Supreme Court allows eBay petition
The Supreme Court on Friday admitted petitions of the auction portal, eBay India Pvt Ltd, and its chief Avinash Bajaj, a US citizen, seeking quashing of the criminal proceedings against them.delhi Updated: Aug 08, 2009 00:27 IST
The Supreme Court on Friday admitted petitions of the auction portal, eBay India Pvt Ltd, and its chief Avinash Bajaj, a US citizen, seeking quashing of the criminal proceedings against them.
The criminal proceedings were initiated against them for allegedly permitting the sale of a 2.37-minute MMS clip, recorded on a mobile phone camera, showing two Delhi school students in a sexual act.
A bench, headed by Justice Altamas Kabir, admitted the pleas and tagged them with a similar issue pending before a larger bench.
The bench earlier issued notice to the Delhi government and stayed the proceedings against the portal and Bajaj under the Information Technology Act 2000.
Bajaj, then managing director of baazee.com (now Ebay India Pvt Ltd), was arraigned for allegedly allowing the MMS clip to be uploaded on the company’s site in 2004. Bajaj subsequently sold baazee.com to eBay in 2004.
However, the state government said Bajaj was responsible for the illegal display of the clip both in official as well as in his personal capacity.
Challenging the Delhi High Court judgment that quashed the proceedings under the India Penal Code on May 29 last year, but permitted prosecution under the Information Technology Act, Bajaj said mere a listing of the clip could not be construed as a crime under the Act.
Bajaj said in his petition that since section 67 of the Act does not define the term obscenity, liability could not be fixed on him for merely listing of the clip even if it was obscene.