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Advocate Who Acted Professionally As Per Client’s Instruction Cannot Be Made Criminally Liable For Defamation: Madras HC [Read Order]

first_imgNews UpdatesAdvocate Who Acted Professionally As Per Client’s Instruction Cannot Be Made Criminally Liable For Defamation: Madras HC [Read Order] LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK1 Oct 2020 10:18 PMShare This – xAn advocate who acted professionally as per the instruction of his or her client cannot be made criminally liable for offence of defamation under Section 500 unless contrary is alleged and established, the Madras High Court has observed.In this case, a lawyer had filed an application on behalf of committee of creditors to remove the complainant and seeking appointment of another…Your free access to Live Law has expiredTo read the article, get a premium account.Your Subscription Supports Independent JournalismSubscription starts from ₹ 599+GST (For 6 Months)View PlansPremium account gives you:Unlimited access to Live Law Archives, Weekly/Monthly Digest, Exclusive Notifications, Comments.Reading experience of Ad Free Version, Petition Copies, Judgement/Order Copies.Subscribe NowAlready a subscriber?LoginAn advocate who acted professionally as per the instruction of his or her client cannot be made criminally liable for offence of defamation under Section 500 unless contrary is alleged and established, the Madras High Court has observed.In this case, a lawyer had filed an application on behalf of committee of creditors to remove the complainant and seeking appointment of another Resolution Professional under Section 27 of Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 before the National Company Law Tribunal, Chennai. A criminal defamation complaint was filed against the lawyer and the committee of creditors alleging that the statements made in the application were defamatory. The lawyer, and the other accused approached the High Court seeking to quash the complaint filed against them.Referring to a judgment in Ayeasha Bi Vs.Peerkhan Sahib reported in AIR 1954 Mad 741, Justice GK Ilanthiraiyan, observed:”It is held that a lawyer is an advocate, one who speaks for another. Naturally beyond what his client tells him the lawyer has no opportunity to test the truth or falsity of the story put forward by the client. Therefore no lawyer could ever be prosecuted for defamation in regard to any instructions which he might have given to his lawyer, because it is the lawyer’s business to decide whether he could properly act upon the instructions, and whatever responsibility might ensue from acting upon those instruction would be his, and no one else’s, is opposed to the entire trend of decisions defining the scope and extent of the privilege conferred upon the lawyer.”The court also noted a judgment of Chhattisgarh High Court in Arun Thakur Vs. State of Chhattisgarh, in which it was held that an advocate, who acted professionally as per instructions of his/her client, cannot be made criminally liable for the offence of defamation under Section 500 of the IPC unless contrary is alleged and established. The court said:”The Hon’ble Supreme Court of India and also various High Courts repeatedly held that an advocate who acted professionally as per the instruction of his or her client cannot be made criminally liable for offence of defamation under Section 500 unless contrary is alleged and established.”The court then quashed the entire complaint observing that allegations made in the application filed on behalf of the members of COC are not defamatory in nature.Case name: M.L.Ganesh vs. CA V.Venkata Siva KumarCase no.: Crl.O.P.Nos.4669 & 5115 of 2020Coram: Justice GK IlanthiraiyanCounsel: Adv S.ArunkumarClick here to Read/Download OrderRead OrderSubscribe to LiveLaw, enjoy Ad free version and other unlimited features, just INR 599 Click here to Subscribe. All payment options available.loading….Next Storylast_img read more

Prevention is better than a cure

first_imgStressin the workplace could be seen as an epidemic. However, some public sectoremployers are showing it can be avoided if the right policies are put in place.Jo Rick, principal research fellow, Institute for Employment Studies, applaudstheir creativity and flexibility in tackling the problemThepublic sector, with constant modernisation initiatives and a powerful impetusfor sweeping change in every area, appears to be the perfect breeding groundfor stress. A cycle of new demands and pressure leads to more stress, absence,and then further demands to do better still. Organisations could be forgivenfor pressing the panic button.Buthold on. What is this ‘disease’ that could spread so quickly? The fact is that‘stress’ is used too often as a catch-all phrase. A GP will write ‘stress’ on asick note because their duty is to decide whether or not a person is fit forwork. However, the key to being able to intervene effectively is understandingthe specific nature of the problem.Stressas a cause of absence is different from physical illnesses. If an employeesends in a sick note, for example, for a broken leg, the employer immediatelyhas some idea of the likely length of absence, the limitations on that employeeduring the illness and whether there will be any need for adjustment to work inthe longer term.Adiagnosis of stress says nothing about the specific problem, the possiblecauses, the likely length of absence and whether the problem is reallywork-related. Technically speaking, stress is not a diagnosis, and is notlisted in medical diagnostic criteria.Lookmore closely and employers will see that stress is not the invisible assassin,stalking the workplace, but is being used to describe what is actually a rangeof specific, identifiable and usually preventable or resolvable situations.Organisations can deal with it, and there are many examples of good practice inthe UK of how employees are being rehabilitated back into work.1Alongsideother good practice in rehabilitation, organisations are starting to recognisethat if they are to tackle stress, they need to start with a much more detailedand specific assessment of the nature of the problem.Forinstance, Lancashire Constabulary Central Division has changed its culture toensure stress is seen as an issue that needs to be addressed quickly. Anattendance policy is in place to pick up on longer spells of absence, and anyabsence relating to stress or anxiety is followed up immediately. Fullassessments are made to pinpoint the real causes of absence and employees areable to agree their own rehabilitation plan, which might involve temporary‘recuperative’ duties, change of work location or home working. The range ofstress policies and practices are seen to have been a real success in reducinglevels of sickness absence.AtSandwell Healthcare Trust, there is a robust absence reporting procedure inplace, with regular contact with the absent employee. Rehabilitation plans aretailored to the needs of the individual employee, often involving the use oftemporary placements. The trust operates a case management system, with rolesclearly defined for the line manager, divisional HR managers and occupationalhealth in each plan. Training is available for managers in managing change andadvice on how to maintain contact with an absent employee – a difficult taskfor many managers when stress is the problem. Goodrehabilitation practice is based around the following principles:–Maintaining contact with the employee on a personal rather than a purelywork-related basis–Attempting to diagnose the specific problems behind the stress involved–Providing immediate support from the start of the absence–Encouraging stress awareness among line managers–Being creative and flexible about options for a return-to-work–Developing an agreed rehabilitation plan with the employee–Creating a written policy or set of guidelines for employee rehabilitation.Thereis much talk of flexibility in the workplace in order to improve motivation andproductivity. It may actually be that creativity and flexibility in approachesto preventing stress and rehabilitating employees can bring even bigger rewards.Someorganisations are trying something new. For example, offering coaching formanagers in dealing with an employee once they are off work with stress, andthe creation of closer working relationships between employers, occupationalhealth and GPs to determine more specific causes.Themore specific diagnoses become, the more quickly this ominous, entirely vagueepidemic can be exposed and organisations will be able to get a handle on thespecific underlying issues.Reference:1.Best Practice in Rehabilitating Employees Following Absence Due to Work-RelatedStress, Thompson, Neathey, Rick, HSE 2003, ISBN 0 7176 2715 2, £20.00, is alsoavailable as a free download from the Health & Safety Executive stress webpages, www.hse.gov.uk/stress/research.htmFormore information, contact Jo Rick, [email protected],at the Institute for Employment Studies (IES), www.employment-studies.co.uk Prevention is better than a cureOn 1 Oct 2003 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos. 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