Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot objected to how Supreme Court judges were targeted for their comments in the Nupur Sharma case.
Mumbai: Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot on Saturday fired at the Central government, at the inaugural ceremony of the 18th All India Legal Services Authorities’ Meet in Rajasthan’s Jaipur. Chief Justice, NV Ramana, Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju, and other senior judges of the Supreme Court and the Rajasthan High Court were in the presence for this event. Gehlot highlighted the recent episodes of criticism that Supreme Court judges Justices Surya Kant, JB Pardiwala had to face for their remarks on former BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma.
Referring to a public letter by ex-judges, former administrators and retired officers of the armed forces criticising the Supreme Court’s comments against Nupur Sharma, the since-suspended BJP leader whose remarks on Prophet Mohammed led to protests and a diplomatic row, Mr. Gehlot said “116 people were made to stand up (against the two judges)”.
Gehlot also highlighted how post-retirement concerns were also affecting the functioning of judges. In this regard, he highlighted the Rajya Sabha membership of former Chief Justice of India, Ranjan Gogoi. “Imagine, four Supreme Court judges said ‘democracy is in danger’, and the ones who said all this even had a CJI among them, (retired) Justice Ranjan Gogoi. I had asked the President of India ‘was Mr. Gogoi fine before (during Supreme Court tenure) or is he fine now?’ This is beyond my understanding. Then he became a Member of Parliament,” Gehlot stated.
He then trampled upon Prime Minister Narendra Modi saying that he should address the nation to end “the atmosphere of violence and tension” in the nation. “A democracy is based on tolerance. People listen to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and that is why people vote for him. Shouldn’t the Prime Minister address the nation and say that unity and brotherhood have to be maintained? He has to say that I will not accept violence at any cost. I believe the Law Minister can convince him. He does not listen to us. Today the situation is such that it’s creating a lot of tension,” he said.
He further said that the ‘Tamasha’ that is going on in the country doesn’t indicate any sort of democracy in the nation. If elected governments are overthrown due to horse trading then he doesn’t know how my government would be saved. “I would not be standing before you today. You would have met some other Chief Minister today. It was a touch-and-go situation,” he added.
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