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‘The CJI told me in Court, you can tear it if you want, I proceeded to tear it’

Rajeev Dhavan (Image source: IndiaTV)
Rajeev Dhavan (Image source: IndiaTV)

A clarification by Justice Markandey Katju

Recently the Senior Supreme Court lawyer,, Dr Rajeev Dhavan, whom I had praised in my article ‘Rajeev Dhavan, the Atticus Finch of our times ‘ ( published in the wire.in ) was criticised by some people for tearing some paper in the Courtroom in the Supreme Court when the Babri Masjid-Ram Janmabhumi case was being heard. Some even suggested in the social media that contempt of court proceedings be taken against him.
I have known Dr. Dhavan for a long time ( we were classmates in Boys High School, Allahabad and again in the University of Allahabad ) and I know he would be having a good reason for doing so. So I sent him an email from California ( where I am presently staying ) asking him his version of the incident which I would like to put in the public domain. This I thought necessary since our mostly biased media often paints Dr. Dhavan in dark colours since, like Atticus Finch in Harper Lee’s famous novel ‘ To kill a mocking bird ‘ and like the legendary American lawyer Clarence Darrow ( see his biography ‘ Attorney for the Damned ), he often defends Muslims and other underdogs in our society.



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Here is Dr. Dhavan’s reply:

“Vikas Singh was trying to introduce new evidence on the 40th day. I protested and told the Court I am deleting it from the bunch of papers. The Chief Justice of India said to me in Court, you can tear it if you want, I proceeded to tear it. Since the matter had gone viral without mention of the CJI permitting or even encouraging me to tear it, I asked the Court in the second afternoon session, if the CJI could clarify what happened. He reiterated that he told me that he had given permission to me to tear the paper and added his surmise that this clarification would also go viral.”

(The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of The Rational Daily.)

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Markandey Katju

Written by Markandey Katju

Justice Markandey Katju is the former Chairman, Press Council of India. Prior to his appointment as Chairman, Press Council of India, he served as a Permanent judge at the Supreme Court of India.

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Justice Markandey Katju (Image Credit: HindustanTimes)

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