The Congress is jittery because it had invested politically in the judge Loya death case
Within hours of the Supreme Court dismissing a bunch of public interest litigations demanding a probe into the death of judge BH Loya who was hearing a case of BJP president Amit Shah’s alleged involvement in an encounter case, the Congress held a Press conference questioning the order. it claimed there was “overwhelming” evidence to have an investigation. The Congress spokesperson conveniently overlooked the fact that the “overwhelming” material was also available with the apex court’s three-judge Bench, and the learned Justices had found it fit to be dismissed.
Clearly, certain people have decided to use PILs as not just Public Interest Litigation but as Political Interest Litigation.
The Congress forgets that every demand for a probe based on mere suspicion is not necessarily a valid one. There is no legal directive that every suspicion must be taken at face value. Due diligence is done before accepting such material, and after such due diligence, the Bench found the demand unsustainable. The Congress called the verdict day a “sad” day for justice. It was indeed a sad day — not for justice but for the Congress which had its devious game-plan exposed.
And naturally, the Congress is jittery because it had invested politically in the judge Loya death case. It had backed demands for an investigation because it wanted to discredit the BJP and Amit Shah. It had endorsed the rebellion of four sitting Supreme Court judges who had addressed a Press meet — in itself condemnable — and flagged the Loya issue as one of the bones of contention. Now the Congress has egg on its face, but it refuses to learn lessons. It continues to believe that the judiciary can be used to settle political scores. it’s clear that it had no role to play and that it was not even a party to the case before the apex court, is a fig leaf behind which it desperately seeks to hide its naked ambition.
There are more lessons in the observations the Supreme Court made in the course of rejecting the pleas for a probe. The first is that frivolous PILs will not be entertained. The second is that motivated PILs will not be accepted. The third is the PILs that seek to tarnish the judiciary’s image will not be tolerated. The ‘conspiracy lobby’ should thank its stars that the Bench, while unambiguously holding that the lobby’s conduct in the course of the hearing amounted to contempt of court, has decided to not press the matter against the lobbyists. Clearly, certain people have decided to use PILs as not just Public Interest Litigation but as Political Interest Litigation.
The Supreme Court has held without ambivalence that judge Loya had died a natural death and that there was no ground for a probe into the incident.
Yet it is unlikely that this lobby will mend its ways. Backed by the Congress and a few other opposition parties, this group which consists of senior lawyers like Prashant Bhushan and Indira Jaising and assorted so-called rights activists can be expected to launch a fresh campaign to tarnish the highest judiciary’s image by targeting select judges. That these people have a personal axe to grind, has become known by their behaviour in the court in case after case. Lawyers from this group often indulged in mud-slinging even against judges in open courtrooms, compelling the judges to reprimand them in strong language. This happened during the Ayodhya case, for instance.
Now that these motivated attempts have fallen flat on the face, the lobby is likely to seek a review of the apex court’s order, though legal experts have opined on the futility of the exercise given the Bench’s clarity in judgement and the absence of any ground of doubt that can be seized upon by the conspiracy theorists. The Supreme Court has held without ambivalence that judge Loya had died a natural death and that there was no ground for a probe into the incident.
Meanwhile, it is possible that stung by the loss of face, this group, driven by its blind hatred for the BJP, for Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and now for no less than the incumbent Chief Justice of India, could step up its drive to impeach the CJI. It has been working on the project for some time now, with the Congress’s full backing. Outside Parliament, these forces are doing their bit; in Parliament, the Congress and a clutch of other parties are keen to make it happen. When will the Congress realise — if at all it will — that its machinations stand exposed before the people, and that far from enhancing its prospects, such shenanigans will take it further down the abyss?
1. The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of PGurus.