The Calcutta Excessive Court docket on Friday granted bail to 4 leaders of Trinamool Congress within the Narada sting case, during which the political battlelines have been drawn sharply. The order got here after a senior decide of the Calcutta Excessive Court docket, in an unprecedented transfer, wrote a letter to his colleagues elevating questions in regards to the established process of legislation being given the go-by. It’s a name for the excessive courtroom to look within.
First, the excessive courtroom, in seeming haste, agreed to listen to a plea by the Central Bureau of Investigation towards the TMC leaders, that the accused had secured bail from the CBI courtroom by placing strain on the decide. A division bench of the excessive courtroom, headed by performing Chief Justice Rajesh Bindal, as an alternative of a normal single bench, heard the plea and stayed the bail order with out even listening to the accused, elevating questions of due course of. The senior decide questioned each the selections of performing CJ Bindal — to assign the plea to himself because the grasp of roster and to remain the bail order. Regardless of the urgency proven on Might 17, the Excessive Court docket issued a discover that “on account of unavoidable causes” the division bench by the performing CJ wouldn’t sit the subsequent day. The case was heard subsequent on Might 19 and the outcome was a cut up verdict the place the junior decide on the bench needed to grant bail whereas CJ Bindal differed. The guidelines of the Calcutta Excessive Court docket say that in case of a cut up verdict in a division bench, a 3-judge bench is constituted — including a 3rd decide to the prevailing division bench. Nevertheless, for causes that stay unclear, performing CJ Bindal constituted a five-judge bench. In the meantime, in an uncommon transfer, the CBI challenged the cut up verdict however the SC refused to listen to the case, prompting the company to withdraw the attraction. In his letter, the senior decide famous that the excessive courtroom had been decreased to a “mockery” in its dealing with of this case.
The letter raises essential questions on whether or not the excessive courtroom acted pretty in evaluating the central company’s claims. In instances when there are apprehensions in regards to the independence of countervailing establishments towards a robust and aggressive government, there’s a particular accountability on the judiciary to be vigilant, and to behave as custodian of the due course of. The Calcutta Excessive Court docket should heed the warning from within.