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  Sonia Gandhi"s Education in Cambridge University: Petition Dismissed  
 

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Sonia Gandhi Education, Cambridge University London


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By: V Sundaram, IAS, Retd.
June 20, 2007
V
iews expressed here are author?s own and not of this website. Full disclaimer is at the bottom.

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After the disastrous and wholly avoidable dark day of partition of India on the 15 August 1947, we as a nation sank to abysmal depths of irretrievable degradation yesterday which in my view is the darkest day in our legal history. All the patriotic and LAW abiding citizens of India owing their allegiance to the letter and spirit of the Indian Constitution are shocked beyond words by the fact that the Supreme Court on Friday dismissed a special leave petition filed by Janata Party president Subramanian Swamy against a judgment of the Allahabad High Court that did not allow the court to go into the veracity of an affidavit filed by Congress president Sonia Gandhi regarding her educational qualification while contesting the poll from Rae Barelli constituency.

A three-Judge Bench comprising Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan and Justices B P Singh and G P Mathur asked Dr Swamy: "Should the Supreme Court go into all the affidavits to find out they are false or not. Further investigation is not possible into a stale issue and it should be dropped."

Dr Swamy pointed out that Ms Gandhi had filed an affidavit that she was educated at Cambridge University, London, whereas she had studied only language teaching course from a "teaching shop" and not the University. He said that since the filing of an affidavit regarding educational qualification was because of a Supreme Court judgment, no false affidavit could be filed by a person. He told the Bench: "If you take such a large-hearted view that the matter should be dropped, I have nothing more to say."

What has been completely overlooked by the Supreme Court in this case is the fact that Sonia Gandhi committed the offence of perjury when she wittingly dropped her claim regarding her bogus educational qualifications from Cambridge University in the Affidavit which she filed before the Returning Officer of Rae Barelli Constituency in 2006. In 1999 Sonia Gandhi was elected to Lok Sabha. Soon after her election she had furnished details relating to her educational qualifications to the Speaker of the Lok Sabha based on which those details were incorporated into a Lok Sabha publication "Who is Who In Lok Sabha? After verifying the factual details of the bogus and false claim of Sonia Gandhi regarding her fictitious education in Cambridge, Dr Subramanian Swamy wrote to the Speaker of the Lok Sabha in 2000, complaining that Sonia Gandhi had committed a Breach of Privilege by giving false information to the Speaker. The Speaker after keeping Dr.Swamy"s petition in a special incubator (!!) finally wrote to Sonia Gandhi and requested her to give a suitable reply to him. It is understood that in 2003 Sonia Gandhi gave a reply to the Speaker that she had unwittingly signed a letter/document without applying her mind to it and that the whole problem lay in a typing mistake.

In my view this became the longest typing mistake in the tortuous history of typography and legitimately qualified for inclusion in the Guinness Book of World Records. Despite this known and factual background, Sonia Gandhi repeated the same mistake by including her bogus educational qualifications again in her Affidavit to the Returning Officer of Rae Barelli Constituency during Parliamentary Elections in 2004. Thus she showed her supreme contempt towards the Indian Constitution, Indian Parliament, the Rule of Law and if I may say so, even the Supreme Court of India. To crown it all, in her Affidavit to the Returning Officer of Rae Barelli Constituency before her reelection in 2006, Sonia Gandhi very quietly dropped her false claim made in 1999 and repeated again with calculated impunity in 2004. Thus in her Affidavit of 2006 presented to the Returning Officer of Rae Barelli Constituency she tacitly admitted her earlier offence of perjury.

Every honourable citizen in India (not privileged to have the extra-Constitutional status of a Queen of India like Sonia Gandhi) would like to know whether he or she would get the same consideration on the same issue (all facts being pari passu and equal on all fours) from the highest Judicial Tribunal in the land. Perhaps George Orwell had the Indian Judicial System in view when he wrote: "Though all of us are created equal, some are more equal than others".

In 2006, the Samajwadi Party (SP) and the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) strongly criticized the decision of the Election Commission (EC) to drop the Office-of-Profit Case against Sonia Gandhi in the Office-of-Profit Case following her resignation from the Lok Sabha. The Samajwadi Party (SP) General Secretary Amar Singh and TDP Parliamentary Party Leader K.Y.Yerran Naidu said: "Jaya Bachchan was disqualified from the Rajya Sabha with retrospective effect. We demand that the same treatment that has been meted out to Jaya Bachchan should also be meted out to Sonia Gandhi." By indulging in open political discrimination between Jaya Bachchan and Sonia Gandhi on the same issue, involving the same principles of law and procedure, the Election Commission of India covered itself with everlasting disgrace and infamy when it sent its recommendation to the President for closing the case against Mrs.Sonia Gandhi.

In 2006, I had written an article in these columns about the reprehensible conduct of the Election Commission. I am quoting from my own article which is as relevant today as it was in 2006: "The matter is not so simple, harmless and innocuous as the Election Commission or the Congress Party would have the nation to believe so cozily in this matter. The people of India would like to know why Sonia Gandhi"s name has been dropped by the Election Commission.

If Jaya Bachchan can be disqualified with retrospective effect, in what way is Sonia Gandhi enjoying a special status above the law of the Constitution? The straight and simple course is for the Election Commission to apply the same law with the same effect in the sane manner along the same channel for the same reason and finally for the same result in respect of Sonia Gandhi as well. For a neutral and Constitutional body, why should the honour of Sonia Gandhi alone be more important and vital than the letter and spirit of the Indian Constitution?"

As a citizen believing in the Rule of Law, Rule of Equality Before the Law and the Majesty of Law, I am not convinced by the observation of the Supreme Court. "Further investigation is not possible into a stale issue and it should be dropped." In this context, I would like to quote the brilliant words of American Chief Justice William Hubbs Rehnquist (1924 - 2005) in the landmark case of MILLS v. HABLUETZEL, 456 U.S. 91 (1982): "This Court has held that once a State posits a judicially enforceable right of its citizens, it can never get circumscribed or circumvented by a State"s interest in avoiding the prosecution of stale or fraudulent claims".

In my humble opinion neither the incontrovertible facts or the irrefutable points of law raised by Dr Subramanian Swamy can be viewed as STALE in any sense of the word/term. Of course there is nothing fraudulent in or about them.

I would also like to cite from another historic case in the American Supreme Court which is very relevant to the Indian situation in the case under review. To quote Justice Felix Frankfurter (1882- 1965): ""To argue that no genuine issues of material fact remain for trial, is to sweep the entire expanse of American History under the rug as well, and to substitute in its place a veritable host of fictions and fictitious nonsense, of which the American People now have had about all they are willing to take .. Competent waivers of fundamental rights must be knowing, intelligent, affirmative acts done with sufficient awareness, other relevant circumstances and likely consequences."

All the enlightened citizens and the myriad millions of India are shocked by the recent verdict of the Supreme Court. They do not consider it as a stale view on a stale subject. They are of the view that the survival of India as an independent sovereign nation has been completely lost sight of by the highest tribunal of law in the land. All of them quote the following words of Rt.

Honourable Srinivasa Sastri (1869 -1946) with approval: "If the salt has lost its flavour, wherewith shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out and trodden under foot of men."

V Sundaram, IAS, Retd.

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Sonia Gandhi Education, Cambridge University London

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