It is easy to write about M.L. Sharma, easier to dismiss him. I invite you to fight, Apar, someone more suitable to your intelligence and passion: Mr. Ram Jethmalani. Ram Jethmalani’s interview with Karan Thapar is still not forgotten history. Mr. Jethmalani had said, “I will not do anything..but everything to defend my client” – even if it be at the cost of casting aspersions on a murdered victim’s moral fibre. Apar, while you may contemplate “distancing yourself” from M.L. Sharma as a possible solution, how do you distance myself from Mr. Ram Jethmalani? Your solution is immature.
It is true that it is for the Judge, and not the Advocate, to decide according to the law. Sir George Jessel, Master of the Rolls, illuminated us on this long ago. “Disbarring a lawyer for a personal opinion” indeed cannot be a rule. But can an Advocate always, and without exception, demand the privilege of calibrating his opinion as ‘personal’?
X: What do you think of the weather, Sir?
Senior Advocate: Well, it is perfect for a murder!
X: I don’t quite understand!
Senior Advocate: You are quite young, you know. Under 30!
X: Do indulge me!
Senior Advocate: When it is cloudy and you murder, it goes with the mood. You perform better.
Senior Advocate (smiling): If you do try, choose a day like this.
Few Days Later…
Bar Council: We heard you like murdering when it is cloudy?
Senior Advocate: Yes, cloudy with a chance of meatballs.
Bar Council: Meatballs?
Senior Advocate: You lack the intellect clearly.
Bar Council: We saw you advising young X to murder when it is cloudy?
Senior Advocate: Only if he wanted to try.
Bar Council: He tried.
Senior Advocate: Bullshit.
Bar Council: What if he did?
Senior Advocate: Don’t waste my time with a ‘what if‘!
Bar Council: We are confused.
Senior Advocate: I believe in free speech.
Bar Council: What about murdering on cloudy days?
Senior Advocates: Only if there are meatballs, after.
Bar Council: Sorry?
Senior Advocate: Murders if committed should be committed on cloudy days! Happy?
Bar Council: So you believe in murdering?
Senior Advocate: Only when it is cloudy.
It would not be ‘cynical’ or a ‘contrived result‘ to disbar M.L. Sharma, if he were to behave similarly while showing cause. Procedure remains the eternal mistress of justice. M.L. Sharma shall return unscathed.
Post Script: Mr. Apar Gupta is ‘simply’ wrong.