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Finance Minister Arun Jaitley today raked up the Bofors case reminding Rahul Gandhi of Ottavio Quattrocchi's escape to hit
The campaign for the ouster of External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj was today met with a strong counter-offensive when
Congress today backed the reported controversial remarks of President Pranab Mukherjee on Bofors issue to a Swedish daily
The reported controversial remarks of President Pranab Mukherjee on Bofors issue to a Swedish daily have no bearing on his
President Pranab Mukherjee's remarks on Bofors issue to a Swedish daily sparked off a controversy today with India protest
Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar today described the quality of Swedish Bofors guns as "good" but refused to co
The Delhi High Court today dismissed former Foreign Minister Madhav Singh Solanki's plea for quashing an FIR lodged agains
BJP today used the claims made by former CBI director A P Mukherjee in his new book on defence deals row by seeking to kno
A barrel of the indigenous- version of the Bofors howitzers burst during their trials in the Pokharan range, delaying plan
Congress today said Italian businessman Ottavio Quattrocchi was a "ghost" created by BJP and slammed the opposi
The Quattrochchi case is an embarrassment for the government of India. We have tried to extradite him from Malaysia, from Argentina, and the courts have said we don’t have a strong case. Now, it is not a good reflection on the Indian legal system that we harass people while the world says we have no case. Before the matter was referred, Interpol asked India why do we want to keep him under the red corner notice. The law ministry referred the matter to the Attorney General, who gave the advice that it (the notice) should be lifted. [From here]
Justice (retd) JS Verma tells Shekhar Gupta in the Indian Express that something like what the outgoing CEC suggested -- no post-retirement jobs from the government in power for 10 years for the CEC and ECs and prohibition on their joining any political party -- should apply even more to CJI, CEC, EC, SC judges and CBI directors
Rajeev Dhavan argues in the same paper that the Attorney General's role needs to be looked at afresh:
The AG is a constitutional office (article 76). He is the principal advisor and legal conscience-keeper of the Government... In 1962-63 when Ashok Sen tried to combine the offices of AG and Law Minister, he was rebuffed. Today, it could be argued that a de facto merger has taken place between Law Minister Bharadwaj and AG [Milon] Banerjee. It wasn’t always so: independent India’s first AG, M.C. Setalvad, chastised the government over the Mundhra deal, averring that he was accountable to the nation, not the government. He addressed Parliament on preventive detention in 1960 — and politicians listened. Fali Nariman resigned as Additional Solicitor General (ASG) in July 1975 when the Emergency was declared. In 1977, Soli Sorabjee as ASG defended Presidents Rule, but on 10 December 1989 reportedly told Krishnan Mahajan that he regretted doing so. Then he, as AG supported opening up Babri Masjid for Hindu prayer in March 2002, even though in 1994 he opposed this stance in the Babri Masjid case. In UP K.L. Mishra and in Bombay H.M. Seervai set standards for Advocate Generals, the comparable office at State level.
The CBI giving a clean chit to Jagdish Tytler or, as reported in the Indian Express today, dropping charges against Quattrocchi in the middle of an election campaign, is only symptomatic of this Congress-led UPA government's biggest problem: Its hubris.
The CBI as an independent institution never had much credibility. This government ensured that whatever was left has been ground to the dust.
Off-hand, consider the cases against Mayawati. Mulayam Singh. Jagdish Tytler. Bofors...
And in all of them it's the same cynical, brazen and blatant arrogance on display, as the Congress went about subverting due process in sheer disregard.
Apart from these, equally randomly, consider Nanavati Commission of Enquiry on 1984 carnage, Jharkhand, Goa, Bihar, Office of Profit, Navin Chawla, Pratibha Patil, Volcker...
In all of these cases, the party seemed to think that it could literally get away with just about anything. And, whenever cornered, it has sought to adopt the higher moral ground
By dropping a Natwar Singh then or a Jagdish Tytler now, the party seems to think it has done the nation a favour, and merrily gone back to business as usual, issuing its empty sermons on secularism.
Brazenly undermining institutions, particularly the CBI, will be some of this outgoing government's lasting achievements.
Update: April 29: More Brazenness