Monday, July 21, 2014

Allegations of impropriety by former CJIs

Justice Markandey Katju has 'exposed' complicity of three former chief justices of 'Supreme Court' in retention of a 'corrupt' judge. The expose is credible though inordinately delayed.

It is easy to ask why Katju did not prevent / expose the venality when it occurred. As a typical career oriented person, he did not want to throw away the chances of elevation to Supreme Court. Was he derelict? Yes. Did he commit a crime? Obviously, no.

What about Justices Lahoti, Sabharwal and Balakrishnan? Their active connivance was culpably criminal.

There is no denying that power corrupts. A High Court judge becomes accommodative or reticent in order to become a Supreme Court judge. A Chief Justice of the Supreme Court remains pliant to the government of the day in order to retain opportunities for post-retirement sinecures.

But someone has to bell the cat. Indian voters trusted the BJP to reinstate principles of governance and morality. It is not good governance to let the past offenders go scotfree. The ruling party seems to be playing ball with the Congress so that possible skeletons in its own cupboard do not tumble out. This is expedient politics and not responsible governance.

The government should order an enquiry and hold the former chief justices accountable. Any other course of action is despicable compromise.

PS: Justices Lahoti and Balakrishnan have understandably denied the allegations.

No comments: