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Updated: April 11, 2014 12:54 IST

All in a lighter vein

Mohamed Imranullah S.
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Justice V. Ramasubramanian. Photo: R. Ashok
The Hindu Justice V. Ramasubramanian. Photo: R. Ashok

Justice V. Ramasubramanian uses humour as a tool to break tension in the Madurai court hall

It may be hard to believe that a High Court Judge can also be a humourist because many perceive it to be a contradiction. But Madras High Court Bench lawyers appearing regularly before a Division Bench presided by Justice V. Ramasubramanian have a different take on it.

Ever since the judge was posted at the Bench here in March, the advocates have been flabbergasted by the way he uses humour as a tool to break tension in the court hall.

On Tuesday, the Bench heard a review petition filed by a group of 12 flower merchants against Madurai Agricultural Marketing Committee’s decision to construct a few buildings at a site originally earmarked for dumping garbage inside the paddy-cum-flower market complex near Mattuthavani bus stand here.

Additional Advocate General (AAG) K. Chellapandian was arguing the case vociferously in favour of the marketing committee, when the judge wanted to know the stand of the Madurai Municipal Corporation. The Corporation counsel stood up and said: “My Lord, we are only bothered about collection.”

Reacting to it, the judge, in a lighter vein, asked: “Collection? Collection of what?” Hearing the witty remark, lawyers and litigants in the court hall burst into laughter. Immediately, the counsel, who was also all smiles, stressed: “I mean garbage collection, My Lord. Nothing else.”

As the arguments proceeded further, the AAG produced photographs to show that the construction, under challenge in the present review petition, had already been completed and, therefore, the case had become infructuous.

To this, the judge said: “So, the marriage is already over and the conception has also taken place. What we are expected to deliver now is the problem.” Later, he reserved the judgement in the case.

Dealing with another case in which the court had to decide if the deity of a temple in Kanyakumari district should be given a bath in Kamuganoor river or in the temple tank itself, the judge said there would have been a natural solution to the problem if the river and the tank had dried up like a majority of waterbodies in the State.

“Fortunately, there appears to be still water in the temple tank as well as the river. Therefore, the dispute also continues to flow,” he remarked.

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