Wednesday, 22 June 2011

For an effective Lokpal

I had sent the following e mail to the PM of India with copy to some activists.

Mr Prime Minister

I was just listening to media reports and discussions on Lokpal Bill and I found Kapil Sibal taking the cake for the most honest comment: Implementing Hazare's demands have lots of practical problems! Sure, I agree. The only thing that your team of ministers (and super ministers too) have no problem implementing seems to be.... looting the country!

The tallest claims made by UPA-1 were NREGS and RTI Act. And ask the citizens who know what is the state of those those programs/laws. Almost 25 years back one of your predecessors had admitted that out of every Re 1 spent by the govt only 14 paise reaches the beneficiary. Can you claim today that even 4 paise reaches the beneficiary?

RTI? The CJI himself subverts the law brazenly and instead of being kicked out he is rewarded with another plum appointment after honourable retirement!

Coming to the Lokpal Bill itself, your own draft bill had included you under the purview of the Lokpal but how come that Pranab Mukerjee and his team is opposing it now?

Sorry Mr Singh, you and your minions are fooling no one. It is only that even after seeing the fate of Irom Sharmila and Swami Nigamanda, the civil society seems to be under the illusion that the thugs, scoundrels and traitors will be moved to act justly by such illogical protests as fasting and torturing oneself in the name of satyagraha! Your minister, P Chidambaram is that way right, fasting is no way to make laws. I know that the Indian army also teaches its soldiers the wrong lesson that it is the duty of a soldier to die for his country. I learnt the truth from an American General who had said: the duty of a soldier is not to die for his country but make the other bastard die for his! So let us hope that the educated citizens like the naxalites, maoists and insurgents ruling the roost in various parts of the country and expanding their tentacles by the day can persuade you to make the laws that the citizens want.


Based on feedback from the activists, it is now available as an online petition at

Please support the above petition.

Judges! no sermons please

The other day judges hearing a contempt of court case, initiated suo moto by them, against a political leader, Jayarajan, were reported advising the accused not to play to the galleries and commenting that they were contemplating yet another contempt of case against him for speaking to the press on a matter under consideration of the court. The arrogance and presumptions would be obvious to all those who have their thinking faculties intact. So I had written an open letter to these judges and the contents are reproduced below for your comments.


I  am writing this open letter in response to a report under the title ‘Kaiyyadikku vendi kalikkaruthennu kodathi‘ (Do not play to the galleries: Court) in the Mathrubhumi daily of 11 Jun 2011. This report by itself actually makes one wonder if Jayarajan is after all right.

The first question that arises is : if politicians aren’t the ones to play to the galleries, then who is? In the same vein the next question that follows is : what are the judges doing giving such unsolicited, unwarranted advices?

As per the report, you have declined to  show some video clips, that you have viewed as part of evidence, to the accused. Needless to say, it flies in the face of probity. Can there be a greater threat to justice than declining to  show the accused what evidence you are relying on to judge him?

Again, while advising Jayarajan that he should have sought re-examination instead of going to the press how come you yourself have gone to the press saying that you are contemplating contempt of court proceedings against him for talking to the press on a matter that is being heard by the court?  That you have not gone to the press but the press had come to you will certainly not wash.

In fact, I am one of those who have realised that our justice delivery system needs to be overhauled lock, stock and barrel. And mine is not a lone voice. This is what the Report Of The National Commission To Review The Working Of The Constitution says: 'Judicial system has not been able to meet even the modest expectations of the society.  Its delays and costs are frustrating, its processes slow and uncertain.  People are pushed to seek recourse to extra-legal methods for relief.  Trial system both on the civil and criminal side has utterly broken down.' Also, 'Thus we have arrived at a situation in the judicial administration where courts are deemed to exist for judges and lawyers and not for the public seeking justice'.

I am entirely with Aravind Kumar, Jurist and lawyer, who in 'Needed high speed legal redressal' (Pioneer, Kochi,01 Aug 2006) wrote: Justice is an intrinsic human need. We suffer much privation but we cannot suffer being wronged. Absence of justice, we must not forget, is one of the causes of crime.

I shall conclude by quoting John Marshall, Chief Justice of US Supreme Court, who had rightly said: "Power of Judiciary lies not in deciding cases, nor in Imposing sentences nor in punishing for contempt, but in the trust, faith and confidence of the common man". The common man in India knows it too well too and that is why one often hear people praying that they should be blessed to pass through this life without entering a police station or a court!

Yours truly,

(P M Ravindran)