Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Too little, Too late?

A Full Bench of the Madras High Court today heard the suo motu PIL and various PIL's filed by the Madras High Court Advocates' Association, the Women lawyers' Association, and others in connection with the police violence unleashed in Madras High Court Campus on the 19th February 2009. The Bench took up the matter for hearing today morning and heard the arguments of petitioner advocates, representatives of the Bar and also the Advocate General for the State Government. At 4.30 p.m. the Bench passed interim orders directing the State Government to suspend the Additional Commissioner of Police Mr.A.K.Viswanathan, and Joint Commissioner of Police (Chennai North) Mr.J.Ramasubramani (presently DIG Coimbatore Range). The Full Bench also requested the lawyers to go back to work. It is significant to state that even according to the Home Secretary it was Viswanathan who was in charge of the police until the Commissioner arrived on the scene on 19th February 2009. Any self respecting government ought to have placed not only Mr.Viswanathan who was implicated by the State itself but also the DGP, and the ADGP (L& O) Mr.T.Rajendran, the Commissioner of Police Mr.K.Radhakrishnan and the intelligence officers who played a significant role in masterminding the predetermined attack, on suspension in addition to ordering their arrest. This order is undoubtedly resounding victory for the lawyers' in Tamil Nadu who have been agitating for nearly a month now. This interim order will by no means bring the curtains down on the shameful saga of police atrocities. The lawyers' struggle for justice will not yield or lie dormant until all the guilty police officers are brought to book and pay the penalty for the assault on the independence of the judiciary and the rule of law.

"We have promises to keep and miles to go before we sleep"

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