N.S. Venkataraman 23/4/2018
The move of some opposition political parties in India to impeach the Chief Justice of India is one of the worst incidents happening in India in the last several decades. No member of parliament has been irresponsible enough to vote for impeaching the Chief Justice of India in the past, and none has been so short-sighted.
Earlier, when a few Supreme Court judges thought it fit to address a press conference to criticise the Chief Justice of India in public, the countrymen were shocked. Many wondered why these senior judges who are expected to know better conducted themselves in such a deplorable manner, throwing to the wind the dignity associated with the judiciary and trying to undo the respect and esteem that it should command.
When the senior Supreme court judges conducted themselves in such obnoxious manner, some people suspected that they were trying to settle some personal scores with least care for the image of the judiciary. At the same time, there were others who suspected whether there was a deeper agenda to cast aspersions on other judges, question their integrity and in the process weaken the judiciary itself.
It was the opinion of the concerned Indians that even if these dissenting judges had some grievances, they had the option of discussing the matter between the judges and if in their view it would not be possible, then quit the job and come out in open and take up the issue in whatever manner they deem fit.
On the other hand, the dissenting judges made the serious allegations in public and are staying on as judges and continuing to make direct or indirect accusations and in the process weakening the judiciary from within.
People who suspected that the senior dissenting judges might have some hidden agenda now see a pattern when some opposition political parties try to impeach the Chief Justice of India.
It appears that the move to impeach the Chief Justice of India is the second step in trying to weaken the judiciary after the first step initiated by the dissenting judges.
In independent India, common men have been placing huge faith in the verdict of the judiciary which is accepted in toto, even if the person receiving adverse judgment would feel disappointed.
When most people view the politicians and bureaucrats in India with suspicion and the only remedy for the people is to seek justice in the judiciary. If the judiciary would get weakened, it would inevitably weaken the stabilizing force in the country and destabilize the country itself.
The present Chief justice has been the Supreme court judge for several years and has been Chief Justice for quite some time. None of these opposition political parties objected to his elevation as Supreme court judge and later on as Chief Justice of India, even as they are now questioning his past track record. Have they suddenly got “wisdom” only now?
There were so many Chief Justices in India in the past and on and off, some allegations were made about some of them, which were not proven and those making the allegations never cared to prove it. All those Chief Justices in India retired gracefully, and none were humiliated as it is sought to be done now.
The problem today is much more with the low standard of several politicians and members of parliament, who do not seem to have the maturity to understand the implications of their ill-advised move. Or, don’t they care about the implications? At least for the sake of larger interest of the country, can’t they think beyond their personal needs and priorities?