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Is the External Affairs Ministry of India above the Law?
P. K. Jabir Vs. The Indian Ministry of External Affairs

The External Affairs Ministry, Government of India, Respondent in C.W.No.4972/97 (C.M.9144/97) was directed by High Court of Delhi, an order of mandamus, to dispose of the representation submitted by petitioner within two months of the date of the Judgment. The directives contained in the judgment of Delhi High Court was dated 20-11-1997. In total negation of such a specific order of the Delhi High Court, the External Affairs Ministry, despite the lapse of 16 years of date of the judgment, demonstrates a blatant disrespect to the law of the country.

It has to be noted, that a mandamus is an extraordinary writ commanding an official to perform a ministerial act that the law recognizes as an absolute duty and not a matter for the official's discretion. A mandamus is used only when all other judicial remedies fail. The legal instruments that a society or government develops in order to deal effectively with crime and meaningful relief to victims of their circumstances. When these legal principles are ignored it would only erode the public faith and confidence in the judicial system.

Under such a very compelling circumstance, an attempt is being made to publish the relevant records of the case and communications with the MEA in different stages.

Last Updated: December 17, 2012

A brief history and current perspective

The petitioner was an established businessman and investor engaged in the business of Trading and Contracting in Abu Dhabi, UAE. He was trapped in a fabricated police case in order to extort money from him. He was brutally tortured and imprisoned illegally for over a year. Ultimately, when the case reached the Apex Court of Abu Dhabi, the Hon’ble Judges who heard the case found beyond any doubt that the entire case was fabricated by Abu Dhabi police. The culprits then made a vain attempt to withdraw their false claims in the court. After due consideration of the documents, witnesses, arguments besides merits of lower court decision of the same, the Apex Court of Abu Dhabi, vide its judgment dated 19/5/1996 declared that the ‘victim’ is innocent and a ‘martyr’. The Hon’ble Judges instructed the UAE authorities to release the victim immediately and pay him due compensation for all the loss and sufferings he was put to, as well as for the entire loss he had in his business. Instead of obeying the Apex Court’s order, the Abu Dhabi authorities resorted retaliatory tactics and the victim was re-victimized over and over again and deported unlawfully to India. (View Features)

After reaching India, the petitioner has made every efforts to the safeguard of his dignity. He has made representations to the Union Government of India and other authorities asking them to grant him leave to institute legal proceedings against the state of UAE. In October 1996 a writ petition was filed by petitioner before the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India. The facts enumerated therein would clearly establish the callous attitude of the authorities in UAE. The Supreme Court of India took cognizance of the case and suggested the Delhi High Court deal with it. The very fact that the Supreme Court enabled us to withdraw the petition and file it under Article 226 of the Constitution in the High Court of Delhi, shows that the Hon’ble Supreme Court found merit in the case.

The petitioner has thereafter moved the Delhi High Court. The Hon'ble High Court of Delhi, after hearing the Senior Counsel, Mr. K. Sukumaran, was pleased to issue a mandamus to the Government, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) to dispose off the petitioner's case within two months from the date of Order (20-11-1997). The deadline set by the High court is long past.

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The directives contained in the judgment of Delhi High Court dated 20-11-1997 of Justice Arun Kumar, the Hon'ble High Court of New Delhi (Appellate Civil Jurisdiction), C.W.No.4972/97 (C.M.9144/97) read as follows:-

The only grievance of the petitioner is that his representation dated 26th December, 1996 has still not been disposed of respondents. ...The said respondents are directed to dispose of the said representation of the petitioner within two months from today. The petition stands disposed of. (The External Affairs Ministry was, in fact, (quoted as) Respondent No.2 in the case).

Although the High Court of Delhi ordered the External Affairs Ministry, vide its judgment dated judgment dated 20-11-1997 to dispose of the representation of the petitioner dated 26th December, 1996 within two months of the date of judgment, even as on date, the directives in the said judgment have not been acted upon.

The directives of the Hon'ble High Court of New Delhi, followed by repeated efforts by petitioner through higher officials of the country have also been kicked out by the Ministry of External Affairs, India. In a recent letter to the MEA enquiring the status of the case under the Right to Information Act, the MEA has sent an evasive reply that they do not have any records of the case with them. The External Affairs Ministry, Government of India, without caring to obey the judicial order, have shirked or willfully evaded the entire responsibility that would amount to contempt of Court and calls for other appropriate legal action against the Ministry (MEA).

Under such a very compelling circumstance, an attempt is being made to publish the relevant records of the case and communications with the MEA in different stages. Copies of the records of the case are appended hereto for your kind perusal.

1. Letter 26-11-2012 from the External Affairs Ministry - No papers of the case could be traced by the Embassy of India, Abu Dhabi

2. Letter 26-11-2012 from the External Affairs Ministry - No papers of the case could be traced by the Ministry of External Affairs


3. Reply under RTI Act Letter No. RTI/551/763/2012 /July 11, 2012 - To the Ministry of External Affairs, New Delhi.


Copies of letters from the Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India, National Human Rights Commission (N.H.R.C), Prime Minister’s Office, The Ambassador of India, United Arab Emirates, other institutions and personalities for reference. (Resources)

Resources


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