PERKS OF INTERNING: COURT VISITS

Well now that I have become 1/10th of a lawyer, I thought why not give, what these people call courts, a visit. But first things first, my results came about a few days ago and guess what I passed, even that sucky subject called History of Legal and Constitutional Development. Even though I got the highest grade in all others and the lowest in HLCD but whatever I passed. But before our college broke for winter break of one and a half month, after exams, I started applying to NGOs to intern there and got in one of the fancier places called HRLN, Human Resources Law Network. This place, as the name suggests, is a place for fighting against any injustices done to those who cannot defend themselves in a legal suit. Now this place has a selection process and that is what makes it fancy, we have to fill forms and send write ups and all the other shizz. Now, I got in, that is not the part that matters but the fact that during my internship, I got to go to court, both, the Delhi High Court and the Supreme Court of India!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! For two really important cases, believe me. Wait; first let me tell you the hierarchy. If you have a criminal suit or for that matter civil matters, you first file in a court that will be at the district level, then appeal to the court at the state level called the High Court and then from there after obtaining a certificate for appeal you appeal to the Supreme Court. But if fundamental rights are violated, one can appeal directly to the High Court or the Supreme Court invoking what is called writ jurisdiction of these courts.

I first went to the High Court, in a matter regarding pricing of medicines and an order that was given by a national level body dealing with pricing of drugs and medicines. This was a sudden decision, I wasn’t even dressed to go to the court, interns and lawyers are supposed to wear black and white formals and I was dressed in a hoodie and jeans, imagine! But I actually went because I thought that now that I had done some research one the case, I’ll actually understand what was going on. So I went with my supervisor to the Delhi High Court. I first had to stand in this 1 km long Ladies’ Line for getting my interns entry pass made. For that you have to have a slip from your supervisor and college ID. When my turn finally came, the women gasped, seriously, “What have you given me??” and I was like, “This is what they gave me, I don’t know” and she sent me off to this important looking lady asking me show the slip to her but then I thought what could be the problem, turns out I had attached a receipt from previous day for ‘A donation of ₹1000’, I quickly ran back with the correct slip and got my pass made. In my defence the receipt and the slip were of the same size.

Then I entered this huge complex called Building A and as I entered I saw this swarm of lawyers wearing the black cloaks that one has to wear while arguing in court and I practically was flustered.  I had to go to court room 7 which took me like a million years to find. We were item 16 and as I entered, item 10 was going on. And that is when all my notions of the court, that one forms by watching movies and TV shows were neatly beaten to bits. Item 10 took 20mins, Item 11 took merely 3, Item 12 took 5, Item 13 took 6, Item 14 took 19 and Item 15 took 16mins. In most cases they just made a motion for adjournment, hence the short timings. Item 13 had this guy with that short Shah Rukh Khan pony and he stood with his juniors who for some reason looked exactly similar to me. All of them were hunching because, well the judge did speak as if speaking to himself In Item 15, there was a bald lawyer who kept laughing at what the judge was saying. Then Came our turn, I moved towards the front chairs and the other side came, it was as if the entire room was standing on both sides, the room felt charged and one could feel that the case was going to be awesome. The opposing lawyer spoke “Your Excellency………………………………………………..Please grant us an adjournment”. What the heck! I just got out of the room and started a tour of the court as if I was on a school trip to a museum. I also did one silly thing; I went to an ATM and got a mini statement because it said Branch: Delhi High Court.

Talking about the Supreme Court, frankly it took me some time to get over the fact that I was standing in the premises of the highest judicial authority in the country. There we just kept going here and there because our matter was at 4 in the evening at we came at 10 in the morning. We saw quite a few great and known lawyers like Prashant Bhushan, P. Chidambaram, Salman Khurshid, Pinky Anand and others and attended cases ranging from Article 66-A of the Information Technology Act to killing of a Civil Servant in Manipur. And frankly when our matter actually came, we were so tired that we slept through it. You see the Supreme Court is a huge ass complex, so you have to walk a lot to go from one court room to another and this time we were even dressed properly so you know, I couldn’t help dozing off. OK OK Sorry! It was fun because well I had never been to these places and the cases were to some extent interesting.

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