Justice S.R. Sen says secularism is one of Indian Constitution’s basic structure – after CPI(M) said it was considering impeaching him.
New Delhi: Within hours of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) saying that it was considering an impeachment motion against him, Meghalaya High Court judge S.R. Sen has said his remarks that India should have been a Hindu nation were a misinterpretation.
On Monday, while delivering a judgment, Sen suggested that India should have been declared a Hindu nation at Partition, and that if anyone tried to make it an Islamic country, it would be “doomsday for India and the world”.
In a statement Friday, Sen clarified that his observation has been misinterpreted.
“Secularism is one of the basic structures of our Indian Constitution. It should not further be divided on the basis of religion, caste, creed, community or language,” said Sen.
“I would like to make it clear that when I mentioned the government under Shri. Narendra Modiji it is inclusive of the Hon’ble Ministers and Hon’ble Members of both the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha.”
Sen was referring to his comment that “only this government under Shri Narendra Modiji will understand the gravity, and will do the needful as requested above and our chief minister Mamataji will support the national interest in all respect (sic)”.
In his statement, the judge said, “I also mentioned about the Chief Minister of West Bengal, which did not mean that other Chief Ministers of other States were not included. My request was to the policy makers and law makers of this country. I hope this will clear the confusion, if any, in the minds of the people.”
The CPM Friday urged Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi to remove Sen from his judicial duties, alleging that his remarks were against the basic structure of Indian Constitution.
‘God is one’
Sen’s “Hindu nation” remark came as he delivered a judgment in relief to an Army recruit, Amon Rana, who was denied a domicile certificate by the state of Meghalaya.
“[Upon Partition], Pakistan declared themselves as an Islamic country and India since was divided on the basis of religion should have also been declared as a Hindu country but it remained as a secular country (sic),” Sen said Monday.
In his clarification, Sen said that he doesn’t belong to any political party and doesn’t have “any dream to get any political berth” after retirement. He also said that his judgment is not politically motivated or influenced by any party.
“Whatever is the truth, history and real ground reality, on that basis I have written my judgment to save the citizens of India irrespective of caste, creed, religion or language and people should understand the history of India and live in peace and harmony. I also mention that I am not a religious fanatic rather I respect all the religions because to me God is one (sic),” he said.
He also said that he didn’t say anything about secularism anywhere in the judgment and that his “judgment makes references to the history and one cannot change the history”.
‘Importance of documents’
In his controversial remarks, Sen also pointed out the religious persecution of minorities in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan.
On Friday, Sen said that it is well known that “India still lives in its villages” and “most of the people in this country are yet to receive formal education and are not aware of the importance of certain documents”.
“… that is why many people of Indian origin may not have any of those…their presence in India is primarily due to religious persecution (emphasised in statement) that they have been facing through generations and nobody can deny that,” he said.
“Since then, these unfortunate people have lost many near and dear ones as well as their property and livelihood and have been forced to come to India and till date these people continuously facing religious persecution (emphasised in statement),” added Sen.
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