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An estimated 55-minute read

LIVE BLOG: 6th RGNUL National Moot Court Competition, 2017 (31st March, 2017 - 2nd April, 2017)

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Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law has always envisioned serving the society through reforms in legal services by way of preparing professionally competent lawyers. And to fulfil the vision, a constant endeavour has been made to keep the essence of RGNUL learning alive. Mooting being an integral part of a law student’s life finds a regular mention at RGNUL and to promote the mooting culture, the University is organising its flagship moot, the RGNUL National Moot Court Competition, 2017.

The first edition of the moot court competition was organised in 2011 and since its inception; RGNUL National Moot Court Competition has grown to be one of the prestigious national moot court competition in the country. The 6th edition of the Competition seeks to test the argumentative and research skills of the participating teams.

The top 40 teams all over the country have been selected through a memorial selection round and would be competing against each other from 31st March, 2017 to 2nd April, 2017. This year's moot proposition deals with the constitutionality of the criminalization of defamation.

We express our gratitude to our Knowledge Partner, EBC Publishers, in organising this Edition of the Moot.

MPL Trivia: RGNUL National Moot Court Competition is now a Tier 5 Moot in MPL (Points!Points!Points!)

We have the following 40 law schools who qualified for the oral rounds in this edition:

University of Allahabad, Faculty of Law; Tamil Nadu National Law School; Symbiosis Law School, Pune; Symbiosis Law School, Noida; Symbiosis Law School, Hyderabad; School of Law, Sastra University; School of Law, KIIT University; School of Law, Christ University, Bangalore; School of Excellence in Law, Dr. Ambedkar Law University, Chennai; Pravin Gandhi College of Law, Mumbai; Panjab University, Regional Centre, Hoshiarpur; O. P. Jindal Global University, Sonipat; National University of Advanced Legal Studies, Kochi; National Law University, Odisha; National Law University, Jodhpur; National Law University, Delhi; National Law School of India University, Bangalore; National Law Institute University, Bhopal; Maharashtra National Law University, Nagpur; Maharashtra National Law University, Mumbai; Lloyd Law College, Noida; Law College, Dehradun; Law Centre-I, Faculty of Law, Delhi University; Jamnalal Bajaj School of Legal Studies, Banasthali University; Institute of Law, Kurukshetra University; Indian Law Society's Law College, Pune; Hidyatullah National Law University, Raipur; Gujarat National Law University, Gandhinagar; Dr. Ram Manohar Lohiya National Law University, Lucknow; Department of Laws, Panjab University, Chandigarh; Department of Laws, Himachal Pradesh University; Delhi Metropolitan Education, G.G.S.I.P.U; Damodaram Sanjivavya National Law University; College of Legal Studies, University of Petroleum and Energy Studies, Dehradun; Chankya National Law University, Patna; Bharti Vidhyapeeth University, New Law College, Pune; Army Institute of Law, Mohali; Amity Law School, GGSIPU; Amity Law School, Centre- I, Noida; Amity Law School Centre II, Amity University, Noida

Day 1: The Moot War Cry! - Registration, Inauguration & Researchers' Test:

A Brief schedule for Day 1:

RGNUL is all set to organise the Sixth Edition of RGNUL National Moot Court Competition. The teams have arrived and will be getting themselves registered in next 30 odd minutes. The registration will culminate into the Inaugural Ceremony which is set to take place from 3:30 - 4:30.

Following the traditions, the participants and the organising team shall pose for a group photograph which will be followed by the Draw of Lots.

Meanwhile, the researchers will be asked to give the testimony of their preparation in the 2 hours researcher's test (The MCC Convener being a successful researcher will have a special eye on it!) which shall begin at 5:00 p.m.

3:01 p.m.: The Registration: What's your name?

The Registration process has started. Thanks to Naveed (our very own shot man!) for the candid click.

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3:30 p.m.: Lighting the Lamps: The Inaugural Ceremony Begins!

3:35 p.m.: All the teams are seated in the Seminar Hall (Ground Zero) with eyes gleaming towards the trophies.

3:47 p.m.: The Inaugural Ceremony is being presided over by Prof (Dr.) Paramjit Singh Jaswal, Vice-Chancellor, RGNUL & Prof (Dr.) G.I.S. Sandhu, Registrar RGNUL. The Chairpersons and the Faculty Members have lit the auspicious lamps in the backdrop of melodious Saraswati Vandana.b2ap3_thumbnail_IMG_2301.JPG

3:50 p.m.: Vice-Chancellor Sir is invited by Navneet Nair (Co-Convener) & Rashika Raina to welcome the Teams. 'We feel proud of our mooting achievements this year as we stand at a great position in MPL', remarks, VC Sir. Indeed! We are.

4:10 p.m.: The Registrar Sir, the drafter of the Moot Proposition, welcomes the teams and wishes them Luck!

4:30 p.m.: The Inaugural Ceremony comes to an end with a 'Vote of Thanks' by Navneet and reciting of National Anthem.

4:38 p.m.: The Group photograph at the Amphitheatre! Smiles all around...

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Eat Well, Sleep Well, Argue Well! - VC Sir at his best!

4:45 p.m.: Bout 1: The Draw of Lots & Researchers' Test:

4:47 p.m.: A brief session by Mr. Ishfaq Ahmed of SCC Online to familiarise the participants with the use of SCC Online as a legal database. (A session for the Speakers). Looks an interesting man! Remarks: 'Atleast say hi, bore nahi karunga!' Participants seem interested now. Who are here by Choice or Chance? Question of the day!!

5:00 p.m.: The Researchers are here for the test - few intimidating looks here & there. They seem to write so much and with such enthusiasm. The Test consists of both subjective and objective questions. Few peeps around, it looks a decent enough test to keep everyone engaged. All the hard work will speak in here!

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6:00 p.m.: The Draw of Lots - Convener Showtime! - Ashutosh Mishra introduces the teams to the format of the Game and invites them to pick their opponents for the First encounter tomorrow!
Commotion and tension building up in the hall! The Final bell before we get down to business as we chart down the Match-ups and court hall arrangements.

6:05 p.m.: The Rush hour! - We are into the last 50 minutes of Researchers' test.

MPL Trivia: Shall we get some extra-points for Liveblogging. First-timers thoughts! Nevermind!

7:00 p.m.: We come to the end of the Day 1 as the invigilators collect the answer-sheets of the Researchers. Overall, it was an exciting day of Moot preparations. We are informed that the dinner is from 8:00. Hope you enjoyed the day 1 of our commentary. Goodbye, Tata, Sayonara & Shabbakhair for this day!

Day 2: The Boxing Day: Prelims, Quarters & Semis:

8:45 a.m.: So we are all set to report you the happenings in almost real time.

9:00 a.m.: The judges are here and are being briefed about the moot proposition. RGNUL is making full use of its Alumni expertise with our seniors from top notch firms and exceptional mooting records are here to grill the participants for what is anticipated to be a law defining moot on criminalisation of Defamation - Examining the Constitutionality. (Mini Alumni Meet - Greetings & Catching up) Mood to Moot!

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A Brief schedule for Day 2:

We will have the two prelim rounds followed by the lunch and then the quarters and Semifinals. The Schedule says 9:30 - 10:30 - Prelim 1; 11:30 - 12:30 Prelim 2; 3:30 - 4:30 Quarters and 6:00 - 7:30 Semifinals! (Phew! A Jam packed day.. Now we understand why we have to Eat & Sleep Well).

9:30 a.m.: Preliminary Round 1:

Court Room 1: University of Allahabad v Lloyd Law College -

University of Allahabad:

The first speaker, though after starting confidently, has seemed to have lost a part of it due to the constant grilling by the judges. The 2nd speaker, however, restores that lost confidence and is arguing wonderfully, while supporting his arguments with proper authorities and satisfactorily answering the questions by the judges.

Lloyd Law College:

The constant and intense grilling by the judges, both on facts as well as law, seems to be a bit too much for the respondents to handle. However, the respondents will definitely learn something valuable from this round: Do not refer to cases that are not mentioned in your memorials.

Court Room 2: RMLNLU v. Institute of Law, KU -

RMLNLU:

Counsel for petitioner MISPRONOUNCES GPC as CPC. His lordship tauntingly asks the counsel to ''at least remember their statutes properly "His lordship has a question for the researcher.

He is seemingly not convinced by the answer.Lessons learned. "laws of PANAMA (HAHA) are not binding on us, counsel" -on the counsel repeatedly citing the non-binding random international 'Recommendation'."

The bench advised the counsel for petitioner to at least number the paragraphs in memorial next time.

Institute of Law, KU:

The tryst continues..

Speaker two from petitioner side seems more confident than her Co-speaker The panel applauds the reasoning and argumentation of counsel but asks for more case laws to rely their judgement upon.The game seems to the dicey for the petitioner, as the first speaker was not convincing enough.
Learning fast, the speaker from respondent side, backs his statements with properly citing page no, flag no from the compendium / memorial.

EXCELLENT PERFORMANCE !!! by speaker for the respondent.

The case now very well seems to be shifting towards their side.
"don't you think the relevant section is too vague and even the wrong ones can find a way around it? "
The counsel beautifully sums up the argument.

Court Room 3: HNLU v GNLU -

HNLU:

Petitioner side came well prepared but honourable bench had some other plans. Speaker 1 took more time than he asked for in the beginning but it was permitted by the bench. The path to convince the honourable bench was filled with many hurdles. It will be too early to reach to a conclusion before hearing respondent side. Let's see what respondent side is hiding in their closet.

GNLU:

Respondent's side presented their arguments smoothly.
The councils of Respondent's side were fluent with their contentions and were also able to answer. There were times when honourable bench tried to deviate the counsel from the case and they did that very well. After listening to both the sides it is difficult to say who had the upper hand.

Court Room 4: JGLS v ALS, Noida - I

JGLS:

Breaking the silence and beginning the moot; the first speaker got interrupted in the very starting note for not mentioning the facts by the honourable judges.Later the speaker got back on track with his convincing arguments.

ALS, Noida - I:

The moot fever rose to its peak with the opening speaker of respondent - presenting very confidently logical arguments.No signs of uneasiness or even shudder shown despite a series of questions posed by the judges.The 2nd speaker kept up the momentum and ended on a persuasive note.Making it a good day for the team.

Court Room 5: SLS, Pune v. Law Fac-I, DU:

SLS Pune:

The rapid fire round! The Petitioner seemed well versed with the case answering the questions of the judges with great enthusiam. Like Judges, Like Team!!

Law Fac-I, DU:

Grilled till the end!

Advice: The teams need to be confident even if they are not well prepared with their contentions/arguments and the cases as well.

Court Room 6: SLS, Noida v PU:

SLS, Noida:


Both speakers are contradictory to each other while one is lucid, the other a bit bewildered. On few occasions, speaker passes a smile as if awaiting for the same question coupled with a lot of hand movements.

PU:

The 1st speaker has a nervous body language. The team as a whole is not very impactful. The judge questions the 2nd speaker on a point & is not really satisfied.

Court Room 7: ILS, Pune v PU, Hoshiarpur:

ILS, Pune:

It is very active bench. The learned counsels were said to speak louder at second of the rounds.
Further, when the questioning started the honourable judges clearly stated that "we aren't satisfied" and this position continued to the end of their prayers.

PU, Hoshiarpur:

At the very first question, the first ld. counsel was silent & didn't move for 30 seconds, "ouch''! Clearly they are bleeding.
Hon'ble judges are speaking more than the learned counsel clearly explaining the state of preparations of the team. However, the second counsel took a good stance but still failed on the legal fronts. Again the judges are satisfied neither with their arguments nor with their memorial submission.

Court Room 8: MNLU, Nagpur v NLIU, Bhopal

MNLU, Nagpur:

The speaker does not lose her cool even after being bombarded with questions about the maintainability of the case. Judges are not accepting the accuracy of cases cited by the speaker. Speaker 2 gives an embarrassed smile after conceding to certain facts. Judges seem amused by the constructive presentation of facts by the counsel.

NLIU, Bhopal:

The judges sarcastically call the respondents obedient for submitting to the jurisdiction. The first speaker seems very composed and is well versed with the facts. The second speaker is perplexed by the questions posed by the judges but manages to answer anyway. Judges do not seem satisfied and continue asking for relevant sections of IPC. Counsel pleads ignorance as suggested by judges.

Court Room 9: Nuals v SLS, Hyderabad

Nuals:

The counsel seems to woo the judges with excellent speaking skills. Judged asked for the footnote of the case which is mentioned by the speaker in his argument. Speaker explained democracy and its essentials. Judges seemed to be satisfied by the argument of the second speaker. Judges asked some clarifications in the written submission.

SLS, Hyderabad:

The first speaker took 2 minutes just to get the permission to approach the dais and speak. He did not seem well versed and was only reading out the written submission. The second speaker spoke much more confidently but spoke only for 5 minutes and then proceeded to the prayer.

Court Room 10: KIIT v TNNLS

KIIT:

Judges started grilling the first speaker from the very beginning. The speaker argued more on facts rather than law points. The same story happened in the case of the second speaker. The second speaker also argued more on facts rather than points of law. The judges exhibiting deep knowledge of the facts grilled the speaker on the relief sought by them.

TNNLS:

The speaker cited several case laws and provided relevant references. The judges grilled wherever they found an opportunity.
Second speaker made certain points contradictory to the memorial submissions. The speaker was constantly grilled by the judges. The speaker seemed to lack in legal knowledge and points of law. The speaker seemed to fail at connecting the arguments.

Court Room 11: Sastra University v. MNLU, Mumbai

Sastra University:

The speakers were quite shaken with the questions posed by the honourable judges.The speaker tried their best to satisfy the judges but their efforts were in vain.The questions posed by the judges did not receive satisfactory answers.Let's see if the defendants will take this to their advantage or not.

MNLU, Mumbai:

The respondents have tackled the question of the honourable judge with a lot of caution. The judges grilled on the question of law and also on the judgement produced by the respondents. Some of the questions shook the respondents but they managed to stand their ground.

Court Room 12: UPES v SOEL, Ambedkar Law University, Chennai

UPES:

Both the speakers are dealing with their contentions very well. The second speaker is persuasive and has fairly satisfied the judges.

SOEL, Ambedkar Law University, Chennai:

The first speaker did fairly well. The second speaker was uneasy at first but later managed to catch up. Overall, the judges seem to be content with the arguments.

Court Room 13: BVP, Pune v ALS, GGSIPU

BVP, Pune:

The petitioner speaker is confident and well versed with the facts. The bench questioned the speaker about the facts which he answered well. The bench asked the speaker one to establish the jurisdiction. He seemed a bit confused, however, he satisfied the bench with his answer.

ALS, GGSIPU:

As soon as the respondent speaker one reach the dais he is asked to prove the jurisdiction. He establishes the jurisdiction. The opponent team is listening to respondent arguments intently and preparing their arguments for the rebuttal accordingly. The bench asks the speaker one,"Whether the politicians are even worthy of having a reputation that they are filing a case for violation of that reputation." Hillarious!!

Court Room 14: NLS v CNLU

NLS

The first speaker asked for a moment to substantiate his allegation in the case. Both the speakers are trying their level best to answer the difficult questions of the bench. The bench gave extra time to complete the arguments.

Court Room 15: NLUJ v BU

NLUJ:

First speaker looked confident but lacked command on the facts of the case.

BU:

The councils of respondent do not seem to know the necessary reasons and arguments.
Judge : Who is the highest law officer of our country?
Respondent: Auditor General!

Court Room 16: NLUD v Law College, Dehradun

NLUD:

The judges draw a parallel to a similar situation but the speaker is careful not to mess up as he clarifies his stance and makes a distinction between the two situations and justifies the measures taken by them.

Law College, Dehradun:

Respondent side's speaker is trying really hard to put her point across. Judges too are listening to her patiently.

Court Room 17: NLUO v DSNLU

NLUO:

Even though the speakers were confident and well versed, the judges did not leave any opportunity to question them.

DSNLU:

The dependents started with an igniting fir but as the 2nd speaker started the time seemed to have stopped as even the judges asked the speaker to sit 7 minutes earlier.

Court Room 18: DME, IP v Pravin Gandhi, Mumbai:

DME, IP:

The speakers argued confidently but were a tad underprepared which resulted in unsatisfied judges and a lot of grilling!

Pravin Gandhi, Mumbai:

Like teams & Like response by the judges. The judges spoke more than the teams (Moot Judges are not adversarial for sure)!

Court Room 19: AIL, Mohali v ALS, Noida:

AIL, Mohali:

Right at the outset, the speaker for the petitioner is grilled about the facts of the case before proceeding to the issues. However, the speaker answers and presents the facts of the case with confidence. A point raised by the speaker becomes a topic of conflict with the judge saying, "I'm not convinced with the arguments presented."

ALS, Noida:

The speaker for the respondents open his case with confidence and it is accepted by the judge that the point brought out by the speaker must be taken into consideration.
There were a lot of real life scenarios pointed out by the judges, asking the speaker to justify his case in those scenarios.

Court Room 20: HPU v. Christ

HPU:

The speakers started strongly with their arguments but judges unsettled them with their questions. Although speakers lacked confidence and the quality of instant replying but were diligent in their speeches. The bench is very sarcastic and is making the speakers nervous by their continuous but reasonable interruption.The judges do not seem to be satisfied.

Christ:

The team started with firm arguments and clear facts. The speakers are effectively answering the bulk of questions from the bench. Although the bench was trying to make the team nervous regarding their technical errors but speakers got back on track with their instant replies and firm arguments.
The team possesses good mannerism and command over the legal language.

Phew!

10:45 a.m.: End of Preliminary Round 1 - The Scores are being compiled & collated by the MCC! Meanwhile, the Court Managers rush to make arrangements for Prelim Round 2!!

11;30: Preliminary Round 2:

Court Room 1: TNNLS v NLUD:

It is an 'all girls' v. an 'all boys' team in this Court Room.

TNNLS:

Both the speakers from the petitioner side were having difficulty in answering (and understanding) the questions of law, which were being bombarded at them by the judges, further also disrupting the speakers' flow, which did not go down well with the judges and they were clearly not satisfied with the answers.

NLUD:

The judges continue to be ruthless regarding questions of law and the respondents, even though better versed than the petitioners, don't have answers for all the questions.
However, the judges seem relatively satisfied with the arguments contended by the respondents.

Court Room 2: SLS, Hyd v HPU:

SLS, Hyd:

The judges are on fire and going ballistic the very first second on. The Petitioner seems to be crumbling under the weight of the questions and the grilling out forth by one of the judges.
Petitioner 1 has been given some time to calm his nerves after the intense grilling, meanwhile, Petitioner 2 is being given the hammer now by both the judges as they pose practical questions.

HPU:

Make sure you are thorough with your cases. The judges did not liked being interrupted. It was like -
Speaker- It was a pleasure arguing before the Bench. Bench- It was a pleasure arguing before the team.

Court Room 3: MNLU v NLUJ.

Court Room 4: Lloyd v NUALS:

LLoyd:

There is a lot of questioning by the Bench. The speaker seems unable to aptly address the questions put to him. The judges seemed to have scrutinised almost every word of the speaker and did not appear to be convinced.

NUALS:

The speaker laid down a brief structure of his arguments. A barrage of pointed questions was expected from the bench which the speaker answered with ease and seemed to be very confident.
After their questionnaire was answered the judges seemed pleased.

Court Room 5: Law College, Dehradun v DME, IP:

Law College, Dehradun:

The speaker's arguments have ambiguity and the judges do not seem to be pleased. They are being asked about the facts of the cases they were referring to.

DME, IP:

Speaker 1 of the respondent side seemed well versed with the facts of the case. Even the incessant question raised by the honourable bench have not been able to shake the confidence of the speaker.

Court Room 6: Pravin Gandhi, Mumbai v KIIT:

Pravin Gandhi, Mumbai:

The speaker was not able to deal with the issue of maintainability coherently. The speaker was unable to cite relevant case laws. Judges grilled both speakers. A few times the researcher had to step in to help the speakers.

KIIT:

Naturally now the judges were well versed with the case laws on their propositions. At one instance, when speaker cited a point, judges countered it with a judgement.The speaker was unable to satisfy the judges. Second speaker contradicted himself which was immediately pointed out by the judges.

Court Room 7: PU, Hoshiarpur v RMLNLU:

PU, Hoshiarpur:

The speakers spoke confidently. The judges referred extensively to the memo submitted while asking questions. The speakers spoke well and the judges seemed to be satisfied.

RMLNLU:

The speakers exhibited calmness and composure. The judges asked for analogies and references in the arguments. As the judges kept firing questions, the speaker seemed to get a little frustrated. When the second speaker presented his arguments, the first speaker and the researcher seemed quite busy eating something.

Court Room 8: MNLU, Nagpur v SLS, Noida:

MNLU, Nagpur:

The counsel for the petitioner was bombarded with questions regarding the cover of the memorial by the judges, before the counsel could even utter a word. But the counsel confidently took it in their stead and proceeded to argue very well.

SLS, Noida:

The counsel for the respondent learnt how to present a criminal writ petition in a memorial by the judges. But all in all they presented their arguments smoothly and kept up with the sharp questioning by the judges.

Court Room 9: PU v BVP, Pune:

PU:

Counsel for the petitioner is rebuked for producing inappropriate authorities that held neither bond nor persuasive. The counsel kept referring to the all ladies bench as " your lordships" funnily enough.

BVP, Pune:

Counsel for the respondent started off rather dramatically by quoting SHAKESPEARE "NEXT TO LIFE, REPUTATION IS WHATEVA PERSON VALUES THE MOST" towards the end of his speech, it was made rather clear that it would have been better for his side that he relied on BLACK STONE more than on SHAKESPEARE.

Court Room 10: KU v NLS:

KU:

The petitioner's side looked confused when it came to convincing the honourable bench. The team researched well but they were not able to present their arguments, all thanks to the mind games played by the honourable bench who did not seem satisfied by the counsel.

Court Room 11: Banasthali University v AIL, Mohali:

Banasthali University:

The learned counsels are directed to call the constitutional bench "the lordship and the lordship"
Even though not fully satisfying the Hon'ble judges the first learned counsel made a decent dialogue with the constitutional bench. The second learned counsel comes with much hope but disappointed the judges Hon'ble judges. Various chits from the researcher were airborne but no laughing.

AIL, Mohali:

The learned first counsel made a confident show explaining almost everything to the Hon'ble judges. Second Speaker made a good start with confidence, answering all the questions. As the number of citations increase the satisfaction of Hon'ble judges, the confidence of learned counsel rises.

Court Room 12: GNLU v. UPES:

GNLU:

The courtroom strictly in awe although not because of the opening statement or the arguments presented by the petitioners but because of the series of questions posed by the judges, of which most were left unanswered by the 1st speaker on behalf of petitioners. The counsel even stood confused whether they were plaintiff or petitioners. The second counsel though raised the bar.The bench stood disappointed overall.

UPES:

The temperature of the room lowered with the coming of second counsel on behalf of the respondents.This counsel seemed well versed with facts, laws, to even flag colours. Contrarily, the 1st counsel on their behalf stood blank as to use of both laws and lexicals which was duly considered by the alert judges and pinpointed. The day for the team was saved by the end speaker who managed pretty well the bullets fired via the bench.

Court Room 13: SOEL, Ambedkar University v. JGLS:

SOEL, Ambedkar University:

The petitioners were aware of the facts of the case and used the same with similarities drawn to present day events to justify their arguments.The speakers were able to answer the questions, the judges, however, were not convinced with some of the answers and reasoning put forth.The ball is now in the respondent's court and we are to see what their arguments be.

JGLS:

The respondents were very thorough with the facts of the case and also had the facts of the cases produced and the judgements quoted on their fingertips to justify their arguments.The speaker were very confident with their arguments and satisfactorily answered the questions raised by the judges.

Court Room 14: LC-I, DU v ILS:

LC-I, DU:

Although several questions are being asked by the judge, there is calmness in the room. The Researcher was not allowed to pass any chits to Counsel 1, hence, Ignorance was pleaded.
The bench enlists various issues which were not satisfactorily dealt by the counsel 1. Counsel 2 is asked to proceed after answering the questions posed to counsel 1 which he is unable to answer. Judge says, the law doesn't work upon expectations, but counsel 2 doesn't leave his ground unargued.

ILS:

Judge asks the counsel to challenge the maintainability of the case even if it is not challenged in the written submission. The counsel 2 begins by answering the questions asked to the previous speaker. Judge hands over the IPC to counsel 2 to bring clarity to the arguments. Extra time is granted for prayer.

Court Room 15: DSNLU v SLS, Pune:

DSNLU:

Speakers seem to have found the medicine for moot fever and are already throwing answers to expected questions but the bench is very clever and baffled them with unexpected grilling and practical scenarios. The judges catch the speaker in basic legal terminology - when the speaker speaks appellant instead of petitioner.

SLS, Pune:

The bench is interrogating the speaker about the basic facts and probing him to accept claims which are against them but the speaker is trying to be serene and is quick in his replies.
The dialogue between the judges and speakers are interesting, quoting poetry of Rabindra Nath Tagore - "where the mind is without fear".

Court Room 16: CNLU v Law Fac, AU:

CNLU:

The round started with a question and Speaker gave the answer very confidently. However, after a few more questions the speaker was not any more confident about his stand & apologised to the judges many times during the argument.The second speaker was also greeted with questions and but the speaker managed to answer back along with supporting case laws.

Law Fac, AU:

Bench seemed annoyed with the second speaker. They were not satisfied with the arguments presented by the respondents side.

Court Room 17: Christ v NLIU:

Christ:

The petitioners seem well versed with the facts and has answered the questions posed with full confidence & knowledge. They spoke with a poise which was impactful.

NLIU:

The respondents were not very impactful in delivering their submissions. Although, one of the speakers has taken the questions quite enthusiastically. Both the speakers also fumbled quite a no. of times.

Court Room 18: ALS, IP v Sastra University:

ALS, IP:

The judges in this courtroom are grilling both the speakers to quite an extent. The speakers are trying hard to persuade the judges and prove their contentions.

Sastra University:

The judges are grilling both the speakers. They are pinpointing the law and asking it to correlate it with the facts of the case. They do not seem to be fully satisfied with the presentation of the arguments. The speakers are bringing up history to add value to their arguments.

Court Room 19: ALS, Noida v NLUO:

ALS- I:

The petitioner speaker is confident and alert. Instead of reciting the mug up contentions. She is trying to be crisp and precise. She has good oratory skills. However, she is unable to link her arguments with the facts (one needs to have a great presence of mind to be a good mooter).
A lot of grilling!!
The speaker 2 seems comparatively less confident. She is not able to satisfy the bench with her arguments.The bench wants the speaker 1 to justify why the public prosecutor is made a party to the petition. The speaker is not able to justify.

NLUO:

The bench wants the speaker 1 to justify why the public prosecutor is made party to the petition. The speaker is not able to justify. The counsel is not even well versed with the facts. The speaker is not able to support her arguments with case laws.
(Advise: Guys you need to take moots more seriously).

Court Room 20: ALS, Noida - II v HNLU:

ALS, Noida:

A slip of tongue kick starts the round of the petitioners pointed out aptly by the judges. The speaker is subjected to indepth questions about jurisdiction of the Hon'ble Court. The speakers rely heavily on the plethora of cases to justify their arguments and convince the court. The judges time and again reprimanded the speakers for their slightly over-the-top mannerism in court.

HNLU:

The counsel for the respondent opens his case with confidence and introduces the basic structure of his argument while calling out the petitioners for having a malafide intent behind approaching the Hon'ble Court.
The speaker slightly loses his footing when the judges point out that he is grasping blindly at random facts mentioned in the proposition to prove his point.

TING!!!!!

1:00 p.m.: This brings us to the end of the prelims! The excitement is quite high in the TAB Room! The results are being prepared.

2:30 p.m.: The Results are here!

The Quarterfinalists are:

SLS Noida; NUALS, Kochi; RMLNLU, Lucknow; AIL, Mohali, JGLS, Sonipat; NLIU, Bhopal; SLS, Pune & NLU, Delhi! Congratulations to the qualifying teams...

4:00 p.m.: The Quarterfinals - A quarter full of success for above teams!

Court Room 1: NLU, Delhi v. SLS, Pune:

NLUD:

Speaker 1:

The first counsel for the appellant starts off on a confident and affirmative note. He lays down a comprehensive argument for an unfettered right to free speech and cites a litany of cases in support of the same. However, a single, penetrative question from the bench on the historical circumstances behind the enactment of defamation laws and the speaker is stopped in his tracks. He tries his best to weave around the issue but is brought to task and convincingly so. It's fair to say that what started out as a steam train has categorically been brought to a halt.

Speaker 2:

Counsel approaches the bench with a look of steely determination on his face and tries his best to pick up where his co-council left off. Alas! he is bombarded with questions and is trying his best to cling on.
The bench roasts him on his interpretation of certain sections of the CrPC and an interesting to and fro follows. It must be said that the speaker is handling himself quite well, considering the circumstances. However, the same cannot be said of his arguments as the bench is having a field day ripping them up

SLS, Pune:

Speaker 1:

The first counsel for the respondents exhibits both elegance and gracefulness as he effortlessly guides the bench through his arguments. He answers most of the questions posed and the bench seems reasonably convinced.
A final argument is made regarding the necessity of defamation laws as a means of deterrence and the speaker wraps up his arguments. Simple, crisp and straight to the point.

Speaker 2:

Counsel goes on the offensive right from the get go and points out various deficiencies on the appellant's side. She then attempts to convince that judges that the jurisprudence on defamation is adequate and provides all necessary safeguards. This is met with some resistance from the bench and a lively exchange follows. The bench seems to have gotten the upper hand here as the speaker appears a bit shaken and starts floundering. However, she concludes strongly!

Rebuttals -

NLUD: Speaker attacks his opponents use of fundamental duties and argues that one of the judgements cited is per incurium.

SLS, Pune: The speaker produces a handout of the impugned judgement and attempts to justify his sides use of the same.

Court Room 2: SLS, Noida v. AIL, Mohali:

Opening remarks by the judges advising both the teams to be confident. This would have surely calmed some nerves.

SLS, Noida:

Speaker 1:

In the blink of an eye the speaker clearly enunciates the facts of the case. The question raised is regarding the procedure for trial of the offence of defamation to which the counsel answers in affirmative. The counsel straight away opens her tally with authorities and speaks of the dichotomy prevailing with regard to the law as it stands. Judges did listen keenly in the beginning but subsequently is being bombarded with a flurry of questions. The counsel first shifts the burden to her co counsel but later the questions are being confidently dealt and seems to be well versed with the authorities she has cited. In the end the judges look satisfied albeit there were minor hiccups in the way.

Speaker 2:

The counsel has to deal with the validity of s.499 and 500 of the Penal code. She starts with a catena of authorities and tries to link it to the facts at hand. The judges at this point ask some ticklish questions with regard to the facts. The questions seem to be Brett Lee bouncers and the counsel has no option but to duck.
The judges seem to have a liking for the counsel! She is tangled with repetitive questions. She seeks refuge in authorities but the judges again bring her back to the facts and talk of the jurisprudential aspects involved. Well! this seems to be a circular loop and the counsel is finding no way out. After heavy scrutiny on law and jurisprudence the counsel finally escapes although she was on the backfoot throughout.The likes of Hegel and Austin would have loved this round!

AIL, Mohali:

Speaker 1:

Readily submits to the jurisdiction. Counsel is very particular with the facts and I must say that both the teams have narrated the facts beautifully. But this is not a bed of roses and judges have finally opened their cards! The question is whether the procedure for the trial of defamation is violative of the Constitution to which he answers in the negative. And authorities are a counsels salt and spice and he has garnished his argument with plenty. The judges have enough ammunition and the counsel seems confused and the counsel is desperately trying to hold his post.
Finally the counsel seems to be on track and has some newly found confidence. The judges have been flooded with authorities and the sacred Maneka Gandhi judgment seems to be the stalwart here as well!
The questions have been pin point and thus it has been a crisp round.

Speaker 2:

The issue raised is that the offence of defamation should continue. The counsel starts with the very basic and builds her edifice upon the same. And it seems that the judges were waiting for something of this sort. Questions after every statement, the counsel must be feeling like driving on Indian roads, so many obstacles! Although the counsel draws a beautiful analogy the issue being jurisprudential in nature it has taken the turn of a polite debate between the bench and the counsel.
The counsel seems to undergo a trial which Lannister withstood!
The clarity with which the counsel is engaging the bench is worth appreciating. And another illustration which again seems to be on point and satisfies the concerns of the judges like a "tracer bullet".
Finally the counsel has rested her case and the bench seems contended.

A very intriguing round indeed. Best of luck to both the teams!

Court Room 3: NLIU v. JGLS:

NLIU:

Speaker 1:

The first speaker is off to a flying start(literally flying) trying to get as much through as possible before the bench starts firing questions. About one minute in she is asked a question to which she responds by speaking even faster almost making her arguments incomprehensible. At, this point she is asked by the judges to slow down and answer the question asked rather than beat around the bush. This is followed by a barrage of questions. The speaker maintains her lightning pace and finally the judges seem to be on the same page as the speaker.
Once more the speaker is asked to slow down however she does not pay heed to the same.Towards, the end of her speech she is caught in a self-laid trap by trying to draw an analogy between a certain section of the IT Act and that of the IPC. She tries her best to argue the same but fails. (This speaker could certainly give competition to 'The Flash', she might even beat him)

Speaker 2:

The speaker starts off with a factual analysis of the case trying to draw a certain analogy. She is immediately asked to give a real life example to better explain the case at hand with respect to the analogy she was trying to draw.She seeks permission to give a hypothetical example which the judge denies and quips by saying that in 69 years of independence she must certainly be aware of at least a single example to which the speaker pleads ignorance. Unfazed! the speaker continues but is constantly questioned at every utterance, she is able to maintain her composure, however, it remains to be seen if the judges are convinced by her legal argumentation.

JGLS:

Speaker 1:

The speaker begins by giving a brief characterization of the dispute at hand, followed by mapping the course of his argumentation. He is off to a great start, this, however, is followed by the INEVITABLE CONSTANT of every moot, a 'challenging question' which the speaker manages to tackle. After a few more exchanges between the bench and the counsel, the court reaches a boiling point with the bench one spectrum and the counsel on the other. The bone of contention is Section 499 of the IPC, with the counsel arguing that it is the most elaborate and well-drafted sections of the IPC to which one judge angrily rebukes, "SECTION 499 IS THE MOST FOOLISHLY AND STUPIDLY DRAFTED SECTION OF THE IPC, DRAFTED BY THE BRITISHERS WHO RULED OUR COUNTRY IN THE 1860s". Towards, the end the bench proportionately gets angrier with every passing second firing question after question, metaphorically lynching the speaker while the speaker tries his hardest to maintain composure. However, signs of strain and stress are showing and the speaker is certainly at his melting point. Somehow, he manages to wrap up his arguments. The beginning and the end of this speech were as dichotomic as it can get.

Speaker 2:

The speaker seems to be low on confidence and shows early signs of nervousness. This probably has nothing to do with her level of preparation but is rather a result of the massacre that has occurred over the course of the previous three speeches. With, the passage of time the questions get trickier and the answers less persuasive. This is coupled with two to three instances of the speaker losing her chain of thought and pausing for certain periods before regaining her composure and answering. She wraps up her arguments with the prayer.

Rebuttals -

NLIU: The speaker does something which many may have (I certainly did) perceived as impossible- she increases the speed of her argumentation and wraps up her rebuttals within the prescribed period of time, focussing more on the time limit as compared to clarity. She does however, manage to cover all the necessary points of conflict.

JGLS - A well rounded sur-rebuttal covering all the points raised by the applicant in their rebuttal.

Court Room 4: NUALS v. RMLNLU:

NUALS:

Speaker 1:

The speaker starts hesitantly by failing to provide which issues he would be dealing with. The judges, within the first 5 minutes, have rattled the speaker by shooting question after question. The speaker fails to provide the judgement that their argument is relied on and the judges grill him on the same. They question the authenticity of the case mentioned by the speaker and ask the speaker to refer to the memorial.
The speaker tries to recover by confidently presenting his second argument, but the bench again is able to shake his confidence as they point out the contradictory nature of his arguments. After assenting to extra time for the speaker, they point out the vagueness of his argument by asking for enumeration of the essentials of 'Public Good' that the speaker is not able to do. The judges also refer to the element of 'Truth' in cases of defamation repeatedly.

Speaker 2:

The speaker starts confidently but is not carrying the Bare Act, which is frowned upon by the judges. He, however, presents his arguments and answers questions with a flair that reflects mental clarity about the issue. The judges question him on the maintainability issue that was not satisfactorily dealt with by the first speaker. The Speaker moves on to the other arguments but the judges have other plans for him as they ask about a minute detail from their memorial. They enquire about any alternatives for the Section in question but the Speaker leaves the judges unsatisfied as he is not able to lay the grounds for his submissions and convince the judges.

RMLNLU:

Speaker 1:

The Judges begin by pointing out an incomplete citation in the 'Index of Authorities' in the Respondent Memorial, amongst other numerous issues in the Memorial, calling it a "blunder", to which the Speaker pleads ignorance.
The judges present a hypothetical situation to the Speaker, in response to which the speaker seems to hesitate and fumble, seemingly underconfident. The judges are left "confused" as the speaker tries to reason out her argument. The Speaker is unable to correctly quote a judgement and doesn't request for overtime after the time is over from the Bench, which leaves a sour taste in the Judges' mouth. The Speaker, essentially, fails to successfully plead any of her submissions.

Speaker 2:

The Speaker starts confidently and smooths into her first argument. She is able to answer satisfactorily to the Judges, however the Bench points to the lack of decorum shown by the members of her team.
The Speaker, with the help of her researcher, is able to prove her points to the satisfaction of the Bench and has a relatively smoother time arguing, only to have a major issue pointed out in the 'Prayer' by the Bench at the end.

Rebuttals -

NUALS: The Speaker structures his rebuttals perfectly and is able to state them confidently but the Bench frowns upon the ignorance of the Speaker on an imporant judgement in the filed of Criminal Defamation.

RMLNLU: The Speaker presents her rebuttals within the appointed time. A speech of confidence and clarity of thought, it leaves the judges nodding and instantly made them put their heads together for an intensive discussion.

Happy Mooting!

6:00 p.m.: Wooh! What rounds..tough fight among the teams!

6:02 p.m.: Close Margins!!!

6:05 p.m.: So here are our semifinalists! - AIL, Mohali; NLIU, Bhopal; NUALS, Kochi; SLS, Pune!

MPL Trivia: SLS Pune continue to march on...

6:30 p.m.: The Semifinals - A Step Away from Final Showdown!

JUST IN: We have Session Judges to judge the Semi-Final Rounds! Truly NLUish!

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Court Room 1: NUALS v. AIL:

NUALS:

Speaker 1:

The first speaker has an air of composure around him. He back every argument with a corresponding legal authority and to substantiate the same refers the bench to his memorandum and compendium and quickly wraps up his first contention in a matter of a couple of minutes.

This peeks interest from the bench and a barrage of questions are fired. These questions manage to throw off the speaker and break his chain of thought. In, particular when asked about the substantive provisions being relied upon to make his case, the counsel tries to work his way around the question by stating certain judicial decisions. The bench, however, takes note of the same and grills the speaker regarding the substantive provisions of the IPC and The Constitution being relied upon and not the judicial decisions. The counsel is unable to satisfactorily address the queries of the bench for the second time and with every passing second he seems to have lost all the lucidity and clarity that he began with.

Speaker 2:

The second speaker starts off with mapping out the structure of his argumentation however before he can complete the same he is asked to clarify the ambit of the definition of Public Servant and whether his locus standi lies in a civil or criminal court. Instead of answering the questions posed the speaker tries to evade the questions by asserting that he shall be dealing with the same in a subsequent contention of his. To this, the bench rebukes by asking him to answer the question immediately rather than delay the same. This throws off the speaker and he takes a moment to pause and recollect his thoughts. This is to no avail as he is unable to answer the questions posed by the bench.
Next, the bench tries to take control away from the counsel by asking him the difference between an act committed by a common man and one committed by a Public Servant which the counsel is unable to answer taking away his remaining time as well as the sanctioned extra time. Several questions of the bench remain unanswered towards the end, the counsel was indeed saved by the bell.

AIL:

Speaker 1:

Speaker one from side respondent seems to be extremely high on confidence, he almost has the demeanor of a debater rather than a mooter, however, the bench doesn't seem to mind. A debate ensues as to whether a suit can be filed against the Prime Minister and if any protections are available under The Constitution to the Prime Minister with respect to the same. The speaker goes on to assert that such a protection is indeed available to the Prime Minister and request help from his teammates to corroborate the same with respect to the relevant article of the Constitution but upon referring to the constitution the counsel concedes that he had erroneously made the previous assertion and would like to take back his statement.
 
The counsel then moves on to his next contention but, before he can begins he is asked to rebut the contention of side petitioner that - In the instant case, the circumstances are such that the right to appeal is diminished. In, response to this the counsel with great confidence makes several arguments and assertions and does everything with the exception of answering the question posed by the bench. By the time he reaches his last contention the counsel happens to contradict himself which is immediately caught by the bench. The bench goes on to say that the counsel is unnecessary exposing himself and is falling into the trap of the petitioners argument. The counsel ends his arguments with the same confidence he began with. (Now that is what you call confidence).

Speaker 2:

Taking from the confidence of speaker one, the second speaker makes a positive start to her contentions. She is allowed to speak uninterrupted (Which is a first) for a few minutes before the bombarding begins. A particular question pertaining as to whether Mr. Arjun Pandit can be defined as a Public Servant seems to throw off the speaker. Here the counsel concedes that Mr. Pandit may not fall under the classification of a Public Servant but smartly deals with the query posed by asserting the influence possessed by Mr. Pandit and its implications. Counsel further stumbles when asked as to whether the protections being referred to are with respect to the individual per se or with respect to the Office of the individual, the counsel seems to answer the question and wraps up her next contention without much difficulty (relatively).

Rebuttals -
 
NUALS: The speaker asserts as to how respondents accepted the existence of intelligible differentia, however could not discharge their burden of establishing a necessary nexus.Next, the speaker asserted how by virtue of the right to appeal being taken away in the instant case, due process is being derogated from which the bench does not seem to agree to. Finally, counsel pleads that the respondents are trying to mislead the bench by the wrong classification of Mr. Pandit.
 
AIL: The first words spoken, come from the bench in the form of a question. The Counsel is unable to understand the question and tries to buy some time by asking the bench to repeat the question and to be more specific.The Bench obliges the Counsel and somehow the counsel is able to answer the query and moves on to se-rebut the rebuttals of the petitioners.

Court Room 2: NLIU v. SLS, Pune:

NLIU:

Speaker 1:

The counsel started in a flawless manner by stating the facts in brief and kept the judges engaged by referring to the memorial continuously and also cited a lot of authorities with regard to her argument that defamation should be restricted to only civil and not criminal defamation by seeking refuge to the Constitutional assembly debates as well. Just when you could sense that the counsel was racing ahead like a bullet train the first interjection was made by the judges which beautifully caught the essence of the whole issue halted her advances and later on a flurry of questions derailed her totally.

Speaker 2:

The counsel submits that S. 499 is flawed and vehemently pointed towards the underlying subjectivity. The judges interjected in the meanwhile to stick to the constitutional aspect. Subsequently the judges questioned with regard to the presence of alternative remedy and were satisfied by the crisp arguments of the counsel. The bench reiterated the concerns they had raised earlier and were dealt in a much better manner by the counsel.

SLS:

Speaker 1:

Starts straight with the arguments advanced. He first challenges the maintainability which is struck down and subsequently moves on to the merits.
The counsel seems to be shrewd and started confidently and was smoothly sailing through. However it seemed that he was in haste which was objected to by the judges. The judges then raised the most pertinent question of the nature of the offence which was answered with a combinantion CAD's and authorities.

Speaker 2:

Starts her arguments with the presumption of constitutionality and various other constitutional principles.
Than she proceeds to satisfy the situation on the pedestal of Article 14 and submits that the law was wide enough to incorporate all the possibilities.
The judges pose situational questions to the counsel to which she gave confident replies. Both the sides have shot authorities at each other just like bullets and it would be interesting to see who has done the maximum damage!

Rebuttals -

NLIU: Pointed out that the respondents conveniently skipped the point of public good and secondly submitted that the case cited by the respondents were per incuriam.

SLS: The cases are not per incuriam and the counsel distinguished the cases cited by the petitioners and those cited by them.

Well! Well! Well! The Judges in both the rounds showed the best of grilling till now..!

8:00 p.m. - With this we come to the end of the Semi-Final Rounds and a day full of legal aroma!

8:05 p.m. - The Results are being prepared.

8:30 p.m. - The Result time! The teams who have made to the final showdown are:

SLS, Pune v. AIL, Mohali!

8:35 p.m. - Draw of Lots was done with a coin toss which was won by SLS, Pune who chose Respondents as their side of argument. (Heads up!)

The participants and judges are escorted for the sumptous dinner. The networking time of the Moot Court Competition as everybody look to make contacts, acquaintance and Friends.

We Hope you enjoyed the business day of RGNUL National Moot Court Competition!

MPL Trivia: RGNUL, in one of the parallely live blogged Moots has qualified for the quarter-finals! (Kudos!)

Day 3: The Final Showdown: Finals & Valedictory -

9:45 a.m.: The teams have arrived in the GRAND Moot Court Hall will all the antics like Balustrade & Hammers. (Hope the judges do not feel the need to use it)!

9:50 a.m.: The VC Sir informs that the judges would arrive in next 5 and requests the teams & audience to maintain the decorum and sanctity of the Court. (Bottomline, Turn your lovely Gadget off!).

9:55 a.m.: The esteemed panel of judges are here and being escorted to the Moot Court Hall. The Constitutional Bench Comprises of:

Hon'ble Mr. Justice Augustine George Masih, P&H High Court;
Hon'ble Mr. Justice Deepak Sibal, P&H High Court;
Addl. Registrar. Krishnan Mahajan, Supreme Court of India;
Prof. (Dr.) Nishtha Jaswal, Dept. of Law, Punjab University;
Prof. (Dr.) G.I.S. Sandhu, Registrar, Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law.

10:15 a.m.: The Finals - The Winners Compete for the Ultimate Title!

Moot Court Hall: AIL, Mohali v. SLS, Pune:

AIL, Mohali:

Speaker 1:

The Counsel starts confidently by sweeping all the permissions and aptly explaining the facts of the case. He will definitely score good on reference to the memorial submission as he cites the statement of jurisdiction and draws the attention towards the most important case.

He outlines the issues to the judges to be dealt by him and his co-counsel. The Counsel is knitting facts into the law. He is finally halted by the Ladyship to pose the most pertinent question that "Whether the Right to Freedom of Speech Absolute"? The Q/A Session has begun and judges are keenly listening now. (This is where you score or bore!) Counsel appreciating the question of the Ladyship and starts to explain that the how the criminalisation of defamation is an unreasonable restriction.

One of the Hon'ble Judges pose a difficult question that "whether a defamatory statement 'a speech' to be protected under Art. 19?" Counsel seems to have missed the argument and has not cited the relevant authority which was very well pointed by the Hon'ble Judge. Now ladyship holds the speaker in his contradictory stand on Article 19 i.e., a restricition on free speech v. Article 21 i.e., right to reputation.

This is getting interesting! that time of the speech where you win or lose. The flurry of Q/As's.

Alas!! the Speaker compliments the judge on his question with respect to the locus standi of the Petitioners to come to the Supreme court. The counsel is going tizzy as he is stuck with jurisdiction after stating the merits of the case. There is an altercation with the Judge. (You're losing points my friend!)

The Counsel continues with the issues and arguments. (Though not satisfying the judges!).

The framer of the Moot Proposition, our Registrar Sir, as one of the judges tries to explain the counsel the real question and concern of the bench.! He tries the last trick up his sleeve.

Times Up! Bell... The Counsel granted permission to sum up! Co-Counsel Invited.

Speaker 2:

Oh my my! She looks a good orator. She speaks 'Criminalisation of Defamation is unconstitutional' loud and clear. She, alike her co-counsel, starts testing constitutionality of S. 499 IPC across various constitutional principles. The abstract nature of the offence is being pointed, to make it only a civil offence and shall not be subjected criminal penalties.

Alike, the first speaker, the ladyship interjects first, followed by the Hon'ble Judge asking her to point out the unconstitutionality through the words of the provision to which she points to vagueness of the provisions of S. 499, IPC. The judge seemed semi-satisfied. She is using her good speaking skills to satisfy the queries. References is now being made to the authorities and memorials.

One of the Ld. Judges, equate the criminality to remark that Defamation is also an act of KILLING the reputation of a person which might ultimately lead to grave consequences to a person's life. Counsel says, the damage and compensations are appropriate to punish the offender.

Finally, she brings the defence of 'TRUTH' which is not being provided for in criminal defamation. The Ld. Judge remark that why should a person not be punished for broadcasting that someone has HIV with malafide intention. Same left almost unanswered. Partly due to non-convincing arguments & Partly due to next concern of the court.

The next line of questioning begins with how the punishment for criminal defamation is beyond reasonable restriction. The judges starts to test the constitutionality with practical examples.

The Counsel turns back to 'Chilling effect' which the Hon'ble Judge has deep knowledge about and she is stuck. She lacks knowledge regarding the principle itself which is a concept of American Jurisprudence. Now she is bombarded with flurry of questions. The Hon'ble judge is now furious and she takes refuge by saying that the same was dealt by co-counsel.

The last - Can the Court make a Law? Division of Power? She cites ICCPR and duty of state. She is starting to hold some ground but the Hon'ble judge who asked the question on 'Chilling Effect' seems disinterested now.

Bell again! Both the speakers couldn't complete the arguments in alloted time.

Permission granted! Summed up! Prayers made. - Decriminalise the Defamation!

SLS, Pune:

Speaker 1:

First question - From whose side are you appearing?. Answer: Union of India! Judge: Union of India? Smiles & Apologies (Ganarajya! he murmurs).
He starts on a lighter note and which gives a fresh start to the judges too. He begins confidently and starts thrashing the arguments of the Petitioner from the word go by citing the direct SC Decision on the issue which is in their favour.

He starts satisfying the tests of constitutionality by citing CAD's on the drafting of defamation provision. Stop! Ld. Ladyship - "So, we still refer them, shall the law be static?". The line of questioning continued by the Ld. lordship. Calm, Poised & with perfect modulations, he continues to answer the question along with the his submissions. (Cites: Keshavananda Bharti! Now we are talking constitution).

Now a discussion on civil v. criminal punishement! He says civil remedies lacks teeth.! Therefore, the compensation not a proportional remedy. Judges fire more questions. (He Interupts the Judge, both teams will loose marks on this count). Ld. Judge discuss the chilling effect through scuttling of free speech by such provision. He clings onto the harmed reputation of P.M. in the factual matrix. Cites no. of cases!

Playcard shown! He is starting to race through arguments but is quite clear and judges are listening. (He is scoring, with his clear & lucid arguments).

Ld. Ladyship draws him to effects of defamation which harms only personal interest as opposed to public interest. He says, the person defamed has impact on lives of others and his defamation affects their lives also.

Now, the line of question on TRUTH as defence. He says Truth is not always in welfare of society! Quotes HIV Example of the Ld. Judge. (Witty)

Caught! Ld. Judge points out to noscitur a sociis principle cited in memo. Couldn't answer as the relevant part of the judgement cited was rejected by the Hon'ble Judge in that case. (Ld. Judge is well versed with every judgement on the issue). Ends on unsatisfactory note. Invites Co-counsel!

Speaker 2:

Wishes the Ld. bench. Starts on a confident note! They are finalists indeed!

First argument, Presumption of constitutionality. Now thrashes, the arguments of the petitioners regarding vagueness by passing the authority to Hon'ble Bench. Apologies for the certain mis-pronoucements and mis-stating of provisions.

She is animated with all the hand gestures and flowing authorities. Question on intelligible differentia - She starts to explain. Ld. Judges draws her to Restriction on Freedom of Speech v. Right to Information & Know Truth. She admits to constructive criticism covered under the exceptions of S. 499 but not decriminalisation.

She puts a wrong foot by remarking that the instant court shall not examine the facts but only point of law. She is now grilled as the Ld. Judge says that the Court have given and can give fact specific judgement on constitutionality.

Ld. Judge to Speaker, "O lord let me be holy but not today!" in her robust defence to the P.M. She is questioned on the level playing field for P.M. v. Common Man, where P.M. can use state machinery as opposed to Common Man. She draws the judge to equality of equals and beautifully comes to inteligible differentia and then cites the relevant authority. (She is good! Scoring Point Now!) She justifies criminal nature of the punishment by criticising expensive nature of civil remedies and not a remedy of poor person if defamed.

She again commits the same mistake, that a question asked by the Ld. Judge is not a matter of concern. Grilled again! - 'Now you will tell us what shall we discuss and what shall we not?'! Apologies Again! (To & Fro).

Questions on intent of the Statement as malafide v. bonafide. Institutional Integrity is the question of Ld. Judge where P.M. at many instances has put in so many persons behind bars for defamation by using state machinery. She answers, that public prosecutor is servant of court not government.

Bell!! She was left with one issue which she sums up quickly and pray for the criminal punishment.

Rebuttals:

AIL: The speaker points out that the case submitted by the respondents were not fully cited. Factual clearity drawn to the bench as the Respondents said that the facts are not important. Raining Authorities!

Bell! Time extended, He keeps on the thrashing the arguments with number of cases. Preamble - Liberty v. Equality of status and opportunity!

SLS: Municipal Law v. Intl Obligations; Municipal law shall prevail!. (Not a very effective Surrebuttal!)

Phew!!! What a round! So much of Constitutional law and authorities all around.

11:50 p.m.: Ld. Judges wishes the teams all the best! Rise! and shall discuss before declaring the final result.

Anxious moments for the teams begin!!

12:15 p.m.: The Valedictory Ceremony - Crowning the Champions!

12:17 p.m.: The MCC welcomes everyone to the ceremony with floral greetings to the dignatories and invites the VC Sir to welcome them.

12:20 p.m.: VC Sir welcomes the diganatories and the audience with his kind words.

12:25 p.m.: Ashutosh Mishra, Convener, MCC presents the moot report highlighting the events in past 3 days. (Well Done! To the Committee and the volunteers).

12:30 p.m.: Naveed Mehmood Ahmad officially released the CASIHR Journal on Human Rights Practice.

12:33 p.m.: Prof. Krishnan Mahajan addresses the audience and congratulate the University for taking up an issue which is already decided by the apex court. He remarks, that the Democracy is safe till we have such events.

12:35 p.m.: Prof. (Dr.) Nishtha Jaswal advises the participants to have a healthy minds along with sharp minds. She recites the poem which surely shall motivate one and all present in the room.

12:40 p.m.: Hon'ble Justice Deepak Sibal addresses the students as future of our profession and nation. He remarks that he would not have been able to decide the winners if he was the lone judge. (Compliments the teams!). Advises that confidence and mastering the facts is the key!. He quotes 'Lawyers are trained to ask the questions, the answers to which they already know' & a quote from Godfather, "The lawyer with the briefcase can steal more money than the man with the gun". (Truly a judge of our generation!)

12:55 p.m.: Hon'ble Mr. Justice Augustine George Masih enlightens us to the qualities of the good advocate. Advocate - A Complete Man. (That has a similar ring to a jingle). He points out to the lack of depth in arguments but he acknowledges the courage of young teams. Advises, that an advocate shall anticipate the response and cover the same in their drafting and be patient while putting for the argument. (He is actually giving tips to win). Do not (c)ry but (t)ry because the way you begin is the way you end.

01:10 p.m.: The participants are felicitated with their certificates. The Countdown begins!

01:20 p.m.: The Winners are being announced:

Best Speaker: SLS, Noida;

Best Memorial: NUALS, Kochi;

Best Researcher: SLS, Pune.

Runners Up: AIL, Mohali

AND The Winners are!!!: SYMBIOSIS LAW SCHOOL, PUNE!

It looks like we might have the MPL 'Season winners' this time with SLS Pune doing exceptionally well in another National Moot.

01:28 p.m.: Registrar Sir presents the vote of thanks!!

With this we come to the end of an entertaining, fiercely fought & academically enriching competition.

I take this opportunity to thank and congratulate all the members of the Moot Court Committee & the Media Team who worked tirelessly to successfully conduct the Moot. I, congratulate, our faculty coordinator, Dr. Shilpa Jain for another flawless and well-organised moot court competition. 

Hope you enjoyed reading the blog. We expect that this reportage will help the teams in the future competitions at RGNUL.

Signing off!

Yours bloggerly - Upkar Agrawal

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