Saturday, September 08, 2018

SANYASI WHO CLAIMED TO BE A PRINCE

This post is about Bhawal Sanyasi Case, why was it wrongly decided and the book 'Dead Man Wandering' by Partha Chatteree.

Bhawal Sanyasi case is a bizarre case. It is the most famous of all Indian cases. After about 12 years of death/ disappearance of a prince, a Sanyasi claimed to be him. Did the prince die or disappear; was the Sanyasi the prince or an imposter – these were the questions to be decided in a suit filed 21 years thereafter. In the suit, some facts were admitted and some were contested like hell. 

I had read about the case in the legal history class as a law student in 1970 but did not go into the depth as better means of identification have come about. This year in January,  Khoj International Artists' Association approached me to play the role of the judge in re-adaptation of the case. It was to be staged in Dhaka literary festival. For some personal reasons, I could not go but it piqued my interest.

The trial court had held Sanyasi to be the prince and the Calcutta High Court dismissed the appeal by 2-1. These judgements are not reported. The High Court dismissed the application for leave to an appeal to privy council  and it is reported in AIR 1942 Calcutta 498. However, Privy Council granted leave but later dismissed the appeal after briefly recording the facts. The judgement is reported in AIR 1947 PC 17. 

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Samudra Manthan - Story of Progress

Inter-linking of rivers is important but debatable: it destroys forests, natural habitats, and uproots people. Last year, Khoj International Artists' Association staged a drama ‘Landscape as Evidence: Artist as Witness’ to emphasise the importance of evidence of artists before taking such decision. The setting was that a decision of interlining the rivers was referred to a commission and the commission was too report back its finding on the same. 
The Association approached me to play the role of the judge commissioner. When I asked them what decision was to be given, they left that to me to take an independent call. In the process of listening the evidence and deciding the same, I had a new insight to mythological story of ‘Samudra Manthan’. 
Recording of evidence in the drama
Here is my decision and new insight to the old story। You can see the drama on the YouTube here

Saturday, July 21, 2018

Real Sherlock Holmes

This post is about the book 'Conan Doyle for the Defence' by Margalit Fox and inspiration behind creation of Sherlock Holmes.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

STEPHEN HAWKING: Courage personified

Stephen Hawking was one of the greatest Astrophysicists of all times. He died early morning today on 14th March 2018 at the age of 76. This article was written as many years ago is being published as a tribute.

Photograph courtesy Wikipedia

'Stephen Hawking A life in Science' by Michale White and John Gribbin and  'Stephen Hawking: Quest for a Theory of Everything' by Kity Ferguson are two biographies about him. They are worth reading.

SANYASI WHO CLAIMED TO BE A PRINCE

This post is about Bhawal Sanyasi Case, why was it wrongly decided and the book 'Dead Man Wandering' by Partha Chatteree. Bha...