Recently there was a lot of controversy about Justice P.Devadoss of the Madras High Court who ordered a case of a rapist and his victim to be sent for mediation, evidently to see whether the victim would marry her rapist.
I myself think the Judge should not have sent the case for mediation unless both parties wanted it. In the case in question the victim has resolutely refused mediation, and has refused to marry the man who raped her. Hence the order sending the case for mediation was clearly uncalled for.
Perhaps realizing his error, the Judge, in a subsequent case where a grown up man had raped a 4 year old child, upheld the 10 year sentence awarded by the lower Court, calling the accused a 'vulture'.
I remember P.Devadoss when I was Chief Justice of Madras High Court ( 2004-2005 ). At that time he was perhaps the Principal District Judge of some District Court in Tamilnadu.
He was a legendary Judge, having the highest level of integrity, so much so that he had prohibited several relatives who were in politics from entering his house, as he did not want anyone in Tamilnadu to think that he was allied or close to any political party or politician. I had a very high opinion of him.
I am saying this to request the public to forgive him for his bona fide mistake, and move on. Such Judges of such high integrity are becoming rare now.
Lord Denning, the celebrated British Judge once said " The Judge has not been born who has not made a mistake ". Critics of Justice Devadoss should ponder over this statement.