Thursday, June 24, 2021
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Judicial reforms need of the hour

The Supreme Court has paved the way for thoughtful jurisprudence in the age of the Internet. The entire issue was about sharing something objectionable online and that section has been quashed by the apex court. Successive governments have tried to control expression on the Internet because the medium connects a large universe with a wide variety of views. The Supreme Court has placed Freedom of Speech and Expression in India as being even wider than Freedom of Speech enjoyed under the Constitution of the United States. Many provision of Indian law contains the ambiguity and vagueness that Section 66A had. Many legal provisions adversely impacts and tramples upon the rights of citizens. Most challenges to such laws come up against the hurdle of collective conscience of society. In the destiny of law, there is a time and place when circumstances converge to give shape to history.

The decision to scrape section 66A is one such momentous event in India’s constitutional history. And there is no doubt about it. It was a personal victory for the 24 year old petitioner Shreya Singhal to get the verdict in favour of millions of people using the social network through Internet in India. The judgement has brought relief to Shreya. But how far we implement these laws and take advantage of the strictures of these laws? We are really bemused at the way that our outdated laws still criminalises homosexuality and marital rape remains non-punishable. The criminals committing crimes like rape and murder must be tried expeditiously and punishment commensurate with severity of crime to be awarded and execution implemented.
It is time to appoint fast track courts and finish of the trial early and the punishment served expeditiously. Act of homosexuality is made legal and done in a whimsical way then it will not accepted by the public and that will bring disrepute to the society as well. However, sexuality is a human condition and should not be regarded as a depravity. Our law enforcing method should be stricter to pin the culprits to books at the earliest rather than dragging the matter for an unduly longer period. Let us continue to safeguard the interest of women in this country with a purpose. We must not give an opportunity to foreign media to malign our country’s image by reporting incidents pertaining to rising rapes. There is need for more reforms in the laws to provide speedy and quality justice accessible to the ordinary citizens.

C.K Subramaniam

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