It is really ironical that great Mr. Digvijay Singh, spokeman of Congress Party is now suggesting Judges of Supreme Court to desist from giving like observations like "parrot' in any court case to make Headlines in newspaper. He further advised Supreme Court to issue judicial order and issue punitive order against Law minister if found committing fault under any law in the eye of court instead of using word like Parrot for CBI or any Constitutional Authority.
He says that Supreme Court is not empowered to order investigation into any acts of the government or any constitutional Authority. Indirectly Digvijay Singh has accused court of indulging in judicial activism and encroaching into the functioning of legislature and executive bodies.
I would like to put some questions before learned Digvijay Singh and media men who are projecting him as Hero on their TV channel.
When CBI or anybody find a minister involved in irregular deal, involved in corruption and found to be negligent in performing his duty, Courts are bound to take up such cases either Suo Motto or on PIL on in response to a petition filed by the aggrieved person or body. Supreme Court has enormous powers to safeguard the dignity of the constitution and to ensure rule of law especially when executive or legislative wing fail to perform as per expectations.
But the pertinent question is when most of the ministers in the cabinet or in the government are involved in corruption , is it possible for CBI or any investigating agency to investigate fearlessly and honestly against the misdeeds of the minister?
No , Not at all.
This is why Supreme court advised CBI to investigate coal scam totally independently and submit status report directly to Supreme court .But corrupt ministers were tempted to taper with status report to conceal their misdeeds and to safeguard ministers including PM.
Obviously it was not exaggeration that the court accepted the bitter truth of the prevalent system that CBI more or less acted as Parrot of the government.And Learned Diggi Baba should wait for final verdict and final order of the learned court instead of being impatient to cast aspersion against the functioning of the court itself.
Government is employer of CBI and CVC and in such position it is not possible for any director of CBI to submit charge sheet against any minister or the government as a whole. And perhaps this is why that the director of CBI without any hesitation admitted the truth uttered by Supreme Court.
When all thieves come together and talk of moral before police force, where the police force stand?
And the greatest fun is that when promotion and survival of job of any police personnel depends of sweet will of the ministers in government, he cannot punish a minister even if he or she is found to be involved in any illegal and improper act.And in such cases only the role of court is warranted and justified.
Government run by Congress Party is having full power to stop corruption and to reverse all bad decisions taken by NDA or BJP government in the past. But ministers who are now part of the government usually blame leaders of BJP and NDA whenever they are accused of indulging in any scam by CAG or CBI or CVC or any regulating body.When they are in power they can take against any erring leader of BJP or SP or BSP. They should not indulge in bargaining or blackmail with opposition party leaders.
Further ,Why did they not change the policies and rules when they come to power to stop the corruption?
Why did they allow continuance of corrupt dealings and corrupt practices rampant in the system?
Congress party leaders always use derogatory words for leaders for BJP or NDA.
Why these ministers do not investigate, prove the charges and pass executive order to punish corrupt leaders of BJP as Digvijay is suggesting course of action for Supreme Court?
Leaders of Congress Party leveled several charges against Gadkari , Ex –President of BJP but failed to prove the charges and punish Mr. Gadkari.
Are they not simply observatory remarks in the same way as they are casting aspersions on Supreme Court?
Leaders of Congress Party have been making noises since long against former BJP CM Mr.Yadurappa in Karnataka for alleged mining scam.
Why did they not advise all relevant bodies like CBI, CVC ,ED, IT,or anti-corruption bureau to investigate into so called misdeeds of Mr. Yadurappa and punish him without loss of time if found guilty?
Why leaders of Congress party simply continued to pass derogatory remarks against Mr. Yadurappa and BJP?
When Congress Party was in trouble due to mass movement launched by Team Anna , Ramdeo and Team Arvind, they immediately and quickly ordered all investigating agencies like ED, CVC, CBI, IT etc to investigate the affairs of Ramdeo, Balkrishna ,Arvind etc, they ensured reports in shortest period of time and ensured punishment to them without no loss of time.
Why leaders of the same Congress Party failed to adopt same course of action and punishment to Salman Khurshid ( misuse of NGO fund ), Chidambram ( for alleged involvement of his wife in Shraddha Chit fund), Mr. Raja in 2G scam, Mr. PM in coal scam, Mr. Pawan Bansal in promotion scam and so on?
When ministers instead of taking real action against culprit think it better to make dirty politics of all cases of corruption exposed, they do not have any moral to teach lessons to ?Supreme Court or High Court?
If at all leaders like Digvijay Singh of Congress Party feel that Supreme Court is crossing its limitation or CAG is going against the spirit of the constitution, he can use the Parliament to pass strictures or pass impeachment motion against the judges or CAG or any Constitutional body which act against the provisions of Constitution instead of making Headlines in Newspapers and TV channels.
Supreme Court should give verdicts, not observations: Digvijaya Singh-Economic Times
NEW DELHI: Congress general secretary Digvijaya Singh has taken on the Supreme Court for its recent observations on the lack of autonomy in the Central Bureau of Investigation, setting up a confrontation between the ruling side and the judiciary.
"The Supreme Court had described the CBI as a caged parrot. A CAT (Central Administrative Bench) in Bangalore had recently termed the Intelligence Bureau as a chicken. Are we not belittling our institutions?" Singh tweeted on Monday. The comment came in the wake of the apex court's observations against the CBI for allowing brazen intervention by the government to change the heart of the agency's status report on its probe into the coalfield allocations scandal.
In his affidavit before the court, CBI chief Ranjit Sinha had admitted that the report was shared with the law minister, coal ministry and the Prime Minister's Office.
"Why doesn't the court order filing of charges against former law minister Ashwani Kumar and send him to jail?" Singh tweeted, three days after the court's scathing observations forced a reluctant Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to sack the law minister. After initially crediting Congress president Sonia Gandhi for the decision, the party clarified that it was a joint decision of Singh and Gandhi.
"The court should also specify legal sections under which the minister should be booked and sent to prison. Nobody can be held guilty on the basis of observations. The law minister has the right to advise CBI and this is specified in the agency's manual. Ashwani Kumar is a lawyer and he knows his job," Singh said. The outspoken general secretary further tweeted, "If the Supreme Court feels the heart of the Coalgate report was changed by the law minister, then it should pass a judicial order. Observations do not fix responsibility and the apex court cannot get away like this."
Congress spokesperson Meem Afzal said the party would not like to comment on Singh's comments, but added, "If a senior general secretary like Digvijaya Singh has said something, he must have done it after giving it due thought."
The main opposition, Bharatiya Janata Party, rushed to the defence of the apex court, saying the government had left it with little choice. "The court intervened to check the whimsicality of the Manmohan Singh government and its crony capitalism. If the government refuses to conduct governance in a transparent manner and indulges in loot, the courts are forced to step in," said Ravi Shankar Prasad, the BJP's deputy leader in Rajya Sabha, adding that the CBI would only gain credibility if it followed the rule book.
Court on Coalgate: How Govt handling of CBI subverts the rule of law--Economic Times
The Coalgate affair revolves around the allotment of 194 coal blocks by the government to private and public sector entities. Recently, the Supreme Court observed that in a court-supervised probe, the government should not meddle in the process of investigation. The attorney general told the court that he had agreed to meet CBI officials only after being asked by the law minister to do so.
On March 8, 2013, the CBI filed the first status report on its investigation. On March 12, the court asked the CBI director to file an affidavit saying that the status reports filed by the CBI had not been vetted by anyone in government and that this should be followed for all subsequent reports.
But on March 12, an affidavit filed by the CBI director established that the rule of law was broken. It admitted that constitutional and statutory functionaries subverted the judicial process, obstructing justice and committing contempt of court. Thus, they become parties to a criminal conspiracy committing diverse offences including under Section 217, 218 and 219 of the Indian Penal Code.
The Supreme Court has been trying to free the CBI from government interference since its 1997 judgment in the Vineet Narain case.
Earlier, in its observations in the Bihar fodder scam cases, the court said that even in police investigations under the Code of Criminal Procedure, no authority could interfere.
In 2003, the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act, 1946, was amended to say that for corruption cases, the police would be supervised by the Central Vigilance Commission.
The Central Vigilance Act, 2003, rounds this off by establishing that it would supervise the Delhi Police for cases under the prevention of corruption Act or for criminal cases involving public servants.
During the debate of the Central Vigilance Bill in 1999, Shivraj Patil said, "I would like to repeat and repeat it again and again that with the corruption charges levelled against many persons, the machinery to investigate into it, the machinery to supervise it and the machinery to decide it should, by all means, be strengthened."
Clearly, there has been a subversion of the rule of law.
The affidavits of the CBI director categorically admit that the law minister and officials of the PMO and coal ministry have seen the status report. In one paragraph, the second affidavit seeks to exonerate the attorney general, but in another damns him by stating that he not only saw the changes but himself made changes.
One wonders why the former law minister, the attorney general and the additional solicitor general would violate the law? The inescapable conclusion is that because they did not want the status report to throw light on the darkness of the coal block allocations.
What the Supreme Court will do is not important. The court is supervising an investigation into the alleged scam. But that does not absolve the constitutional and statutory functionaries from doing what they must, to own up to their guilt without waiting for the court to order them to do so.
On November 25, 1949, Bhimrao Ambedkar, the chief architect of India's Constitution, said that the Congress party could take all credit for the smooth sailing of the draft Constitution in the constituent assembly. But, he warned, "The Constitution can provide only the organs of state such as the legislature, the executive and the judiciary. The factors on which the workings of those organs of the state depend are the people and the political parties they will set up as their instruments to carry out their wishes and their politics."
His words have been prophetic and his fears have been proved right.
After following the events of the last few weeks and the court's stinging observations, one must conclude that despite the existence of clearly enunciated laws and procedures by the Supreme Court and Parliament, the CBI remains enslaved in the hands of the political executive.
India is blessed with a great Constitution. But as Ambedkar warned us prophetically on November 4, 1948, "Indeed, if I may say so, if things go wrong under the new Constitution, the reason will not be that we had a bad Constitution. What we will have to say is that Man was vile."
(The writer is a senior advocate, Supreme Court)