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Is judiciary losing its teeth in this country? The government and in many cases powerful individuals are seen ignoring court orders and observations. The latest being the case of BCCI president N Srinivasan, who is refusing to step down despite a Supreme Court order. His stubbornness in sticking to the chair has only shown the top court of the country in poor light. Are such people ungovernable and non-punishable, no matter how much wrong they have done to the country? The executive’s failure in implementing the Supreme Court order only shows how an individual’s money and power can demean even top institutions.

Similar is the case of education scam in Meghalaya. The high court recently repeated its 2012 order asking the government to take action against officers or authorities, “howsoever high they may be”. Marks in score-sheets of hundreds of candidates applying for posts of lower primary school teachers were tampered with as allegedly ordered by the then education minister Ampareen Lyngdoh. She did it to facilitate appointment of several dozen candidates recommended by a few politicians including herself. Despite the high court order and an FIR, the government has so far taken no step inquire into their involvement in the irregularities. The only achievement the government had in the case is that 246 “tainted” candidates were terminated. However, no explanation has been given as to why they are branded as “tainted”, let alone any action against the main perpetrators. Like Srinivasan, Ampareen, with blessings from chief minister Mukul Sangma, is still holding her fort, despite the court directive to take action against the guilty persons. The government has not yet initiated the process of fixing responsibility in the embarrassing case. Only action taken so far in this regard is suspension of the then education director JD Sangma, although no inquiry has been started on the FIR lodged in this regard.

Judiciary is the last resort of a common citizen facing injustice. It is very important that the faith on judiciary remains. The public should be able to see that the baton of judiciary works on the wrongdoers. If the high and mighty continue to ignore the judiciary, the common people will lose all hope, which they are losing every day. Action against the wrongdoers, who are powerful and rich, will go a long way in instilling confidence among good citizens of the country. Failure to do so will only strengthen the common perception – there is no use of being a good citizen.

(Published as editorial in The Meghalaya Guardian on March 28, 2014)

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