Zomato and Swiggy faced an Anti-trust probe
The Indian antitrust watchdog ordered a wide-ranging investigation into the conduct of food delivery firms Zomato and Swiggy on Monday over whether they are operating as “neutral” following a complaint from the National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI), a body that represents over 500,000 restaurants in the country.
The Competition Commission of India (CCI) acknowledged a series of allegations made by NRAI on July 2021, which include food delivery firms’ practice of bundling delivery services with customers’ food orders, masking data from restaurant partners, operating cloud kitchens, “unfair and one-sided contracts” with the outlets, delayed payment cycle and charging of exorbitant commission.
NRAI has further alleged that they are engaging in a dual role on their platform where they list their own cloud kitchen brands exclusively on their platform, akin to private labels, thereby creating an inherent conflict of interest in the platform’s role as an intermediary on one hand and as a participant on the other hand.
The CCI is of the view that there exists a prima facie case with respect to some of the conduct of Zomato and Swiggy, which requires an investigation by the Director-General (DG), to determine whether this conduct resulted in contravention of the provisions of Section 3(1) of the Act read with Section 3(4). The Director-General has been directed to carry out a detailed investigation and submit the findings within 60 days, as per the CCI order dated April 6, 2022.
India blocks 22 Youtube News channels
The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has directed the blocking of 22 YouTube-based news channels, of which four are from Pakistan, for allegedly spreading fake news to mislead viewers. This is the first time that action has been taken against the Indian YouTube-based news publishers since the notification of the IT Rules, 2021 in February 2021. The Ministry issued an order on April 4, 2022 to block 22 Youtube channels, three Twitter accounts, one Facebook account, and one news website.
With this action, the ministry has, since December 2021, issued directions for blocking 78 YouTube-based news channels and several other social media accounts on grounds related to national security, sovereignty, integrity of India, public order, etc.
The blocked YouTube channels had a cumulative viewership of over 260 crores, the ministry said in an official statement, adding that they were spreading fake news and coordinated disinformation over social media on subjects sensitive from the perspective of national security, India's foreign relations, and public order. According to the ministry, multiple YouTube channels were used to post “fake news on various subjects such as the Indian Armed Forces, Jammu & Kashmir, etc.”
The ministry said that the blocked Indian YouTube channels were using templates and logos of certain TV news channels, including images of their news anchors, and fake thumbnails to mislead the viewers to believe that the news was authentic.
Criminal (Identification) Bill, 2022
The Rajya Sabha on April 6, 2022, passed the Criminal Procedure (Identification) Bill, 2022. The Bill was already passed by the Lok Sabha on April 4, 2022. The Bill seeks to authorise the collection, storage, and analysis of biometric samples of convicts and others involved in criminal matters.
The Bill proposes to allow the Police to collect finger impressions, palm prints impressions, footprint impressions, photographs, iris and retina scans, and physical and biological samples. It also proposes the collection of behavioral attributes including signatures, handwriting, or any other examination referred to under Section 53 or Section 53A of CrPC. The data collected would be protected and shared through a secure mechanism so that people’s privacy was not risked.
The Bill seeks to repeal The Identification of Prisoners Act, 1920. The over 100 years old Act’s scope was limited to capturing finger impressions, footprint impressions, and photographs of convicted prisoners and certain categories of arrested and non-convicted persons on the order of a Magistrate.
Ed Sheeran on copyright issue for ‘Shape of you’
Chokri and his co-writer Ross O'Donoghue had claimed the central "Oh I" hook in Shape Of You is "strikingly similar" to the "Oh Why" refrain in their own composition, with Chokri telling the court he felt "robbed" after he heard it. However, Sheeran, McDaid and McCutcheon all denied being aware of Oh Why prior to writing Shape Of You.
This was an unusual case in that it was Sheeran and his co-authors who originally launched legal proceedings, in May 2018, asking the High Court to declare they had not infringed any copyright. Two months later, Chokri and O'Donoghue issued their own claim for "copyright infringement, damages and an account of profits in relation to the alleged infringement".
Judge Antony Zacaroli ruled on April 6, 2022, that Sheeran had "neither deliberately nor subconsciously copied" Chokri's song. He acknowledged there were "similarities between the one-bar phrase" in Shape of You and Oh Why, but said, "such similarities are only a starting point for a possible infringement" of copyright. After studying the musical elements, he said there were "differences between the relevant parts" of the songs, which "provide compelling evidence that the 'Oh I' phrase" in Sheeran's song "originated from sources other than Oh Why".
The Shape of You songwriters took legal action in 2018 after the track's royalties were frozen when Chokri and O'Donoghue asked the Performing Rights Society (PRS) to add them to the hit's credits as co-writers.
Shape of You earns Sheeran, McDaid and McCutcheon about £5m a year, the court heard, despite almost 10% of the payments having been frozen due to the dispute.
In his ruling, Justice Zacaroli said Sheeran and his collaborators were justified in thinking the request from Chokri and O'Donoghue to be named as co-writers "was a tactic designed to extract a settlement".
Judge Kentaji Brown - first black woman judge of the Supreme Court
Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson became the first Black woman to be elevated to the Supreme Court when the Democratic-controlled Senate on 7th April 2022 confirmed President Joe Biden's pick.
The final vote was 53-47, with all 50 Democratic caucus members supporting Jackson, joined by Republican Sens. Susan Collins of Maine; Lisa Murkowski of Alaska; and Mitt Romney of Utah. In a symbolic moment, Vice President Kamala Harris, the first Black woman elected to her job, presided over the vote.
During confirmation hearings that spanned four days in March 2022, Jackson endured nearly 24 hours of questioning from the 22 members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, after which the panel deadlocked on approving her nomination.
The vote means Jackson will take office at the end of the court's current term, likely in June or July, when Justice Stephen Breyer is expected to step down. Her appointment would not disrupt the current 6-3 conservative balance on the Supreme Court.