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Cong attacks govt for Gopal ‘revenge’

New Delhi, July 2: The Congress today accused the Modi government of “politics of revenge”, claiming its sole reason for blocking Gopal Subramanium from becoming a Supreme Court judge was his decision to be amicus curiae in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh case.

Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said: “Mr Subramanium’s sole crime was accepting appointment as amicus curiae against the Gujarat government and he wrote the report independently.

“The BJP does not tolerate disagreement with them and the man with the 56-inch chest doesn’t forget, doesn’t forgive. This is politics of revenge at its worst.”

Singhvi argued that no lawyer worth his salt could refuse to be amicus curiae and that should not be taken as the basis for future appointments.

“The law minister is not speaking directly. The government is acting through leaks, plants in the media, innuendoes, whispers and trying to spread calumny. The BJP has never made any contribution to institution-building, it has a history of making cheap attacks on constitutional authorities.”

Making a serious charge against the government, Singhvi claimed the BJP did not believe in the independence of judges and the judiciary. Its motive was clear as a BJP leader, who was now a senior minister, had written to the former Prime Minister objecting to Subramanium’s appointment as amicus curiae in the Sohrabuddin case.

He said: “All other reasons being given are false, baseless and to mislead the people. The government has shown a very narrow-minded approach. The IB has given no report on Subramanium.

“The swimming pool membership being talked about was never taken. The telephone conversation being mentioned also only showed Subramanium’s independence.”

These are the reasons being reported in a section of the media for the segregation of Subramanium’s name from the list recommended by the Supreme Court collegium.

Asked about earlier instances when names suggested by the Supreme Court collegium were disallowed, Singhvi said: “Yes, that’s not the point. We are not saying all the names should be accepted.

“The BJP is trying to digress from the topic and derail the discussion. The sole reason for segregation here is his decision to become amicus — that is unacceptable. You can’t compare apples with oranges.”

Singhvi also recalled the observations of Chief Justice of India R.M. Lodha that the segregation had happened without his consent and argued that Lodha was “moderate because of the constraints of the post he holds”.