The latest book of Arun Shourie ‘Anita gets bail’ is a simplistic description of difficulties, which are regularly being faced by the litigants and others in the courts. This book of nearly three hundred pages appears more to be the ravings and ranting of a disgruntled person than any in-depth study of the problems of the courts.
Mr. Shourie is known for his anti-labour and anti egalitarian thoughts. The way he worked for his master Ram Nath Goenka as the Editor of the Indian Express leaves very bad taste in the mouths of those workers, who have worked in that organisation during his time. As a minister in the Vajpayee government, he was known for selling spree of the Public sector units at throw away prices in the hanky-panky manners and yet he never tires of claiming himself to be a paragon of honesty and virtue.
He has painted some of the judges, particularly the Chief Justice of India, with blackest brush, which is simply defamatory and scurrilous. It is said that one can criticise the judgments in the harshest possible manner and language but attributing motives to the author of the judgments will be like eroding the majesty of the law. To say the least, Mr Shourie has gleefully impeached the authority of the CJI in this book. Putting a blinker on the eyes and not looking at the other side of the story is nothing but the intellectual dishonesty and harlotry, which is glaringly reflected in this book.
The first chapter ‘Anita gets bail’, which is also the title of the book, can be extrapolated to other litigants. However, being a VIP, he extracted the favours from the Judges of the lower judiciary and got himself exonerated for the prima facie wrong which he had committed by purchasing and then selling the land in the area where no construction is permissible. It is ridiculous to justify his personal wrongs by comparing it with the open illegal mining by the mafia dons in hilly tracts for which has done nothing to stop.
However, one must agree with Mr. Shourie, when he lampoons the Judges of the Supreme Court and High Courts for their grammatically wrong, abstruse and incomprehensible English language used for writing the judgements. But he has not advocated for the amendment in the constitution for providing the Hindi to be the language of the Supreme Court.
There is no doubt that if Hindi or other regional languages are given the prime place in the courts, the quality of judgments and the speed of the courts will be significantly improved. He has quoted the judgement of a Judge of the Himachal Pradesh High Court, who has constructed each sentence containing more than 350 to 400 words. Even God cannot make a head or tail of his judgments. Yet intriguingly, Mr. Shourie is tight-lipped on the Collegiums-system of appointment of judges, which breeds corruption, nepotism and nauseating favourtism and that elevated the persons like Karnan to the Bench.
But his main target in the book, it seems, is Justice Dipak Misra, the present Chief Justice of India. He has not spared him in denouncing, denigrating and defaming for his wrong, pompous and verbose English and also for his inclination towards corruption. The book is virtually a charge sheet on the Chief Justice of India, which is based on the allegations of a father-son duo of lawyers in the Supreme Court, who have developed the knack of browbeating the judges.
It is really strange that Mr. Shourie has failed to see the mechanisations and maneuvering of some of the top lawyers of the Supreme Court having allegiance to a political party in running down the authority of the Chief Justice of India, who as per the rules is the Master of the roster. Mr. Shourie has not spoken a word in the praise of the judges like D.A. Desai and V.R. Krishna Iyer, who brought about revolutionary changes in the jurisprudence through their landmark judgements.
In fact, they have been criticised in tongue-in –cheek manner. Mr. Shourie has also not come out with any innovative suggestion as to how to improve the judicial functioning, quick disposal of cases and appointment of competent persons as the judges. He is silent about the employment of the modern technology in the courts to cure many ills and also for quick disposal of the cases. He waxes eloquently for rooting out corruption but how? Nobody knows.
Nevertheless, there are certain good narrations, which must be seriously thought over by all stakeholders to keep the dignity of law un-impeached.
वरिष्ठ पत्रकार और वकील परमानंद पांडेय की एफबी वॉल से.