Skip to main content

Why shouldn't citizens of India 'deserve to be treated' judiciously by the judiciary?

By Pannalal Surana*
On October 1, 2019 last, the Supreme Court declined to pass interim order to maintain Status Quo about reorganization of the State of Jammu & Kashmir (J&K). The petitions challenged the validity of procedure adopted by the Central government in getting legislation about deleting two clauses of the Article 370.
The petitions also challenged the reorganization of the state bifurcating it into two parts and downgrading them, as also about restrictions imposed on the people and, particularly the media, were submitted in the third week of August, but were not taken up immediately on the specious plea that the authorities should be given time to deal with the extraordinary situation.
Right to freedom of speech and expression are not only guaranteed by the Constitution but also need to be exercised as and when something wrong was being committed by the authorities and hence the Court should help the citizens , instead of the authorities in times of crisis.
A wrong can be averted by discussion while there is time to correct .But the apex court thought otherwise. All those petitions were taken up after the gap of about two months. Not commendable.
When the petitioners reminded the Supreme Court about its decision in the 1975 Additional District Magistrate, Jabalpur case, the apex court said, “There has to be a balance between personal liberty of a person and national security.”
It is surprising to see that the apex court looked at the subject matter of the petitions as personal matter and they preferred to accord more importance to the doings of the Central government as dealing with national security. How was the national security endangered?
Pakistan’s threatening language has become a routine matter. There could be no action perpetrated by any other outside party, while state of J&K was bifurcated and demoted thereby abrogating many rights of the citizens of the state.
Reminded of its decision in a 1975 case, the apex court said: There has to be a balance between personal liberty of a person and national security
The apex court should have given importance to the matter of citizens’ rights being abnegated by the authorities. One feels sorry about the apex court not doing its duty to uphold fundamental rights of a person individually as also of all the present and future generations of J&K citizens.
The apex court undeservedly obliged the authorities by giving more than six weeks time to the Central government and the J&K administration to file their affidavits. Why so many days? In fact, the apex court should have presumed that as the authorities had taken such drastic actions, they should be possessing all the material ready for drafting the affidavits .Why delay the matters? Not fair.
Many persons in the position of responsibility have lauded the performance of the three layers of UK courts in declaring the action of the Prime Minister of UK about suppressing the rights of the Parliament there as “unconstitutional" -- within 27 days.
Citizens of India do deserve to be treated judiciously by the judiciary. Let us hope that the Supreme Court of India will, in future, uphold the high traditions of protecting rights of the citizens from the repressive actions of the arrogant authorities.
---
*President, Socialist Party (India)

Comments

TRENDING

132 Gujarat citizens, including IIM-A faculty, others declare solidarity with Kashmiris

Counterview Desk
A week after it was floated, 132 activists, academics, students, artists and other concerned citizens of Gujarat, backed by 118 living in different parts of India and the world, have signed a "solidarity letter" supporting the people of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), who, it claims, have been silenced and held captive in their own land. The signatories include faculty members and scholars of the prestigious Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad (IIM-A).

Amit Shah 'wrong': Lack of transparency characterized bank frauds, NPAs, jobs data

Counterview Desk
India's senior RTI activists Nikhil Dey, Anjali Bhardwaj, Venktesh Nayak, Rakesh Reddy Dubbudu, Dr. Shaikh Ghulam Rasool, Pankti Jog and Pradip Pradhan, who are attached with the National Campaign for Peoples' Right to Information (NCPRI), have said that Union home minister Amit Shah's claim that the Government of India is committed to transparency stands in sharp contrast to its actual actions.

Untold story of Jammu: Business 'down', students fear lynching, teachers can't speak

By Rajiv Shah
A just-released report, seeking to debunk the view that people in Jammu, the second biggest city of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) after Srinagar, people had gone “out celebrating” abrogation of Article 370 which took away the state’s special status, has reported what it calls “abominably high levels of fear” across all sections in the town.

Kashmiris in a civil disobedience mode, are going against 'diktat' to open shops

Counterview Desk
A team of concerned citizens, including Ludhiana-based psychiatrist and writer Anirudh Kala, Mumbai-based activist and public health professional Brinelle Dsouza, Delhi-based journalist and writer Revati Laul, and social activist Shabnam Hashmi, travelled to Kashmir and Jammu to understand the impact of the abrogation of Article 370 and the subsequent security clampdown and communication blockade on the lives of the people of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K).

Gujarat's incomplete canals: Narmada dam filled up, yet benefits 'won't reach' farmers

By Our Representative
Even as the Gujarat government is making all out efforts to fill up the Sardar Sarovar dam on Narmada river up to the full reservoir level (FRL), a senior farmer rights leader has said the huge reservoir, as of today, remains a “mirage for the farmers of Gujarat”.
In a statement, Sagar Rabari of the Khedut Ekta Manch (KEM), has said that though the dam’s reservoir is being filled up, the canal network remains complete. Quoting latest government figures, he says, meanwhile, the command area of the dam has been reduced from 18,45,000 hectares (ha) to 17,92,000 ha.
“According to the website of the Sardar Sarovar Narmada Nigam Ltd, which was last updated on Friday, while the main canal, of 458 km long, has been completed, 144 km of ranch canals out of the proposed length of 2731 km remain incomplete.
Then, as against the targeted 4,569 km distributaries, 4,347 km have been constructed, suggesting work for 222 km is still pending. And of the 15,670 km of minor canal…

Ceramic worker dies: 20,000 workers in Thangadh, Gujarat, 'risk' deadly silicosis

By Our Representative
Even as the country was busy preparing for the Janmashtami festival on Saturday, Hareshbhai, a 46-year-old ceramic worker from suffering from the fatal lung disease silicosis, passed away. He worked in a ceramic unit in Thangadh in Surendranagar district of Gujarat from 2000 to 2016.
Hareshbhai was diagnosed with the disease by the GCS Medical College, Naroda Road, Ahmedabad in 2014. He was found to be suffering from progressive massive fibrosis. He is left behind by his wife Rekha sister and two sons Deepak (18) and Umesh (12),
The death of Hareshbhai, says Jagdish Patel of the health rights group Peoples Training and Research Centre (PTRC), suggests that silicosis, an occupational disease, can be prevented but not cured, and the Factory Act has sufficient provisions to prevent this.
According to Patel, the pottery industry in the industrial town of Thangadh has evolved for a long time and locals as well as migrant workers are employed here. There are abou…

Cess for Gujarat construction workers: Spending less than 10%; no 'direct help' to beneficiaries

By Our Representative
While the Gujarat government’s Building and Other Construction Workers Welfare Board, set up in 2004, as of March 31, 2019, has collected a total cess of Rs 2,097.62 crore from the the builders, it has spent less than 10% -- Rs 197.17 crore. And, as on May 31, 2019, the total cess collection has reached Rs 2,583.16 crore, said a statement issued by Bandhkam Majur Sagathan general secretary Vipul Pandya.
Pointing out that just about 6.5 lakh out of 20 lakh workers have been registered under the board, Pandya said, vis-à-vis other states, Gujarat ranks No 13th in the amount spent on the welfare of the construction workers, while 11th in the amount collected.
And while the builders are obliged to pay just about 1% of the total cost of their project, the calculation of the cess is flawed: It is Rs 3,000 per square yard; accordingly, Rs 30 per square yard is collected. “Had the cess been collected on the real construction cost, it would have been at least Rs 7,000 cr…