Launches book to mark 150 year celebrations of Madras High Court

Union Law Minister Salman Khurshid on Sunday endorsed the demand for making Tamil a court language and suggested that a start be made by compulsorily featuring the gist of judgements in lower courts in the regional language.

Mr. Khurshid, who launched a book “Neethimandrangalil Tamil’ under the auspices of the law journal ‘Sattakadir’ and the Brahma Gana Sabha to mark the 150 year celebrations of the Madras High Court, said that some ground work had already been done on this front.

“I do honestly, from the bottom of my heart, acknowledge your concerns … I hope that I can be a faithful advocate for this cause,” Mr. Khurshid said.

According to the Minister, the Supreme Court’s caution of not moving too fast on the issue given the requirement of considerable case and reading materials work in preparing equivalent reading and reference materials in Tamil, “should not hold us back and out of this need we should create a new opportunity of job for young people in translation.”

A.R. Lakshmanan, former Supreme Court Judge, said the government should set up a State Law Commission and Language Department and appoint judicial officers who are proficient in English and Tamil as a precursor to making Tamil an additional language in the High Court. S.J. Mukhopadhya, Supreme Court Judge — an ardent advocate of having Tamil in the judiciary during the period he was a Judge at the Madras High Court — said the acceptance of the regional language would strengthen the common man’s faith in the court. While noting that the demand for inclusion of Tamil, as an additional language in court, was under consideration of Parliament and the President, Mr. Justice Mukhopadhya said judgements were delivered in regional languages by various High Courts and translated into English when the matter was heard at the apex court.

The Judge also presented ‘Satta Tamil Mani’ awards to lawyers for distinguished legal services in the field of writing law books in Tamil.

S.S. Palanimanickam, Union Minister of State for Finance, called for the concerted cooperation of the Bar Council and the Bar Association for realising the demand for inclusion of Tamil as a court language.

Nalini Chidambaram, advocate, Madras High Court, said the inclusion of Tamil in the lower courts would help lawyers rise to heights and do justice to their talents.

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