Monday, April 27, 2015

Judicial tamasha

Justice Dipak Misra of the Supreme Court, ruling on behalf of the three-member Bench in the Jayalalithaa Disproportionate Asset case, has struck down the appointment of Bhavani Singh as prosecutor in the appeal before the Karnataka High Court. The learned judge has also said there is no need to appoint another prosecutor and has cautioned the High Court judge not to take cognisance of Bhavani Singh's arguments.

Dipak Misra also clarified  that for the High Court judge "the filament of reasoning will naturally flow from a dispassionate viewing of the evidence".

Asking the High Court judge to be vigilant about the "corroding effect of corruption" and the "gravity of the offence" against the accused in this case, the Bench said it was the duty of the judge to make a "complete and comprehensive evaluation and appreciation of the evidence in its entirety before rendering his judgment".
The Bench advised the High Court to "dispassionately render a judgment which is objectively and resolutely expressed".
Does the High Court need to be advised by the Supreme Court that its judgement should be objective, comprehensive, complete and appreciative of the entire evidence? It is difficult to understand why the Supreme Court prefers to mouth philosophical inanities and evade a direct ruling. We are reminded of Justice Krishna Iyer's evasive comments on 'democratic dharma' while letting Indira Gandhi off the hook during the emergency days. 
It is not our argument that the former chief minister of Tamil Nadu does not deserve any relief. Corruption in Tamil Nadu was not initiated by Jayalalithaa and it will not end with her. Corruption has many patrons across the political spectrum. Perhaps Justice Misra's conscience does not permit him either to come down heavily on or give a clean chit to someone as strong-willed as Jayalalithaa. But he needs to remember that the same problem may be faced by Justice Chikka Rachappa Kumaraswamy of the Karnataka High Court.


Anonymous said...

The Hindu time-line on this case states that in Sep 2013 Supreme Court refused to fire Mr. B. Singh! Now it says that appointment is not valid.

"August 26, 2013: Karnataka issues notification, citing no reasons, withdrawing Bhavani Singh’s appointment as SPP. Singh moves Supreme Court against the withdrawal.
September 30, 2013: SC quashes Karnataka’s notification, reinstates Singh."

Well, what is it?

K.R.Srivarahan said...

Supreme Court is not against Bhavani Singh. The court is miffed that the Tamilnadu government dared to exercise its "non-existing" authority. Following assertion of the court is funny: " the interference of the Tamil Nadu government in his appointment was a manifestation of the government's "anxiety" about the future." So what? Which government is not anxious about its future? Like any entity, individual or others, any government has every right to be interested in its future. In a non-decisive milieu, any decision is mistaken as a manifestation of guilt.

kurungudi satagopan said...

No body prevented Mr Acharya to continue as SPP and he did resign on his own accord citing personal reasons. In a political vendetta case like this emanating from a most corrupt party in tamilnadu (kettle calling pot as black) the accused has every reason to fight tooth and nail for several years to overcome the adversity in the face of her political rivals occupying position at Centre and the states (Tamilnadu and Karnataka). It is sad to note that Supreme Court which heard the bail petition did not feel any urgency to change the horse (SPP)mid stream and who else will be a better person than the SPP who argued at length at the Trial Court and won the case for the prosecution forget the appointment bad in Law. When Supreme Court wanted the appeal to be disposed in three months time, Karnataka High Court in its true wisdom did not object to his representation in the absence of termination by the appointing authority in the given case viz., Karnataka Govt which failed to exercise its vested authority to change or terminate the services of trial court SPP in consultation with the Karnataka High Court. Silence in such circumstances, viz silence maintained by both Supreme Court and Karnataka Govt in their wisdom can only be taken as their no objection to trial court SPP continuing in Appeal case also.

K.R.Srivarahan said...


It is indeed sad that there are judges lacking judicial knowledge and wisdom in various courts not excluding the Supreme Court. The cliched statement that the Supreme Court is not supreme because it is infallible, but it is infallible because it is supreme instantly comes to one's mind. Judicial schizophrenia is disastrous.