Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Judicial Wisdom

The Delhi High Court in a recent judgment philosophied, "A developed country is not one where the poor own cars but one where the rich use public transport". A nice thought indeed.

The case is Nyaya Bhoomi vs State of Delhi. The Division Bench consisting of JJ Pradeep Nandrajog and Manmohan Singh made the following interesting assertions:

"What is best may not always be discernible, the wisdom of any choice may be disputed or condemned. Mere errors of Government are not subject to judicial review. It is only its palpably arbitrary exercise which can be declared void. In complex matters, decision need not necessarily be empirical and could be based on experimentation."

The petition was against BRT (Bus Rapid Transport) corridor being implemented by the Delhi government. The petitioner's grievance was that the space mandatorily reserved for bus movement was much more than what was equitable while taking into account number of buses versus other vehicles. The judgment  argues that what is more relevant is the number of people using different vehicles and not the number of vehicles.

The petitioner's argument that "those who create wealth travel on the roads by cars and their time is precious too" did not weigh much with the judges.

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