Eating is an agricultural act - Wendell Berry

Wednesday, March 14, 2007


this was the highlight reel of yesterday. an exchange between the acting chief justice patel and a lawyer.

lawyer - your honour, this is a PIL against the inhumane treatment of undertrials by the arthur road jail authorities. these undertrials are given breakfast at 7 and lunch at 930. then the whole day, they are in court. they reach back in jail at 6 by which time, dinner is over.

cj - so what is the matter?

l - the undertrials have to remain without food through the day. and this is inhumane.

cj - have you been to an orphanage?

l - duh!!

cj - last week, we had a case where we learnt that this orphanage feeds the kids only twice a day and that too very bad quality food.

l - what is going on here !?

cj - the lawyer for the orphanage said that even his own son eats only once a day. i told him that that may be his choice, but orphans need much more care and more nutrition. have you been to an orphanage?

l - no your honour.

cj - you guys (pause), national civil liberty union, no. why don't you visit orphanages and see the state there for yourself. we are here to take care of the prisoners, you guys take care of the children.

l - your honour, but please pass an emergency ruling to ensure that these undertrials are given proper treatment.

cj - there are a host of other litigations against overall jail management and yours could be joined along with the others. please visit an orphanage soon.

l - ?!?!

i was bowled over by his sarcasm and causticity at the lawyer and their priorities. totally hilarious.

p.s. - my case has been pushed further to friday. hopefully by then...


Vanessa said...

Disgusting conversation that. Are you serious?

csm said...

i am serious.
why is it disgusting?

he was just questioning their priorities. and sarcasm is an excellent tool. i use it all the time. not endearing, but efective.

Vanessa said...

I found it disgusting. esp. Few things like - "My son eats only once a day." Lawyers argue like that? God. I would have boiled over.
Its simply unimaginable that such an issue reaches the court. Food is such a basic thing. All this argument in court about how much should a prisoner be fed and the comparison with orphans is just intolerable.
As for sarcasm, it is effective in the short run. Ends up deteriorating the relationship, does more harm than good in a long run. Thats my take on it.

csm said...

you will be surprised at what all reaches the court.
and what some lawyers say sometimes to bolster their cases are atrocious.
so dont ever try to attend court as you are likely to throw something heavy at the lawyers and/or judges and then held for contempt of court.

Vanessa said...

Thanks :-) I'll stay away.