Image Of This Nation Has Taken Enough Beating, Ensure That There Is No Suppression Of Dissent, Discussion Or Debate: Bombay HC [Read Order]
“If democracy has be preserved and protected in this country and this part of the world, then, not only the Executive, but equally the citizens have to act accordingly.”
“Freedom of speech and expression guaranteed by the Constitution of India, coupled with the freedom of religion, both of which are subjected to reasonable restriction ensure that there is no suppression of dissent, discussion or debate. They have to be free and meaningful,” said the Bombay High Court while directing the Central Bureau of Investigation and Maharashtra CID to make sincere efforts to trace the accused in the murders of anti-superstition crusader Narendra Dabholkar and CPI member Govind Pansare.
Examining the progress reports submitted by both investigating agencies in these cases, the division bench comprising of Justice SC Dharmadhikari and Justice Bharati H Dangre said that the country’s image has taken enough beating as three or four crimes have been highlighted all over the world.
“The higher authorities ought to realise that given the nature of the crimes, their seriousness and their impact on the society as is now projected before us, it is time that the approvals are granted and incidents of this nature are curbed,” the bench added.
It also said that if democracy has to be preserved and protected in this country and this part of the world, then, not only the Executive but equally the citizens have to act accordingly.
“The world is watching how India is making efforts to implement the values and ideals enshrined in the Constitution. The prominent amongst that is the right to equality, freedom of speech and expression and right to religion, namely, to freely profess and propagate one's religion. If we claim to be one of the prominent democracies in the world, then, those in-charge of investigation of crimes and bringing the guilty to book have an important role to play,” Justice Dharmadhikari said in the order.
The bench observed that though certain steps and measures have been taken to apprehend and arrest the persons who are involved in these crimes, the investigating machinery feels inhibited on account of procedural compliances and administrative matters taking time. If files are pending with the headquarters of the CBI, then, those manning these headquarters should be apprised of the orders of this Court and the anxiety expressed therein from time to time, it added.