Tight slap

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 25 Apr 2018 11:47:08

BY REJECTING the impeachment motion submitted by Opposition parties against the current Chief Justice of India Mr. Dipak Misra, the Vice-President of India Mr. Venkaiah Naidu has upheld the dignity of the high office of Chief Justice of India. That the motion was destined to be trashed was a foregone conclusion and the Vice-President was quick to call the bluff of Congress party and its attempt to demean the institution of Supreme Court. The rejection of the motion truly exposes the sinister designs of the grand old party and a few Opposition MPs to hold the judiciary to ransom for their political gains.

Mr. Naidu’s order has exposed the Congress’ attempts to subvert the democratic process, Constitution and independence of judiciary. Right from its initiation, the Opposition move was questioned by eminent jurists as well as veterans in politics over its propriety and legal sustainability. Yet, Mr. Rahul Gandhi, obviously ill-advised by some of his myopic colleagues, tried to rake up the issue against the Chief Justice. In one single stroke, Mr. Naidu demolished the very edifice of the entire case and confirmed that noted legal luminaries, constitutional experts and jurists had also unanimously opined that the present motion was not a fit case for removal of a judge.
The Vice-President has unequivocally held that none of the charges covered the “proved misbehaviour” and “incapacity” and observed that the phrases used in the motion indicated that there existed a “mere suspicion, a conjecture or an assumption”, which did not constitute proof beyond reasonable doubt.

The move to bring a sitting Chief Justice of India under scanner is unprecedented in the history of Indian republic. It marks a new low in competitive politics. Issuing threats to a judge by using the tool of impeachment process can seriously jeopardise the judicial system. Such intimidating tactics and bulldozing inconvenient judges has remained the hallmark of Congress ecosystem for decades. This was the same party that openly advocated the concept of “committed judiciary” during the infamous Emergency era. The impeachment motion marks another dark chapter in the history of Congress.

Desperate times bring in desperate measures. It was out of sheer desperation to stay relevant in contemporary politics that the Congress party embarked on this foolish idea that was doomed right from its inception. Electoral setbacks and fast slipping political ground has now forced Congress to resort to scandalising, horrifying and vilifying the judiciary. Not surprisingly, former Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh and many legal stalwarts within Congress stayed away from this imprudent initiative.The entire move, with an oblique political motive to intimidate inconvenient and fiercely independent judges, has also emerged as a serious implication of undermining the independence of judiciary. The chorus by Opposition parties was based on either internal judicial processes or unsubstantiated surmises and conjectures. By delicately finding a fine balance between the three wings - Legislature, Executive and Judiciary, the rejection of impeachment motion, has avoided a possible institutional skirmish. Also, by staying away from the issue of Master of Roster controversy, which has been decided on the judicial side, the Vice-President has reminded all that it was an internal matter to be resolved by the Supreme Court itself.
The initiators of this ominous plan never expected such a swift and scholarly response from the Vice-President and Chairman of Rajya Sabha. Their knee jerk response to the reject bordering on open threat, indicates their frustration and bankruptcy. Their falsehood stands totally exposed.