Nemo judex causa sua, Audi alteram partem

The epitome of the union government’s backdoor efforts to strip Telangana of its constitutional rights lies in these lines of the shameful circular.

It reads, “Provided that if any question arises whether any matter is or is not a matter as respects which the Governor is under this sub-section required to act in the exercise of his individual judgement, the decision of the Governor in his discretion shall be final, and the validity of anything done by the Governor shall not be called in question on the ground that he ought or ought not to have acted in the exercise of his individual judgement”

Principles of natural justice

Now, that means the Governor will sit a judge on a case to decide if he is eligible to take up that case at all or not. Add to that you cannot question the decision taken anywhere. That means the Telangana government, for that matter, Andhra Pradesh government too cannot question the omissions and commissions of the Governor. That flies in the face of what is known as ‘natural justice’ in Indian context.

The two basic maxims of natural justice are nemo judex causa sua and Audi alteram partem. The former means, in Latin, that no one should be a judge in his own cause. It implies that no person can judge a case in which they have an interest. And the latter means “hear the other side too”, or “hear the alternative party too.” It implies that no person should be judged without a fair hearing and each party is given the opportunity to respond to the evidence against them.

It is no ‘Arthashastra’ to understand that the above rules of natural law were circumvented in case of the communication in question. Looks like the Modi government is only too willing to grant the insatiable wishes of their ‘Babus’ from Seemandhra! Heard of ‘Bhasmasura’ story?

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