Fraud Cases Increase In Courts As Elections Close In: CJI Chandrachud

New Delhi: Chief Justice of India D Y Chandrachud on Thursday said that the number of “fraud cases” in the Supreme Court tends to increase as elections draw closer, transforming the court into a site for political engagement.

Chandrachud, while speaking at the Constitution Day function in the apex court, said we all exist together and the Indian Constitution tells us that “we either survive or we perish together,” reported PTI.

“But above all, I think it is important that on a day where we celebrate the Constitution, we learn to discharge our duties to the cause of justice. Our duty to the cause of justice ranks much higher than the success or failure in individual cases,” he said.

“Just yesterday, I had to deal with a fraud case. The Supreme Court deals with fraud cases every day. Some courts have more than their share of fraud cases and there are some times as elections come, the number of fraud cases tends to increase in the court and we as judges realise it,” PTI quoted him as saying.

Justice Chandrachud further stated that after elections get over, things settle down, and “as the polls come closer and closer, the court becomes a site for political engagement. That is a truth of our society. I am not looking at it with any value judgement”.

Speaking about the legal profession, the CJI said it is a profession of diversity, including diversity in terms of gender, adding that be it the judges or lawyers, all have come from different parts of the country in search of a better livelihood, reported PTI.

“But in the process of giving each one of us a better livelihood, we are also engaged in providing a better existence to our fellow citizens. That is the big power which all of you command as lawyers,” he said.

Referring to the attire of judges and lawyers, the CJI said it reminds us that the “similarity of our attire is a symbol of the common existence which we share”.

Justice Chandrachud said it was for the members of the Bar to make the legal profession broad-based and inclusive. “It is if you support the institution of justice, which is to ensure that you support the independence of your own judiciary, that the judiciary can truly be able to discharge its duties,” he said.

“If you are not giving to the judiciary its own sense of due, how will you expect them to discharge their own obligations towards society. Because your judges come from you and they return to you. They are not distinct from you,” he added.