POSTED BY Sundeep Dougal ON Sep 08, 2011 AT 04:02 IST ,  Edited At: Sep 08, 2011 04:02 IST

The Supreme Court's monitoring of the CBI and hold its feet to the fire has resulted in some high-profile arrests. After acknowledging that in the face of abject state failure the courts do not have many options, Pratap Bhanu Mehta asks some relevant questions in the Indian Express:

In a context where, by its own accounts, the CBI cannot be trusted, does court monitoring help or exacerbate the problem? It helps in so far as it compels the CBI to produce something to satiate the court. The court can also monitor meticulously whether there are any double standards in chargesheeting — an area of considerable public concern. But how can the court possibly “monitor” the full range of evidence? This is purely institutional challenge, not a question of motives. The risk is this: precisely because of court monitoring, the imprimatur of legitimacy can be given to an investigation that is not full, complete or fair...

The court has been using an SIT in cases related to Gujarat. While the SIT has raised enough questions about Narendra Modi’s political responsibility, it seems to have fallen short of making a legally prosecutable case. So the court then appoints a distinguished amicus curiae to assess its own SIT. The issue here is not guilt or innocence. But the process is instructive: we create an institution to bypass an untrustworthy process, and then that institution itself requires yet another layer of assessment...

The courts run the risk of perpetuating the myth that because the executive has failed the judiciary can do better. Alas, there are no extra-political quick-fixes for executive failure.

The questions raised are very relevant, but are there any easy answers other than complete autonomy for the CBI? But what about now, the current cases and the short run? What must the courts do?

Read the full column at the Indian Express: A Delicate Balance 

POSTED BY Sundeep Dougal ON Sep 08, 2011 AT 04:02 IST ,  Edited At: Sep 08, 2011 04:02 IST
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Daily Mail
Sep 12, 2011
06:21 PM

>> "If Narendra Modi can be hounded relentlessly...." - SS Nagaraj

In many ways, the very people who hounded him are the ones responsible for turning him into a mass hero. To his credit, he has responded to those diatribes with tremendous dedication, commitment and efficiency as the Chief Minister. Most others would have buckled into oblivion under such assault.

The Irreverent Indian
Online, India
Sep 12, 2011
12:16 PM

If Narendra Modi can be hounded relentlessly,why not a posthomous investigation on Rajiv Gandhi's role in organising mass killing of Sikhs in 1984?The Sikh community must demand this to get to the root of the greatest mass killing in independent India.

Bangalore, India
Sep 09, 2011
11:29 PM

>>"While the SIT has raised enough questions about Narendra Modi’s political responsibility, it seems to have fallen short of making a legally prosecutable case."

Wow.. so PB Mehta is quite sure that Modi is culpable and it is only the SIT which has not made a valid case against him!!! If people are so sure of his guilt, why couldnt they prove anything so far when there is a UPA government in the second run, a gangful of so called NGOs barking for 10 years running ?

In any case, political responsibility and criminality are 2 different things.. If political responsiblity is taken as a criteria for Judicial punishment, then every government and the CM will have to be punished in one way or another.. The union home minister should be held responsible for all the terror attacks etc.

>> "Some will be successful, others not. But not only is the outcome fair, it is seen to be fair."

Seen to whom ? While 2G, mining etc. are general issues of corruption, the stakeholders who do not want justice delivered are obvious: the politicians.. But if you take issues like Gujarat riots, Ayodhya etc. the vested interests of the seculars and the left liberals seem to hijack the public opinion and hence any judgement delivered that goes against their ideological beliefs is 'seen' unfair and then all hell breaks loose.. So, in both these cases, the guilty is finalized even before the trial has begun and the accused is 'labelled' fascist, hitler-alike, communal etc. and if the judgement goes against the popular belief, then everyone starts crying that the system is corrupt etc..

Bangalore, India
Sep 09, 2011
01:32 PM
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Dallas, United States
Sep 09, 2011
01:00 PM
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a k ghai
mumbai, India
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