Why “Activism” Remains A Double-Edged Sword

Prameyanews English

Published By : Prameya News Bureau | November 28, 2023 IST

Activism

Sutanu Guru

The author had written about the Hindenburg Report on the Adani group and its promoter Gautam Adani in January 2023 in this column. The report by Hindenburg —a self-admitted US based “research” outfit that makes money by short selling (betting that the stock prices of a company will go down)-accused the Adani group of various misdemeanours. The report generated a lot of controversy in India and the share prices of Adani group companies crashed. “Experts” reckoned the Adani empire will come crashing down because of the serious nature of the alleged violations of law. I had written back then that the whole thing was being overhyped by vested interests and the issue will settle down in due course of time. A PIL was filed in the Supreme Court which ordered the SEBI to investigate and file a report. In fact, multiple PILs wee filed including one by a law student who was represented in the top court by lawyer cum “activist” Prashant Bhushan.

On November 24 2023 the Chief Justice of India literally chastised Prashant Bhushan for taking his activism too far. Some sordid “activism” facts were even led during the hearings. It seems when authorities contacted Hindenburg for more details on the allegations during the enquiry, they were informed by the outfit to contact an India based organisation because the US outfit had taken some details from there. That India based NGO turned out to either headed or intimately linked with Prashant Bhushan. So an India based NGO prepares a “dossier” on the Adani group that is used by Hindenburg to make Damini allegations against the corporate group triggering a share price collapse. Indian “activists” including that law student file PILs in the Supreme Court based on the Hindenburg report. The circle is complete. The mainstream media has featured the news the next day, but definitely as hysterically as allegations against Gautam Adani. After all, Prashant Bhushan is a “liberal” and “secular” activist who is fighting against the “fascist” Narendra Modi regime.

The scandalous behaviour doesn’t stop there. The Supreme Court had appointed a Committee to closely examine the allegations against Adani and submit a report. The Committee did not find any concrete evidence of illegal activities by the Adani group and so informed the top court. Activists like Prashant Bhushan were not happy. They questioned the integrity of the Committee and publicly said it was biased as one member had represented Adani in the past as a lawyer. The Chief Justice of India chastised Bhushan even over this. It seems the lawyer had represented Adani long ago in 2006 and has now been appointed a judge in the Bombay High Court. In effect, Prashant Bhushan wants everyone to believe that a just appointed Bombay High Court judge is prejudiced in favour of Adani.

This is classic tactics by scores of elite “activists” with access to the Supreme Court. They will file PILs making all sots of allegations against a person or entity they don’t like. If as is wont the verdict goes in their favour, they will hail top courts as saviours of democracy. If as is equally won the verdict goes against them, they stat questioning everything, including the Supreme Court. So frequent has this become that it is both tiresome and a scandal. But there is no stopping them. Before the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, the “activists” accused the Modi regime of taking bribes in the Rafale jet fighter deal. Of course they went to the Supreme Court which heard all sides, including summarily summoning senior Air Force officials to the Court. Prashant Bhushan was one of leaders even of this “movement”. As usual, when the Supreme Court found not even a hint of corruption, the activists refused to accept the verdict and till date keep accusing Modi of taking bribes.

This is simply outrageous behaviour that should not be allowed in a democracy. Just a handful of lawyers living in Delhi and work also as “activists” keep literally wasting the time of High Courts and the Supreme Court to flog their favourite “cause” of the day. Imagine the waste of time when there are more than 50 million cases pending in India and more than 70,000 in just the Supreme Court. Look at how “activist” Medha Patkar used the top judiciary to block the Narmada project for decades. After prolonged hearings, the top court even chastised Medha Patkar and her outfit for playing fast and loose with data and facts. For moe than 20 years, another “activist” Teesta Setalvad has been “mis-using” the top court to make Modi the architect of the 2022 Gujarat riots. The Court has chastised even this “activist”.

The real problem is: nobody seems to be in a position to stop this cabal of “activists” to game the system to peddle their favourite causes. They have no shame in any case even when they are caught lying or being economical with the truth. India needs PILs as there can be no doubt that powerful corporate entities and the State often exploit the ordinary Indian ruthlessly. But the manner in which these activists are behaving, Indians are fast losing faith in the PIL system.

Disclaimer:

This is the personal opinion of the author. The views expressed in this write-up have nothing to do with www.prameyanews.com.

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