28 September, 2020

Misplaced Priorities Or Simply Towing The Line? Why Top Supreme Court Judges Have Been Caught Napping

With senior Supreme Court judge Arun Mishra openly praising the Prime Minister and former CJI Ranjan Gogoi 'gifted' with a ticket to the Rajya Sabha, the civil liberties of the dissenters and opponents seem to be compromised

Mann Ki Baat
Former CJI Ranjan Gogoi with Prime Minister Narendra Modi
Photographs by PTI
Misplaced Priorities Or Simply Towing The Line? Why Top Supreme Court Judges Have Been Caught Napping
outlookindia.com
2020-03-20T10:56:43+05:30

When it comes to upholding civil liberties and constitutionally guaranteed rights, a conducive environment—or the lack of it—must not be grounds for courts to determine if a case pertaining to these bedrocks of democracy can be heard or deferred. Yet, in recent times, several legal luminaries have red-flagged how curtailment of civil liberties by the executive is being increasingly normalised by the judiciary—particularly the top court.

Over the past few years alone, irrespective of who sat on the high throne of the Chief Justice, the lamentation that judiciary was acting as an extension of the executive has been far too frequent. Peti­tions seeking urgent hearing of mob lyn­ching cases or challenging the lockdown across Jammu and Kashmir were dee­med not urgent enough by former CJI Ranjan Gogoi, whose recent nomination to the Rajya Sabha by President Kovind under the ‘distingui­shed citizens’ quota has triggered a deafening opprobrium. Gogoi’s successor, S.A. Bobde, some say, has continued the trend with cases...

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