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CURRENT ARTICLES OF V. SUNDARAM (JANUARY 2010 ONWARDS)

Monday, March 29, 2010

HOT AND COLD VERDICT BEFORE AND WITHOUT TRIAL - I

V.SUNDARAM


HON'BLE JUSTICE FELIX FRANKFURTER (1882-1965)


I have derived my inspiration for writing this article from the following observations of Hon’ble Justice Felix Frankfurter (1882-1965) one of the greatest of American Judges and makers of American Law: “A colleague of mine at the Harvard Law School with whom I got into a tangle about some question of Law once chided me, indeed, closed a contentious argument between us by saying, ’You Take Law awfully seriously’. I said, ‘That is one accusation against which I plead guilty without any reservation’. I am bound to say hardly another member of the Harvard Law School would have thought of making such an accusation. I do take law very seriously, deeply seriously, because fragile as REASON is and limited as LAW is as the expression of the institutionalized medium of REASON, that is all we have standing between us and the TYRANNY OF MERE WILL AND THE CRUELTY OF UNBRIDLED, UNDISCIPLINED FEELING.” (Source:Felix Frankfurter Reminisces, New York: Reynal and Company, 1960; page 189)
The charge-sheet has not yet been filed by the police in Karnataka against Swami Nityananda. God only knows how long it will take for this essential Due Process to be completed. But for the last one month or more, the PSEUDO-SECULAR MAFIA OF MASS MEDIA HAS CARRIED ON AN UNAUTHORIZED AND TOTALLY ILLEGAL CRIMINAL TRIAL against this Hindu Swamiji with venom and spite which passeth all understanding.

I am firmly of the view that Mob Law does not become Due Process of Law by securing the assent of a terrorized and ill-informed segment of society.

Due Process is not a mechanical yardstick. It does not afford mechanical answers. Hon’ble Justice Felix Frankfurter himself has stated this for all time: “There is no table of weights and measures for ascertaining what constitutes the Due Process.” [Source 346 US. 137, 149 (1953)].

Hon’ble Justice Jackson laid down this inflexible, immutable and inexorable general principle of Law: “Procedural fairness if not all that originally was meant by Due Process of Law, is at least what it most uncompromisingly requires. Procedural Due Process is more elemental and less flexible than substantive Due Process. It yields less to the times, varies less with conditions, and defers much less to legislative judgment. In so far as PROCEDURAL LAW is technical Law, it must be a specialized responsibility within the competence of the Judiciary on which they do not bend before political branches of the Government, as they should on matters of Policy which comprise SUBSTANTIVE LAW.” [Source Schaughnessy vs Mezei, 345 US. 206, 224 (1953)]  

The incontrovertible views of Hon’ble Justice Jackson cited above are totally relevant to the current ongoing irregular, illegal and ‘immoral’ (no less!!) Mob and Media (both print and electronic, apart from web media) Trial of Swami Nityananda. The media cats seem to be using the lingua franca of Adolf Hitler and Josef Stalin, to lay down the basis of not only the Procedural Due Process and Substantive Due Process for conducting their one-sided media trial of Swami Nityananda but also to give their preconceived verdict against him in the most imperious manner.

In this context I have drawn my salutary lessons from a brilliant article by Vijayan, an exemplary and fearless journalist (a nishkamya karma journalist wholly committed to the cause of Hindutva and Hinduism as I see it as well) titled “Nityananda has set the Cats among the pigeons”. I found it hilariously funny (notwithstanding whatever may be the arrogantly learned views of the Aryan and Dravidian Cats of India on the one hand and the Dravidian Channels like Sun TV on the other which revel in attacking Hinduism in general and Hindu Swamijis in particular!!) like the following poem of Lewis Carrol (1832-1898) in his Alice in Wonderland:

“In my youth”, said his father, “I took to the Law,
And argued each case with my wife,
And the muscular strength, which it gave to my jaw,
Has lasted the rest of my life” (the emphasis and the added emphasis wholly mine!!)

In this context, I am reminded of a hilarious play titled ‘Cat on a Hot Tin Roof’ by Tennessee Williams (1911-1983). This play is one of Williams's best-known works and it won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1955. I am only applying the expressive  words of Teneese Williams to the Cats in the Indian Media who are hell-bent on chasing Swami Nityananda in the same manner as Hitler chased the Jews in Nazi Germany!

Why do so many cats in our media find themselves like ‘Cats on a Hot Tin Roof’ today on the Nityanada Affair? I do not know. I do not want to make any distinction between Aryan Cats and Dravidian Cats because I am fully aware of the fact that the British Colonial Aryan Invasion Theory (AIT) has been discredited for ever!


T.S.ELLIOT (1888-1965)

In this context, I cannot help lapsing into poetic levity. I have to refer to the following poems by T.S Eliot (1888-1965). One of them is titled ‘The Naming Of Cats’ and the other ‘Macavity -The Mystery Cat’.

The Naming Of Cats
The Naming of Cats is a difficult matter,
It isn't just one of your holiday games;
You may think at first I'm as mad as a hatter
When I tell you, a cat must have THREE DIFFERENT NAMES.
First of all, there's the name that the family use daily,
Such as Peter, Augustus, Alonzo or James,
Such as Victor or Jonathan, George or Bill Bailey--
All of them sensible everyday names.
There are fancier names if you think they sound sweeter,
Some for the gentlemen, some for the dames:
Such as Plato, Admetus, Electra, Demeter--
But all of them sensible everyday names.
But I tell you, a cat needs a name that's particular,
A name that's peculiar, and more dignified,
Else how can he keep up his tail perpendicular,
Or spread out his whiskers, or cherish his pride?
Of names of this kind, I can give you a quorum,
Such as Munkustrap, Quaxo, or Coricopat,
Such as Bombalurina, or else Jellylorum-
Names that never belong to more than one cat.
But above and beyond there's still one name left over,
And that is the name that you never will guess;
The name that no human research can discover--
But THE CAT HIMSELF KNOWS, and will never confess.
When you notice a cat in profound meditation,
The reason, I tell you, is always the same:
His mind is engaged in a rapt contemplation
Of the thought, of the thought, of the thought of his name:
His ineffable effable
Effanineffable
Deep and inscrutable singular Name.


Macavity  - The Mystery Cat
Macavity's a Mystery Cat: he's called the Hidden Paw--
For he's the master criminal who can defy the Law.
He's the bafflement of Scotland Yard, the Flying Squad's despair:
For when they reach the scene of crime--Macavity's not there!

Macavity, Macavity, there's no on like Macavity,
He's broken every human law, he breaks the law of gravity.
His powers of levitation would make a fakir stare,
And when you reach the scene of crime--Macavity's not there!
You may seek him in the basement, you may look up in the air--
But I tell you once and once again, Macavity's not there!

Macavity's a ginger cat, he's very tall and thin;
You would know him if you saw him, for his eyes are sunken in.
His brow is deeply lined with thought, his head is highly doomed;
His coat is dusty from neglect, his whiskers are uncombed.

He sways his head from side to side, with movements like a snake;
And when you think he's half asleep, he's always wide awake.

Macavity, Macavity, there's no one like Macavity,
For he's a fiend in feline shape, a monster of depravity.
You may meet him in a by-street, you may see him in the square--
But when a crime's discovered, then Macavity's not there!

He's outwardly respectable. (They say he cheats at cards.)
And his footprints are not found in any file of Scotland Yard's.
And when the larder's looted, or the jewel-case is rifled,
Or when the milk is missing, or another Peke's been stifled,
Or the greenhouse glass is broken, and the trellis past repair--
Ay, there's the wonder of the thing! Macavity's not there!


And when the Foreign Office finds a Treaty's gone astray,
Or the Admiralty lose some plans and drawings by the way,
There may be a scrap of paper in the hall or on the stair--
But it's useless of investigate--Macavity's not there!
And when the loss has been disclosed, the Secret Service say:
"It must have been Macavity!"--but he's a mile away.
You'll be sure to find him resting, or a-licking of his thumbs,
Or engaged in doing complicated long division sums.


Macavity, Macavity, there's no one like Macavity,
There never was a Cat of such deceitfulness and suavity.
He always has an alibit, or one or two to spare:
And whatever time the deed took place--MACAVITY WASN'T THERE!
And they say that all the Cats whose wicked deeds are widely known
(I might mention Mungojerrie, I might mention Griddlebone)
Are nothing more than agents for the Cat who all the time
Just controls their operations: the Napoleon of Crime!

The media cats pronouncing an arrogant verdict of death without any trial against Swami Nityananda today would not hesitate to pass an equally virulent verdict against T.S Eliot for his blatant poetic lapse of using the term the Napoleon of Crime Instead of Nityananda of Crime! My alliteration is just incidental but the point I am trying to emphasize is both fundamental and elemental. Regardless of our status in life, there is a lot to be learnt by all of us from the Biblical injunction: ‘Judge not for ye shall be judged’. (Source: St Luke 6-37)

I do not know the facts of the case. I would not arrogate to myself the role of an investigating police officer or a judge trying to adjudicate the case. At any rate, unlike the media cats of India, I would not rush to give any judgment against Swami Nityananda wholly based upon the loaded or the prejudiced presentation made by the well known mafia of anti-Hindu media in India.

Comments can be free (including powerful and sacred comments by media cats!) provided the facts are treated as sacred and sacrosanct. Media cats cannot be granted dictatorial powers to ignore with supreme contempt the paramount need for even ascertaining the most elementary facts. What is even more tragic and reprehensible is that media cats are treating their unverified prejudiced and jaundiced comments relating to Swami Nityananda as sacred revelations.
I would like to present the following quotations to bring out the overriding importance of assiduous gathering of facts in a judicial case:

1:- “State the facts first and let the characterizations suggest themselves.” - Justice Brandeis



2:- “A patient pursuit of facts, and cautious combination and comparison of them, is the drudgery to which Man is subjected by his maker, if he wishes to attain sure knowledge of anything.”—Thomas Jefferson



3:- “An impartial and reliable research substitutes facts for hunches.” - Robert Kratovil



4:- “To know the Law of a Case—given industry and intelligence—is relatively simple, but to know the FACTS of a case is indeed a life sentence to hard labour.” - Justice Arthur Vanderbilt.



5:- “The Supreme Court of the United States has frequently reminded the Bar that painstaking examination of the FACT SITUATION is more important than the LAW involved. Mr. Justice Miller was one of the Court’s great judges. He said, after 25 years on the Bench, that as a result of his own experience in the Conference Room of the US Supreme Court, it surprised him how quickly Judges could agree on the LAW and how frequently they disagreed on the FACTS.” - Eugene C Gerhart



6:- “I must say that in my experience in the Conference Room of the US Supreme Court, which consists of nine Judges, I have often been surprised to find how readily these Judges come to an agreement on questions of LAW, and how often they disagree in regard to questions of FACT.” – Justice Samuel F. Miller



7:- “Discrimination so subtle is a feat beyond the compass of ordinary minds. The reverberating clang of unproven accusatory words would drown all weaker sounds.” - Justice Benjamin N. Cardozo in Shepard vs United States, 290 US. 96, 104 (1933).



I am deliberately quoting from the judgments of great judges because I do not want to arrogate to myself the transcendental legal wisdom claimed in an assertive manner as absolute hereditary rights by some of the media cats in India! Justice Oliver Wendall Holmes has reiterated several times in his judicial career spanning nearly 4 decades and more that if justice requires the fact to be ascertained, the difficulty of doing so is or can be no ground for refusing to try. The media cats seem to have ignored this injunction of Justice Holmes with unconcealed journalistic contempt bordering on contempt of law and justice.



The best protection against these catty tendencies is to cultivate an intellectual habit of subordinating one’s opinion and wishes to objective evidence and a reverence for things as they really are, and to keep constantly in mind that their hypothesis is only a supposition. Here the words of the great scientist T.E Huxley come to my mind, “My business is to teach my aspirations to conform themselves to fact, not to try to make facts harmonize with my aspirations. Sit down before fact as a little child, be prepared to give up every preconceived notion following humbly wherever nature leads, or you will learn nothing.” But our cheeky media cats want the basic facts relating to the Nityananda case to creep and crawl before them as their bonded labourers so that they can violate their fundamental humanitarian rights with arrogant impunity.



I have dealt with the vanity and overweening autocracy of the media cats towards a young Hindu Swamiji with millions of highly educated followers in all parts of the world. All of them are capable of taking their own decisions on their chosen, venerable, profound and irrepressible guru without the superincumbent guidance of the media cats. I have consistently held the view that grave injustice has been done to Swami Nityananda by the anti-Hindu mafia of mass media.



LORD DENNING (1899-1999)


Now it can be asked as to what I would define or constitute as JUSTICE. I would answer this question in the irreplaceable words of Lord Denning (1899-1999), formerly Lord Chancellor of England: “Thence I ask the question, what is Justice? That question has been asked by many men far wiser than you or me and no one has yet found a satisfactory answer. All I would suggest is that Justice is not something you can see. It is not temporal but eternal. How does man know what is justice? It is not a product of his intellect but of his spirit. The nearest we can get to defining justice is to say that it is what the right-minded members of the community – those who have the right spirit within them – believe to be fair.”



Judged by Lord Denning’s yard stick, I would repeat once again that blatant injustice has been dished out to the Hindu Swami Nityananda by the media in general and media cats in particular.The loud and dictatorial proclamation of the Media Cats is this: "Treat our personal  prejudiced opinions as sacred and sacrosant facts."