Generalia Specialibus Non Derogant

“The maxim is quite well-known. The rule flowing from the maxim ‘generalia specialibus non derogant’ has been i) considered in Hari Shankar Jain, (1978) 4 SCC 16 and ii) explained in Mary Seward v. Owner of “Vera Cruz”, (1884) 10 AC 59, 68. “Where there are general words in a later legislation capable of reasonable […]

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Unconscionable Bargain

“In Brojo Nath Ganguly, (1986) 3 SCC 156 this Court considered the concept of unconscionable bargain. “The word ‘unconscionable’ is defined in the Shorter Oxford English Dictionary, [Third Edition, Volume II, Page 2288] when used with reference to actions, etc. as “showing no regard for conscience; irreconcilable with what is right or reasonable”. An unconscionable […]

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May & Shall

“It is not quite accurate to say that the word ‘may’, by itself, acquires the meaning of ‘must’ or ‘shall’ sometimes.” – Dharti Dhan, (1977) 2 SCC 166. “It is not to be taken that once the word ‘may’ is used, it per se would be directory. In other words, it is not merely the […]

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Quia Timet

“In Fletcher v. Bealey (1884) 28 Ch. D. 688 a quia timet action was asked for to interdict the tort of nuisance in order to prevent noxious liquid from flowing into a river. Pearson, J. after referring to earlier Judgments on quia timet action then held: “I do not think, therefore, that I shall be […]

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Legal Malice

“In a Judgment reported as HMT Ltd. v. Mudappa, (2007) 9 SCC 768 quoting from earlier Judgment of this Court reported as State of A.P. v. Goverdhanlal Pitti, (2003) 4 SCC 739 it was held that ‘legal malice’ or ‘malice in law’ means ‘something done without lawful excuse’. It is an act done wrongfully and […]

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