This Blog is written by Dr Sulakshana Banerjee Mukherjee (Assistant Professor of Law, Sushant University PhD, LL.M(Gold Medalist), LL.B(Gold Medalist)
An independent judiciary free from any compressions, enticements, baits or terrorizations is the cornerstone of any Constitutional democracy. It is a vigorous part of the basic structure of our Indian Constitution. The majority of the member States of the comity of nations today are originated on the principle of “Welfare State”, run with full involvement of their respective populaces, endeavouring to attain the common good and in the process affording ideal opportunity and engrossment for progression of the individual so as to subserve the societal interests. This has led to the evolution of “Good Governance”, as opposed to mere governance. Judges are assigned with an arduous job that justice is done and it must also seem that justice is done. To maintain judicial veracity absence of prejudices and biases must be scrubbed. As boldness is the hallmark of a good judge. Judges are supposed to reach a conclusion fairly and impartially. Any wrong influence on the judiciary will directly create hindrances in the smooth functioning of the administration of justice. As stated by Judge David William McKeauge of The United States Court of Appeals “Justice must be dispensed with neither fear nor favour. When Judges are fearful, it impedes their ability to do their jobs.”
As judges are bound by law to dispose of justice carefully and diligently so confidence along with courage is very much required to be taken care of. Judges are protected from any sort of proceedings whether it is civil or criminal as the protection is very much guaranteed under The Judges (Protection) Act, 1985 and also to add under section 77 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 which protects the judges while acting judicially or in good faith. Judges face lots of protection threats both within and beyond their courtrooms. But it is their major task to preserve and maintain justice while dealing with all sorts of indifferences and disruptive issues.
Recently, the murder of an Additional District Judge from Jharkhand, Uttam Anand depicts the vulnerability of judicial officers. The CCTV footage shows the judge who went jogging at 5.00 a.m just a little bit away from the judicial quarters a sudden Auto came and hit the judge from behind. At such early hours of the day when the roads are almost free from traffic, suddenly the appearance of an auto is quite absurd. It simply portrays that it was pre-planned and well executed according to it. Reports say that the Judge was looking after some high profile cases and had rejected bail petitions of two notorious mobsters. This incident also reminds us of the murder of the judicial officer’s wife and his teenage son in Gurugram by their personal security officer (PSO) in a crowded market in Gurugram in October 2018.
These types of incidents are very disgraceful and demoralizing as these occurrences simply reveal that “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere” as it’s the noblest task of the judiciary to interconnect law and justice.