National / World

Cabinet ministers should 'speak up' like SC judges: Yashwant Sinha

New Delhi, Jan 13 (PTI): Firing a fresh salvo at the government, disgruntled BJP leader Yashwant Sinha today asked his party colleagues and ministers to "get rid of their fear" and "speak up for democracy" like the four Supreme Court judges who came out publicly against the chief justice.

The former Union minister referred to the comments of the four judges to claim that the prevailing atmosphere was like the Emergency in 1975-77 and voiced concern over short parliamentary sessions.

If Parliament is compromised, the Supreme Court is not in order, then democracy is threatened, he told reporters.

Sinha said, "if four senior-most Supreme Court judges say democracy is under threat, we have to take their words very seriously".

"Every citizen who feels for democracy should speak up. I will ask party (BJP) leaders and senior cabinet ministers to speak up. I will appeal to them to get rid of their fears and speak up," he said.

Sinha, however, insisted that it was for the apex court to sort out the crisis after the four senior judges virtually revolted against the country's chief justice yesterday, raising questions on "selective" case allocation and certain judicial orders.

Like the Chief Justice of India in the Supreme Court, the prime minister is also first among equals in the government and his cabinet colleagues should speak up, he said.

Sinha, who has been a vocal critic of the Modi government over issues like demonetisation, GST and Kashmir, claimed that he was "personally aware of the fear in which members of the cabinet in this government are working, and that also is a threat to democracy".

The BJP has in the past attributed Sinha's scathing criticism of the government to his being sidelined in the party with Finance Minister Arun Jaitley once dubbing him as a "job applicant at 80".

Sinha was a cabinet minister in the first BJP-led NDA government and held finance and foreign affairs portfolios.

In his press conference, Sinha also rejected suggestions that politicians should not wade into the judicial crisis, saying when four senior-most SC judges have gone public, it was no longer an internal matter of the court and it was imperative for every concerned citizen to raise his voice.

Political parties and Parliament should speak when four senior-most judges had spoken about dangers to democracy, he said.

Referring to the Winter Session and the first leg of the Budget Session to be held between January 29-February 9, Sinha said he had never heard of such short sessions and this was also a threat to democracy.

Citing the four judges comments that sensitive cases were assigned by the Chief Justice of India to particular benches, he said it must be clarified which were these cases.

He added that it was anyway "clear like sunlight" that which cases were being talked about.

"It is obvious that attempts have been made to manage some sensitive cases," he alleged, adding "corrective actions must be taken. People should be told which are these cases".

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Comment on this article

  • Gabriel, sagar

    Sun, Jan 14 2018

    Learning to speak child is encouraged to speak. After that the growing child gets the admonition shut up, shut up and shut up till the last breath. Cabinet Ministers are not exception to this is rule.

    DisAgree Agree [2] Reply Report Abuse

  • Rajesh, Mulki

    Sat, Jan 13 2018

    No one will dare to speak against government. They will be branded anti national..

    DisAgree [3] Agree [15] Reply Report Abuse

  • mahesh, Mangalore

    Sat, Jan 13 2018

    Nobody listens to you anymore.
    No point in shouting.
    Talk to pappu and see whether he can accomodate you.

    DisAgree [20] Agree [6] Reply Report Abuse

  • Rathan, Mangalore

    Sat, Jan 13 2018

    This gentleman forgets the basic complaint of 4judges .it is very clear that these so called learned judges once say all judges are equal and there is no difference between them and CJI and in next sentence they complain they being senior judges
    are not given some important cases and are given to juniors.see the contradiction
    They only say they all r equal and at the same time they r neglected in alloting cases
    and juniors r alloted cases.if all r equal where this question if junior and senior arises?it looks these 4 fools r dancing to the tune of somebody else

    DisAgree [24] Agree [3] Reply Report Abuse

  • ca girishkk, m'lore/dxb

    Sat, Jan 13 2018

    In short.., the Hindu's of Hindustan must realize what it make the obvious difference if it is in the safe & wisdom full hands of educated class..,

    However, to add to the list, the biggest threat to democracy is the EVM...!!!!!

    DisAgree [9] Agree [27] Reply Report Abuse

  • Michael, Mangalore/US

    Sat, Jan 13 2018

    Too late to do anything Mr. Sinha. Your advice is not taken on board even by your son. Too late to join another party also. We will see same place same time with some other statement. Until then goodbye.

    DisAgree [21] Agree [7] Reply Report Abuse

  • HENRY MiSQUITH, Bahrain

    Sat, Jan 13 2018

    Mr. Yashwant Sinha wants to teach Modi a lesson and expose BJPee

    DisAgree [7] Agree [40] Reply Report Abuse

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