Former Union Law Minister and senior advocate Shanti Bhushan has criticised the Narendra Modi government for dropping senior advocate Gopal Subramanium’s name for the post of a Supreme Court judge on flimsy grounds.
In a statement, he said, “The letter of Mr. Gopal Subramanium to the Chief Justice of India R.M. Lodha withdrawing his consent for appointment as a judge of the Supreme Court has created quite a furore in the country. People are getting reminded of 1973 when Indira Gandhi directed Mohan Kumaramangalam to take steps to have a committed judiciary. It is quite clear that the CBI and the IB have been induced to do a hatchet job for the BJP, which was angry with Gopal Subramanium as an amicus curiae appointed by the Supreme Court for taking a tough stand in the Sohrabuddin, Kauser Bi and Tulsiram Prajapati fake encounter cases, in which Mr. Amit Shah has been chargesheeted.”
Mr. Bhushan said the BJP had insisted that the CBI was a tool of the Congress government. “We had seen this repeatedly in the corruption cases against Ms. Mayawati and Mr. Mulayam Singh. The CBI and the IB have raised two questions about the suitability of Mr. Subramanium,” he said.
Mr. Bhushan said the f >irst reason given by the government for opposing Mr. Subramanium’s appointment was ridiculous. “The government says that a conversation between Nira Radia and some third person shows Mr. Subramanium in poor light. On the contrary, the conversation between Ms. Radia and industrialist Ratan Tata, where his name is mentioned, shows him in a very favourable light, since Ms. Radia says, ‘I am not sure that he (Mr. Subramanium) will agree to what they say. He is an upright person. I think Raja will be trying to get the AG (Vahanvati).’”
Mr. Bhushan added, “So far as the other reason given by the government is concerned, that is meeting the lawyer of Mr. Raja in his chamber, I do not think that there is anything unprofessional in such a meeting in the presence of CBI officers. An allegation of this type is absurd.”