Dr. Ajay Bhatt is a senior faculty at Amity Law School, Gurgaon. He has a vast experience of teaching for almost 2 decades at various esteemed law colleges. He has published dozens of research papers in peer journals. Legal Bites got an opportunity to have a conversation with Dr. Ajay Kumar Bhatt, a learned gentleman who believes in sophistication.
Here are moments from the interview:
Legal Bites: Sir, it is said that democracy is the best type of governance and there are many who oppose that perspective. So what exactly is the ideal state of democracy? There are various examples, like Bhutan is a complacent and happy country where a Monarch rules the country but out of his modesty and humility, the country is forced to be a democratic nation. They have a constitution just like us and it is proven that their gross domestic product (GDP) is measured in Happiness. Why is India not as happy?
Dr. Ajay Bhatt: I believe, and truly so, out of many forms of systems of governance the democratic pattern of governance is the most suitable and relevant form in India. In a democracy, eventually, the power vests in the people of the country and our forefathers were visionary and they adopted the democratic form of governance, unlike the British Monarchy.
Perhaps a small country like Bhutan may have a monarchical form of governance and it may also be progressing at all levels but in a country such as India where the second largest population resides is governed by a democratic form of governance. Even during the Vedic Era, a Sabha and Samiti was elected to represent the people.
Morality and ethics are the parameter of any developed country. The progress of a country is solely dependent on its morality. When the representatives and the citizens of the country follow the ethical values written in our holy scriptures, which are still quite prevalent in society, the nation will automatically flourish and achieve a higher GDP. One must perform their duty as prescribed in the Bhagvad Gita and the Constitution of India.
In addition, it is wrong to say that India is not a happy nation. We are prosperous in each walk of life. But, where we lack is fundamentally the habit of greed and materialistic needs. One must be altruistic in his/her approach towards life for the sake of the social solidarity of the nation.
Legal Bites: There have been incidents when moral policing has overweighed the fundamental rights of Indian citizens. Whether it is the freedom of speech and expression or the right to life and privacy of an individual, India has had to face humiliation on a daily basis. Sir, where are we going wrong? Why is the Judiciary not as efficient as it should be. And why are law enforcers – the police silent in almost every instance when a mob or a lunatic takes the law in their own hands?
Dr. Ajay Bhatt: Our Constitution guarantees fundamental rights to every citizen but unfortunately there are incidents when these fundamental rights of people have been breached. The primary responsibility of the State and its agencies is to safeguard the fundamental rights of individuals and not to encroach upon it. However, it is quite possible, that either by exceeding or denying duty any agency of the state may cause irreparable loss to an individual. And in that situation, the Judiciary takes cognizance either Suo Moto or by complaints through writs, to defend such rights of an individual and pass orders to issue writs against the State. Our Judiciary is an individual body and is beyond the purview of any supervision by any agency of the Government. No person is allowed to go beyond the law of the land and it is the duty of the Judiciary to ensure that the State performs its duty to maintain the law and order in society and to establish well-being of all.
Our enforcing machinery must do their duty which they owe, for instance, the Police must perform their duty to ensure safety of individuals in the society. Our Judiciary is much more vigilant than the Judiciary of other nations and people have full faith in the Judicial System of India.
Legal Bites: A country is not developed if its women don’t feel equal and safe! Kindly lay your opinions on matters of gender equality. It is already established in the Constitution that equality shall prevail among all and is also categorized as a first generation Human Right. Yet, even today, almost every woman in this country is a victim to a disguised misogyny. Will this crude practice ever end?
Dr. Ajay Bhatt: The principle of equality is the backbone of our Constitution. Article 15 and 16 mandate no discrimination on the ground of race, sex, religion, caste, etc. This duty has been cast on the State. The Parliament has enacted various laws for the development of women. Now, we are running in the women empowerment decade. It is wrong to say that men are against women. India is the only country where women are treated as Goddesses. Our Vedas and Smritis say that where women are respected, Gods live there. Peoples mindsets are changing gradually. The concept of a Patriarchal society is being liberalized. Daughters are now equally entitled in the property of her father. It is just the feeble-minded men who are against equal rights of women.
Maximum incidents against women are committed either by uneducated or incorrigible habitual offenders. And time is about to come in India, when every person is respected by each one of us without any gender bias.
Legal Bites: Sir, being a senior professor yourself, where in your opinion is the teacher of this generation lacking, in their approach towards a better and smart process of teaching.
Dr. Ajay Bhatt: Nowadays, maximum numbers of students are getting education for the sake of earning tons of money than for acquiring knowledge. Knowledge is itself a power to gain all materialistic pleasures but it is equally true that a person having pure knowledge may detach themselves from materialism. Anything is possible for a person having pure knowledge and wisdom.
A teacher should know the concept and content that he/she intends to teach. What one has, he/she has to communicate to others. It is necessary for a teacher to take the digital approach and use PPTs and graphic imagery to portray knowledge. As I have observed, many teachers of highly reputed institutions have a proper lack of knowledge about the traditional subjects of law. A teacher must know about the correlation of subjects of law while delivering lectures in the class.
Legal Bites: We have believed that India is developing to stand amongst the developed nations in the World. But, social issues like Casteism, Communalism, Regionalism, and conflicts on the basis of Language and Culture are, unfortunately, as prevalent today, as it was say about 50 years ago. We cannot compare ourselves to any other country that faces similar social issues because unlike them we are different and it is time that India realizes that it cannot develop till it stops the unnecessary hatred among them. Please share your views regarding this.
Dr. Ajay Bhatt: India is the most diverse country in the World. Casteism, communalism and regionalism have come into existence since Independence. Despite all these contradictions, we have been a developing nation in all fields. No doubt our progress is slow paced, but we hope to achieve the status of a developed nation very soon. Conflicts make us stronger. Now, we have gained independent position in space technology, agriculture, education, health and many other sectors too. Our engineers, doctors and lawyers are playing vital roles at the global level. We were the Gurus of yesterdays world and in about ten years or so, we will be the Gurus of tomorrows world too.
[This interview was brought to you by Keshav Basotia and Deepanshu Rao]