A common citizen’s open letter to Supreme Court, PM
Dear Honourable judges and PM,
Yesterday the Sri Ramajanma Bhoomi case came before the Supreme Court and it took almost the same time as making a bowl of instant noodles, for the honourable CJI to reject the hearing by saying that “the court has its own priorities”. And then it was declared by CJI Gogoi: “We will fix the date of hearing of Ayodhya dispute case before the appropriate bench in January.” This means that in January, 2019, they will decide on a date when the case should be heard. Today, the Supreme Court said, “We would hear the petition in due course of time” and refused to give an urgent hearing to a petition filed by lawyer and BJP leader, Ashwini Upadhyay, seeking early deportation of illegal Rohingyas and Bangladeshis to their respective countries.
Without talking about the various cases where the SC has found it necessary to arrange for urgent hearings even at midnight, I’d like to say a few things…
- Should SC even accept petitions which question the authority of the Nation to decide on things of National importance? For eg: Whether one should stand up or not when the National Anthem/National Song is going on. Or whether a National Flag should be allowed to be hoisted? Or even whether one is allowed to say “Pakistan Zindabad” during a cricket match? Is it necessary to pass a ruling on this? And then unsavoury elements quote the SC ruling to show disrespect to our Flag/National Anthem/National Song and so on. The Supreme Court needs to firmly put their foot down and say that they will not even take up such cases and that any Bharatiya or anyone who lives in this country has to show respect to this country. Can the Supreme Court as the highest judicial authority in the country do this much?
- Should it be the SC who should decide who should be allowed to live in our country, who are our enemies and who are illegal refugees? What is the government supposed to do then? On what basis does the SC decide to take up a midnight hearing for one who has plotted against the Nation? Why should SC be allowed to have urgent hearings for Naxalites but not for those falsely accused of Hindu terror? Is there no guideline which the SC needs to follow in such cases?
- Should SC even interfere in how a temple should be run? What clothes should be worn in the temple, whether Suprabhatam should be allowed in a temple, which water should be used for Abhishekam, whether people of other religions should be allowed in the temple and so on? Do they pass such judgments on mosques/churches as to whether women should be allowed to enter with tight pants/shorts or sleeveless blouses or such things? Can they say which prayer should be read out & which shouldn’t? Do they have a say in the rituals of mosques/churches/ fire temples? On what basis is the SC deciding on these rituals in Hindu temples, especially because of the complex nature of Hindu rituals? It is the Archaka or the Panths or the Samaj who is running the temple who should decide. Can the SC even dare to say that a non-Christian should be buried in a Church cemetery? Forget that, they could not even speak on the separation of cemeteries between high caste and low caste Christians. They could not even comment on the evils of the caste system among Christians. But they want to take cognizance of a case put up by a non-Hindu, about temple rituals.
- The Supreme Court wants to be wise and have a say when it comes to traditions which support the building of family or societal ties during Hindu festivals – for eg. the height of the Dahi-handi, the cracker bursting during Diwali celebrations, etc. But talk about restricting animal slaughter (especially of cows which Hindus believe as Holy) during Eid & the Supreme Court will have no time for such a hearing. Suddenly everyone will hide behind the amended Constitution. Why should the Supreme Court be allowed to be so partial? Do no rules apply to them?
- In cases where a Sanskrit prayer is to be sung in schools, should SC be the deciding institution or should it be the people who fund and run the institution? The decision of the SC that Hinduism is a way of life, has been used and misused by the SC itself to cause harm to the Hindus and to mislead people on what tenets should be followed and which should not.
- When it comes to Minority run educational institutions, SC says it has no rights to interfere. But in case of all other institutions ie. those run by a Hindu trust, Hindu, Government, the SC has right to interfere in everything – right from who should teach to who should study. How did the SC get such rights? Who decides this?
- In any normal field of work, one has to be time-bound. Why then is it that the Courts are not having any limitations of how much time a case should take or maximum how many hearings any case can have? I am told that in countries like Singapore if one doesn’t show up for hearings, or if there is an inordinate delay in the hearing or in giving of judgment, heavy fines are levied. We are today bogged down by lakhs of cases, many of which do not even come up for hearing. And when they come up for hearing, our Courts, under some flimsy excuse, defer the hearing to a future date. This should end. There should be a limit on the number of hearings that any case can have & judgment should be pronounced by the deadline set. This will increase the credibility of the courts.
- When cases where genuinely aggrieved parties are involved, like those of the Kashmir massacre, the Sikh massacre, Uphaar Cinema, Bhopal Gas tragedy, there should be no flippancy involved. Settling such cases with paltry fines is an insult to those aggrieved. Refusing to hear such cases is an act of sadism. Such cases should not be allowed to continue for years together. The verdict should not take more than 2 years in coming. Can this not be enforced?
The above are only some of the points which every thinking Bharatiya feels strongly about. If change is the only constant, it is time to bring some changes in our Judiciary and our Justice Systems too. These changes should not be such as to make the Judiciary be subservient to any Government in power or to anyone with an Agenda, but to make the judiciary be subservient to the cause of Justice alone. The Lady with the Blindfold has to open her eyes and see how some judgments are causing deep distress to the people affected by such judgments.
To the government of the day, I wish to say a few things:
- Make changes in the judicial system to make hearings and judgment time-bound.
- Please do not hide behind the judiciary – explore other options and take difficult decisions when the judiciary may have made a mistake.
- Justice cannot be delivered by making the post of judges one which comes via reservation – in this case, the Collegium or the set families in the Collegium. Merit has to be the only factor.
- Please amend the Constitution and delete those amendments which are responsible for the Hindu Samaj bearing the brunt of judgments which are skewed against them.
With great respect to our courts and our legislative bodies,
A common citizen