“Till when will we – the common citizen – be taken for granted? As a general citizen, I want to ask, till when will the politicians continue to fool us?” Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Tarun Yogesh posed the question to the defence counsel.
During arguments on the bail plea hearing of former Delhi law minister Jitender Singh Tomar, the prosecutor argued that Tomar despite “being a law minister” procured a fake “law degree”. Rebutting, the defence counsel said, “They have not secured a single evidence that documents are forged… It’s a flawed argument. Even a matriculation pass can be a law minister.”
It was in this context that the judge, in “his personal capacity”, said, “As a general citizen, I want to ask, till when will the politicians fool us? How can you forge a document or affidavit? Till when will they (politicians) keep fooling people?” The remarks had no reference to Tomar, though.
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The judge then expressed his “immense satisfaction” over the apex court direction to the election commission to include the NOTA provision during elections.
“The Supreme Court has done the right thing by making the provision of NOTA (None of the Above) option. As a simple voter, I get immense satisfaction by pressing this button on the EVM. I have now the right to record my choice, by rejecting those I don’t find appropriate to be voted to power,” the judge said.
However, senior advocate Ramesh Gupta said, “What is the use of NOTA? Even if 99.9 per cent vote for NOTA, then the candidate who comes second would be declared the winner. So what is the point of NOTA?”
To which, the judge replied, “This is where both of us differ. I have immense satisfaction over the discretion that I have. I think NOTA gives me that right to record my vote, but still reject the candidates who I don’t want to vote. Why do someone always have to think about the outcome?”