Friday, 30 December 2011

Corruption in Higher Judiciary

  If a common citizen commits a crime or indulges in corrupt practices he can be punished by judiciary. If a politician or a bureaucrat indulges, they all can be punished by judiciary (though no politician or top bureaucrats have been punished till date) but what can you do if u find the same judiciary is indulged in corrupt practices. How will you keep your faith in the system when you find that the so called man of impeccable integrity is sitting as the chief justice of india and there are serious charges of corruption against him and still continuing in the office with the full support of entire system and nobody dares to utter a single word. I am asking why?..what was the reason of complete silence on these issues by everyone..specially media...the role of media has always been in question but i didn't know that most of them are it because there is a terror of “contempt of court” in every honest man’s mind or all the top corrupt politicians are looting this country by fixing the entire system with the help of judges, bureaucrats and corporates?.

I would not talk in detail about the entire judiciary.  I am not saying that entire judiciary is corrupt but I will refer to some chief justices of India and their corrupt and immoral acts and u can infer from that if a chief justice of India can be corrupt then how can we have faith in the honesty and integrity of other judges.

Let’s not go before 1990. Because I think before 1990, the CJIS were also a masked representative of govt like president and vice presidents. But I wonder how people’s perception about judiciary changed suddenly, where as I think  they actually continued to be the masked representative of govt even till date.  This may be due to so called vibrant (govt controlled and corporate run media) media. I was surprised to know the first few names which come in this list- the likes of justice M N Venkatachallaiya, justice J S Verma, Justice A S Anand, Justice Balakrishnan. The role of justice venkatachallaiya and justice verma in the hawala case was suspicious. When Mr. Vineet narain filed public interest litigation before justice venkatachallaiya, Justice challaiya got confused and commented that how come it is possible for a journalist to catch 115 biggies single handedly in this case and he pushed Mr. Narain to disclose his sources of the referenced documents. He repeatedly ordered to change the chargesheet. One by one he removed all the names of politicians and bureaucrats. He also ordered to remove the name of O P Sharma(suspended D.I.G of CBI) who was also made the correspondent in hawala case.  Even after doing all this he again questioned the credibility of Vineet narain then Mr. Anil Deewan( Mr. Narain’s advocate and later was made amicus query of supreme court in the hawala case) said “Instead of asking Mr. vineet narain to prove his credibility of the sources, why can’t you send a notice to CBI for investigating the matter. If the charges are false you can punish Mr. Vineet narain for misleading the court”.  Then,on his strong argument, supreme court ordered for CBI enquiry.  When court started the hearing in this case, Venkatachallaiya intentionally postponed the hearing 9 times in 10 months and just few days before he was to retire he suddenly showed interest in the case and asked for the hearing. Mr Deevan resisted and said he already had requested for the whole day and court had only 2 hours left on that particular day. 

Second, Justice J S Verma. The man is known as the best CJI india has ever produced. He earned so much of respect for taking tough stands in the beginning of the hawala case but later on he also tried to dilute the hawala case. why??..I want to ask him a question. What compelled him to shut the hawala case?. You know he was one of the judges from the supreme court bench(along with justice Bharuch and justice sen) under which hawala trials were taking place. When bench started hearing of the hawala case, Justice verma made a statement that “There are ample evidences to punish the hawala perpetrators. This is a very serious matter. We will have to take this to the conclusion and if we cannot do so then we should shut the shop of judiciary in this country”. After that he directed that Supreme Court will monitor the CBI investigation in this case. His statement and this directive sent a very strong message to the entire system that judiciary is independent and he made a very strong impression of the most honest and fearless judge. But I was surprised when he later gave a statement in his last year of job that someone is putting pressure on the bench in hawala case and the person was  present in the court that day. He also said that the person had been meeting justice s c sen for quite some time. His this disclosure created a furore in the entire judiciary but even after asked by so many ppl including lawers, journalists he did not reveal the mystery man’s identity. In 1997, he made historic judgement that CBI should be made independent and CVC should be the supervisory body of CBI”. But surprisingly the bench did not give any clear verdict in hawala case. I want to ask him when he himself had already said that there are ample of evidences then why no judgement could be made in hawala case. Why he did not take cognisance of almost no investigation by CBI even under the supervision of Supreme Court. I also want to ask him-does he know Dr. Jolly bansal?. And what is the nature of their friendship?. I am not saying justice verma was corrupt but his verdict in hawala case was misleading. Post retirement when he was asked d question about jolly bansal one could analyse the inconsistency in his statements. Later, People came to know the closeness of Justice verma with Jolly bansal and jain brothers. I mean this was disgusting. And people call him the man of impeccable integrity?.

Another CJI, Justice A S Anand. The world knows that he and his family were involved in so many land scams and still he continued to stay in office with the support of Mr. Bajpayee and Arun Jaitly (the then Law minister). I don’t want to name the judges and other jurists who supported and helped A S Anand. The question is why no any journalist could dare to speak or write about these scams except Mr. Vineet Narain.  The more surprising thing is the politicians who make noises on small issues why none of them even made a single statement. was it due to fear of "contempt of court” or something else. Has anybody ever tried to understand why Mr. Jethmalani had to resign from the law minister and why Arun jaitly praised A S Anand immediately after becoming law minister?. I was also surprised how the national judicial commission was formed to enquire the charges against A S Anand. The retired judges in the commission also tried to defend their friend Justice anand on the name of saving the face of the judiciary. how ironic it was. The question is how come the person with such backgrounds (most of the scams happened when he was the judge in high court) can be made chief justice at first place without due diligence. And why he was not forced to resign after scams were exposed?.

Another CJI, Justice Balakrishnan. I think everybody is aware about the charges of misappropriation and illegal asset case against justice K G Balakrishnan.

The point here is not that entire system is corrupt but the point is how will you make sure that those who are corrupt can be brought to justice. If there is so much of corruption in higher judiciary, one can imagine the scale of corruption in lower judiciary. 

Now, the need of the hour is reforms in higher judiciary. Everybody has started talking about judicial reforms.. Yes, there are some good suggestions for judicial accountability and formation of national judicial commission. But i know that judicial reform will also become a  joke in the end like what happened in the case of lokpal. Actually,I find it very strange when i see the very same people, the likes Mr. Prasant Bhushan, Mr Arun Jaitly, Mr. Ram Jethmalani, Mr Sibbal who protected and tried to defend these judges at one or the other point of time. Now they are talking about judicial accountability and national judicial commission. it is not a question about their qualification and legal expertise but about their real intent. 

Saturday, 16 July 2011

Mockery of Police Reforms

Political executives have always made jokes on the name of reforms by forming committees but not accepting/implementing their recommendations.The problems of police in this country have been examined extensively by various commissions and committees appointed since Independence.The appointment of the Working Group on Police by the Administrative Reforms Commission in 1966, the appointment of the first National Police Commission (NPC) after Independence, Ribeiro Committee on Police Reforms in 1998 on the directions of the Supreme Court, the Padmanabhiah Committee on Police Reforms in 2000, Ram Pradhan Committe by Maharashtra Government after 26/11 attack to name few.there were other reports from different committees like "The Indian Police System
-a reform proposal" by Ebba Martensson and" ACCOUNTABILITY FOR THE INDIAN POLICE" by Adam Shinar from HRLN(Human Rights Law network).Now I would not like to go in detail of each and every reports but i just wonder how these committees were formed for the sake of reforms...none of their recommendations have been implemented.Most amazing is the fact that most of them have not been looked upon and debated upon. These are just lying in the archives.

In most of the committees, social aspects have not been looked upon at all. No public consultation and  debate on those reports which actually concerns the community. Take an example of the Padmanabhiah Committee. There were only four members in the committee(only Policemen..two retired and two Serving). The Committee did not have any representation from other sections of society or public.
The governments and people in other countries have realised that policing is too serious and important a business to be left to policemen alone. This is obvious from two important developments in international policing that have occurred during the last few decades- community policing and civic oversight of policing. We have yet to learn from the basic idea underlying these developments.

Though the report of the committee covered the wide range of aspects yet on some of key issues its recommendations were not that substantive. the three most important issues are:
1. Politicisation and Criminalisation of Police
2. Control over Police
3. Accountability of Police

All the reports with all the recommendations are lying in the home ministry's library. Most of them have been implemented yet. I would say majorly none.Some of the reports of other committees have not been made public even after a decade or two.

One also must read the 90 page report prepared by Ram Pradhan Committee formed post 26/11 By Maharashtra govt. ...some of the revelations it made were amazing and more amazing is the facts that most of its recommendations have not been acted upon yet....still Maharashtra govt. claims that we have done lot in making police system better to deal with any kind of terror attacks..forget terror attacks.. today,police system in almost all states are not even competent enough to deal with small small local crimes...they themselves with the coordination with political criminals are indulged in all type of criminal activities.

Intelligence comes from the local level. You fail to track small crimes. These small small crimes turn in to bigger crime one day.But how will you prevent them.When you don't register an information at local level. When you don't have any database containing the reports and datas on several cases filed in police stations in one district. When your police personnels are not trained properly. They are not fit enough to run 100 meters in 5 minutes. still we are relying on them, for security. When you have no weapon in police stations. We have entered in 21st century still Police stations are not connected with  special communication channel and internet. We have the same old training structure. It has not been revised since decades. and Political executives say we are improving..I agree we are improving but if this is the rate with which we are improving then god can only save this nation..I don't know when is this gonna stop. how long people will continue to be fooled by them