I have been making good progress, understanding the labyrinths of the legal system for the last one month, since I have taken up advocacy and being a member of the BAR. My progress in terms of reality would amount to identifying the Judges on the Bench and having a little know-how of what subject comes before whom. And sure I am familiar with some interesting facts, out of which cases have been spun out, from the files of my Seniors. The law involved, many a time, I fail to comprehend, but the stories, I remember.
I made the walk to the High Court, with my head held high, amidst all the chaos and rush caused by the Red-Volunteers and the Khaki Enforcement personnel , in protest to the 6 months imprisonment of the CPIM leader, whose foul mouth didn't find much admirers on the Bench and Contempt of themis, the Bench observed he committed. I had a fool-proof brief, I was familiar with the facts, the law involved and all that was required was the answer to my statements made on Thursday by the opposite counsel. I believed he didn't have much grounds to argue and then the agencies of State was on my side, on Thursday while I presented my case.
I made the walk to the front of the Court-room majestically, mentioned about the party for whom I am appearing and the other Counsels did their part of introduction. The Judge looked at me and said, Counsel, proceed. I didn't understand, what the Judge meant by 'proceed'. Was it to proceed from where I left of last time or was it to proceed from the beginning? I had seen the Judge take down notes last time I spoke, so he must be familiar with the things and from where I spoke last time, there was no place else to proceed. I fumbled, not understanding the path to proceed and stood like an idiot, talking mumbo-jumbo about the case, nowhere as nearly as good as what I spoke on last Thursday. The opposition counsel, just kept idle, with a faint smile on the corner of his lips and the only thought inside me was, it was your day to talk about your side of the case and yet you sit leisurely, watching the mess I am in and having the nerve to smile as well. Judge must have been disappointed, because I saw the welcome smile give way to more of a frown and later ridicule.
Then the least expected of all happened, the counsel for the State agencies, who was as verbal as me on Thursday bragging about my client's inalienable rights and the error apparent on the face of records, did a somersault and said some-things which made him a big good liar in-front of me. Technically he never lied, because on Thursday it was his junior who had appeared and it was the junior who raised arms with me and fought the battle side by side. A new day, a new battle and the allies have been arrayed differently and I was caught alone, not knowing that members of the Bar would so easily step back from some statements made, because it was never made by them personally.
That was the killer blow and I stood bleeding, with my face turned red, out of surprise and the pain in realizing some truths first hand of the integrity of the Bar. I guess the Judge, took pity and in his order, which was all against what I prayed for, gave me a piece of wet rag to put over my wounds and try make it heal. I staggered down from the front, dejected than I have felt any time in almost all of my existence, gathering my files and wanting no pity from the spectators nor help. I stepped out from the court-room, silently swearing, and the Junior who joined arms with me on Thursday, who helped me in instilling the wounds, stood waiting just outside and he had the nerve to say - "dude, what where you doing? You had a perfect case, and you messed it." There was nothing about the contradictions in what he spoke the last time and what his Senior enlightened the Court today, definitely not after making a whooping discovery over the weekend about the state of facts. There was no mentioning about anything else, just the killer-punch, giving the final blow to my wounded pride !!
For a moment, I wanted to throw down the robes and ask him to 'Fuck off', because there was definitely an imminent lack of integrity I expect in humans, in a good number of the lovers of themis, but I didn't, I made the long walk to the other Court Room, seeking bail for another one of my Senior's client.