“We often imagine that the court serves as a sort of neutral umpire controlling the warring political branches. But this is mostly myth. The justices of the Supreme Court are themselves actors in the struggle for power, and when they intervene, they think carefully about how their decisions will affect the court’s own legitimacy and authority” ~ Noah Feldman
The Supreme Court of India recently declared Section 66A of IT Act unconstitutional being violative of Indian citizens’ right to free speech and most importantly, right to dissent and criticize. Taking this opportunity, being unmindful of the consequences which could have followed from this article ( afterall, i have a judgment of their Lordships to protect me now ) why not analyze how the Supreme Court functions and not how it is projected by the Indian Media.
Indian Media has made Supreme Court the supreme power of this nation that does all the things right and is indispensable to the justice delivery system of this country, the most recent noted examples being quashing Jat reservation, quashing 66A of IT Act, legitimizing Transgenders, Monitoring of 2G Scam & Coalgate, IPL scandal, Sahara case, Vodafone Tax Case etc
Undoubtedly the Supreme Court has not only sent a strong signal to the politicians and citizens’ of this Great Nation of ours but also sent out a strong message that they we are here to set things right while the Legislature and leaders of this country fail to do their duties
However, this message is only for the common man on how the Supreme Court essentially functions – no doubt Supreme Court every other day makes it to the front pages of every god damn newspaper and news channels of this country. But do we really know what actually goes on in Supreme Court?
With greatest respect to their Lordships sitting in the Apex Court what about the injustices meted out at the hands of Supreme Court of India itself?
Justice Dhingra recently commented “SC exists only for rich and influential class. It does not exist for poor whose appeals and bail Apps are pending for years” and very rightly so.
Their Lordships though not oblivious to the pathetic conditions of the Lower Courts and the daily problems faced by the common litigants of this country but have surely turned a blind eye towards their apathy. But the common man of this country does not know that when their turn will come to knock the doors of the topmost court, there are less than 1 % chances of them getting a favorable order as their Lordships might decide its not worth their valuable time.
The system of this court is being manipulated or rather ruled by a caucus of senior advocates who rule like Kings in our Westminster kind of democracy and a system which works on separation of powers. Their Lordships doesn’t leave even a single chance to hop on to an opportunity which transports them onto front page news ( though not all judges are of the same mettle ). The astronomical fees charged by Senior Advocates can be anything per hearing on admission days from 1 Lakh to 22 lakh.
These are the advocates who are most likely to get u relief from their Lordships. Barring few judges not many junior advocates find favour with their Lordships, no matter how strong a law point you argue, their’s always a point unearthed by their Lordships to bring you down, if not ridiculed in open court and not because you don’t have a point to make but only because you are not in the so called league or their Lordships think you are not worth listening to or rather wasting their time onto.
The caucus of Seniors has become so embedded in the judicial dispensation system which may take a long time to get dispensed with so until then if you cannot sack up huge piles of cash to fill their already over-burdened coffers, not to forget the Seniors can be ruthless when it comes to charging anything and there is a fair chance that they might not even turn up for the hearing leaving you with no other chance but to be accommodated by a junior despite paying them your hard earned money.
Jayalalitha even after being convicted is given Bail in a multi-crore scam on the first day of hearing but a poor under trial might have had his file/paperbook literally thrown out of the window even before his counsel stands up to open his arguments. The judges come prepared and with pre determined minds on what to do in a particular matter/case, so much so that they are unwilling to listen to the point of view of the counsels and especially if you are a junior counsel in the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India, then you will find it a tough cookie to crack.
Supreme Court at times can leave a junior counsel so devastated by its sadistic approach unmindful of the fact that the junior counsel might just have started his career just to feel supreme. The internal rift between the judges of the Supreme Court is also now out in the open, which is another debatable topic but rather an interesting one.
These things can never become known to an uninformed citizen who did not have his tryst with the Supreme Court. Reading day in and day out about all the niceties judgments passed by the Hon’ble Court and pulling the politicians by their collar but Dear Naïve brother citizen that is just a tip of iceberg which is being deliberately projected, the deep dark reality is unknown and unspoken.
No doubt their lordships at the end of the day are also humans and are fallible but their Lordships are also citizens who do their duty like other public servants for fear and favour. The corridors of the famous Supreme Court are known as “ Power Corridors” where the mightiest and the most influential walk day in and day out for some thing or the other but all is not well in the famous “Power Corridor”.
The Supreme Court has always tried to become a source of inspiration in highly publicized and decisions affecting morality of this country but it rather seems their Lordships are uninterested or rather oblivious to the greater ailments that plagues our justice delivery system.