A ‘state’ of Constitutional breakdown and lawlessness – I

via B R Haran published on March 7, 2009

‘Brahmin Dog! Brahmin Dog! Subramanian Swami Brahmin Dog!

Anti-Tamil Brahmin Dog! Subramanian Swami Brahmin Dog!

Get away, get away! Rajiv killer get away!’


These were the slogans raised inside court room 3 of Madras High Court
by a team of lawyers who threw eggs on Dr. Subramanian Swami, who was
seeking to implead himself in support of the Dikshitars in the Chidambaram Temple case, listed for hearing on 17 February 2009.


group of lawyers belonging to pro-LTTE political parties and outfits
has been boycotting the court proceedings thereby preventing other
sincere lawyers from doing their duty, since January end. They have
been engaged in a daily practice of going around the corridors in
procession inside the Madras High Court shouting slogans against the
Sri Lankan government and in support of Sri Lankan Tamils (read LTTE).


same lawyers are also supporting the government’s takeover of the
Chidambaram Temple. On learning that Dr. Swami was going to implead
himself in the Chidambaram
case, they utilised the moment with the triple motive of attacking Dr.
Swami for his anti-LTTE stand, abusing the Brahmin community, and
preventing the Chidambaram Temple case from being taken up for


entered the third court shouting slogans, threw a number of eggs on Dr.
Swami’s face, and some eggs near the well of the room, spoiling the
records and furnitures. A few lawyers pushed him from behind and tried
to assault him. When police officers attempted to protect Dr. Swami,
unruly lawyers thrashed Assistant Commissioner
Kadar Mohideen, pushed him, and prevented other officers from entering
the court hall. Some more lawyers who swelled inside the hall attempted
to close the other entry to prevent the personal security guards of Dr. Swami, who has ‘Z’ category security cover, from entering the hall.


Smt. Radha Rajan, Editor, www.vigilonline.com,  Smt.
Uma Anandan, Sri T R Ramesh and this writer, who were present in the
visitors’ section, objected to the lawyers’ abusing the Brahmin
community inside the courtroom. A male lawyer assaulted Smt. Rajan, and
when we tried to protect her some blows landed on our hands too. The
lawyers threatened and abused us. A female lawyer attempted to pounce
on Smt. Rajan and hurled more derogatory remarks. The melee lasted
about fifteen to twenty minutes; finally the unruly mob vacated the


Later, the division bench
allowed the personal security guards of Dr. Swami to take positions
around him. Dr. Swami complained about the ugly incident and requested
the bench to pronounce an order as everything happened in the presence
of the honourable judges. He requested adjournment of the case as there
was no security for him and other litigants inside the court hall. He
told the division bench that he would take up the issue with the Supreme Court.
Mr. Justice P K Mishra was very critical and asked the government
pleader Raja Kalifullah to explain why police protection was not given.


The government pleader replied that, ‘The
police need the permission of the Chief Justice to enter the hall, as
there is an earlier order restricting the police from entering the
court room and the available police is enough only to give protection
outside the hall and for protecting the advocates,
’ When Justice
Mishra reminded him of the presence of a posse of policemen seeing
their own officer getting thrashed by unruly lawyers, the pleader said,
‘It is very unfortunate that a respectable person like Dr. Swami has been attacked.’


For this the bench criticised the government pleader and said, ‘the
respectability of a person is immaterial. Even a hardcore criminal who
is present in the court attending his case must be given protection.’
It asked, ‘does the government expect this court to remind it of its duties?’ and added, ‘it is a shameful incident. No right thinking citizen would tolerate this type of an incident and it is a national shame.’


the Chidambaram case for further hearing on 19 February 2009, the
judges said they would also forward their order to the acting Chief
Justice to take severe action against lawyers involved in the shameful
act. They said the order would be sent to the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court as well.


Coming out of the court hall, Dr. Swami addressed the press and said, ‘The attack is a clear indication of the breakdown of Constitution
and prevalence of lawlessness in the state under the DMK government.
There is no security for litigants even inside the court hall. If a
bunch of unruly elements including lawyers could disrespect the law,
dishonour the court and act in defiance of the Constitution, then one
can imagine what sort of governance is happening and how the law and
order situation has deteriorated in the state. A group of lawyers have
been preventing the functioning of the courts for the last two to three
weeks and they have been supporting the cause of a terrorist organisation
of another country at the cost of the rights and interests of the
citizens of this country and this is an act, which has resulted out of
anti-national attitude.’


Condemning the incident, he said, ‘The DMK government doesn’t have the right to continue in office any more and it deserves to be dismissed.’ He reminded the people that both Chief MinisterKarunanidhi and his son M K Stalin have taken central police protection as they do not repose trust and confidence in the state police force, and asked, ‘were these policemen not Tamils?’


Swami, who faced severe attacks and humiliation during Indira Gandhi’s
emergency and Jayalalithaa’s first tenure (in the same High Court premises),
was undaunted by the attack by “Dravidian” lawyers who tried to take
the law in to their own hands. He said he would lodge a complaint with
the Bar Council and demanded the impugned lawyers be debarred for life.


this context, it may be noted that a few months ago a magistrate of the
district sessions court in Chennai was assaulted by an advocate; the
judiciary, instead of bringing the concerned lawyer to book, preferred
a ‘dialogue’ with the lawyers for an amicable solution! Such a
compromising attitude only emboldens advocates and the assault upon
police inside the court premises is only further evidence of the
deterioration of ethical standards among the legal fraternity. 


recent incident in Law College, involving law students, is a grim
indicator of what lies ahead. Even as Dr. Swami was addressing the
media, many lawyers could be seen abusing him, hurling invectives at
him and the Brahmin community, and blaming the media for giving him
more space. At the same time, a section of law-abiding advocates were
visibly upset at the happenings and aired their anger privately over
the conduct of the unruly section of their fraternity.


acting on the complaint of Assistant Commissioner Kadar Mohideen, the
city police has arrested a lawyer named Kiniliyo Immanuel for alleged
involvement in the incident; he is among the twenty lawyers against
whom the police have registered cases.


BJP was the only political party which condemned the attack on Dr.
Swami; even the main opposition AIADMK refrained. The state BJP blamed
the government for not providing security and alleged that the
government itself might have been behind this incident. Certainly
the state government fears Dr. Swami might win the case in favour of
the Dikshitars and thus save the Chidambaram Temple from hostile takeover, much in the manner in which he triumphed over the UPA government in the Setu Samundram case and helped protect the sacred Rama Setu.

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