which they have sought remedy through.

The counsel has some problem conveying the crux of her contention but quickly provides the clarification, drawing an affirmative nod from the judges.

It’s a wobbly start for the counsel but the counsel is trying to get over it. The judges have started to question and the counsel is trying to satisfy them but so far in vain. Even good counsels can run out of form. But in this case, the barrage of questions has put the counsel in a fix. The counsel is in an unenviable position. Undaunted and fearless, the counsel continues with her arguments.

The counsel 2 from the respondent side had ask permission to proceed the Dias. She had started out strong. She has definitely learnt a thing or two from the counsel 1 and the petitioner side.  The constant grilling from the judges had led her to stumble.

 

NLUJA Assam (Dummy Team)vCNLU Patna

The Counsel 1 from the side of Petitioner has approached the bench and the judges have already started their questioning by challenging the jurisdiction of their petition. The counsel looks baffled by the sudden outburst of questions from the Bench and things have taken a turn for the worse as the judges seem to draw the conclusion that several of the arguments of the counsel are not backed by any authority. The arguments being raised by the counsel are being contradicted at every point by the judges and this doesn’t seem to be helping the Petitioners case at all. They are in a tight position which they might find difficult to maneuver out of.

Counsel 2 approaches the dais. The judges are poking holes in the arguments of the Agent very systematically. The compromise is analysed carefully and in depth by the judges. The Bench looks impatient and unsatisfied with the contentions of the counsel.

The judges seem to grill the Respondent from the very start just as they did the Petitioner. Judges are now on a spree of cross-questioning, the counsel is now wavering in his demeanor and seems to be caught in the web of questions. The arguments seems to be slowly getting away from the hands of the Respondents as Judges continue to grill them mercilessly. The Counsel is taking various defenses but the Judges seem unconvinced. The judges have let off with a barrage of questions and the trend continues. And yet again, the counsel had to go past the allowed extra time to complete her argument. This bench has proven to be a tough one for both the teams.

With this, the 2nd preliminary round comes to an end. All the teams faced huge challenges and constant barrage of questions from the judges, but then, a moot is all about satisfying the bench, let’s see which of the  teams did a better job!

2:30 P.M. – The judges and participants have now proceeded for lunch.

3:30 P.M. – The teams are now eagerly waiting for the results!

4:00 P.M. – The following teams have qualified for the Quarter Finals

  1. DSNLU Vishakhapatnam
  2. JCC Law College
  3. MNLU Mumbai
  4. NUSRL Ranchi
  5. Symbiosis Law School Pune
  6. UILS Panjab
  7. UPES Dehradun
  8. Uttranchal University, Law College Dehradun

 

Quarter Final Round

UILS Panjab v JCC Law College

The Petitioner Counsel 1 has approached the dais and has begun with the submissions.

The counsel is very soft spoken and is making the submission regarding the maintainability of the case. He makes the submission that CWC does not have the authority to resolve the dispute between two private parties. He then  makes the submission that CWC has not made social investigation regarding the children’s need for care and protection and thus there is irregularity on the part of CWC. The judges have asked the Counsel for the best course for the custodial rights to be determined for the children. He answers the question referring to the essential questions of law at hand. The judges seem satisfied.

Counsel 2 has approached the dais. He makes the submission regarding CWC’s failure in considering the welfare of the child. The counsel makes the submission regarding the interim custody which should be given in the hands of the grandparents. He submits  that children’s father had been convicted in a criminal cases and is not fit for the custody of the children. Moreover, Counsel 2 is making the submission that the father became infuriated when the minor girls were born and thus, he is not fit for their custody.

Judges are grilling the Petitioners on the question why a father can’t be affectionate towards the children. Judges have asked the Petitioners whether grandparents have been defined as a fit person under any substantive law. He answers the question referring to the essential questions of law at hand. The judges seem satisfied. Petitioners have now concluded their submissions.

Respondent Counsel 1 has approached the dais.

 Judges are grilling Respondent Counsel-1 on the statement of facts. Afterwhich,

Respondent Counsel-2 has approached the dais. She is making the submission regarding the custody of the children. However, judges are not satisfied with the submissions made by her. She then makes a  submission regarding the preferential treatment being given to the grandparents. She is contending that the father should be given the custody of the children. Judges are grilling the counsel.

 Rebuttal rounds have started. The Petitioners have raised a very important question.

 The Respondents are clarifying the questions raised by the Petitioners. The judges do not seem satisfied.

 

Symbiosis Law School Pune v MNLU Mumbai

Counsel 1 has approached the bench and as the judges are well acquainted with the facts and jurisdiction of the case, the Counsel has been permitted to move ahead with the arguments. The Counsel has commenced with the question of maintainability of the petition in the Court. The Counsel has swiftly moved ahead with the arguments by backing the arguments with a number of precedents and has also discussed the powers of the Child Welfare Commission. The arguments have been made structurally and put forth in a sequence by the Counsel which has been appreciated by the judges. The facts of the relevant precedents as and when cited by the Counsel have been summarily discussed by the Counsel to aid the judges in drawing an analogy with the present case. The Counsel has time and again asserted that “paramount welfare of the child” is of utmost importance. The judges have asked the Counsel to further elaborate on the factual matters of the case with the relevant laws on a particular question of fact. The judges have also asked the Counsel to read the Code of Criminal Procedure  in order to provide a better answer to their particular query. The judges have been very inquisitive throughout the submissions of the Counsel and have focused on the nomenclature and terminology used by the Counsel. The Counsel exceeded her time limit and was permitted to submit a gist of the remaining arguments.

Counsel 2 has approached the Bench and would be arguing on the remaining issues. The Counsel, however, has been rattled by the question forwarded by the judges on whether the personal laws superseded the statutory laws. The judges went on to discuss the facts of the landmark judgments as cited as authorities by the Counsel. The judges have commented that “seniors citizens are one of the most harassed communities in the country.” The judges have asked the Counsel to relate the facts of the instant case with the provisions cited by the Counsel. The submissions of the Counsels for the Petitioners ended with the prayer and reliefs sought. In conclusion, the judges have also discussed the refugee and political asylum status of a person.

The Counsel 1 from the side of the Respondents has approached the Bench and prayed before at the outset to emphasise on the best interest and welfare of the children. The Counsel has questioned the maintainability of the petitions and taken the stand that the petitions are not maintainable. The questions as and when forwarded by the judges have been satisfactorily answered by the Counsel with authorities. The Counsel has focused on the point that the case is of “restoration” rather than “custody”.

Counsel 2 has approached the Bench to address the remaining issues on the side of the Respondents. The judges have asked the Counsel to co-relate the precedents cited by her with the facts of the instant case. The judges have been inquisitive about the facts of the case and with humour have discussed their views on the submissions of the Counsel. The Counsel has also stated that the “best interest of the child” is to be of paramount importance for the Courts to consider. Various international conventions have been cited as authority by the Counsel. The Counsel has rested their case with the prayer.

The round has come to an end with the Counsels for the Petitioners rebutting on the arguments advanced by the Counsels for the Respondents. The replies of the Counsels for the respondents have been given in a structured manner to the judges.

The student adjudicators participating have also put forth relevant questions to both the parties which have been effectively answered by the Counsels.

Counsel 1 has approached the bench and as the judges are well acquainted with the facts and jurisdiction of the case, the Counsel has been permitted to move ahead with the arguments. The Counsel has commenced with the question of maintainability of the petition in the Court. The Counsel has swiftly moved ahead with the arguments by backing the arguments with a number of precedents and has also discussed the powers of the Child Welfare Commission. The arguments have been made structurally and put forth in a sequence by the Counsel which has been appreciated by the judges. The facts of the relevant precedents as and when cited by the Counsel have been summarily discussed by the Counsel to aid the judges in drawing an analogy with the present case. The Counsel has time and again asserted that “paramount welfare of the child” is of utmost importance. The judges have asked the Counsel to further elaborate on the factual matters of the case with the relevant laws on a particular question of fact. The judges have also asked the Counsel to read the Code of Criminal Procedure  in order to provide a better answer to their particular query. The judges have been very inquisitive throughout the submissions of the Counsel and have focused on the nomenclature and terminology used by the Counsel. The Counsel exceeded her time limit and was permitted to submit a gist of the remaining arguments.

Counsel 2 has approached the Bench and would be arguing on the remaining issues. The Counsel, however, has been rattled by the question forwarded by the judges on whether the personal laws superseded the statutory laws. The judges went on to discuss the facts of the landmark judgments as cited as authorities by the Counsel. The judges have commented that “seniors citizens are one of the most harassed communities in the country.” The judges have asked the Counsel to relate the facts of the instant case with the provisions cited by the Counsel. The submissions of the Counsels for the Petitioners ended with the prayer and reliefs sought. In conclusion, the judges have also discussed the refugee and political asylum status of a person.

The Counsel 1 from the side of the Respondents has approached the Bench and prayed before at the outset to emphasise on the best interest and welfare of the children. The Counsel has questioned the maintainability of the petitions and taken the stand that the petitions are not maintainable. The questions as and when forwarded by the judges have been satisfactorily answered by the Counsel with authorities. The Counsel has focused on the point that the case is of “restoration” rather than “custody”.

Counsel 2 has approached the Bench to address the remaining issues on the side of the Respondents. The judges have asked the Counsel to co-relate the precedents cited by her with the facts of the instant case. The judges have been inquisitive about the facts of the case and with humour have discussed their views on the submissions of the Counsel. The Counsel has also stated that the “best interest of the child” is to be of paramount importance for the Courts to consider. Various international conventions have been cited as authority by the Counsel. The Counsel has rested their case with the prayer.

The round has come to an end with the Counsels for the Petitioners rebutting on the arguments advanced by the Counsels for the Respondents. The replies of the Counsels for the respondents have been given in a structured manner to the judges.

The student adjudicators participating have also put forth relevant questions to both the parties which have been effectively answered by the Counsels.

 

UPES Dehradun v Uttranchal University, Law College Dehradun

Counsel 1 approaches the dais. The Counsel is continuing with the arguments without any interjections from the Bench. With the ringing of the first bell indicating the time, the Counsel has picked up the pace and continues with the arguments sans interruptions. Before wrapping up her arguments, the Bench questions the jurisdiction of the Court in the present case. Counsel 2 continues with the remaining issues while substantiating them with relevant authorities. The Bench inquires into the integration of the general and special laws applicable in the present case. The Counsel falters at answering some questions regarding the basics of law. The Petitioners wrap up their arguments with the Prayer.

Counsel 1 for the Respondents starts with the issues of the case. The Judges direct the Counsel to directly deal with the maintainability of the case before the Court along with the reasons thereof. The judges have been asking questions frequently. Counsel 2 for the Respondents starts with a criticism of the Petitioners’ point of argument before beginning her own arguments. The arguments have proceeded with hardly any questions from the Bench.

The Petitioners have given a good comeback with the rebuttal round. However, the Bench has restrained the Counsel from making sweeping remarks. The Respondents have put forward the sur-rebuttal.

Following the rounds by both the teams, the first Student Adjudicator has taken his place to put forward his view. He speaks about the relevance of interlocutory orders, as used by the Petitioners. He elaborates on the crucial aspects  of the relevant laws discussed. Both teams have clarified their points which have been raised by the first Student Adjudicator.

The second Student Adjudicator has taken his place and starts with pointing out certain pertinent issues as were discussed by the Petitioners. He then proceeds to direct certain questions towards them regarding the filing of the case. He then questions the Respondents with respect to certain relevant provisions of the Code of Criminal Procedure which have been neglected in the present case. The round is wrapped up with the answers and clarifications by the teams.

The Judges then proceed with providing feedback to both the teams.

 

 

DSNLU Vishakhapatnam v NUSRL Ranchi

The counsel for the petitioners begins with their arguments.

The Counsel 1 approaches the dais and starts off by introducing the case, specifies the issues at hand and begins with the arguments for the issues he will be dealing with.  The judges are listening intently. The judges are asking question with regards to jurisdiction and they seem satisfied with the answer. The judges also point out certain flaws in the authorities submitted in the compendium. The counsel confidently continues with his remaining argument.

Counsel 2 approaches the dais and continues with the remaining issues. She seems to waver in presenting her arguments. Judges start asking her question contradicting the arguments presented by the counsel.  The judges do not seem satisfied with the counsel’s arguments and seeks permission to deal with the questions subsequently in her arguments. The Judges interrupt the counsel mid-argument and bombard her with questions contradicting the points made by her. The judges do not seem to be convinced by the arguments made by the counsel. The counsel continues with her arguments confidently and relies on the cases and authorities to substantiate her points. The judges listened to the arguments. The counsel is given 2 minutes to wrap up the arguments and present the prayer. The counsel stands her ground and wraps up the arguments as instructed.

The counsel for the respondents begins with their arguments.

The Counsel 1 approaches the dais and starts off by introducing the case, specifies the issues at hand and proceeds with the arguments of the issues he will be dealing with. The judges are listening intently and going through the authorities cited by the counsel. The judges begin with the questions and ask to clarify the arguments made by the counsel. The judges are now asking questions contradicting the points made by the counsel. The counsel is trying to answer these questions but seems to be wavering. The judges do not seem much satisfied with the responses and the counsel proceeds with other argument. He is again questioned on the points made by him and the judges do not seem much satisfied with the arguments made and justification presented. The judges also question about certain commentaries cited by the counsel.

Counsel 2 approaches the dais and sets out the issues she will be dealing with. She confidently proceeds with her argument and the judges start to question her. She takes moments and starts presenting her arguments and justifications. The judges start to question the counsel and contradict the points made by her. The judges do not seem to be satisfied by justification made by her. The counsel confidently continues and the judges seem to be satisfied. The judges again contradict the arguments of the counsel; however, she substantiates her point by citing a case decided by the Supreme Court. The questions continue over the issues. The judges do not seem satisfied by the last arguments presented. The counsel ends her arguments with the prayer.

During the rebuttal, Counsel 2 from the petitioner’s side approaches the dais and rebuts on issues pertaining to revision, jurisdiction as well other arguments and statements made by the counsel for the respondent. The judges seem to be satisfied with the rebuttals.

Next, the Student Adjudicator 1 approaches the dais and seeks permission to shed light on issues has not been dealt with. She proceeds confidently. The judges are listening intently. She satisfactorily answers the questions presented by the judges and then seeks permission to proceed forward to ask question to the petitioners. The judges seem to be satisfied with the questions and points made by the Student Adjudicator.

Subsequently, Student Adjudicator 2 approaches the dais and requests counsel 2 of the petitioner and the respondent’s side to take cognizance of the points made by him and answer his questions. He explains his points and proceeds to question with regards not filling of writ of Habeas Corpus and Writ of Certiorari, firstly the counsel for the respondent; she seeks permission for a moment for indulgence. The counsel for the petitioner proceeds to answer the questions. The counsel responds with an answer however the judges are not satisfied and it seems that the counsel of respondents is confused with the question asked. Their answer does not satisfy the judges. Student Adjudicator 2 concludes and the judges seem to be satisfied with the points he has presented.

 

And that brings us to an end of the quarterfinals. The teams seem exhausted but excited for the results. The judges were engrossed in the argumentation and now seem to relax. This day has seen some excellent argumentation so far.

7:20 P.M. – After getting over with their rounds, the teams are anxious to know their results, and the judges proceed for high tea.

It is now time for the results of the Quarter Finals. Here are the teams that have advanced:

  1. MNLU, Mumbai
  2. UILS Panjab
  3. NUSRL, Ranchi
  4. Uttranchal University, Law College Dehradun

We’ll be back tomorrow with all the updates from the Semi-Finals and the Finals. Tune-in tomorrow morning for the upcoming events.

 


 

Day – III Semi-finals , Finals and Valedictory Ceremony

10:30 A.M. – Good morning everyone! We are back for the third and final day of 2nd Dr. Gurjeet Singh Memorial National Moot Court Competition 2018. The judges have arrived and the teams are ready for their upcoming challenge.

Here is the list of match-up for the Semi-Finals:

  1. UILS Panjab MNLU, Mumbai
  2. Uttranchal University, Law College Dehradun NUSRL, Ranchi

 

Semi – Finals

Uttranchal University, Law College Dehradun NUSRL, Ranchi

10:26 A.M. – The Teams have arrived and there is ample amount of anxiety present in the room. The Student Adjudicators are also going through their last-minute preparations. To make the competition more interesting the Teams and the Student Adjudicators have been given a new Moot Proposition to feel the adrenaline. The extempore Moot Proposition has set the teams abuzz with anticipation. Let’s see how it unfolds!

10:40 A.M. – The Judges have arrived and the Court in-charges are briefing them of the rules and procedures. The faces of the participants seem to be grim as the competition will commence in a while.

10:45 A.M. – The judges are ready and it begins! The Counsel 1 of the Petitioner’s side is already on the dais. The counsel is briefing the judges of the statement of facts. The counsel seems to be intimidated by the presence of the judges as he is faltering and stammering in every statement. The Counsel is now beginning with his arguments but his confidence seems to be fading away. The judges are pin-pointing the minute details of the arguments which seem to be contradictory. The questions were answered by the Counsel but the Judges don’t seem to be very impressed. They allow the Counsel to proceed nevertheless. The Counsel puts forth that the petition is maintainable under the Section 6 of the POCSO Act. Counsel is now slowly picking up his confidence once again and citing relevant cases in support of his arguments. The judges now question the counsel of the difference between circumstances, circumstantial evidence and solid evidence. The Counsel, although still short on confidence, points to the facts of the case to bring it to his side. Then he refers to the cases in the compendium submitted to the bench beforehand.

11:01 A.M. – The Counsel is now on a good track and beautifully puts forth the circumstances of the cases as an evidence to be used against the Respondents. One more question from the Judges and the Counsel falters again. The Extempore Moot Proposition seems to be taking a toll on the Counsel as he is contradicting himself in one single statement itself. He is now trying by tooth and nail to save himself. The Judges are not impressed and ask for case laws. The Counsel sought ignorance and Judges ask the Counsel to proceed.

11:06 A.M. – The Counsel is now pointing at the loopholes which have been very pertinent to support the criminal appeal filed by them. The Medial Examination, as per the Proposition was carried out after 48 Hrs. And the time is over! But the Counsel is not done yet. He is stating sections after sections but the Judges are still not convinced of the points stated but allow him to continue with his arguments. The Counsel asks for an extension of 2 mins and it is granted by the Judges. He moves on with his submissions.

11:13 A.M. – Counsel 2 asks for permission to approach the dais and judges say that it is her right to do so! She is beginning with the summary of Issue 2 and she is way more confident than her co-counsel. The Judges are already questioning her and asking her to come the main points of offences and allegations. The Judges are asking for proofs that how the evidence is pointing to the offence being committed as the evidences are not direct and circumstantial. The Medical Lapses are being covered very smartly by the Counsel as she is pointing the Medical Jurisprudence Manual already submitted with headers of UV Light Examination and Toxicology. The Judges seem very impressed with the arguments.

11:19 A.M. – The Counsel cites cases and Judges are hearing her out very intently as she is going into the very details of inference of the Medical Examination and the relevant Sections. The Judges now question if there is any statement directly from the victim but the Counsel contends that the Proposition is silent upon the said fact.

11:27 A.M. – The Judge asks for her contention and her prayers. The Counsel prays for quash the order of acquittal of the accused, hold him guilty of Section 12 of POCSO Act, Section 376 of the Indian Penal Code and any order which the court may deem fit for the justice, equity and good conscience.

11:30 A.M. – Counsel 1 from the side of the respondent has approached the dais with the permission of the Bench and has directly started off with his arguments. The judge points out some minute loopholes in the submissions of the counsel in the very first minute.

11:35 A.M. – The counsel seems to be confident about his submissions while arguing for his case as he is citing relevant precedent cases continuously to support the respondent’s side. He is accusing the petitioner’s counsel about relying too much on the imaginary facts. The Bench questions the counsel on the accusations made by him and the counsel is trying to justify his argument. The counsel seems to be faltering in justifying his arguments and the judges look unsatisfied.

11:41 A.M. – The Bench asks the counsel as to what defense they will use for the act of the respondent of locking the door from inside with two outsiders in the house? The judges question the intentions of the respondent, to which the reply given by the counsel seems to satisfy the judges that any reasonable man would lock his house from inside when he is inside. To the matter raised by the judges that the two children were outsiders the counsel points out from the facts of the case that it has been mentioned that the respondent was a distant relative. Locking the house from inside does not indicate anything about the intentions of the respondent.

11: 49 A.M. – The judge has directed the counsel to rely on the facts of their own case rather than presenting imaginary arguments from the facts of some other precedent case.

11: 51 A.M. – The judges question the counsel whether granting custody to the mother will affect the defense? To which the counsel replies no. Then the judges shoot another question as to whether the same issue has affected the investigation procedure of the case? The counsel has been left speechless by the judges’ question and has sought for a moment of indulgence to get back to the bench to answer their question. He tries to get back with an answer but seems under confident about his submissions.

11:53 A.M. – Counsel 2 on behalf of the respondent approaches the dais with the judges’ permission and tells the bench about the manner in which she would be proceeding with her arguments.

11:56 A.M. – The counsel points out that as the two children are of the ages 9 and 13 and according to the moot proposition are doing quite well in their academics, it cannot be assumed that they were of such mental conditions that they cannot express or understand if any sexual offence has taken place against them. On this contention the Counsel argues that if her client, the respondent would have committed any sexual offence against the two girls they would have told their mother the very same day.

12:06 P.M. – The counsel moves on to the last issue, citing the relevant cases to support her arguments, and the judges seem to be satisfied by her submissions as they are letting the counsel go on with her submissions. Seems like we assumed it too soon! The judge interrupted the counsel and asked her a question on the jurisdiction and maintainability of the case, to which the counsel replied that jurisdiction and maintainability was her co-counsel’s issue and she isn’t dealing with it.

12:17 P.M. – The counsel ends her arguments with the prayer and asks the bench to uphold the same.

12:24 P.M. – Student Adjudicator 1: The first Student Adjudicator has already approached the dais. She states the contention of the Petitioner of violation of Fundamental Rights should have been dealt with by approaching the High Court under 226 and not 227. Then she moves forward to point that the statement of the Victim must match with the medical report and only then that the evidence is submitted. She then contends that the allegation by the Petitioner were under Section 3 but the prayer stated Punishment under Section 12 which is Sexual Harassment. She says the proper approach could have been asking for punishment of assault or aggravated sexual assault.

The Counsel from the Petitioner’s side is now answering all the questions put forth by the Student Adjudicator and there is a very grim discussion on vital points of the facts which have been stated and missed.

12:31 P.M. – The Student Adjudicator now turns to the Respondents and points that their contention should have been under Section 378 (2) of CrPC rather than Section 378 (1). She further states that semen was to be found only if there would have been complete penetration and not if there was mere rubbing. The contention of the Respondent that the caressing could have been from an affectionate manner but the Student Adjudicator says that it would definitely not include touching all over her body. She says that it is a public duty that any person could report even the apprehension of an attempt.

The Counsel from the Respondent’s side points to the facts and the precise words written in the Proposition to answer the questions raised by the Student Adjudicator.

12:37 P.M. – Student Adjudicator 2 has approached the dais and contends that the case at hand is a complicated one. He starts off with pointing out loopholes and questioning the petitioner’s side. The adjudicator questions the petitioners as to why they have filed the case under section 3 of the POCSO Act and not under Section 7 of the same?

12:39 P.M. – The adjudicator mentions that the default was on the part of the authorities in the investigations. Even after knowing the above fact, why do the petitioners want the accused to be held liable?

12:42 P.M. – The counsel for petitioner is fluently answering the questions of the student adjudicator and also points out from her arguments as to where and what all she has already mentioned to support her case.

12:44 P.M. – Now the adjudicator has started questioning the counsels on the behalf of the Respondent. The adjudicator questions that if the Uncle of the children had good intentions, why did he not inform their parents when the children started feeling dizzy. The student adjudicator questions the intentions of the accused and also points out that the respondents should have approached the court under different section.

12:49 P.M. – The adjudicator has lapsed his time but still continues to point out the loopholes in the submissions of the respondent as he has not been interrupted by the judges. Also, the adjudicator is citing several cases and their judgments to question the respondents.

12:51 P.M. – The counsel for the respondent tries to answer the questions of the student adjudicator and seems to be quite fluent with her facts as she is proceeding with her answers and arguments with ease.

 

 

UILS Panjab MNLU Mumbai

10:41 A.M. – The judges have arrived and the counsel 1 asks for permission to approach the bench.

10:42 A.M. – The counsel proceeded with the criminal appeal under Sec. 361 (b) of the CrPC and Sec. 28 of the POCSO Act and with the issues of the case which was, whether the appeal is maintainable or not? The counsel is describing the important facts of the case with relevance to Sec. 3 of the POCSO Act and Sec. 375 of the IPC. The judges asked questions relating to his stance whereby he argued that the entire penetration is not required for an act to amount for rape and the counsel answers the question by mentioning Sec. 29, 3, 5, 7 and 9 of the POCSO Act.

10:48 A.M. – The counsel elaborately described the facts of the case, the judges interrupted him with queries whereby he answered confidently. However, the Counsel did make a contradiction to his own arguments which was pointed out by the judges but cleared the doubt confidently. The Bench further raised another issue that whether the evidence raised by the respondent could be relied upon, to which the counsel answer says no and also stated that it was not a reliable piece of evidence. The counsel further elaborated that the main question before this Bench is whether the decision given by the session court is wrong and whether there was any miscarriage of justice and not that the accused has committed the act or not.

11:00 A.M. – The counsel further mentions that the trial court has overlooked the compelling evidence which was produced and mentioned Sec. 3 of POCSO Act whereby it states that even though the act is not vade out still they will be convicted with homicide and not murder. He further mentions Sec. 7 of POCSO Act which defines sexual assault and argued that the accused would still be convicted under this Sec. 7 if not Sec. 3. He further substantiates his argument with a case law whereby the Hon’ble SC of India has mentioned the drug facilitated sexual assault and Sec. 9 which mentioned an aggravated sexual assault. The Counsel also refers the newspaper mentioning about the ordinance issued by the Cabinet for validating his argument.

11:06 A.M. – Judges ask question regarding Sec. 2 whereby the Counsel answers with confidence and the judges look satisfied. Counsel 1 further leave the dais to his co-counsel to argue for the subsequent issues dealing with evidence and cases.

11:07 A.M. – The Counsel 2 asks for permission to approach the dais and begins his arguments.

11:08 A.M. – The Counsel 2 argued that the order given by the Sessions Court is not only horrendous but insensitive by giving case laws and mentions Sec. 147 of the Evidence Act. He further argued that the medical proof is insufficient and inclusive and that rape is a legal term and not a medical term. The judges asked questions regarding the inclusive medical report which was answered confidently by the counsel through various case laws. He also argued that the even though there are no external marks on the body of the accused, it does not mean that he did not commit rape. He validates his argument with case laws and also gave reasons such as protection or incompetency of the accused. He also mentions Sec. 375 of the IPC which states that even the touching of the female part by the male part is penetration and argued that the SC of India has held that the slightest contact even without rupturing hymen would constitute rape.

11:16 A.M. – The Counsel argued that rape is a crime and not a medical conclusion and that it is a legal term. The Counsel also describes the Society in India whereby the mother is the support base for the female child and that her support is responsible for building up her personality which was held by the SC. He also stated that the CWC has a principle of utmost importance to give the custody of the child to the mother. The judges proceeded with a query as to why the father should not get the custody and how could you say that custody is given to the mother when both the mother and father live together? He answered the queries with confidence and the judges were satisfied. The counsel concludes his argument and proceeds to the prayer.

11:21 A.M.– The Counsel 1 on behalf of the respondents approaches the dais. She starts with proving that the appeal is not maintainable as there is no compelling or substantial reason for the court to interfere and that there was no malicious intent on the part of the Respondent as contended by the Appellants.

11:27 A.M.– The counsel further contends on the reliability of the statement of the child stating that the children being merely 9 and 14, their statement cannot be taken into consideration. She signs backing up the same with case laws and analysis of the instant case.

11:34 A.M.– Moving further with the contention of maintainability, the counsel states that this Hon’ble Court should not interfere with the functioning of the lower courts. Moreover, the respondents contend that there was no illegality and so the decision of the lower court must be upheld.

11:36 A.M.– The counsel now moves to her second contention. But due to the lapse of time, the counsel quickly summarises the contention.

11:37 A.M.– The co-counsel has now approached the Dias beginning with the remaining contentions. With the permission of the Hon’ble court, the counsel argues that the one-finger test is no ground of rape whereby the judges questioning of the facts of the case, the counsel stated that there was no rape in the instant case with relevant provisions of medical jurisprudence.

11:44 A.M.– The judges questions on the validity of the section 7 provided by the Appellants and the respondents contends that fresh charges should be made under section 200 of the IPC. But, the judges seems to be unsatisfied with such an argument presented by the counsel as the  counsel contends that the case at hand just includes section 3 of POCSO and not section 7.

11:49 A.M.– Moving to the fourth issue, the counsel contends on the validity of the medical reports with various case laws but the judge questions the presence of spermatozoa after 48 hours. However, it looks like the counsel is well-versed with theories and analysis provided by various medical experts.

11:53 A.M.– Coming to the fifth issue, the counsel argues that there was no penetration on the child substantiating it with various case laws.

11:56 A.M.– The respondents move to their prayer and rests their case.

11:57 A.M.– the rebuttals are now on the go where the counsel on behalf of the Appellants states that the validity testimony is not admissible by the Respondents is nowhere mentioned in the facts and is baseless. Moreover, the counsel contends that as the Appellants have disregarded and avoided some very important facts in order to avoid the charges framed.

12:01 P.M.– Now, the Respondents begins with that presumption of innocence, burden of proof and guilt beyond reasonable doubt are the rights of an accused, but however, the judges question the counsel sheerly on the facts about these rights presented by the counsel.

12:06 P.M. – The Student Adjudicator 1 raises a question regarding the allegations that have been put against Anil. She also mentions that Appeal is a matter of right under Art. 21 of the constitution and substantiates the same with case laws.

12:08 P.M. – She further points out that why no contention has been made regarding Suman and also mentions Sec. 23 of the Juvenile Justice Act.

12:09 P.M. – The Student Adjudicator further mentions Sec. 22 describing malicious intent of Ram and backed her statement with case laws.

12:10 P.M. – She further asks how is Ram not aware of the 48 hours rule of cross examination of the CrPC?

12:11 P.M. – The Adjudicator points out that there is no report to proof the evidence of sedatives (coca cola).

12:12 P.M. – She further asks that how do you concretely proof that the children are still relevant in this case? With Sec. 124, she also mentions that the argument of the Counsel 1 from the petitioner’s side is contradictory, whereby the children does not tell anything to the parent because of the fear of scolding. She also asks that why an FIR was not filed to the police after the incidence?

12:23 P.M.– The Second Adjudicator 2 has now approached the dais. The adjudicator starts with common question to both the sides about the maintainability under the POSCO Act. Moving forward with section 7, hymen being intact and penetration in the instant case.

12:27 P.M.– The adjudicator questions on the validity of the testimony of Suman and section 3 as there is no direct evidence.

12:29 P.M.– Intention can only be used as a presumption until proven guilty is how the adjudicators rests his arguments.

12:30 P.M.– The counsel has approached the Dias in order to answer the relevant questions presented to both the sides.

12:34 P.M.– The court is adjourned and it looks like a close call.

 

 

 

01:10 P.M.- And that brings us to the end of the Semi-Final rounds. What a thrilling contest. Hold your breaths, we’ll be back with the results soon!

01:50 P.M.- The wait is finally over. Thank you for your patience. the following teams have advances to the Finals:

  1. UILS Panjab
  2. Uttranchal University, Law College Dehradun

The Finals will be beginning shortly, we will be updating you with the actions as it unfolds! Stay tuned.

 

Final Round (“The Finale”)

Uttranchal University, Law College Dehradun University Institute of Legal Studies, Panjab

02:20 P.M. – The Judges have arrived and here, in the Finals of 2nd GSMNMCC 2018, the teams would be facing a bench of 5 Judges comprising of Mr. Hasibur Rahman, Justice Ujjal Bhuyan, Mr. Angshuman Bora, Mr. Probal Mukherjee and Mr. Krishna Kanta Mahanta. The Courtroom is abuzz with activities and last minute clarifications.

02:21 P.M. – The Judges have allowed the Counsel from the Petitioner side to commence and he has approached the dais. He begins by briefing the Judges with the Statement of facts and the Judges so far are listening intently. The Judges look very serious and have a grim expression. The Counsel seems to be stammering at points which can be because of nervousness of Finals and facing a bench of 5 esteemed Judges.

02:25 P.M. – The Counsel proceeds to deal with the issues. The Petitioners would be contending for in total of five issues of which the first Counsel will be dealing with the first two issues and the subsequent issues would be dealt by the second Counsel. The Counsel seems to be gaining his confidence bit by bit and is now submitting his arguments with utmost fluency. The Judge points a couple of errors and then they proceed.

02:29 P.M. – The Judges are going through the Bare Acts to confirm the sections being quoted by the Counsel. One of the Judges interject and question if there are any provisions in the POCSO Act which state that the provisions of CrPC will be applicable? The Counsel smartly puts forth the relevant section but the Judge points to a more precise section for the said question. The Counsel is intimidated a bit but the Judges are more of in a learning discourse rather than grilling.

02:33 P.M. – The Judges are so far very patient and hearing out the Counsel very intently and referring to the cited cases’ judgments. They agree with the Counsel and move forward with the submissions. The Counsel refers to the submitted Compendium and Judges look impressed with the Judgment which have been referred to.

02:36 P.M. – The next contention of the Counsel is on the Medical lag which was definitely not in favour of the Petitioner. The procedural lapse has led to the present situation due to which the Petitioner is still suffering. The Judges seem to agree with the submission.

02:40 P.M. – The Counsel submits that the victims of the crime are minors and hence, the future of the country. The welfare of the minors was not taken into consideration and that there was a grave injustice done. He cites the case of Kiran Bedi (1986) where it was mentioned that there was Right to Reputation and likewise in the case of Maneka Gandhi where it was contended that an individual has a Right to Live with Dignity. The Counsel finishes his submission but one of the Judges has a query with regard to a section.

02:42 P.M. – The Counsel answers beautifully that the facts are silent on the said issue which has been raised by the Judge. The Judge is satisfied but has a tail question. The Counsel contends that the said issue will be dealt with by his Co-counsel. Another judge interjects and explains the issue elaborately to the Counsel. As already stated above, the Judges are more of into a learning discourse rather than grilling.

02:46 P.M. – The Counsel moves forth to the second issue which is with regard to the handing over the custody of the minor girls to their mother. The Counsel submits the relevant sections and Judges agree. The Counsel further contends that the Statement of Facts clearly state that the mother was of a caring nature and the CWC was right in giving over the minor girls to their mother.

02:49 P.M. – The Counsel has finished submitting his arguments but one judge has raised another query. The Counsel answers the query dutifully. One of the learned Judges points out the practical facts as a part of learning discourse.

02:51 P.M. – The first Counsel has left the dais with the agreement of the judges.

02:51 P.M. – The Counsel 2 for the petitioners approaches the dais with the judges’ permission and asks for a moment of indulgence before starting up with her submissions.

02:52 P.M. – The Counsel seeks permission to start off with her arguments to which she gets a permission. She starts off with stating the facts that support the contentions she is pleading for before the esteemed judges.

02:54 P.M. – The counsel moves on to state the medical facts of the case in pointers to make her submissions more easily understandable for the judges. She also provides the judges with the document containing the medical facts.

02:56 P.M. – One of the honorable judges after going through the documents provided by the counsel interjects the counsel and asks questions on which the counsel pleads that the facts of the case are silent. But this interjection seems to have affected her confidence a bit.

03:00 P.M. – The judges have caught the counsel off guard on a minute loophole of their submission which seems to have lowered the confidence of the counsel. However, she is still trying to maintain her composure while making her submissions.

03:03 P.M. – The judges point out a section from the POCSO Act that supports the arguments of the petitioner which the counsel seems to have omitted. The counsel pleads that it indeed is an important point that she missed and should be taken under utmost consideration while delivering the judgment.

03:06 P.M. – The counsel seems to be quite fluent with her arguments as she is proceeding with utmost ease citing all the important and relevant precedent cases to support her arguments along with providing the judges with documents that they need to refer to understand her points better.

03:08 P.M. – The judges point out an important contention  that the counsel has missed in her argument but not with an intent to question the counsel for the same but rather to provide her a learning guideline.

03:12 P.M. – The counsel proceeds towards her prayer as she is done with her submissions and seeks permission for the same. The judges ask the counsel to justify some of the points that are unclear from the petitioner’s prayer and she complies with the same. It is now time for the Respondents to make their case.

03:15 P.M. – The counsel on behalf of the Respondents seeks permission to approach the Dias. The counsel starts the proceedings with a procedural objection and a preliminary objection to the prayer presented by the Appellants. The Counsel brings to the notice of the Hon’ble Court about the procedural lapses and that no clear evidence has been presented by the Appellants, stating that the appeal is frivolous. 

03:19 P.M. – As the counsel states that there was no evidence however, the judges interrupts the counsel by throwing light on the facts of the case by circumstantial evidence. But, the counsel very confidently answers the pertinent question presented to him through the testimony of one-testimony test. 

03:22 P.M. – Further, the counsel contends that the FIR is completely frivolous and baseless. Also, the PIL cannot be used as a vengeance as done in the instant case. 

03:25 P.M. – The counsel states that there was no medical report, no evidence presented, and the appellant has admitted all of these. To this, the Judge asks for evidence on the side of the Respondents to prove their case and contends the presumption of innocence as mentioned by the counsel under section 29 of the POCSO Act and section 129 of the Evidence Act. 

03:29 P.M. – There seems to be a dissatisfaction on the part of the Judges by the counsel’s response to the volley of questions and the counsel is trying his best to convince the Bench with both the statutes and the facts. 

03:31 P.M. – The counsel moves forward to his next issue regarding the medical reports whereby he starts with discharging the charges based on the elements mentioned in the report. The counsel further mentions that the hymen was intact, there was no injury on the private parts and so the charges are invalidated. 

03:33 P.M. – The counsel contents that for a sexual offence to happen there must be the presence of sexual intent but the absence of the same discharges any liability imposed on the Respondents and now there lies presumption of innocence on the part of the Respondent. 

03:35 P.M. – The counsel moving forward additionally prayed that the Hon’ble Court should under section 21 of the POCSO Act must convict Ram and with that, rests his argument.

03:37 P.M. – The counsel with the permission of the Bench approaches the dais. He starts off with the issue of maintainability that was mentioned by his co-counsel and also the appeal that was given by the petitioner side. He argues that the petitioner has no foundation to prove that the accused has committed an offence. He further contends that for the sake of making his organisation reputable Ram has used his political connections. This was questioned by the judge and he answers the question with confidence. However, it seems like the bench is not satisfied with his argument, but the counsel went on and proceeded to another issue. The queries raised by the Bench with relation to Section 29 of the POCSO Act was answered and further substantiated by the Counsel with a case law.

03:48 P.M. – It seems that the Counsel is not well aware of the facts of the case and does not have a sufficient answer to the question raised by the bench. He further states that Suman has not filed an FIR within the stipulated time which shows that there is some criminal intention with it. He also stated relevant Sections from the Juvenile Justice Act to prove his case. When the question was raised by the Bench as to how does it affect his interest, the counsel was not able to answer to the satisfaction of the Judges. The Counsel now proceeds with the prayer.

03:56 P.M. – The Counsel for petitioner has now approached the Bench for the round of rebuttals. One of the esteemed judges has cracked a joke to release the pressure of the tensed up environment of the finals Court room.

03:59 P.M. – The Counsel for the petitioner points out several lacunae on the part of the respondents while taking into consideration the facts of the case. The Counsel rests her case.

04:00 P.M.– The Counsel on the behalf of the Respondents approaches the dais for sur-rebuttals. The counsel is arguing that FIR can be filed only after conducting the General Data Entry. Presumption is only prima facie and further argues that sexual intention should be proved by the Petitioner. It seems as if the Bench likes grilling him but he surely has a stance and confidently comes out of the tricky situation presented before him by the Hon’ble Bench. He further strengthens his arguments by stating the principle that presumption has to be proved before reasonable doubt.

04:03 P.M. – The first Student Adjudicator has already approached the dais with due permission of the learned Bench. He commences by questioning the Petitioner’s Side and cites a case in which negates one of the submissions made by the Counsel. Next, he moves forth to discuss about the sections of POCSO Act and the general and specific sections which could have better helped the Petitioner’s argue. Also, he asks about the non-application of certain sections which could have been pertinent to their submissions. He questions the principle of ‘mens rea‘ ?and says that the contention would have been better with certain amendments. The Student Adjudicator has lapse his time limit but the judges allow him to move forward nevertheless.

The Petitioner answers the questions raised by the Student Adjudicator beautifully with all the facts and figures. One of the Judges seem to be in a very jolly mood and cracks one more joke to lighten the atmosphere. She cites the relevant sections and rests her case with the learned bench.

04:11 P.M. – The Student Adjudicator turns to the Respondent’s and questions them about the maintainability of the suit and cites a case where it was judged that the court should not be swayed on the emotional ground as the matter is of a serious nature. Next he points the factual issues raised by the Counsel and questions about the gray area. He cites another case and quotes the judgement. Another contention of the Respondent submitted said that the Children are minor and hence, the suit is not maintainable. He cites a Supreme Case where it was judges that a young girl won’t level her reputation by alleging false facts about her chastity. He also stated that the welfare of child was of paramount importance and that children are not chattels to be played around with. They are the future of the country.

The Respondent also is very well adept with the cases and cites them back to back to answer the Student Adjudicator.

04:19 P.M. – The second Student Adjudicator has approached the dais. She starts with questioning the petitioners on how was there no vested interest of Ram. Though contended by the appellants that there was no presence of semen to which the adjudicator questioned that the hymen cannot be repaired even when the semen can be washed off? The adjudicator contends why did Ram not take the minor to a nearby hospital even after knowing about the 24 hours rule? How can the statement of the minor be valid when the course of their statement later? She ends with a question of information to the mother at least about such an act taking place.

04:24 P.M. – The counsel on behalf of the Appellant puts forward their arguments answering the queries put forth to them.

04:26 P.M. – The adjudicator seeks permission to question the Respondents with circumstantial evidence seeking a reasonable doubt in order to break the chain to prove any presumption of innocence. Moving forward, the adjudicator seeks how will the counsel defend the case when there was still smegma and no semen. Finally, what authorities do the respondents have in order to prove any such authorities.

04:29 P.M. – The counsel on behalf of the Respondents puts forward their arguments answering the queries put forth to them.

04:32 P.M. – The court is adjourned and may the best team win. 

04:33 P.M. – The Grand Finale has finally come to an end and we must say that it was Clash of the Titans! What a round! Such perfect arguments! Such perfect skills! May the best team win!

04:36 P.M. – The Judges are busy marking the competitors and filling up the score sheets. The tension is mounting and the hearts are beating faster than ever. On one side are the defending champions of 1st GSMNMCC’17 – UILS, Panjab and on the other side are the fresh entrants – Law College Dehradun.

Valedictory Ceremony

05:28 P.M. – So, it begins! We have amongst us Justice Ujjal Bhuyan, Guwahati High Court, Prof. Dr. J.S. Patil, Vice Chancellor, National Law Unievrsity and Judicial Academy, Assam, Mr. Angshuman Bora, Senior Advocate, Guwahati High Court, Mr. Hasibur Rahman, Senior Advocate, Guwahati High Court, Mr. Krishna Kanta Mahanta, Senior Advocate, Guwahati High Court, Mr. Ved Prakash, Child Protection Officer, UNICEF Assam, Mr. Miftahuddin Ahmed, ACS, Registrar. All the dignitaries have been felicitated and we proceed towards the Welcome speech by the Registrar of National Law University and Judicial Academy, Assam. He heartily welcomes all the delegates from all over the Country. Also, he says that GSMNMCC is the only National Level Moot Court Competition in North East India.

05:34 P.M. – The Hon’ble Vice chancellor of NLUJA, Assam take over the dais and addresses the dignitaries and delegates. He applauds the efforts put in by the participants and calls it a “tough but enjoyable” game! He talks about the conception of NLU and appreciates the fact that 7 out of 22 NLUs are present in the hall today even though the host NLU is merely 8 years old. He states that the young lawyers have a very important role in making the country robust and making India the supreme nation. It is the youth which pushes the country forward because it is their energy which has the potential to reach the pinnacle of success. On a light note he points that he is very thankful that the students tolerate him despite his old age and ‘Gandhigiri.’ He laughs and says that the students still walk with him in the chores of the University and he is ever grateful to them. The Moot Proposition which was with regard to the Child Rights has come in at a very pertinent time and way it has been dealt with is commendable. He concludes with his usual ‘Jai Hind,‘ filling the hall with zeal.

05:43 P.M. – Mr. Angshuman Bohra starts off his speech by thanking NLUJAA of making him a part of GSMNMCC and reminding him of his college days. He shares his experience and says that he was quite timid when he began but today he saw confidence which was kissing the zeniths of enthusiasm. He applauded efforts put in by the participants. He moves forth by telling a story which was from the early days of his practice. He states that the love for one’s profession is the thing that rolls the life forward.

05:49 P.M. – Mr. Hasibur Rahman comes to the stage and starts his address by throwing light on the fact that he has been long tied with NLUJAA. He moves on to complimenting the University and the people who did their best to organize this 2nd GSMNMCC and made it a huge success. Further, the learned lawyer gives a thoughtful advice to the students that they should not run after money in this profession and rather should focus on gaining knowledge and establishing themselves as a good citizen of the society.

05:54 P.M. – Next comes up, Mr. K.K. Mahanta, he states that this being his first experience of being at this position even though he has been practicing for last 40 years. He also explains that he was also a part of the judgement panel of the 1st GSMNMCC. He compares his experience of this time from the past and says that he found the new age budding lawyer to be very confident and hard working and exclaims that these students of today and tomorrow’s would be lawyers, with more and more knowledge and appropriate law school training can thrive to achieve great success in their lives. He focuses more on the point that every student of today before being a successful lawyer needs to be a successful and good citizen of the society first. He also calls the lawyers as the social engineers of the society and tells the students that it would be their responsibility to build a better and more responsible society.

06:04 P.M. – Now Mr. Ved Prakash Gautam, Child Protection Officer, UNICEF Assam, comes up to the stage and starts his speech by trying to draw the attention of everyone to the point that very few moot court competitions in India have take up the matter of child rights as their moot problem but NLUJAA has done that and it is commendable. He further explains his journey of how he started off from working at NGO for child rights and reached the point where he is now working with the UNICEF. He also requests the students that though students are going to opt for varied careers in the field of law it is important for them to at least keep themselves attached to the matter of child rights and human rights. He urges the students to be altruistic and share their work for the betterment of the society. He further shared with everyone a data regarding the matter of how many cases have been reported and investigations done on those cases in the past one year related to POCSO.

06:11 P.M. – Finally, Hon’ble Justice Mr. Ujjal Bhuyan takes up the stage and starts off with a light hearted joke on the court clerks that they would raise the time tag if he took more than 2 minutes for his speech so he would take only two minutes of time. Further he says that he is highly impressed by the mooters that took part in the university and wants to just trans-locate them directly to their courts. He also cracks a joke that he isn’t aware as to why the organizers have organized for so many speeches as even when he was a student he never liked it. On a more serious note he explains that whether you lose or win the thing that is important is that one needs to perform their work fearlessly but fiercely. He seems to be quite a cricket fanatic as he compares the profession of law with the sport and a lawyer to Chris Gayle. He quotes some lines said by the Shakespeare and explains its meaning that as now finally the competition is over the students should eat, drink and make merry!!!

06:20 P.M. – The hunger games are now over, the results are finally here. May the odds be in your favour!

06:21 P.M. – Certificates to student adjudicators are being handed over to the participants by the Hon’ble Registrar.

06:23 P.M. – Next comes the certificates for participation handed by the UNICEF Chief Protection Officer, Mr. Vedprakash Gautam.

06:24 P.M. – The next slot of certificates are being presented by Mr. Angshuman Bora, Senior Advocate, Guwahati High Court.

06:27 P.M. – The participants are now being presented with the certificate of participation by Mr. Mahanta, Senior Advocate, Guwahati High Court.

06:28 P.M. – Mr. Hasibur Rahman, Senior Advocate, Guwahati High Court is now presenting the participation certificates.

06:30 P.M. – The most awaited prizes are finally here. It begins with giving away the second best student adjudicator which goes to Mr. MEHUL SHAH from National Law University and Judicial Academy, Assam and the Best student adjudicator which goes to Ms. FILZAH BELAL from National Law University and Judicial Academy, Assam by Mr. Rahman, Senior Advocate, Guwahati High Court.

06:31 P.M. – The Best researcher goes to Mr. MUKUND JOSHI from MNLU, Mumbai and the Best student counsel goes to Ms. SAKSHI TYAGI from Law College Dehradun, Uttranchal University. CNLU, Patna receives the Best Memorial award.

06:34 P.M. – Well, the biggies are here!!!

06:35 P.M. – The second Best Team goes to Law College Dehradun, Uttranchal University comprising of Mr. Suvigya Saxena, Ms. Sakshi Tyagi, and Mr. Mousam Sharma and the defending champions yet again sweep the trophy!

Kudos, UNIVERSITY INSTITUTE OF LEGAL STUDIES, PANJAB UNIVERSITY for winning it in a row. The winning team comprised of  Mr. Mehtab Dhaliwal, Mr. Gunwant Dhaliwal and Ms. Kashish Aggarwal.

 

06:37 P.M. – Mr. Utkarsh Roy, the senior most Moot Court Committee member of NLUJAA, proposes the Vote of Thanks. He address and thanks everyone present in the hall. He thanks the sponsers which were UNICEF, Assam; SCC; EBC; and SC Biswas and Associates and officially ends the three-day long festival which was 2nd Gurjeet Singh Memorial National Moot Court Competition, 2018!

Thank you for taking the time to tune in and share with us in the excitement and intensity of the competition. We hope you had a fun time reading. We would like to thank, our knowledge partners, SCC Online and Eastern Book Company for all their help. Thank you for reading. On behalf of the live blogging committee, we wish you farewell. Thank you. See you until next time!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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