You (Person A) want to electronically send a monetary amount to Person B. You access your wallet via an electronic key. You initiate the transaction. This transaction is broadcast to a particular network. The entities on this network will verify that you have enough value in your wallet in order to transfer the desired amount to Person […]

via Blockchain Technology – An Amateur’s Guide — LawSkills blog

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No Reform in Procedure for Allotment of Cases: Supreme Court

On 6th July, 2018, the Supreme Court laid to rest yet another debate on the question of judicial accountability. In the case of Shanti Bhushan vs. Supreme Court of India and Ors. MANU/SC/0702/2018, a petition filed by Senior Advocate and Former Law Minister, Mr. Shanti Bhushan, it had been contended that concentration of unfettered powers in a single person was anti-democratic. Thus, reforms in the process of determination of were sought.  While conceding that the Chief Justice of India was indeed the Master of Roster, it was argued that the process of allocating cases should be determined by the collegium of senior most judges instead of the CJI alone so as to prevent abuse of power. While the 2 judge bench of Hon’ble Justices A.K. Sikri and Ashok Bhushan decided not to act upon the said petition, they did shed considerable light on judicial accountability and the qualities that need to be possessed by judges. The opinion of the judges have been summarized as follows –

  • On the petitioner’s contention that the role of CJI as the ‘master of roster’ was not based on any constitutional provision, Justice Sikri expressly acknowledged that the Constitution is silent on the role of Chief Justice as the Master of the Roster. However, he added that this role was “based upon healthy practice and sound conventions which have been developed over a period of time and that stands engrafted in the Supreme Court Rules.”
  • Reliance was placed on the cases of Campaign for Judicial Accountability and Reforms vs. Union of India & Anr. And the Asok Pande Case which affirmed the powers of the CJI as the master of the roster. Further, these cases reaffirmed that the CJI was an institution in himself and, thus, his administrative power of allocating cases cannot be delegated to the Collegium.
  • It was observed that –

This kind of system which is devised for the appointment of Judges cannot be replicated when it comes to the role of the Chief Justice as Master of Roster. We have to keep in mind that the Chief Justice, as the head of the Supreme Court of India, and the Chief Justices of the High Courts, have to perform many other functions, on the administrative side, in their capacities as Chief Justices. Framing of the Roster and constituting the Benches is one among them. In case the expression ‘Chief Justice’ is to be interpreted as ‘Collegium’, it would be difficult to have smooth day to day functioning of the Supreme Court, or for that matter the High Courts.

  • However, Justice Sikri reiterated the role of the CJI as that of being ‘first amongst the equals” and thereby clarified that the bench to which a case has been allotted will have complete dominion over the case.
  • The Bench further outlined the qualities to be possessed by a judge such as –

– Wisdom

– Patience

– Fairness and Balance

– Independence of Mind

– Knowledge of the Law

– Moral Courage or Fortitude

– Sense of Practical Reality

– Commitment to Administration of Justice in Accordance with Law

Thus, the Supreme Court has once again refused to entertain reforms to the CJI’s power as master of the roster as against transparency in the procedure of allocating cases. A huge furor had been created in this regard in a press conference on January 12, 2018 wherein the 4 senior most judges of the Supreme Court had expressed concerns about this very issue. However, status quo has been maintained as of now.

Full text of this judgment can be found at – Shanti Bhushan vs. Supreme Court of India and Ors. MANU/SC/0702/2018

O Captain! My Captain! – #SunilChettri #Football #India

I don’t believe in miracles, no. Yet, something phenomenal happened that made me take a pause, sit back and smile. India is a country where cricket is a religion, badminton a seasonal fad, hockey a chance to rest on our laurels and every other sport, well, is like a third-grade citizen. So much so, that when our football captain scored a hat-trick, the first for us in eight years, thereby making our way to a thunderous 5-0 victory against China in the Intercontinental Cup, no one noticed. The huge stadium comprised of a meagre 2500 people. Most people just saw this feat in the newspapers the next day with only a passing glance.

And then….

The very same captain, Mr. Sunil Chettri, tweeted a video, a home-made one at that. Nah, not a video, a heartfelt appeal. He asked his countrymen to come watch them play. His words went somewhat like –

“…Today I am not making a video for you guys. I am gonna speak and appeal to all of you who did not come. To everyone who is not a football fan, please come and watch us for two reasons. No. 1 – it’s the best game in the world and No. 2 – we play for our country. We will make sure that once you come to watch us, you will not return the same person back home.”

“To all of you who are fans of big European clubs and support European clubs with so much passion, thinking that the level is not the same. Agreed, the level is not the same, it is not even close. But with our desire and determination, we will make sure to make your time worth. To all of you who have lost hope, I request you to come and watch us in the stadiums.”

“To all of you fans that could not come or did not come due to delay, work and school, please come and watch us in the stadiums. You guys have no idea how important you are and your support is. So today I am requesting all of you to come support us on 4th, 7th and hopefully 10th June when we are playing in Mumbai. Encourage us, watch us, abuse us, criticise us, talk about the game, go back home and have discussions, make banners but please get involved.”  (To watch the video click here.)

What struck a chord, along with his words, was the honesty in his voice, the integrity in his face and the humility in his eyes. And the masses responded.

Indians turned up in huge numbers to cheer the team in the next match against Kenya. Amidst a jam-packed stadium, Chettri played his hundredth game and did not disappoint. He scored two goals to a screaming, cheering audience. Post the match, a grateful Chettri said that for support like this, the team will give their lives on the field playing for their country.

The Captain called and the country answered.

It wasn’t a big deal, really. Its just a game, isn’t it? But anyone who watched Chettri’s video couldn’t scroll ahead unaffected. It was shared by one and all. People not only bought tickets for themselves but also sponsored tickets for orphanages and underprivileged children.

I think this is what they mean when they talk about the power of the common man. One man made a world of a difference. And one response from the people made a world of a difference to him and his team.

I don’t know about you, but I’ll be going to bed with a lighter heart tonight.

Walmart Set to Acquire Flipkart – Market Competition Set to go into a Tizzy — Law and Little Things

There has been a lot of brouhaha surrounding rumours of Flipkart being taken over by either Amazon or Walmart. Amidst speculation, an underlying deeper concern was the potential impact on small-time traders, retailers and market economy as well. While the battle of the giants ended in favour of Walmart which, on 9th May, 2018, […]

via Walmart Set to Acquire Flipkart – Market Competition Set to go into a Tizzy — Law and Little Things

Surprise Sale – The Darkest Sunrise

Hello to all my fellow book-lovers! I came across a wonderful sale and thought of sharing its details with you. Its a limited time offer so please hurry if you’re interested!

Details-

 

✴✴ SURPRISE #99c #SALE ✴✴
The Darkest Sunrise, book one in this heart-pounding, emotional duet by Aly Martinez is now on sale for just #99pennies!

#oneclick your copy here:
The Darkest Sunrise (Book One): #99cents
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2tYlkMY
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2u5aPrp
Amazon CA: http://amzn.to/2u5dCAX
Amazon AU: http://amzn.to/2u4XsHs

Also, you can grab book two now!
The Brightest Sunset (Book Two):
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2sX0Yo9
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2tG4oJ9
Amazon CA: http://amzn.to/2u9VhU1
Amazon AU: http://amzn.to/22u0aVAI

(This duet is currently only available through Amazon)

Darkest_SALE3

 

A Little Knowledge Need Not be a Dangerous Thing – Presenting #LegisOrbis

Hey guys,
I’ll be going a little off topic today. Well, I say off topic because today’s post is not poetry or prose related – but if you consider the fact that I’m a lawyer by profession, it would definitely make sense.
I was wondering how often is it that lawyers and non-lawyers alike are miffed, baffled and, at times, left completely out of the loop when it comes to important aspects of our country’s governance? Yes, I’m speaking of parliamentary updates and passing of new, path-breaking judgments that end up being nothing more than latin and greek to the common man? What I find to be unreasonably ironical is that these people, who are unable to understand what just happened, are the ones who’d be most affected by these updates. Are you following me?

Let me make this simpler – out of all my European friends, how many actually understand GDPR (General Data Protectio Regulation), the law coming into effect on 25th May,2018 aimed at protecting their own personal and private data?

How many of us Indians are still trying hard to figure out the finer nuances of GST (Goods and Services Tax) in an attempt to not get swindled by every other trader out there?

Do I make sense now?

It’s an unfortunate situation, right?

Well, what if I tell you there’s a platform that not only decodes all such information but literally provides it at your doorsteps – nah – fingertips!?

I came across Legis Orbis recently and, trust me, I’ve become a convert. In an age where every media house has its own axe to grind, has not-so-hidden political agenda and what matters most is ratings and profits – here’s a forum dedicated to only delivering bare facts in the fastest and most reliable manner possible.

Coming down to brass tacks, if you’re interested in the developments taking place in our country and want to know the direction in which it’s heading – just like every responsible citizen and member of the society should be – it’ll be worth your while to go check out Legis Orbis. You don’t need to take just my word for it and subscribe – there are trials available for you to make up your own minds. But hey, when you can trust me with pleasing your thirst for poetry at times – then I’m sure you can take a leap of faith and go check out this brilliant new endeavour by a team of dedicated, hard-working people who are bound to become path-breaker. I’m providing access links to the platform’s pages down below for ready reference!

Legis Orbis

Twitter Page

Instagram Account

Also, I would love to hear your views on the questions I’ve raised in the beginning of the post. So, if you could please be so kind as to leave a quick word in the comments section down below, pretty please?

As always –

Love,

Varnika

PS – This is not a paid promotion. Nor has there been any quid pro quo. Like I keep saying, I’m not a big enough blogger for that yet. But hey, if you think otherwise, then thank you, i am indeed very honoured! (Internal me – haha, fooled ya!)

#Book #Release : The Point of a Gun – Steven W. Kohlhagen

The Point of a Gun by Steven W. Kohlhagen is a political thriller showcasing vigilantism against terrorism in the face of failure of intelligent agencies and the bureaucracy. Sounds interesting, right? Not only is it an intriguing read, but by way of its storyline, it also raises pertinent questions as to how the government should react to vigilantes, whether they should be allowed a free reign for the good that they’re doing, or should they be reigned in and brought to justice. The books strikes a perfect balance between two equally enthralling plots – the vigilantes’ hunting down of terrorists and the government’s/investigators’ hunt for the vigilantes. No mean task considering the vigilante group could comprise top intelligence agency insiders.
I am still in the midst of reading the book and have not yet come across a single disappointing word. It is simply riveting! I shall do my very best to have a review up for you within this week. For now, here’s a look at the back cover –

FYI, The Point of a Gun releases in September, so go grab a copy for yourself!

Disclaimer: I received an Advance Reading Copy of the book from the publisher for an honest review.

Of Gratitude and Giveaways

As the title suggests, the current post is two pronged. I have previously written on the need and importance of counting one’s blessings (to read the post, click here). Continuing on the same note, I wish to express gratitude today to all the people who are part of the sweet, little community that I’ve managed to form in this wonderful world of blogging.

WordPress told me that I am a hundred posts old now. This made me look back on how far I’ve come and in how little a time. Needless to say, I couldn’t possibly imagine embarking on the journey this has been without the love, support, encouragement, inspiration and constructive criticism which each one of you has taken the time and effort to shower on me. You all know who you are, and I cannot thank you enough!

This realisation became more profound in recent days when I had fallen very sick and could not post any new content for a long, long while (I understand that my hiatus lasted only three weeks but for someone who posted and interacted daily, it felt like an eternity). The warmth with which you welcomed me back has left me very touched. What filled me with a deep sense of belonging was the fact that you noticed my absence. Isn’t this what our lives are all about? Creating a mark of your presence so that you’re missed in your absence? Now, I do not claim to have done that in the measure it’s usually spoken of but your love definitely fills me with a similar feeling.

So thank you, thanks to all of you for letting me become a part of this wonderful and giving community. For opening your arms wide when I made my foray into this world with baby steps. And lastly, for sticking by me all through. You are all deeply treasured and cherished by me each day.

Coming to the second part of this post – I come bearing gifts!

The absolutely brilliant author, Mr. Christopher Hepworth, who just happens to be someone who’s works I’m always going to keep a keen eye out for, is about to launch his third book! The Last Oracle releases in September and it would have the suave negotiator, Sam Jardine, back in action. I, for one, cannot wait to get my hands on the book ASAP. Sensing my desperation and plight with his internal radar, Mr. Hepworth has very kindly and warmly invited all of us (yes, it includes all of you lovely readers) to become a part of his book launch. There are some interesting competitions lined up for you too. What’s more is that you also get a chance to win a free copy of the soon to be launched book! Feeling excited yet? Then hurry up and click on the link down below:

http://christopherhepworth.com/launch-team/

For your convenience, here’s a little sneak peek of what The Last Oracle is about:

“As a series of bizarre climate-related events occur across our planet, it seems the world is edging towards a catastrophic tipping point. Rex Daingerfield is the owner of a giant fracking company that seeks to exploit a rich seam of gas in the environmentally sensitive Greenland ice shelf. But Daingerfield has a nemesis – his daughter. Born to an Egyptian mother, she is inducted as the Oracle of the Temple of Sekhmet. Her role is to protect the earth from the likes of her father. The Oracle recruits the world’s greatest negotiator, Sam Jardine, to convince her father to change his destructive business model. But a secret society of the rich and powerful stands to profit from the chaos that has gripped the world. Led by an errant priest from the Temple of Sekhmet, he will do anything to stop Jardine. As the planet edges closer to disaster, Jardine is confronted by politicians, lobbyists, vested interests – even his own radicalised half-brother – all of whom stand to gain from the mayhem about to be unleashed.”

If you’re new to the enigma that is Sam Jardine, click here to read my review of the book in which he made his first appearance.

Please do let me know if you decide to register and become a part of the book launch team by commenting down below!

The Quaint Reading Nook

Hello everyone!

Remember my announcement yesterday about foraying into the big, bad, world of books? (Just kidding, it’s the most beautiful world there is)

In light of the overwhelming support and encouragement extended by most of you (you know you did, don’t ditch me now!), I’ve been an industrious bee today and set up a new blog titled The Quaint Reading Nook. (I’ve hyperlinked it’s about page here for you to go see)

So I’m going to request all of you to please visit it and give it a follow as the first book review will be up tomorrow! Because this venture is very close to my heart, I’m going to say pretty please. 

Just so you know, I decided against adding a section here itself because I wanted to keep my own writings separate from book reviews and avoid confusions. Hopefully, I’ve thought this through properly and all of you will reward my love for you and books by supporting the new blog too. You know I won’t be able to do it without you!

Have I whined enough? (I thought I’d finally live up to the name of my own blog today- please don’t disown me! No, really!)

Please know that your feedback matters to me the most and any suggestions for the new blog, which is a work in progress at the moment, will be heartily welcomed and greatly appreciated.

Thank you for reading!

Yours lovingly (and almost sweating in anticipation),

Varnika Jain

Update: I see your likes but I don’t see your follows. I’m watching you. (No, not ominously but more with bated breath and anxiety. Can I just say please again or will you abort this right here? 😓)

Catch up with me on social media-

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    Rainy day, Blog Update and Some News for You! #amreading #amwriting

    ​​Rainy days should be spent at home with a cup of tea and a good book.” ― Bill Watterson, The Calvin and HobbesTenth Anniversary Book. 

    And that is exactly what I did today. Because, obviously, I’d trust a Calvin and Hobbes advice with my life! (Does anyone else think that the comic strips cover a lot of deeply profound, existentialist issues, or is it just me?)

    Needless to say, it’s been a beautiful and oddly fulfilling day. In the daily struggle of life and making ends meet, I’d forgotten what it felt like to sit down with a good book, a cup of coffee and relax. Simply stated, it’s exhilarating!

    In addition, once the little grey cells had been thus stimulated, I got to thinking. I realised I’ve recieved a couple of offers from Authors and Publishing Houses for ebooks and advance copies of books in exchange for an honest review. On further research, I found that providing a review is the best way to help an author out. Amazon and all other e-commerce websites show preferential listings based on number of reviews. Even if you keep the commerical aspect aside, isn’t it nice to drop a few nice words if you’ve enjoyed reading someone’s work?

    I know I’m beyond joyful whenever someone reads, likes and/or comments on any of my posts. Just imagine the amount of anxiety and impatience with which authors, who have devoted their time, emotions, energy and their life and soul into creating a book for our reading pleasure, must be awaiting our feedback?

    Hence, I’ve decided I will set all procastrination aside, get down to reading the books that have so kindly been sent to me and write reviews for them. I’ve also decided to go ahead and not limit this activity to just Amazon and Goodreads. 

    I’ll shortly be opening an “All Things Book” section on my blog covering reviews, recommendations, genre based listopia, et al. (In case you were wondering what the news bit in the title was all about)

    The purpose of putting up this announcement is single-fold. I want to assure all my lovely readers that all reviews and recommendations will be strictly honest. I’m not getting paid for doing this. I love to read, I love to share my views on the books I’ve read, and thus, I’d love to spread the word. I’d also be sharing book recommendations on old books (i.e., not the ones garnering  publicity recently or the ones that have been released in the past two years) that I’ve loved reading, hence, they’d obviously be honest. Therefore, I hope to get your whole-hearted support in this venture just like you take out time for showering love on all my other blog posts.

    PS- In case you write book reviews anywhere, I have a simple request. Please keep mum in case you didn’t like a book, don’t badmouth it. You can give your rating but please choose words carefully while writing your reviews. You see, any book, whether good are bad as per your opinion, is the product of a lot of love and work. If you like something, say it out loud, if you don’t, please don’t hurt the writer unless a constructive criticism has been specifically asked for. It can be very disheartening. The amount of vitriol I’ve witnessed people pouring out  on Goodreads shook me to the core. It’s very easy to ascertain whether you’d like a book or not within the first 10-20 pages, so don’t call it a waste of time if you still went on and read the entire thing. Put it down! Don’t accuse the author for worsening your day. Just saying!

    Thank you for reading! Please let me know your views on my idea and future plans in the comments section down below. I’d love to have your feedback!

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