The Bar Council of India, in a press statement, has criticised and sought the withdrawal of a tweet by senior advocate Indira Jaising. Indira, in a tweet dated 23rd March had accused Supreme Court justices of diluting the SC/ST Act and favouring Brahmins. She had also insinuated that the Supreme Court had no justices belonging to the SC/ST communities.
In a press statement dated 3rd April, BCI Chairman Manan Kumar Mishra condemned the tweet and stated that he urges her to delete the tweet against the Honourable Justices.
The BCI Chairman termed the derogatory remarks as ‘unexpected and extremely painful’ coming from learned members of the bar. He insisted that the sanctity of the judicial institutions and judges should be protected at all costs. He had added that the honourable judges be given the privilege of making orders and judgements without the fear or stigma of it being mocked in such a way.
The letter went ahead to state that some advocates are repeatedly indulging in mocking and denigrating the Supreme Court with a vested interest or to gain cheap popularity. It urges the members of the Bar Council to realise the extent of damage being done by issuing reckless statements accusing Supreme Court justices of caste-bias.
Manan Mishra added in the letter that he knows Indira Jaising personally and being a seasoned and learned advocate, she should withdraw her statements and advised that the members of the bar should not attempt to politicise the institution of judiciary.
Indira Jaising tweeted in her defence that she had pointed to the social background of the judges and not attributed motives or questioned their integrity. She has not deleted the March 23 tweet yet.
I’ve neither attributed motives nor questioned the integrity of the judges. I have pointed to their social background. i appeal to the Chairman BCI to request the Supreme Court to appoint SC /ST judges & more women. “Nothing about us without us” is the guarantee of equality .
— indira jaising (@IJaising) April 3, 2018
Indira Jaising’s tweet was with regard to the Supreme Court order on 20th March that ensured safeguards to be placed to prevent misuse of the SC/ST Act. It called for a preliminary enquiry and approval of concerned authority before arresting a government official under the act. It also made provisions for a person to apply for bail. Several Dalit organisations had called for a Bharat Bandh against the order that saw many incidents of violence and vandalism across the country.
Supreme Court Justices AK Goel and UU Lalit had ruled on a case regarding the SC/ST Act and stated that the court order is to protect the rights of innocents and prevent rampant misuse of the act.