Welcome to LEX INDIS

A boutique law firm that provides solutions beyond the ordinary with a holistic approach;

A full service law firm having rich experience in providing cost effective solutions in diverse areas of legal practice and services;

A name that strives to provide Logical, Ethical, eXpert, Intellectual, Normative, Diligent and Ideal Solutions;

Where a team of legal experts having over 200 man years of experience in dealing with legal nuances, provides the best legal solutions.

Areas of Practice
Our Team

The team at Lex Indis carries an outstanding ability to understand, analyze, multi-task, and efficiently meet the clients’ requirements. With more than 200 man years of legal expertise residing amongst our team of skilled professionals, we deliver highest quality of service, offering each client a single point contact with prompt response. We possess an effective and well-informed, accessible team of four founder members with more than three and a half decades of industry experience that gives us the ability to innovate the most enviable practical solutions to the legal issues.

Our team structure has been designed and shaped in a manner that not only ensures satisfactory, responsive and successful client deliverables but also maintains impeccable standards of clients’ confidentiality and privacy. The team at Lex Indis is highly competent to make representations and argue matters before any Fora or Authority in any jurisdiction.

Where others may stop, we pace with a blend of strong communication, interpersonal and indispensable advisory skills to meet the changing needs of our patrons with highest ethical standards.

Ajay Kumar Tandon

Managing Partner

Experience: Since 1983

Saran Suri

Senior Partner

Experience: Since 1983

Sunil Kumar Gandhi

Senior Partner

Experience: Since 1982

Manjula Gandhi

Senior Partner

Experience: Since 1986

Esteemed Clients
News & Events
Adultery Not A Crime

The Supreme Court on Thursday unanimously struck down a 158-year-old law that considers adultery to be an offence committed by one man against another, and has been criticised for treating women as possessions rather than human beings. The court declared that Section 497 of the Indian Penal Code -- the adultery law -- was unconstitutional (See factbox below). The section reads: "Whoever has sexual intercourse with a person who is and whom he knows or has reason to believe to be the wife of another man, without the consent or connivance of that man, such sexual intercourse not amounting to the offence of rape, is guilty of the offence of adultery." Adultery is no longer a crime, but it will continue to be grounds for divorce. Chief Justice Dipak Misra said adultery may not be the cause of an unhappy marriage, but the result of one. Misra, who wrote a judgment for himself and Justice AM Khanwilkar, said the unequal treatment of women invites the wrath of the Constitution, and that any provision treating women unequally isn't constitutional. The other judges on the bench were Justice RF Nariman, Justice DY Chandrachud, and Justice Indu Malhotra. FACTBOX: THE JUDGMENT IN TEN POINTS * Five judges, including Chief Justice Dipak Misra, unanimously strike down Section 497 * Equality the governing parameter of the Constitution: Misra * It's time to say the husband is not the master of the woman: Misra * Section 497 manifestly arbitrary the way it deals with women: Misra * IPC Section 497 and CrPC Section 198 unconstitutional: Misra and AM Khanwilkar * Adultery can be grounds for divorce, but not a criminal offence: Misra * A woman loses her voice, autonomy after entering marriage: DY Chandrachud * Autonomy intrinsic in dignified human existence: Chandrachud * Manifest arbitrariness is writ large in Section 497: Chandrachud * No justification for the continuation of Section 497: Indu Malhotra * Section 497 a clear violation of fundamental rights granted in Constitution: Malhotra Justice DY Chandrachud said Section 497 destroyed women's dignity and self-respect as it treated them as their husbands' chattel, and offended their sexual freedom. Whoever has sexual intercourse with a person who is and whom he knows or has reason to believe to be the wife of another man, without the consent or connivance of that man, such sexual intercourse not amounting to the offence of rape, is guilty of the offence of adultery. Chandrachud has now overturned his father Justice YV Chandrachud's 1985 ruling that held the adultery law to be constitutionally valid. Chief Justice Misra pointed out that adultery isn't a crime in countries like China, Japan and Australia. He and Khanwilkar said mere adultery can't be a crime, but also that if an aggrieved spouse commits suicide because of his or her partner's adulterous relationship, then -- if evidence is produced -- it could be treated as abetment to suicide.

Aadhaar Constitutional But Conditions Apply

A five-judge bench of Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled that government provisions asking people to link mobile numbers and bank accounts to Aadhaar number are unconstitutional. The bench said that the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) Rules as well as the notification issued by Department of Telecommunications (DoT) in this regard were unconstitutional and hence need not be followed. In other words, this means that you don't have to anymore link your Aadhaar number with your mobile phone number or bank account number. It also means that banks and mobile phone companies can't anymore insist on Aadhaar number to verify your details while giving you a new connection or a new bank account. The overall verdict of the court was to uphold the legality of Aadhaar. The court said that Aadhaar is valid and is constitutional, although many of its provisions have problems. A lot of these have been struck down. One that is particularly important is the Section 57, which allowed private companies -- for example like courier companies or Paytm etc -- to use Aadhaar as a tool for authentication. This too has been struck down with the court saying that private companies cannot use Aadhaar number for any verification purposes. For little over a year now, there is a debate raging about the linking of mobile phone numbers and bank accounts to Aadhaar number. Even after the Supreme Court earlier said in its interim order that Aadhaar couldn't be mandatory for bank accounts and mobile numbers, the companies continued to demand it from their customers. Now, with the final order from the Supreme Court calling the linking illegal they will have to stop it. At the same time, do note that the Supreme Court has upheld the linking of Aadhaar with Income Tax records as well as with the PAN card. So in a way, your bank account will be linked to Aadhaar but there won't be any daily harassment from the banks about it. The government in 2017 had come out with directives that told banks and mobile phone companies to seek Aadhaar number from their customers. The finance ministry had amended the PMLA Rules, which aim to curb money laundering, to make Aadhaar mandatory for new and existing bank accounts. The DoT, meanwhile, had ordered a re-verfication of all mobile phone numbers in the country through Aadhaar number, saying that this was needed because of the national security concerns.

Supreme Court agrees to live streaming of court proceedings

Sunlight is the best disinfectant", the Supreme Court said Wednesday as it agreed to the live-streaming and video recording of court proceedings. Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justice AM Khanwilkar delivered a common judgment. Justice DY Chandrachud's verdict was separate, but concurring. Live streaming will bring in more transparency in judicial proceedings and effectuate the "public right to know", the court said. Petitions had been filed by Indira Jaising, a senior lawyer, the NGO Centre For Accountability and Systemic Change, and others. Earlier, the top court delivered major verdicts on Aadhaar and reservations in promotions for Scheduled Castes or Scheduled Tribes.

Section 304A IPC : Rash, Negligent, Or Reckless

Section 304-A was not part of the Indian Penal Code [IPC] as it was enacted in 1860. It was included by an amendment passed in 1870. But, interestingly, the original 1838 Draft of the Penal Code did carry an offence of Causing Death due to Negligence, in the form of Section 304. We will never know whether the 1870 amendment was merely an exercise in adding what was inadvertently excised from the Draft. What we do know, is that Section 304-A differed in a notable way from the stillborn predecessor: Section 304 of the 1838 Draft read "whoever causes the death of any person by any act or any illegal omission, which act or omission was so rash or negligent as to indicate a want of due regard for human life, shall be punished with imprisonment ... which may extend to two years ..." Section 304-A, as inserted in 1870 and continues till date, reads "whoever causes the death of any person by doing any rash or negligent act not amounting to culpable homicide, shall be punished with imprisonment ... which may extend to two years ..." Section 304-A, as inserted in 1870 and continues till date, reads "whoever causes the death of any person by doing any rash or negligent act not amounting to culpable homicide, shall be punished with imprisonment ... which may extend to two years ..." To understand this contention, it is first necessary to appreciate the difference between conduct based crimes and consequence based crimes. This is not a statutory distinction, but one adopted to help understand the nature of criminal liability. Conduct crimes, as the name suggests, are those where the conduct of an accused is of the essence. The idea being that society agrees that certain kinds of conduct are definitely unacceptable, and so should be punished. This sense of agreement is derived by employing certain objective benchmarks, like the reasonable person test. An example of this is endangerment offences in the IPC: they all punish my rash or negligent acts, employing different benchmarks to judge the act. Consequence-based crimes, on the other hand, are those where it is necessary that my acts bring about a particular consequence for me to held liable for that offence. The idea is that some consequences are so grave, that persons should be punished for causing them. But, to ensure fairness, it is necessary that the outcome is caused intentionally / knowingly, i.e. with some mens rea. Homicide is traditionally the most obvious example for consequence based crimes. And through that example, we can also help clarify the law in the IPC context. Like many countries, Indian law does not limit itself to only punishing the causing of death intentionally or knowingly, but also punishes causing of death without paying heed to the consequences of one's acts, i.e. rashly. Is this an objective benchmark style liability? Or is it a subjective test requiring us to inquire into whether or not the person paid heed to the consequences of her actions? The text of the provision makes it unambiguously clear that it is the latter. Because Section 300 IPC says that the person committing the act knows it is so imminently dangerous as to cause death in all probability. The text is asking us to look at the knowledge of the person concerned, and not impose any outside yardstick to judge liability. Now, compare this with Section 304-A, which punishes the causing of death by rash or negligent acts. Thus, rather than punish me for being rash as to the consequences of my acts, Section 304-A is punishing me if I simply act rashly: my act is conditioned with the adverb of it being rash. Therefore, textually at least, it is plausible to argue that Section 304-A, and Sections 279, 336, 337, and 338 IPC do not employ 'rash' like a traditional mens rea requirement. Instead, they use 'rash' and 'negligent' to describe the act itself, and employ objective standards to help courts decide whether or not the conduct warrants this description. Now, let's come back to Section 304-A and its 1838 version, and think about the two keeping in mind the distinction between conduct and consequence based crimes. The 1838 version seems like a conduct-based crime, as the essence of the crime was that it punished conduct if it met a certain objective threshold. Section 304-A IPC that we have today is also criminalizing conduct, but, it does so without invoking any objective benchmarks and harkens back to the subjectivity of consequence-based offences. The outcome is an offence that is neither here nor there. This contradiction has manifested itself in how courts have understood the words 'negligent' and 'rash' over time. Rather than go the whole hog and entirely ditch objective liability for Section 304-A, courts have driven a wedge between these two words at the heart of the provision. From as early as Idu Beg [1881 3 ILR All 776], 'negligent' has been linked with inadvertence-based liability and a reasonable person test. And 'rash' requires assessing the state of mind of a person, to prove that the actor was heedless as to the consequences of her actions, despite having considered the risks. In doing so, courts moved rashness closer to the notion of 'recklessness' as a fault requirement in Common Law. At the same time, they also made Section 304-A both, conduct and a consequence based crime, depending on whether you invoked the negligence limb or the rashness limb of the offence. Counterpoint – Limiting Objective Liability Now, all this criticism could be seen in a totally different light. Section 304 of the 1838 Draft provided an objective barometer to judge the rashness or negligence of acts. Removing it, the drafters of the Code could possibly be seen as removing wholly objective liability for homicide. To put it simply – criminality for homicide cannot be based on a 'reasonable man' test. It must be subjective, linked to the mens rea of the actor. This argument dovetails well with the phrasing of Section 304-A: given that both 'rash' and 'negligent' are used, surely different meanings apply to the terms. So, the argument goes, only 'negligence' refers to an objective 'reasonable man' based liability. To claim that an act was 'rash', it must be proved that the actor was heedless as to the dangerous consequences, despite having considered the risks. Courts in India subscribed to this logic. From as early as Idu Beg v. Empress [1881 3 ILR All 776], 'negligent' is seen as involving inadvertence-based liability, while 'rash' invokes a state of mind of the accused. Naturally, the existence of concurrent civil liability for such acts requires courts to extol the grave nature of negligence/rashness displayed. But the underlying theme rarely wavers, right up to the recent decision of the Supreme Court in Sushil Ansal [(2014) 6 SCC 173]. Those familiar with common-law offences would find this concept of 'rash' as similar to the notion of 'recklessness' as a fault requirement. Links could also be drawn to the criticism faced by the so-called objective recklessness, and its ultimate upheaval in R v. G [(2003) UKHL 50]. Solutions? Different Kinds of Recklessness It still surprises me how conspicuous 'recklessness' is by its absence throughout penal statutes in India. The Motor Vehicles Act 1939 used to carry 'reckless' in the definition of 'dangerous driving'. But this was omitted in the 1988 version of the Act. This leads to some scepticism while reading judicial decisions which don't stop at merely stating rash and reckless as literary synonyms, but go further and incorporate the use of 'recklessness' as a fault requirement. As seen from the many cases where common-law decisions are cited, Indian courts haven't been fully perceptive to the different ways in which 'reckless' is used at the common-law in context of crime.

We never stop Improving



Support Staff


Reported Cases