The order of the special court hearing the 2G spectrum allocation scam on the bail application of the former Hindu sub-editor turned poet turned parliamentarian, M.K. Kanimozhi in the 2G spectrum allocation scam has been reserved (tellingly) till next Saturday, May 14, the day after the assembly elections come out.
However, the bail plea has been remarkable on three counts. One, the DMK, which was “backing” A. Raja, the disgraced former telecom minister, who is a Dalit and close friend of Kanimozhi, when the Tamil Nadu elections were in the air, seems to have abandoned him completely after the DMK’s fate has been sealed in the EVMs.
Two, there is the weird but not unwelcome spectacle of Ram Jethmalani, a BJP member of Parliament of the Rajya Sabha, representing Kanimozhi, who belongs to the DMK, which is a constituent of the Congress-led UPA. There is yet, a third dimension to the bail plea, which is Jethmalani’s handiwork.
The maverick lawyer has said Kanimozhi should be granted bail because she is a woman, although the CBI had called her a co-conspirator in the scam, and an “active brain” who was “controlling everything” in Kalaignar TV, which received a Rs 200 crore bribe from one of the beneficiaries of the Rs 173,000 crore scam presided over by A. Raja.
“Bail is a right and should be treated as reward for my sex, motherhood and my clean record,” Jethmalani said, speaking for his client, even as Kanimozhi was accompanied to the court by her Singapore-based husband and their 11-year-old son, neither of whom were in the picture .
“I hope we have not lost the Victorian sense of chivalry.”
Questions: Should the sex of an accused person be a condition for bail? Are all mothers naturally entitled to bail, regardless of the extent of the scam? And with the NGO with which she is connected having received donations worth crores from the telecom majors, does Kanimozhi really have a “clean record”?
postscript: for eyes which were moistened by Jethmalani’s argument to miss this real gem, let the record state that poet Kanimozhi’s husband was reading Islam and Muslim History in South Asia in court.