Left Menu
Development News Edition

It bothers me, when I see judges feeling harassed: CJI designate on social media criticism


It bothers me, when I see judges feeling harassed: CJI designate on social media criticism
CJI designate SA Bobde. Image Credit: ANI

Taking a grim view of unrestrained criticism of judges on social media for some of their judicial actions, Chief Justice of India designate Justice Sharad Arvind Bobde says it bothers him when he sees judges feeling "harassed" and finds the attack difficult to ignore. Justice Bobde, who will assume charge as the 47th Chief Justice of India on November 18, also said the unrestricted criticism was not only scandalizing but also tearing apart judges' reputation.

Criticism of judges instead of their judgments including on social media is actually an offense of 'defamation', Bobde, 63, said during a wide-ranging interview with PTI. Asked whether criticism of judges bothers him, Justice Bobde said, "To an extent. Yes. It bothers me. That it might affect the performance of courts and I see judges who feel harassed. To that extent it bothers me. Nobody likes it. Everybody is not thick-skinned enough to ignore. Judges are also normal human beings."

He, however, said that at the moment, the apex court cannot do anything to address the uncontrolled criticism on social media platforms. "What can we do. We cannot do anything to this kind of media as of now. We don't know what steps to take. They are not only scandalizing but tearing apart people's reputation and judges' reputation", he said and sarcastically added, "On top of that, there is a grievance that there is no freedom of speech".

"Criticising the judge and not judgment is defamation", said Justice Bobde, who will have a tenure of about 18 months. Justice Bobde said the highest priority of any judicial system has to be the dispensation of timely justice as it can neither be "unduly delayed" nor "unduly hurried".

An undue delay in justice delivery could result in an increase in crime and it could also result in erosion of the rule of law, he said. Justice Bobde said the government is "very alive" to the needs of the judiciary like lack of infrastructure and that the Centre, as well as the state governments, are making adequate provisions for this.

He said it is high time the judiciary resorts to modern functioning, including artificial intelligence for dispensation of justice, as it would aid judges in delivering speedy justice. "The highest priority of any judicial system has to be justice and at no cost it can be sacrificed for anything else because that is the reason for the existence of courts and if that is sacrificed, rest does not matter, only goal is justice. In that process, you have to ensure that it is delivered in reasonable time," Justice Bobde said.

"We cannot have instant justice. Instant justice has very bad connotation in this world. So justice cannot be unduly delayed and it cannot be unduly hurried. It must come in due time. Because we have seen that undue delay in delivery of justice can result in an increase in crime," he said. Giving illustrations, he said there can be extortion if money suits are not decreed, muscle power can be used to evict people and "that is not desirable."

"In other words, it can result in erosion of the rule of law. So we have to do our best to ensure that timely justice is delivered. Obviously, for this, sufficient and adequate infrastructure is necessary," he said. Asked whether there is a move by the Supreme Court to have a permanent five-judge Constitution bench to deal with questions of vital importance, he said incumbent CJI Ranjan Gogoi has some thoughts on this.

"Let's see how I will look into it. You can say that the Supreme Court is likely to have a permanent bench," he said. About the lack of infrastructure in the judiciary, Justice Bobde said, "I think the government is very alive to the need and the Central government as well as the state governments are making adequate provisions for infrastructure."

"In the course of functioning, it is high time that we resort to modern functioning including artificial intelligence for dispensation, not to substitute a judge, not to substitute a judge's discretion but to aid a judge in speedy and accurate justice," he said. On the issue of huge vacancies of judges in courts across the country, Justice Bobde said he would take to the "logical end" the steps taken by the incumbent CJI in this regard.

Justice Gogoi has taken note of vacancies and lack of infrastructure in courts and monitoring them by issuing directions to all the states and respective high courts to do the needful within a fixed time line. Asked how he unwinds after the marathon and surcharged hearings in cases like Ayodhya where tempers run high among lawyers, Justice Bobde gave a cryptic response, saying, "I forget it the moment I get up from the seat. I simply forget it".

He is part of the 5-judge Constitution bench that is expected to give its keenly awaited Ayodhya verdict in the next few days.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


TRENDING

OPINION/BLOG/INTERVIEW

JNU Administration's 100-meter challenge before JNUSU

For the first time in its history, Jawaharlal Nehru University JNU Administration is seeking permanent deployment of local police to keep protesting students at 100 meters away from the Administrative Block. It would be interesting to see h...

Sentiment Analysis of Twitter users during COP25: Governments losing trust on Climate Action

Sentiment analysis of Twitter users during COP25 in Madrid, being held from December 2-13, shows widespread fear on climate change due to global warming but almost no trust on governments in meeting the emission targets. In the analysis the...

These innovators are making humanitarian response more efficient

These alarming trends prompt a call for the world to not only address the ongoing crisis but also to adopt innovative approaches to fulfill the growing humanitarian needs in such emergencies. ...

Hyderabad Encounter: A sentiment analysis of public mood on day of encounter

Sentiment analysis of twitter users revealed that they showered salutes on Hyderabad police for eliminating alleged gang rapists of the veterinary doctor but only a few believe in cops version of successive events leading to encounter....

Videos

Latest News

Anant National University Leads Dialogue on Industrial Symbiosis in India

AHMEDABAD, India, Dec. 16, 2019 PRNewswire -- The Centre for Sustainability at Anant National University is working to solve the alarming mismanagement of industrial solid waste disposal in industrial estates in India which has led to nume...

Asked time from Amit Shah to discuss deteriorating law and order situation in Delhi: Kejriwal

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Monday said he has sought time from Union Home Minister Amit Shah to discuss the deteriorating law and order situation in the national capital.I am very worried about the deteriorating law and order i...

Myanmar has 'softened' stance following ICJ hearing, says Bangladesh Foreign Minister

Following the United Nations International Court of Justice ICJ hearing, Myanmar has softened its stance on the matter pertaining to Rohingya Muslims said Bangladesh Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen. They have softened their stance. They hav...

WB: Several trains cancelled in Katihar division following public agitation against CAA

Due to public agitation following the implementation of the Citizenship Amendment Act, 2019, CAA several trains in the Katihar division of Northeast Frontier Railway will remain cancelled on Monday. The Chief Public Relations Officer, Easte...

Give Feedback