E.R. RAMACHANDRAN writes: Subjected to internal push and pull, the Full Bench started warping. Then the cracks appeared and finally because of fissures it broke into several pieces. The full bench ended up as a set a stools one day.
The honourable judges, used to sitting on a full bench against a wall, sat, for the first time, on stools without back support.
This, in itself, was a rarity and created a commotion of sorts. The chief had to bang his gavel and shout ‘order! order!’. This brought in a sharp response from Senior Juj No1.
“It is the fundamental right of the people to laugh when they see something odd and amusing, as is the case right now. You can’t take away their right.”
Junior Juj No 1 was not amused.
“With due respect to your seniority of 15 years, 7 months and 5 days, I beg to differ. Mutatis mutandis, we must recognize this is a court. This is not a fish market; I will repeat this ad nauseam.”
Senior Juj No. 2 begged to differ and roar.
“Dear Junior! I see you have learnt a bit of Latin and math. But you are still wet behind the ears notwithstanding you got drenched before entering the court. I seek amende honourable from you for insulting our esteemed CJ, implying he runs a fish market here. It is clear you are having a tough time in Anno Horribilis. I suggest you be an understudy for few more years and acquire some basic manners. Otherwise it will be au revoir for you.”
Junior Juj No.2 was quick for the defence of his colleague.
“I find it infra dignitatem to address my honourable colleague like that. There is a malentendu here on the part of my senior. Prima facie why should a senior Juj bully a junior? Are we not against ragging? We have passed judgments ad infinitum banning ragging. Why is it still allowed here?” he said looking at CJ.
As it is without a Full Bench it was quite difficult for CJ to balance himself on the stool. Now this carping tried his patience.
“Quo Vadis, Gentlemen? The whole country is watching us. Are we members of Parliament to behave in this fashion? I mean to say, we cannot behave like irresponsible media. Whether we are united or not, does not matter. Our first business as per the Constitution is to listen to vox populi which is vox dei. If we behave like this what will people think of us?”
“Yes, your honour. We are in danger of being pulled up for ‘contempt of Court’. I wonder who will decide that. Because of our internal fight, people are not even calling us a ‘full bench’ any more. This backless stool is killing my back.”
“My senior colleague is right your honour. If we continue to sit like this and end up with back ache and sciatica, we won’t be active. That is exactly what our parliamentarians want. They don’t want judicial activism of any kind.”
“That is what I am saying to you nitwits! Let’s bury the hatchet and become one. Let us postpone our fights sine die. Let all our internal differences become sub judice. Let us march ahead as one. I will arrange for a regular full bench from tomorrow itself. Hope our modus operandi is clear. Viva judice!” said the CJ.