This issue was initiated by a group of Advocates from Madurai, who are supposed to have gheraoed the court of the Chief Justice of the Madras High court. The demand being that Thamizh be made one of the court languages of the High Court.
The Hon’ble Chief Justice is reported to have been annoyed by the behaviour of the advocates. The Tamilnadu Bar Council turns a blind eye, but the Bar Council of India swings into action and suspends the licence of ten of those gheraoing advocates.
The twist to all this comes from the former Justice of the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India Mr. Markandey Katju, who is supposed to have written to the Chief Minister of Tamilnadu thus:
“THE BALL IS NOW IN YOUR COURT. EITHER GIVE ADVICE TO THE GOVERNOR AND SPEAK TO THE PRESIDENT UNDER ARTICLE 348(2) AND SECTION 7 OF THE OFFICIAL LANGUAGES ACT AS SUGGESTED IMMEDIATELY OR QUIT AS CHIEF MINISTER.”
The ex Justice goes on to justify the proposal on the grounds that since Hindi is permitted in the High Courts of Allahabad, Patna, Madhya Pradesh, and Rajasthan, Thamizh OUGHT TO BE ALLOWED IN TAMILNADU.
What is interesting is that the support for the lawyers in TAMILNADU has come from a strange quarters!
To the best understanding of this blogger, the decisions of any High Court would be binding only within the jurisdiction of that High Court, but there is something called as the PERSUASIVE VALUE, of the judgements pronounced by other High Courts.
If the language of Tamil is used, which is more complex than English, there is every possibility that the translation into English may not be precise, as it is the judgements are being interpreted to suit each of the litigants’ convenience, leading to delays and Babel like situation. More so when old citations are going to be presented in Thamizh to the High Courts!
I wonder why these votaries of any language should push for such agenda when the proposal is more likely to lead to confusion than clarity. Further, how would the CJ of Madras High Court be able to conduct the proceedings when he is necessarily to be from another State, which doesn’t support Thamizh? May be there could be an argument that when Thamizh CJs are posted to Allahabad or Patna or MP or Rajasthan, why not have the same disability be imposed on CJs of TN? Good argument!
In the Justice’ letter, what I fail to understand is that QUIT AS CHIEF MINISTER! As if the people of TAMILNADU voted her to the office based on this as a part of her election manifesto.
As regards EQUALITY, there seems to be a point, but when the Official Languages Act had dignified Hindi, how can Thamizh be raised to that level without making a STRUCTURAL CHANGE to the said Act?
If in the name of the aam aadmi Hindi has been a concession, no doubt similar concessions could be asked on the grounds of Equality!
But that the issue has been raised by a person who is in no way connected to Thamizh, except as a person having occupied the highest court of India, shows the dawn of true NATIONALISM SURPASSING ALL BARRIERS!
Welcome Liberal India!