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Citizens Can Criticize Judgments, But Can't Obstruct Its Enforcement: Kerala HC Grants Bail To BJP Candidate In Sabarimala Violence Case[Read Order]

Ashok Kini
12 April 2019 3:23 PM GMT
Citizens Can Criticize Judgments, But Can

"Trends of this nature cause great concern to all those who have the welfare of the country in mind."

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The Kerala High Court has observed that though the citizens are entitled to criticize judgments, they should not take law into their own hands to obstruct the court orders and directions.

While granting bail to a BJP candidate to upcoming Lok Sabha elections who is accused in a criminal case related to obstructing women who tried to enter Sabarimala, Justice Alexander Thomas observed:

"Certainly citizenry and civil society and those who are concerned with the polity, are certainly entitled to make their critiques of any judgments that may be passed by the court of law, including the Constitutional courts. However, the action of the taking law into one's own hand so as to obstruct the enforcement of the specific directions and orders of the court of law, more so particularly that of the Apex Court, cannot be countenanced and trends of this nature cause great concern to all those who have the welfare of the country in mind."

Prakash Babu, who is contesting on BJP ticket from Kozhikode constituency in Kerala, is accused of being a member of unlawful assembly which caused violence in Sabarimala. Prakash is also a lawyer who is practicing in Kozhikode Bar.

Taking note of the fact that the co-accused in this case have been granted bail, the court ordered that he shall be released on bail on his executing bond for Rupees Two Lakh. Justice Alexander Thomas further said:

"Before parting with this case, this Court would refer to the observations made by my erudite and noble brother, V.Raja Vijayaraghavan,J., in the order dated 7.12.2018 in B.A.No. 8252/2018 filed by accused No.13 that it is rather unfortunate that the respondent individuals, such as the applicant therein, who holds high position in major political parties, resort to unconstitutional practices to achieve their political objectives."

The Judge also quoted from a speech made by the Chief Justice of India.

"This Court is reminded of the words of caution made by the Hon'ble Chief Justice of India, Sri.Justice Ranjan Gogoi in his Lordship's recent speech rendered on 26th November, 2018 in celebration of the anniversary of the adoption of the Constitution of India, when it was observed that "the adoption of the Constitution is inextricably entwined" in our lives and it is in our best interest to pay attention to its advice and "if we do not, our hubris will result in sharp descent into chaos"."

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