Re 1 Fine otherwise 3 months Jail and 3 year Ban For Prashant Bhushan : सौवहीं गलती पर शिशुपाल वध ; Well Done Supreme Court !

Re 1 fine otherwise 3 months jail and 3 year Ban  For Prashant Bhushan : सौवीं गलती पर शिशुपाल वध ; Well Done Supreme Court !

Rajiv Upadhyay rp_RKU-263x300.jpg

prashant courtRe 1 fine otherwise 3 months jail and 3 year Ban  in , is a symbolic punishment , much below  the public view on requirement for Prashant Bhushan , a lawyer who has made a career out of supporting anti nationalism in the guise of defending freedom of speech and in a holier than thou attitude . He was tolerated in Indian public and civil society for so long following Kabir’s prescription in a famous doha meaning keep your critic nearby for he cleanse you free of cost .

निंदक नियरे राखिये आँगन कुटीर छवाय , बिन पानी साबुन बिना निर्मल करे सुभाय

But there has to be a Laxman rekha which cannot be crossed .The thin line that separates the innocent but misguided activism from deliberate treason by misusing constitutional freedoms, was crossed by Prashant Bhushan many times in past . Enraged nationalist public had once beaten him in his chamber in the year 2011 , for his remarks on Kashmir , supporting plebicite but he did not learn the right lesson on respecting the public sensitivity . He would have been beaten by enraged public  or arrested for offending hindu feelings by  calling Krishna a habitual eve teaser but escaped possibly due to his lawyer background .

Judges have to be selected with utmost care and checks as a wrong judge can destroy the trust in judiciary . Courts however  have to be protected from black mail by not only terrorists but also from trade union type pressures created by ganging up by the powerful opinionated lawyers and media in  the name of activism which was even obliquely hinted by Retired CJI Ranjan Gogoi . Indian people were not able to understand why Yakub Memon , a convicted terrorist’s appeal was heard at 3 am although it was repeated for Nirbhya convict too . Freedom of speech cannot be grabbed and misused to wreck the judicial system from with in and vilifying judges . Public trust in judicial process is paramount in maintaining the unity of the country with so many divisions and conflict of interests . Judgements can be criticised for ignoring known  facts like the now  notorius calculation error in Jayalalita’s case or being oblivious to serious social or law and order  implications of judgements as in case of conversion to CNG busses in Delhi   in undue haste in which the then CJI Sabharwal’s son was having commercial interest . Student community was put to considerable hardship . Judgements however should not be criticised for  unproven scandalous motives or not acting as per the wishes of blackmailers in a suo motto fashion say to save democracy. Judges are also human and can be wrong or corrupt. A well proven charge and lawful punishment of a senior  judge does not destroy trust in judicial system . Removal proceedings were initiated in parliament against Supreme court judge Ramaswamy , Justice Soumitr Mitra of Calcutta high court and justice Dinakaran of Sikkim high court . Justice Dinakaran resigned . However in spite of eleven out of fourteen charges being found correct,  Congress and its allies saved justice Ramaswamy . Kapil Sibbal was his lawyer . We failed to punish a proven guilty judge and politicised a simple well proven case for political gains . Even this price was worth paying for the nation because the  trust in system was never endangered . But unproven, imaginary and  frivolous charges against judges or judicial system aired in public by lawyers representing various pressure groups and publicised by the paid  media and on social platforms , is a new danger for democracy . In this regard even the odd case of four Supreme Court judges holding a press conference was considered inappropriate to the dignity of office by a large number of people. Justice Bhagwati in his famous judgement on death penalty had proved that judges have their own orientations and convictions . But the will of majority in a multi judge bench must prevail as it is the only practical solution . Minority judges cannot air the differences in public except through their judgements .

kashmir flag burningLet us examine some other issues supported by Prashant Bhushan apart from plebicite in Kashmir .

ajmal kasab deathHe opposed hanging of Ajmal Kasab on the convenient ground of opposing death penalty . After the April 2010 Maoist attack in Dantewada, which led to the death of 76 policemen, he stated that such “retaliation” was expected because the government had declared the anti-Naxal operations as a war. Narmada dam , the life line of Gujrat today ,  was delayed for so many years by a lobby often accused of acting on behalf of international Nuclear Power Lobby . Bhushan assisted the Narmada Bachao Andolan activists opposed to sardar sarovarthe Sardar Sarovar Dam.[4] After six years of hearings, in October 2000 the Supreme court ruled to allow the massive project to recommence. Bhushan criticised the decision for having been made “without any evidence of the facts [being presented] before the judges”.[31] In February 2001 a criminal petition was filed with the Supreme Court of India accusing Medha Patkar, Prashant Bhushan and Arundhati Roy of contempt of court for having demonstrated in front of the Supreme court in protest against the judgement on the Sardar Sarovar dam.[32] Bhushan defended Arundhati Roy when she was charged with contempt of court for publicly criticising judges in the dam hearings. In March 2002 she was sentenced to one day in jail. According to Bhushan the judges were “just affronted by the fact that somebody has dared to criticise them”.[33]( Wiki ). He opposed the Russian Kundakulum nuclear power plant . Later it was found that anti Kundakulum campaign was being funded by a foreign intelligence agency through an NGO . He did some good things against public corruption, CVC appointment etc. but it is irrelevant in this case .kundakulam power plant opposed

The present case of accusing Supreme Court of not protecting democracy is misguided to say least . Similarly CJI riding a motorcycle on stand , without helmet,  is hardly worth being raised in public , even if it is a Harley Davidson motorcycle was owned by some BJP member.

India is going through a cataclysmic  change . In a political wave , the  majority  feels that the long lost lost hindu voice is now being raised and heard .The old Nehruvian era values are giving way to new values .  It is hurting many old school people and some like communists, who considered ‘religion an opium of people ‘, are very pained by the alleged new religious jingoism .But it is being done as constitutionally as incorporating the word ‘Secularism’  in the constitution during emergency .It should be countered democratically as excesses and radicals if any , will soon get marginalised  in a matured society like ours. However like terrorists misusing the legal protection and freedoms available in a normal peaceful civil society , activists cannot be allowed to misuse and destroy the very fabric of constitution by blackmail by ganging up including by getting the paid international support . Courts are rightly maintaining distance from political upheavals and acting when asked by petitioners. Over activism and  initiating Suo moto actions on controversial political matters will make them a party and destroy their credibility .

Trust in legal system must be maintained . Supreme court has done the right thing by punishing Prashant Bhushan this time . It had let him off  in 2009 in another contempt of court case which is still being heard. It is like the proverbial Shishupal’s beheading after he delivered the hundredth abuse on Lord Krishna and must be welcomed .


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One Response to “Re 1 Fine otherwise 3 months Jail and 3 year Ban For Prashant Bhushan : सौवहीं गलती पर शिशुपाल वध ; Well Done Supreme Court !”

  1. Sampath
    September 1, 2020 at 6:17 pm #

    Extremely well analysed and penned. Kudos to the author.

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