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Monday, October 05, 2015

M Sreenivasa Murty

PART I


My report captioned ‘What all happened in Supreme Court on 30 Sept’ was a honest narration of what I noted in the Court from a physically vantage point. I composed the same utilizing the cosy comfort of my two-hour return flight time, the same evening, from Delhi to Hyderabad, when things are still fresh in my mind. 

After seeing Mr KML’s rejoinder like response to my report, I read my report once again to see if I made any wrong statements that might be factually incorrect and might have provoked Mr KML to indulge in his wholesale personal, below the belt attack on me and concurrently on the two activists from Panchkula, who were not even present in the Court.  I was baffled to read the diatribe of sorts absolutely unwarranted and nothing but an outpouring of venom unbecoming of any decent individual. It reflects the mind-set of a person who fears his own shadow. I would urge his local well-wishers and close friends to arrange urgently for some ‘help’ to him, without delay.  He has to feel better mentally, more than physically, by 18 Nov 2015. We all need his services, irrespective of his disposition towards me and his counterparts in Panchkula.  

Some of his comments and observations need specific rebuttal/response.     

There was no proposal for adjournment from LIC at any point of time on 30th. SGI was reported to be available. This was confirmed to me personally by Shri Prakash Chand, Chief (Per).  Where was the question of KML’s two Sr Counsel opposing the adjournment move, which was never there? Vehemently or mildly? If they have to be paid additionally for ‘vehemently opposing’ the adjournment move, please don’t pay. They did nothing in that direction.



Mr MSM has commented on our Advocate speaking first not knowing the procedures.         

The true position was, when our case was called, there was neither the Sr Counsel to represent the Union of India (who would have started his argument on the SLPs) nor the SGI, to appear for LIC (and commence arguments on the CA against the Jaipur judgement, to start with). I had reported ‘Judge was accommodative, and allowed the other Sr Counsel present to commence (what appeared to me to be informal) arguments’.   

Mr KML asserts that I don’t know the procedureIf as per the procedure known to him it is the Respondent’s Counsel to commence arguments in a SLP or CA, even before the Petitioner/Appellant’s Counsel starts his, I only pity him. If he is keen to announce that I don’t know the procedure, he should have waited for some other occasion to issue me his certificate. As to KML’s knowledge of Law & Procedure, he betrayed his colossal ignorance many a time starting with his attempt to add himself and another of his henchman as the First Petitioner in the Chandigarh Writ Petition AFTER the Petition was allowed by the HC. He later filed an Implead Application in the same WP on the ground that the WP was allowed in terms of his Jaipur Order. The said implead application for the grounds on which it was made, was a laughing stock in court circles and did not merit even being numbered by the registry. Mr KML’s handling of the Contempt Petition before the Rajasthan HC and his branding it as a wrong Order and not challenging it,  speaks volumes of his knowledge of law & procedure. What about the two new Writ Petitions he filed in Jaipur for implementation of his two judgments while the Civil Appeals were listed for Final Hearing? How much was the build-up given by him and his devotees on those two WPs? Is he still spending money on them and are they even numbered? If this is knowledge of Law and procedure, I am not a loser for not knowing the procedure. Let me assure him, I know something, certainly not all. Where I don’t know I check and learn.              

He has also branded the discussions, question and answers between the Court and Advocate as failure on the part of Nidhesh Gupta our Sr. Advocate as failure.

Wrong and baseless accusation.  This is what I reported and I stick to it:

‘It was evident that Mr Nidhesh Gupta's point did not find favor with the Bench. I also added: Mr Gupta I think sensed the mind of the Judge and gently backed out (but not fully) and referred to Art 14 of the Constitution and DS Nakara Judgement in passing’.

Does the above statement mean that I also branded the discussions, question and answers between the Court and Advocate as failure on the part of Nidhesh Gupta our Sr. Advocate as failure?  

Mr KML moves on: But then where his Advocate learned Mr. Savla was, why he did not reply and even MSM (man in black robe) was there why he did not quell the curiosity of the Hon’ble Judge?

Mr KML may not be able to hear from a distance and may not be able to understand even if he hears something, because of his generally disturbed ‘mental’ condition. But can’t Mr KML see who all are there? He knows Mr Savla was very much there sitting in row two and I (in black robe) in the chair next to him. Then what does Mr KML expect Mr Savla to do when the two Sr Advocates were arguing (vehemently, to the complete satisfaction of the Proprietor Saheb)? Physically butt in, outshout the Seniors and tell the Judge something else? Like KML’s ‘full-time but otherwise-free’ RK Singh does often? Mr KML, what is your question and what is your problem? I know you have a serious problem with my robe (and with me ever since I started attending the Supreme Court in my Advocate’s attire). And so you call it black. Do you want me to don white robe instead? Ask your ‘private’ Lawyer to start it one day. 

You let people believe for long you are a  Lawyer in Jaipur. Do you feel uneasy that you can’t wear the black robe yourself? Btw, I concede and you also know that very often an Advocate’s Munshi knows the procedure better than his boss. In your case what is important is you know the procedure better. How does it matter to anybody, if you can’t wear the robe?        

Mr KML you provoked me without good reason to say as above. It is time you realize that at our age we shouldn’t talk and act like school kids to settle our scores. Stop these cheap tricks and earn some respect even from those who differ with you.

You have narrated in some detail how your Sr Advocate opposed the SLP and how CG was not entitled to enter the fray at this point. You have correctly quoted your Sr Counsel’s line of argument on ASG’s ‘admission’ before the High Court and the UoI counsel’s opposition to it ‘that the ASG did not have the power to give this admission’ etc.

Up to this I have no problem.  But you were completely wrong when you attributed to the Judge what you did viz., ‘otherwise the Court agreed with our contention that an Advocate speaks on behalf of his client and under his instructions and if their ASG did not have the power why such a question was not raised’.

I am genuinely anxious to pull you out of this wrong sense of comfort when you claim that the Court agreed with your Counsel that when the ASG admitted about something before the Court, it is binding on the client and here the Government cannot disown the admission of the ASG. The fact (you might have missed out or had no chance later to check with your Counsel) is that the Judge had virtually disagreed with your counsel’s contention with a facile observation (happily owned by the CG Advocate) ‘we know it applies when it is on a FACT and NOT on LAW. If you (or your Sr Advocate) think that you had won that particular point/argument with the Court, against the Government, please stand corrected. I hope you don’t need any more tutorials on this point but let me go on record for what it is worth. If the ASG had admitted before the Court that Government of India had not taken any decision on the Board Resolution, it is an admission of a FACT by the Counsel. It is binding on the Client. If on the basis of such an admission the Court gave any relief to the Writ Petitioner, it is binding on the other party who cannot later disown the admission by the Counsel.  On the other hand, if the admission by the counsel is on a point of law, like ‘the Board Resolution does not need Government approval, it can be given effect to by LIC itself as per Law’, such an admission is not automatically binding on the Government unless it is ‘owned’ as being in accordance with Law, by the Government. This was the essence of what the Judge said in one brief sentence and it does not go in favour of your Sr Counsel.  

I chose to go in to this in detail, because it is a critical point and all of us were interpreting it otherwise till now. You/your Counsel may have to revisit the point and be sure whether or not to pursue it.

(To be continued)