Tuesday, February 15, 2005

The case of black friday

They might put me in jail for this. This will be regarded as a comtempt of court. There is something basically wrong with our judiciary. The sheer volume of cases rotting in our courts tell this. Why, on an average it takes 2 years to depose even the simplest of cases?

And then they find time to put on hold one of the movies . The case of black friday is unique, which shows the utter lack of intelligence on part of the judge. Its one of those numerous case, where the judge, used the most famous weapon at his disposal, namely "put a stay". Not even had watched the film, he just beleived the litigators argument that such a movie will influence the outcome of the case. The stupidity of this argument can be so easily seen:

1. In 12 years that the trial went on, both the prosecution and the defence have presented all the arguments. Are we so naive to beleive that the judges of that case will deliver the verdict not on the basis of the actual facts of the case. Did the judge just wasted 12 years of everybody's time?

2. Since, when do our judiciary care for popular perception? Remember that judges are not accountable to virtually anyone in this country. In the past they have delivered many judgements which goes completely against the general mood of the public. That is the very reason why they abolished jury trials in India.

3. In this particular case, there are only two possibilities. Either the defendants are guilty or not. If they are guilty, then what the movie depicts is quiet true. If they were just been framed by the police, then how does it matter what they show in the movie?

4. This simple judgement can be extended to so many other areas as well. According to justice whatever-his-name-is, no reporting is possible in any pendin cases. Anybody who wants to write something, or make a movie on any issue, has to wait till our courts deliver their verfdict which might take decades. This means that all the coverage of Godhra incident and the gujarat riots and the bhopal gas tragedy and the babri masjid demolition and the parliament attack and the IC814 plane hijack and so on must immediately stop. Thus any type of work based on contemporary events is ruled out forever, cos thats how much time our judiciary takes to deliver a judgement.

5. Look at the way this trial proceeded? On the eve of the release of this movie, the judge puts a stay on its release, without even watching the movie. On 3th he decides that he needs to see the movie to find out if the litigant's argument carries any weight and the extends the stay till 10th. On 10th, for some weird reason he postpones the hearing till 15th. And on 15th, he again decides to postpone it for some more time. Its the utter callous nature with the the whole case was handled, that makes us pity on the state of judiciary of India. Why did the judge not decide to see the movie on 1st day of hearing itself? And even after seeing the movie and hearing the arguments of both sides, why did he postpone the pronouncement of verdict for some more time? Is he lazy or just afraid to give the ruling?

6. The book has been in circulation for 2 years now. The book boldly claims that its based on a true story and has been written by a courageous journalist after lot of research. If the petitioner are so sue that the events depicted in the movie/book are absolutely false, then why don't they drag the author to court? Why did they not raise a word against the book? Why this doggedness?

7. This movie has already been shown in many national and international film festival. I have watched it in delhi last year itself. How does the lawyers/judges get the wake-up call now.

I can propose a theory as to what is really happening. The accused must be guilty as charged. All they have been successful in doing is distract the focus of their case. Now they will be able to claim that the adverse judgement was because of popular opinion, which was affected because of "black friday". What a pathetic thinking? What a mess!!!

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