The way the Supreme Court bench endorsed the decision making process involving the Prime Minister is astonishing. This is the only area gone into by the three judges and the judgment clearly shows that they have ignored some of the major stages of the process involving serious violations on the part of the Indian Government. The apex Court has failed to perform its supreme duty as the custodian of the nation.
This is a joint statement by Yashwant Sinha, Arun Shourie and Prashant Bhushan in response to the Supreme Court's December 14, 2018 verdict on the Rafale deal. All three were petitioners, along with a few others, in a batch of public interest litigation demanding a probe by a joint parliamentary committee into the Rafale deal, wherein 36 Rafale fighter jets were bought instead of 126 aircrafts as per the earlier deal, a decision taken by Prime Minister Narendra Modi himself, much like his choice of offset partner in Anil Ambani's brand new defence company.
For the Lok Sabha elections, the Opposition, especially the Congress has to do two things — first, the Party’s election manifesto must reflect the aspirations of the masses, especially the young, unemployed and the farmers, and it should form the core of the common minimum programme of the anti-BJP front, and second, the Congress must learn to act as first among the equals among the Opposition parties and treat the smaller parties with compassion and dignity so that the anti-BJP front can be sustained on a long term basis.
On December 12, 2018, the Supreme Court asked Justice Bedi (Retd.) as to whether he had shared the reports submitted to the Court with other members of the monitoring committee. The Court also directed that the report shall not be shared with the petitioners until further order. The Gujarat Government contended that the report was unilateral. The case has been adjourned and the hearing will resume after the winter vacations.
Prime Minister Modi and the BJP national president Amit Shah tried every trick to win the elections in its so called strongholds and mobilised massive resources and RSS muscle power. Even in the last part of the campaign, the PM stooped too low by openly telling in the meetings that Sonia Gandhi and her family would be named by the extradited Agusta Westland deal middleman as the recipient of the bribes.
The family of the slain eight-year-old girl, which has been subjected to a social and administrative boycott, pleads with the government to provide them a piece of land elsewhere in lieu of their land in Rasana village. Many of their own community members, according to the family, have started acting distant after the incident. The civil administration — in keeping with the majority sentiment — also seems to have imposed a boycott on the family.
It goes without saying that the Congress’s good showing in the three states is Rahul Gandhi’s big moment. He led the party from the front by effectively replying to Narendra Modi’s barbs with the video which the Congress president tweeted about the prime minister’s incessant harping on the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty being perhaps the most telling riposte.
Muslims get no succor from the law enforcement agencies too because most of the police personnel too are polarised on communal lines. Perhaps the heinous murder of one of their own will spur them into action like it did once to Punjab Police in controlling militancy when the militants started attacking police personnel and their families.
The Indian National Congress and other political parties will be pigmies before cash-rich saffrons on eve of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, thanks to the dubious electoral bond scheme introduced by the BJP government early last year, through the Finance Act 2017. Already, a staggering majority of the bonds have been issued to the BJP by corporate donors, as the Election Commission data have shown. This must be challenged in court.
NHRC observed that the Bulandshahr incident is indicative of ‘yet another violent protest and rampaging by the unruly mob exposing lawlessness and failure of the administration’ to tackle the sensitive issues and situations. It added that ‘even the police officers do not appear to be safe and can be easily eliminated at free will of the uncontrolled lawless elements’.