Thursday, December 15, 2016

Editorial, "Remembering Castro," in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 15-30 November 2016 October Revolution Special issue, Vol. 12, Part 2, No. 21-22


is not just a routine lip service homage exercise but ought to be a real rededication to the noble ideals of a humane socialism. It is almost miraculous that Castro and Che et al were able to overthrow the hated military regime of Batista – supported to the hilt by the US imperialists, and not only establish but till now protect, preserve and promote a socialist state virtually in the ‘armpit’ of America, which speaks volumes about their caliber and consistency but also about their enormous popularity, gained by sincere service to the people, of the many serious efforts at socialist construction – and achieving full literacy, quality education, shelter to all and employment to all – in a mafia and poverty ridden economy. Starvation and economic crises overcome and not only free and quality medical facilities are made available to the people but also no stone left unturned to ‘export’ medical education and health care to wherever needed. Cuba under Castro and Che not only aided but sincerely fought in the various liberation movements, defying the nasty US imperialists who were ever ready to topple them at the slightest opportunity, and earned accolades from several sterling leaders – genuine servants of the people – like Mandela, Neto, Lula, Chavez et al. Of late, Castro voluntarily withdrew from active governmental service but still remained the unquestioned, beloved leader. Many reforms were made liberalizing the economy, even allowing the currency of American dollars to an extent - unlike our own modern mad Tuglaq ‘abolishing’ our own big currency notes at the dictates of the corporate crooks – to extricate Cuba from economic crises and improve people’s living standards. His inspiration and guidance promoted the recent Latin American people’s upsurges, and gave rise to many anti-US hegemonical democratic socialist oriented regimes. We have seen the courage and fortitude displayed by Castro and Che in the catastrophic days of the 1962 Cuban missile crisis – how they challenged the mighty America and later even withstood the effects of the U-turn by the then Soviet Union and extricated their tiny state from deadly crises. There is no dearth of detractors, vilifiers and enemies – hundreds of assassination attempts were made against Castro – of Cuba and Castro but one pithy cartoon message by the American dissident “Executions in Cuba [in 57 years] under Fidel: 275; Killed by US Police in 2016 YTD: 875” is a fitting rejoinder to the stupid outburst of the US president-elect Trump unceremoniously calling him “brutal dictator”, just when the whole world was mourning and paying glowing tributes to the memory of this majestic grand old fighter for the cause of socialism, peace and human welfare. §§§

Editorial, "Can Brics Provide An Alternative?", in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 31 October 2016 issue, Vol. 12, Part 2, No. 20


- to the US global hegemony, of course. Even after the end of the Cold War, the US has not moderated but all the more escalated its expansionist and resource-grabbing policies and is strutting like the only superpower gobbling up millions of people as its meat. In this context the coming together of four big countries of the world, Brazil, Russia, China and India into an alliance, joined by South Africa later, to become the BRICS entity, is a welcome development. Certainly the US monopoly of and hegemony on world trade, economics and politics needs to be broken up for the welfare of humanity at large and for the protection and promotion of the sovereignty and independence of the various countries in the world. To quote Abhijit Das, Since 2001, when Goldman Sachs coined the term “BRIC” (Brazil, Russia, India, China), the acronym has come into widespread use and potentially marks a shift in global economic power away from the developed G7 economies towards the developing world. …BRIC countries … developing rapidly and by 2050 their combined GDP could eclipse the combined economies of the current richest countries of the world. These four countries … account for more than a quarter of the world’s land area, 40% of the world’s population, and have a combined GDP (PPP) of US$ 20.39 trillion in 2011. … The BRIC countries have been engaged with one another to enhance cooperation in various economic and financial areas. The bloc has been enlarged as South Africa joined the group during the BRICS Summit held in Sanya, China in April 2011. It is also exhilarating to know that a conference of IT ministers and teams of BRICS countries has taken place last October to discuss the ways and means to de-monopolize the Internet too, now in the clutches of the US government and multinationals, and not infrequently misused, and at any time can even be access-blocked for their ‘enemy countries’ etc. at their whim and fancy. As the Russian IT Minister disclosed, “we really require some kind of diversification of the IT solutions – we need joint efforts by all BRICS nations, because we represent just about half of the population of the planet…. we really want it to be balanced, not to depend on one country or several companies. We really want fair competition … But also we’re concerned … with such issues as the management, the governance of the critical internet infrastructure. It’s also … an issue of monopolization. …today it’s still under a particular government contract between the government of the US and a legal entity ... called ICANN … assigning domain names, internet addresses. But, still, it’s a legal entity under the US law.” The recent BRICS summit held under Indian chair in Goa is a refreshing breeze with all the five participating countries unanimously consenting to exert their abilities to counter international terrorism, though there were objections to the naming of any particular country as the ‘mother-ship of terrorism’, and also concluding several mutually beneficial economic and political pacts. §§§

Editorial, "The Ugly Presidential Race," in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 15 October 2016 issue, Vol. 12, Part 2, No. 19

Sometimes there seems to be very little to choose between the two eccentric and aggressive candidates of the current presidential race in the United States, which is derided in general as a two-party oligarchy in the guise of democracy, with whoever comes to power toeing the hard line of the powerful military-industrial cum financial crooks who are in reality running the governments. But sometimes it also seems to be a very crucial one which can decide even the fate of the entire world – as to whether it would be pushed into a nuclear Armageddon by the warmongering Killary clique, being supported by several republican neocons too, or be saved from its brink by the no-war, no-intervention protagonists whom in general Trump represents – as the reputed economists and political analysts like Paul Craig Roberts and Stephen Lendman often assert. The contest has escalated to typical American obscene proportions by the fishing out of a 11 year old locker room chat of Trump’s infatuation with grabbing the ‘pussies’ and the counter propaganda of Bill Clinton’s actual rapes and the ‘oral orifice’ proceedings as also Hillary’s own fascination for the male organs.  But as Paul Craig Roberts rightly rues, “What disturbs me about the importance attributed to Trump’s sexual banter is that we have in front of us the dangerous situation of the neoconservatives pushing for Washington to attack Syrian and Russian forces in Syria and the chief Washington propagandist, neocon Carl Gershman, calling publicly for the US to “summon the will” to bring regime change to Russia. The tensions between the two nuclear powers are currently at all time highs, and this dangerous situation is not a factor in the US presidential election!” It is also said that “Both Trump and Clinton are more strongly disliked than any nominee at this point in the past 10 presidential cycles. Clinton’s “unfavourability rating” is 55% and Trump’s 65%.” That the Americans have to choose between “two flawed candidates” in a “campaign of ‘you may not like me, but you’ll like my opponent less’.” Stephen Lendman is more forthright: “The prospect of Hillary succeeding Obama should terrify everyone, an unapologetic war goddess threatening everyone. Businessman Trump would rather profit from relations with Russia than bomb it. Neocon hawk Hillary risks waging potentially cataclysmic nuclear war. Which agenda do you support? A simple choice. Wall Street, war profiteers, media scoundrels, corporate pollsters, and bipartisan lunatics infesting Washington one-sidedly back a she-devil whose extremism may kill us all.Though the constraints of ‘choosing the lesser evil’ may not be palatable always, this time your editor prefers to travel with Paul Craig Roberts and Stephen Lendman. §§§

Friday, October 7, 2016

Editorial, "INSURGENCY AND 'SURGICAL STRIKES'," in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 30 September 2016, Vol. 12, Part 2, No. 18 issue

With the understanding of, and to an extent even an admission of, the saying: “One man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter,” the situation in Jammu and Kashmir is very peculiar in that only about 16% of our controlled state area falls in the Kashmir valley, and only 5-6 districts in it are heavily insurgency-infested. Jammu envelops 26% and Ladakh more than 50%, and are relatively peaceful, shun such militancy and moreover are eager to fully integrate with India. True, population-wise Kashmiri Muslims form about 50% of the total – that due to India’s credit which never disturbed the population proportion in the valley; rather it is the so-called azadiwallahs who ethnically cleansed the valley of Kashmiri Pundits in the 1990s itself. Then, as Tarek Fatah asserts, the people of POK too don’t seem enamored of their Paki connection and there is an agitation in Gilgit-Baltistan for its ‘azadi’. As such, Justice Katju’s comparison of the militancy in the valley with the Vietnamese guerilla war is quite misplaced; the Kashmiri Muslims’ cries for azadi is just an infatuation with fundamentalist Islam and not the love for any ‘Kashmiriyat’, and a real danger exists of their being reduced to a slave status in any ‘Mustafa Raj’. However, the Indian Government and Army too have not done it well by shouting from housetops about the so-called ‘surgical strikes’ carried out in retaliation for the Pakistan inspired, if not directed, attacks; such audacity can be termed a most stupid measure for any wise statesman or military strategist. Surprisingly, Pakistan has also bungled by refusing to admit any such strikes happening, and just tries to degrade those as repetition of the longstanding LoC violations and blames India for not letting UN military observers inspect and report on the same. At the same time, the manner the Pakistani politicians including their prime and defence ministers as also the fanatic Hafiz Saeed and other leaders of the terrorist outfits nurtured by them reacted, shows that something very damaging to their plans, forces and dependant terrorist circles occurred due to these ‘surgical strikes’ and for some reasons, perhaps including avoidance of public disgrace, they cling on to denials. However, it should also be noted that any armed force or terrorist group planning well and carrying out surprise attacks always has the initial advantage but that should not be taken as a decider in any war or longstanding conflict. As repeatedly asserted in this journal, only a wise and sane course – building bridges with China to neutralize any danger from it, negotiating with Pakistan to come to an underhand deal for any rational partition, and, by conduct of region-wise plebiscite, lending it an official and international stamp of approval – could be the real solution for this Ravanasura Kaashta-like conflict. §§§

Editorial, "BLACK SEPTEMBER," in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 15 September 2016, Vol. 12, Part 2, No. 17 issue

readily brings to recollection the plane hijackings in September 1970 by the Popular Front for Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) led by George Habash, in which too four planes were hijacked, and the sovereignty of King Hussein challenged, which led to a brutal civil war in the course of which the then Palestinian Liberation organizations were decimated – not less than 15,000 fighters mowed down and bulk of the refugees fled to Lebanon. But here are referred to – the 3-decades-later purported hijackings, crashing of those planes into the WTC Twin Towers and Pentagon, and the enormous destruction wrought that led to [used as a lame excuse for] aggressive wars in Afghanistan, Iraq, later Libya and now in Syria etc. and also to a macabre religious fanatic organization called ISIS/Daesh created to undermine the very concept and reality of any liberal humanistic civilization. Stephen Lendman asserts that in reality it is a CIA-Mossad plot, and thousands of architects, engineers and other eminent professionals in the US and Europe agree; a powerful 9/11 truth movement is spreading in the US and the West but largely ignored by the mainstream media and derogated by official circles as conspiracy theories. However, a recent European scientific study, published in the Europhysics magazine, declared that “the evidence points overwhelmingly to the conclusion that all three buildings [in WTC Complex] were destroyed by controlled demolition.More than 3000 persons, of several nationalities, were killed in the so-called plane attacks said to be the cause for the collapse of the towers, which were projected to the public as Muslim terrorist attacks. But even a cursory look at the attacks’ videos suffices to reveal the concocted nature of such allegations and in the entire history of the world there is no prior example of any steel-structured building collapsing due to plane hits/ office fires. Silverstein, the WTC Complex leaseholder soon reaped billions of dollars compensation, on the ground of the collapses being due to terrorist attacks, on his mere 15 million dollars investment there-for. Also in the savage wars unleashed by the Bush-Cheney gang, and later by Obama-Hillary clique, in the name of war on terror, millions of people were massacred; in a way the Third World War was already begun through this new crusade to establish American hegemony all over the world. This is nothing but an insider job, a most massive cover up in history, a 'new Pearl Harbor'. As such it is imperative for people all over the world to realize, mobilize and pressurize the United Nations to forthwith constitute an impartial international commission for a thorough investigation and inquiry into this tragedy and cause indictment and punishment of the traitors responsible for such egregious crimes against humanity. §§§

Editorial, "OUR COUNTRY AT THE OLYMPICS," in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 31 August 2016, Vol. 12, Part 2, No. 16 issue


Our country, even since under the colonial rule, has been almost continuously participating in the World Olympics, since 1920 in the team events; even in the very Second Olympics at Paris in 1900, Norman Gilbert Pritchard (1877-1929), Indian-born athlete of British parentage from Calcutta, our lone contestant, won two silver medals. Real triumph for our country was secured by our super-talented Hockey team, especially by the legendary [Maj.] Dhyan Chand. During 1928-1956 our Hockey team won 6 successive gold medals. The Berlin Olympics in 1936 is a memorable landmark, when the Führer himself would get enchanted by our Hockey Wizard Dhyan Chand and offer him a top post in the German Army if he consented to play for Germany, which the patriotic player so politely declined. But this greatest field hockey player of all time has not been given the topmost national award though a much junior/younger talenter in another game, which is not even an Olympic event, was adorned with Bharat Ratna due to patently political reasons. In all the Olympics we participated so far, we could only secure 9 Gold Medals with the last in 2008 with Abhinav Bhindra winning it in air rifle shooting. It is regrettable that in Athletics/Gymnastics we rarely won any medals, and it is to the credit of our Telugu girl Karanam Malleswari that we could get a bronze medal in weightlifting in 2000 Olympics, making her the first Indian woman to win an Olympic medal. Now we are all proud of another Telugu girl P.V. Sindhu bagging the Rio Olympic Silver in Badminton. Our total tally is just 9G+7S+12B = 28 medals in all these Olympics. Compare this to the tally of 100 medals of our neighbor China in the Beijing Olympics 2008 alone, where they also stood as World No. 1. In contrast to us, China has been participating in both Summer and Winter Olympics since the 1980 Winter and 1984 Summer Olympics only, but already its total tally in Summer Olympics is a whooping 201G+146S+126B = 473 up to 2012 – a spectacular achievement with which we have to compare our dismal performances, and try to catch up even to some 10% extent. Truly, in our country where there are no playgrounds in most of the schools, even that would be an insuperable task but what should we do is to provide the basic infrastructure for and fulfill the basic needs of the people, especially the youths, instead of declaring whimsical rewards at public cost for the stray winners; of course, they deserve all encouragement no doubt but not such political pampering. And such winners too, receiving the astronomical gift amounts now, may hopefully try to emulate Usain Bolt of Jamaica, who selflessly donated several million dollars from his earnings to his alma mater to promote the cause and conditions of sports in his country. §§§

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Editorial, "69 YEARS SINCE TRANSFER OF POWER," in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 15 August 2016, Vol. 12, Part 2, No. 15 issue


The so-called Independence Day celebrations fervor was agog again. In the background of the recent imbroglio in Kashmir, the BJP Premier Modi was expected to declare some harsh restrictive measures, coupled with any socio-economic concessions even. However, he chose to ignore the pressing need to tackle this burning issue but just poked Pakistan by referring to the reverent thanks being rendered to him by the people of Sindh, Balochistan and Pakistan Occupied Kashmir. He fell very much short of extending open support to the justified struggle for national self-determination by the Balochs, but yet this is sufficient and sure to create bouts of wrath in the neighboring country. And this once again brings to fore the question whether what was effected in August 1947 can be deemed real liberation for the people of India or were they duped with a transfer of power to some elitist leaders both sides of the border and trapped into endless quarrels and fights with each other over irrational communal and ethnic issues that could have been well tackled in a united India but for the nefarious British intervention. The unparalleled carnage of the partition days and history’s perhaps the biggest exodus of refugees both ways smeared with the most vengeful gory orgies and ethnic cleansings is time and again brought to the mind on this accursed day, fixed not even at the wish of the British Cabinet but solely at the whim and fancy of the sole dictator of the day – Lord Mountbatten, to whose tunes most of the then Congress and Muslim League leaders sang and danced, more with craze for power and perks than for the welfare and interests of the people at large. This editor has always pointed out that Kashmir is one crucial, and international, dispute, burning like the mythical pyre of Ravanasura, which has to be dealt with much tact and a flexible, give and take, approach. Coming to the domestic front, the socio-economic scenario is nothing exhilarating though much boasting of sound growth, controlled inflation and spread of broader national unity climate etc. is being made. What the common man experiences is the enormous increase in prices of food-grains, pulses, edible oils etc. and a sort of dismantling of the protective welfare measures that earlier used to mollify the rigors to some extent, and introduction of naked and merciless market economy measures. Further, anti-labor amendments in law are being made to facilitate the super-rich and multinationals and all this does not augur well for any purportedly democratic government. It is quite sad and shameful that in all these years of ‘freedom’ we have not progressed anywhere near the rate or state of our larger neighbor China or the smaller ASEAN countries even, either in economic growth or in social amelioration or in common civic sense. §§§

Editorial, "KEEP OUR ROADS CLEAN AND GREEN," in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 31 July 2016, Vol. 12: Part 2, No. 14 issue


and statues- and obstacles- free as far as possible, with wide and beautiful junctions of refreshing greenery with blooming flowers and necessary side roads and comfortable pavements – that is the least we can demand and expect of any governance system. In this context the removal of the YSR statue at the entrance of a flyover in Vijayawada, a big traffic obstruction, is a welcome measure though this process has to be extended to remove/shift all such statues and memorials erected in supposed veneration of various personalities cutting across any parties – be those of Gandhi or Nehru or Ambedkar or even NTR, etc. Likewise all temples and mosques/dargas standing as traffic obstructions have to be removed/shifted to nearby/distant vacant places. Perhaps India is the only country which allows its road spaces to be made ugly and crammed by such encroachments and, even if such temples/mosques pre-date the roads, public interest requires that those be shown a respectful place ‘far from the madding crowds’. More important is providing safe side-roads wherever possible, and good pavements to walk invariably, for every road - pedestrians should have the first right to use the roads and not any other vehicles or machines. Further, at least at every 300 meters intervals free and clean public toilets have to be provided to the people and also all shops/hotels/institutions, public or private, etc. be compelled to keep clean and comfortable rest rooms for use by general public and paying for pissing should be totally eliminated. This money spinning culture has ruined our ethos and our environment. At least two to three decades back there were some public urinals on the roads however shabby and dirty they might be, but now all those are gone; and for women it had been and is always an ordeal. Whatever narrow pavements were there, those also removed or arrogantly encroached on. One feels like crying when walking on these roads, but what can ordinary people do? Judges, ministers, political leaders, bureaucrats rarely walk for their chores, they get air-conditioned cars with free fuel and other facilities, even helicopters at public cost, and further, adding insult to injury, blame the general public for dirtying the roads and environs! True, civic sense and culture is very less in our country, but that defect not limited to the ordinary people but extends to, or more so lies in, the elite. On all cross-roads instead of commercial complexes beautiful parks and wide parking spaces have to come up and has the great Hyderabad Municipal Corporation built any parking complexes after the lone initiative at Abids launched by NTR in the 1980s? Where there is a will there is a way, it is often asserted, and it is for all, whose will influences and matters, to quickly intervene and mend/end this dirty situation in our country.  §§§

Editorial, "KASHMIR BURNING," in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 15 July 2016, Vol. 12: Part 2, No. 13 issue


like Ravanasura Kashta (the mythical pyre of Ravana, the king of Lanka) it seems. The recent killing of Burhan Wani, ‘commander’ of the dreaded terrorist [or revolutionary – it depends on which side of the conflict the observer is – per the famous saying, ‘One’s terrorist - another’s freedom fighter’] organization ‘Hizb-ul-Mujahideen’ on 8 July 2016 at village BEMDURU (strangely sounds a Telugu/ Dravidian name, perhaps suggesting some ancient links with Dravidian culture?), some 80 Kms from Srinagar,  in a well-informed and quickly executed attack by the armed police aided by the Army, has ignited huge flames of protest all over the valley [Jammu and Ladakh are not concerned, the people there largely desire total integration with India and if necessary separation from Kashmir], despite the unholy PDP-BJP alliance running the show of a state government there. Misinformed/misguided, or deliberately truth-suppressing vested interested, ‘secular’, ‘leftist’ and ‘liberal’ persons/parties/groups have taken this up as a golden opportunity to corner the pro-Hindu Central Government of Modi, whereas the extremists on the other side are vying for heavy repression and integration of the valley by any means. Saner counsels would suggest a golden mean. First of all, it has to be kept in mind that neither Wani nor his organization was fighting for Kashmir’s ‘azadi’. Their marching song is: Hizb ul Mujahideen kay jawan hain hum / Syed Ali Geelani kaa Aelaan hain hum / Takbeeron kea naaron kaa tuufaan hain hum / Hindi fauzon sun lo Pakistan hain hum, Allah ho Akbar… (We soldiers of the ‘party of holy warriors’ / actors per declaration of Syed Ali Geelani (separatist Hurriyat leader) / storm-troopers with the slogans of takbeer (Allah is the Greatest) / Hear Indian armies we are Pakistan) etc. So, Wani had nothing to do with Azadi in the sense of liberty, equality and fraternity for Kashmiris as an independent state, but was just fighting for Pakistan and the ideals of Mohammed bin Qasim and Ghazni Mahmud! The security forces made a huge mistake in handing over the dead bodies and then not properly managing the funeral procession, etc., which was calculatedly converted into violent rioting. This editor feels that Kashmir issue is a pre-partition problem still unsolved, and the remedy is to, if possible, come to some tacit understanding with Pakistan and China, and conduct a region-wise referendum after carving out a separate Amarnath Temple district contiguous to, and joining it in, Jammu – with the only option fixed by the United Nations long back in this India-Pakistan Dispute.  §§§

Editorial, "INTER-STATE WATER DISPUTES," in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 30 June 2016, Vol. 12: Part 1, No. 12 issue


have been, and are always, a serious headache in our country, at times giving rise to violent conflagrations between the ill-informed peoples of different provinces too [like the unfortunate Cauvery River Waters Disputes between Tamil Nadu and Karnataka], and have to be solved with utmost wisdom and delicate treatment. Now a disturbing situation may emerge in the two Telugu States of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana over the several new irrigation projects announced by the power and publicity crazy TRS government without even information to, let alone consultation with, the neighboring AP, apart from in instances like the proposed Mallanna Sagar project, giving rise to intense agitation in Telangana itself. As Wikipedia reports, “Contrary to the political belief [“and chauvinist propaganda” – one may add], Telangana … the Land of Dams, Reservoirs, Lakes, Tanks and Canals … has the most number of Dams, Reservoirs, Lakes, Tanks and Canals than any other South Indian state.” The National Register of Large Dams India, updated 2014-2015, gives the figures of 182 dams in Telangana (with 20 still under construction) compared to 151 in Andhra Pradesh (24 still under construction). This is sought to be augmented by a spate of fresh projects, even without any Draft Project Reports prepared, and without even seeking the consent of the Central Water Commission, etc. That A.P. has commenced and is continuing certain projects in a like undesirable manner is no answer since a lower riparian State generally poses no or insignificant risk to water usages in upper riparian states. The AP Reorganization Act, 2014, [S. 84], moreover, makes it incumbent on the Union Government to constitute an Apex Council with Minister of Water Resources as Chairman and both the CMs as members, to consider and resolve any such water disputes, which [seems to have] not been formed so far. Anyway, two wrongs cannot right a thing and one has to mind that water, a ‘commodity’ becoming ‘scarcer’ with every passing day, has to be handled and shared in a tactful, democratic and consensual manner between different states of India, a quasi-federal polity, in which water sharing is generally viewed and judged in terms of international water disputes resolution treaties/norms, among which the relatively recent UN Convention on the Law of the Non-Navigational Uses of International Watercourses 1997, sadly not accepted by India so far, can serve as an essential beacon-light.  §§§

Editorial, "Self-hatred and faux pas," in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 15 June 2016, Vol. 12: Part 1, No. 11 issue

Self-hatred and faux pas

seem to characterize the conduct of our Bar Council of India. Otherwise it is hard to understand the many false steps it had taken and yet taking. If not be humble and helpful and stoop to serve the lowly and the needy, at least they should care for the weal and woe of their own ilk. But it seems this ‘management committee’ of Indian advocates falls too short of such high expectations. Created by the Parliament to regulate the Indian bar” which it claims to do by prescribing standards of professional conduct and etiquette and by exercising disciplinary jurisdiction over the bar, setting standards etc., and to represent the bar which they claim to discharge by “by protecting the rights, privileges and interests of advocates and through the creation of funds for providing financial assistance to organise welfare schemes for them”, is this institution discharging its functions in a sensible manner, one wonders. Are there good libraries built or decent legal education and training classes, etc. held by this body or the state bodies under its control? Its steering committee seems to be too divorced from the real conditions and often overstepping its jurisdiction and mandate. Prior to 1960, there was a system of apprentice training for debut advocates as a condition for practicing, but that it did not find place in the Advocates Act should be sufficient to gauge that such provision was deemed onerous. However, our esteemed BCI reintroduced it for a few years and put to burden thousands of upcoming advocates only later for that to be struck down by the Supreme Court. Then another eccentric measure – of barring practice by retired employees, etc. – introduced, which too was quashed by the Apex Court. One wonders if the likes of Babu Rajendra Prasad could have come up if they were to suffer such provision in the past. And now they have come up with this crazy scheme of verification of practice rules, putting to unnecessary toil and torment lakhs of advocates for undergoing tedious processes including loss of some moneys, for no reason at all except the BCI’s self-hatred, a sort of masochist mindset. arae Baba [O Dad!], just see the preface called statement of objects and reasons, so full of invectives and allegations against their own ilk, the advocate community, without a single piece of sound evidence! Truly, advocates of India must have been very much blessed to have to live under its umbrella!

Editorial, "NO DEARTH OF DUMBHEADS," in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 31 May 2016, Vol. 12: Part 1, No. 10 issue


seems to be there at least in our country, as also in the lawyers’ community – which includes judiciary – a la Galib’s punching remark: ‘kami nahin Galib is duniya mein chutiyon kii, ek doondhe to sow miltea hain(O Galib, no shortage of dumbheads in this world; search for one, you get a hundred). Long back when this editor remarked on this to a senior advocate friend that ‘Sir, we are getting thousands such even without searching,’ he immediately responded, ‘O bhai, I am saying you can find such chutiyea on every branch and every leaf of a tree you can see’! Something of this sort should have enveloped our Bar Council of India and apex judiciary; otherwise one cannot see any reason in the so-called practice verification rules framed by the former and not forthwith stayed by the latter. The same applies to the Madras High Court which recently usurped drastic disciplinary powers over the ‘erring advocates’, with powers to immediately stop their right to practice even as an interim measure though there is contempt jurisdiction to deal with emergent situations and also such thing as a State Bar Council to look into complaints against ‘erring’ advocates and the Court could have been wiser and more tolerant to act as a forum of appeal/supervision in such matters. The former this editor holds a more drastic curtailment of the rights of advocates, with unwarranted, humiliating restrictions imposed, right in the face of law and with ridiculous treatment of unexplained classes of advocates. E.g., an advocate enrolled after 2010 would be able to flaunt his state bar council enrollment certificate as his ‘practice verification certificate’ but all other long-standing members of the same fraternity – even if they be enrolled in the 1950s but not fortunate enough to have been designated senior advocates or were more self-respecting and dignified to refuse to apply for such honorary slots which should invariably be awarded by the superior Courts suo motu or on recommendation of Bar Councils or Advocates Associations but never on application by individual lawyers – have to undergo all the embarrassing process of compulsory application, payment of Rs. 250/- to 500/- fee, etc. to get a certificate of verification of practice which appears nowhere in the Advocates Act even. These Black Rules framed by the Bar Council of India, by no means an adequately representative body in a federal polity, should be thrown out lock, stock and barrel and this editor suggests the advocate community should seriously protest and agitate to that end. §§§

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Editorial, THE MAY DAY MESSAGE, in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 15 May 2016 issue, Vol. 12: Part 1, No. 9


Rise like Lions after slumber / In unvanquishable number, Shake your chains to earth like dew / Which in sleep had fallen on you 
Ye are many – they are few” – quoting these spirited lines of Percy Bysshe Shelley, Marx’s daughter Eleanor Marx-Aveling had explained to and exhorted the workers gathered at the momentous May Day meeting at Hyde Park, London on 4 May 1890 – on which Marx’s close comrade-in-arms Engels was later to comment that “The grandchildren of the old Chartists are stepping into the line of battle” – she was not speaking just as a trade unionist but as a socialist and that workers should not stop at demanding an eight-hour working day on this occasion but have to close ranks and struggle to the end to achieve the goal of socialism. A decade later Lenin would comment that May Day is not just for the achievement of eight-hour working day, but for the political liberation of the working class as a whole. The Second International had given a call to workers of the world to celebrate it as the struggle day of the laborers. Nowadays sundry governments of various countries around the world are themselves declaring it a public holiday in order to lull the people into a false sense of satisfaction and security, which in fact is quite far from the truth. Be it America or India, China or Russia, Africa or Europe, everywhere it is only the rule of capitalists and oligarchy, and still in many countries the more antiquated monarchic, feudal coteries that are trampling over the will of the people. Though the workmen, especially the organized sector in various countries with democratic facades, have got some important rights and facilities in contrast to the wretched state of their predecessors of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, everywhere the shadows of misery, indigence and inhumanity are not waning but darkening all the more with gory atrocities committed by neo-cons/neo-colonials for the joy and powers of just 1% of the populations with the 99% deprived of their legitimate share in the assets, opportunities and privileges in the economies and polities. And so, it has become incumbent on the toiling people everywhere, including our country, to struggle to achieve the main goal of socialism by taking a vow to fight to end for the sublime cause in the context of this glorious festival cum fighting day of the proletariat. §§§

Editorial, SPECIAL STATUS TO A.P., ART 371-D ETC, in 30 April 2016 issue, Vol. 12, Part 1, No. 14

Though the bifurcation of united Andhra Pradesh into A.P. and Telangana has become a practical reality, a doubt arises whether it has become a legal reality i.e. one of constitutional and legal validity. There are several writ petitions pending before the Apex Court on the issue and, mind it, the Court has not dismissed but after elaborate arguments by petitioners, agreed to fully hear them. At that time itself this editor had brought to the notice of the Apex Court that though the Court agreed to hear the petitions on a serious matter which is nothing short of passing death sentence on a valid legal and historical entity existing since decades, and, moreover, an execution day was fixed on 2 June 2014, it would be futile if the Court does not grant a reprieve till the petitions are fully heard and decided. However, strangely, the august Court trashed the request easily. Now both the States of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana are relying on Article 371-D, a special provision made for the united State of Andhra Pradesh, to be operative ‘notwithstanding any other provisions in the Constitution’, and that naturally means ‘any other provisions in any other statute’ also. Actually this provision ought to be treated as more sound, strong and inviolable than the Article 370 in regard to the State of Jammu & Kashmir, labeled as a ‘temporary’ provision only; but yet, again strangely, even a statute makes amendments to the Article here. In this background, what value the assurance of a former Prime Minister in Parliament, strongly supported, with even further extension of such period demanded, by the then opposition but now ruling party, to accord subsequent to bifurcation a special status to Andhra Pradesh carries, it is difficult to understand. Just as the bifurcation act was forced in Parliament against all constitutional conventions to suit the interests of certain vested interests, the solemn promises made by the persons in authority that day are also being trashed openly to suit the interests of the present ruling party which was as much part of the nasty bifurcation process as the then ruling party. However, nothing prevents the current Central Government, if it has any sense of ethics and fair-play, from according a special status to the much-injured and defrauded state of Andhra Pradesh even if any Commissions or Committees set up do not commend so in that regard because such recommendations are never mandatory, but only advisory. §§§

Editorial, TEMPLES, SPORTS & JUDICIAL OVERREACH, in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 15 April 2016 issue, Vol. 12: Part 1, No. 7

Nobody can find fault with authorities, especially the judiciary, if they want and try to enforce the fundamental rights of people. But the problem arises when they try to make and impose even ostensibly well-motivated decisions in a hurry and in an arbitrary manner, especially when they take one particular community to be granted and override the traditionalist objections to what they perceive as ‘affront to gender justice’ in a huff. Tripti Desai and her Bhumata Brigade might be motivated by high ideals, or any unknown political ambitions, and may have made a point in pointing out to the ‘gender injustice’ in denying them entry into the ‘sanctum sanctorum’ of the Shani Shingnapur Temple. But the High Court of Bombay seems to have, without calling for opinions of various religious heads of that community and wider public discussions, ruled arbitrarily that under Constitution there can be no discrimination between male and female, as all are citizens entitled to fundamental rights, overlooking the glaring fact that out of thousands of temples in India only 3-4 bar the entry of women per custom and local usage, and also turning a blind eye to another section of lakhs of women from other religious communities who are not allowed even to enter and pray in their places of worship. This would certainly cause a lot of rankling in the hearts of the majority community, which in general is tolerant and liberal, and also fast reforming itself and adapting to complex situations. Likewise the decision to direct the IPL cricket organizers to shift the matches to outside Maharashtra, in view of what is perceived as serious drought in that State, also looks stupid, to say the least. The matches seem to be planned and decided long back, even before any signs of the serious drought visiting the state were apparent, and in any case it would not help relieving the drought victims in any way. On the contrary, if the High Court were to order, after due persuasion, the IPL management to bring trainloads of drinking water at their cost, supply free water bottles to the audience and spectators, and also open several piyaavus (free drinking water counters) for the benefit of general public in the cities where matches are held, it would have been of immense benefit to the people as also to the income of the State. In either case judicial overreach is apparent, which is a cardinal ‘sin’ from which a conscientious judiciary should abstain. §§§

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Editorial, "LET US NOT DILUTE OUR TOLERANCE," in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 15-31 March 2016 Martyrs Memorial Special issue, Vol. 12, Part 1, Nos. 5-6


A doyen of proactive and progressive judiciary in India, late Justice Chinnappa Reddy, in his excellent opinion in the national anthem case, a 1986 decision that we have thought worth reproducing in the columns of this issue to serve as a beacon light in the present murky atmosphere enveloping our country, has left us this precious and unforgettable message: Our tradition teaches tolerance; our philosophy preaches tolerance; our constitution practices tolerance; let us not dilute it!We don’t find better words to express this noble idea and sentiment. Nor are we targeting it against any particular groups or sects indulging in all ruckus, rampage and unseemly agitations nowadays. We find both the so-called left as also the ever ebullient right extremists, or even a bit moderates of these groups, faulty for the present vitiated climate in the country; it is as if things are heading for a ‘common ruin of the contending classes’ as Marx once feared. Especially we are pained at a section of lawyers gloating over committing violence in the name of Bharat Mata Ki Jai slogans or prosecuting and punishing conscientious or otherwise resisting objectors to that concept; or at the so-called liberal and left shamelessly playing the caste card, that too when they know in their hearts, or ought to know with any reasonable diligence, that it is a fake one. In this context this editor would like to remind one and all that the best way to pay homage to the glorious memory of the innumerable martyrs to the cause of our country’s freedom and welfare is to preach and practice the virtue of tolerance. In the golden words of Ramprasad Bismil, who exhorted, inter alia, that हिन्दू-मुस्लिम एकता ही हम लोगों की यादगार तथा अन्तिम इच्छा है, चाहे वह कितनी कठिनता से क्यों प्राप् हो जो मैं कह रहा हूं वही श्री अशफाकउल्ला खां वारसी का भी मत हैदेशवासियों से यही अन्तिम विन[ति] है कि जो कुछ करें, सब मिलकर करें और सब देश की भलाई के लिए करें इसी से सबका भला होगा {Hindu-Muslim unity alone is our last wish and would be our memorial, however difficult to achieve it may be. What I am saying is the opinion of Sri Ashfaqullah Khan Warsi also. Our last request to the people of the country is ‘whatever you do, please do it in a united manner, and all that for the good of the country. This alone will cause good to the country’}”. Also let us not forget that the most cherished slogans of Shaheed-e-Azam Bhagat Singh and other martyrs were “Long live Revolution!” and “Down with Imperialism!”, they were basically non-conformist internationalists demanding and fighting for, in the then circumstances, independence to our country, and that for Netaji and the INA it was the short and vital  “Jai Hind” and nothing more. §§§