Ashamed At Sorry State Of Affairs In India: Mohan Parasaran, Solicitor General*


Ashamed At Sorry State Of Affairs In India: Mohan Parasaran, SG*

Editorial Staff
Solicitor General Mohan Parasaran, who is highly regarded for his legal acumen, court craft and ice-cool temperament, has, on the eve of his resignation from the post, spoken his heart out on the ills plaguing the Country and what can be done to salvage the situation

*Title changed from “Ashamed To Be Indian” as the context appears to have been misunderstood by readers

Survival as top law officer was a “sheer miracle”

Mohan Parasaran did not mince any words in expressing his unhappiness at the way the Government functioned. He said it was a “sheer miracle” that he survived 10 years as the top law officer of the Country. He pointed out that appearing for the Government is like facing a fast bowler in a cricket match without the basic safeguards like pads, gloves, helmet etc. He lamented that the briefs get delivered at the last minute and there are no instructions on what is required to be done. There is a communication gap between the various ministries and the concerned ministry would not even be aware that its’ matter is coming up for hearing on a particular date, he said.

Appearing for the Government is like working in a Govt. hospital” the wily Solicitor General added, emphasizing that you get all sorts of patients with all sorts of ailments and that you were expected to treat them with the most rudimentary of facilities.

Supreme Court’s judgement in Vodafone Judgement is wrong but retrospective amendment is a “knee-jerk” reaction

Mohan Parasaran made it clear that in his view the Supreme Court’s judgement in Vodafone is “completely erroneous” but he called the Govt.’s action of seeking to overturn it by a retrospective amendment a “knee-jerk reaction”. Mohan pointed out that instead of a retrospective amendment all the Govt. had to do was to clarify the definition of the word “transfer” in s. 9 of the Act.

Tax disputes should be resolved on fast-track basis

Parasaran expressed concern that mega disputes like Voadfone and Nokia were being allowed to “hang on for generations”. He pointed out that this caused great discomfort to foreign investors and that they were looking at China as a better investment destination. He urged the Govt. to be “bold” and enter into settlements and arbitration on a fast track basis and resolve the dispute.

Mauritius is not a “tax haven”

Mohan Parasaran came out with all guns blazing in favour of Mauritius. “It is not a tax haven like Cayman Islands or BVI” he said emphatically and with conviction in his voice. Instead, it has a strategic role to play as a gateway to Africa, Australia and Europe, which are big markets for India, Mohan added.

Surprisingly, Mohan Parasaran called New York “the greatest of all tax havens”. He did not elaborate on what he meant.

Ashamed at the sorry state of affairs in the Country

Mohan Parasaran expressed disgust at the fact that all major policy issues, whether it be in telecom, coal allocations, power, mining etc were mired in controversies and disputes. “I feel ashamed that even a country like Myanmar and Thailand, with such great political instabilities & local problems are attracting more investment than India” the legal luminary said with emotion in his voice.

Unless we take off our shackles, be aggressive and take things hands on we will become retrograde and never improve” the Solicitor General added.

Mohan Parasaran was also upset at the act of the AAP Govt. in filing an FIR against the Oil Minister Veerappa Moily and the Union Cabinet over alleged corruption. He explained at length how the State Govt. has no jurisdiction to do so and how it subverted the entire federal structure of our Constitution. Parasaran also spoke his mind over the action of some State Governments (i.e. Delhi, under the AAP regime) of deciding not to implement the retail FDI policy. He explained that as the FDI policy had been approved by Parliament and even the Supreme Court had rejected a challenge to it, it was not open to the State Governments to now “get off the bus” merely because there is a change in the political party. He expressed concern that this sort of flip-flops & uncertainty would unnerve foreign investors who were planning to deploy large amounts of capital into India.

52 comments on “Ashamed At Sorry State Of Affairs In India: Mohan Parasaran, Solicitor General*
  1. sir,
    the governments really aimed to become dictators like Roosevelt attempted in 1930s, why even very congressmen and senators said then besides the then media. even today scholars reassess where really Roosevelt stood,
    fact remains every indian state government intends to become some kind of dictator. or other under great coalition dharma drama!
    see what is happening in maharashtra navi mumbai wants air port for whom is it for villagers at the cost of their lands.

    so people rised rise up and real courts need help them under the constitution of india, though main tooth art 13 though partially toothless yet other articles can indeed save them provided people and good samaritan advocates take up and save people!

    days are bleak, as sheep bleats like power mongers are around the poor people while poor man does not know where to move!

    • The former SG, always had the support of his father either becoming senior advocate, Madras HC, concealing his involvement in a criminal case or becoming ASG and later as SG due to proximity Cong.leaders. There are hundreds of more competent lawyers qualified to become SG. It was rather unfortunate India had a SG like this gentleman, for which every Indian would be ashamed. His recent engagement with RSS shows how desperate he is to come closer to the present government. People like him are much worse than the dishonest politicians.

  2. what FDR behaved during New seal in USA in 1930s, Man mohan singh behaved thinking indians are dumb compared to his coalition partners, and that way law officers were taken for granted as also thinking SC would bow down to his whims and fancies, that way indians rights were taken for granted and were fooled, so nothing wrong with SC to use activism by judicial review

    Mohan Parasaran need to honor the constitution is vital and constitution is the very vital basic fabric and sec 9 of IT acts have to be read with Art 14 not isolatedly as he rather taks mre on IT Act which Act cannot really survive without the blessings of constitution of india, after all every issue of any century can be assessed with the original articles of constitution, after all majority alone cannot take every one for granted;

    again constitution is certainly valid as a promissory estopel to the people and that cannot be taken for granted, even Art 13 is practically raped by these so called congress government knowing Art 13 is the main nerve center of fundamental rights in the indian constitution, as individual rights is in USA.

    Again see when Kapil sibal moved a bill to cut the powers of SC as Roosevelt put a ruse in US to cow down US Supreme court, when court disqualified criminal politicians from elections but congress wanted to protect them, how we can say congress is a good party in the country much better than coalition partners to congress when congress had sufficient numbers, one need to now how PVN managed a minority congress government in the worst of worst times in 1990s!

    i do not subscribe to a view Man Mohan singh is a man of character when he did not say to sonia when she wanted him to cooperate with coalition when coalition was really playing havoc in the government, mohan could have told better i resign that man should have done but he didn’t clearly mean he is also corrupt like Roosevelt while he wanted to pack the court but the senate questioned him though the congress had a good pack of majority but they did not as they realized only SC could save the rights of ordinary man!

    that kind of people in 1930s were there in US but in 21st century in india where are such men who wuld protect the rights of man on the street.

    so ploy was played by men in executive in the last 10 years. similar such might happen even in Modi government too as he has a brute majority in lok sabha, so it is only the media and man on the street have to protect the rights of man right from freedom of speech as also public opinion, strengthen the Apex SC !

    SC only can save india if the country need to be a vibrant democracy!

  3. Dipak Shah says:

    The cases referred is a bad situation . I have seen one Advocate who commented on practices of Advocates in courts and allowed the same by Courts had been prosecuted for contempt of court!! But peep in to the subject is required by Higher Court . WHo supervises such wrong practices? If fact such advocates should be prosecuted by COURTS.

  4. Dipak Shah says:

    read as write.

  5. Dipak Shah says:

    I have faced many trials in last 25 years , starting from City Civil Court at Ahmedabad to Hon. High Court of Gujarat , sorry state of affairs to wrote and to be commented to in open forum. I am also ashamed to write in frank words. This is the only comment I can pass on.

  6. rrajan says:

    As to Vodophone judgement clear thinking is required

  7. MRK GANDHI says:

    It is good that he let out how the government functions and his revelations are no surprise; he only supplemented the public knowledge. The governments in this country have never been managed in the manner known to honest citizens of the country. It is, however, unfair to comment at the end of tenure; having enjoyed the status and patronage. When his conscience bitten him he should have d emitted the office. He should speak more particular instances where he was approached for wrong doing. During the hearing of SAHARA some judges say they are facing pressure; why they do not disclose the details so that the court can step in punish the people for interference with the course of justice. IT IS UNFORTUNATE HE SPEAKS NOW. AT LEASE EVEN NOW LET HIM NAME PEOPLE WHO SOUGHT WRONG DOING AND IF POSSIBLE LEGAL ACTIONS CAN BE TAKEN AGAINST THEM.

  8. lmkdmmrk says:

    We have to seek more information from Mr. Mohan Parasaran regarding black money invested in tax havens by betrayers,especially politiicians from tamilnadu. Our new government should appoint special SIT against Ex politicians in tamilandu

  9. vakilsenthil says:

    Let the new government provide necessary infrastructue to assist all government advocates/standing counsels with full breifs and evidences and conduct the cases more efficiently and effectively. I had tasted the pride of winning a case for government.

  10. CA NAGESH says:

    Mr. Mohan Parasaran, the outgoing SG expressed his views during his tenure in office. He made it very much public how the Government or politicians behave in legal issues. Its an eye opener for the New Government and the General public at large. When a case is filed, can anyone be so casual? Is it that, since no personal monies are invested and the matters are relating to social cause, no one is interested? So from what the SG states, what one has to understand is filing of any case is only an eye wash for the affected parties. There is no sincere attempt on the part of the Government to proceed in the matter with all the facts and figures and law.
    Does any person who files a small case before CIT (Appeals) or Tribunal, be so casual? I do not think. Even we do not file any cases unless there is strength and we eagerly await the date of posting, with a strong will to fight the matter. Our intention is to bring out the injustice done to the affected party.
    Why this thrust is missing in Government cases? Because it is no body’s case and no money is spent from any one’s pocket and no one feels honor for the case.
    So lets instead of abusing or commenting the big person, let us try to understand his apathy. Let the New Government understand the facts underlying what SG said.

  11. N. Devanathan says:

    I fully endorse the views the Sri N. Krishnaswany who dealt the issue in crystal clear manner.

    Some writers making a slur and do not understand the person is not after the post and great sacrifice has been made in the cause of justice delivery system when one works for the Govt. Sri Mohan Parasaran could have earned 100 times if he had not opted the post.

    People failed to note that he garnered more revenue to mother India by winning high voltage complex tax cases against all top advocates.

  12. b c jain says:

    Surprisingly , after clinging to post for such long period – this sermon now ? One of the readers has written above that he was not SG / but ASG :: OK fine :: he has further informed that his resignation was not accepted :: OK fine :: he could have absented himself from the job > In any case such comments could have been made at the earliest opportunity. In any case , some one may be ashamed of himself , but not because of his birth in the country . Any way thanks for bringing in the matter to light – even it is delayed

    • N. Krishnaswamy says:

      The people commenting above has not appreciated the core problem why he is ashamed of being an Indian. they are pouring out emotional outbursts which is not necessary.
      He has been in close quarters with the bigwigs and bureaucrats. He could not divulge any fact that comes to his knowledge in his official or professional capacity because of his official position,because of his oath of secrecy. As a professional he has to render his best efforts to perform his functions, once he has taken the brief. Even now he cannot disclose any matter that he knows about any individual person during his holding office in the public.

      His first grouse was that no other government departments are interested in pursuing a case filed by them or against them diligently by helping the SG with the necessary evidences and documents and but sending an incomplete brief just on the previous day to the hearing of the case. This is what he has called the Indian apathy make him stand as an outsider from the government, not being treated as one of them or as a foreigner, to be ashamed of.
      Apart from incomplete brief at the late hour, the concerned ministry, when inquired as to what ground to be taken up in the case, they do not come forward with definite answer to help him to argue the case.
      This malaise in the government departments is the most unIndian character that he has pointed out and because of the unIndian attitudes of bureaucrats and politicians, that he felt ashamed of being an Indian. this malaise has to be eradicated if the government departments should act as an Indian outfit to protect the government action.

      With regard to accusation of his continuing in office without resignation, will his resignation improve or cure the malaise of unIndian attitude of the bureaucrats and politicians from a foreign oriented attitude to be an Indian attitude. Let us hope that things will improve after the change of the government now.

  13. R R JAJU says:

    It is too late for Mr Parasaran to react in such a manner.

  14. DEVADASAN says:

    Shri Mohan Parasaran should not be ashamed of an India, rather we all Indians should be ashamed of him. Why such a coward was put in the post of SG of the Govt. of India?

  15. Samuel Nagadesi says:

    While clung to the post of SG he is not Indian so there is no need to be ashamed. Cermons come only when they lose the positions due to change in Government. What he wants now when the nation has lost every thing in the past 10 years. Ragarding vodafone DTAA is not only for avoidance of double taxation but also for prevention of fiscal evasion and no one has right to structure a transaction in such a way one can steal the fiscal base of the source country where the business is carried on and the same is valued exorbitantly after transaction crossing the boarders where the business perse is situated. This kind of tax planning is highly unethical and also questionable. Of course, the plain purpose of prevention of fiscal evasion that is built in every tax treaty irrespective of the model is ignored and even the Government further complicated it by resorting to retrospective amendment in the law. Any way God saves this country.

  16. Jagdish Khandelwal says:

    With due respect to Mr. Mohan Parasaran, I am in agreement with his views but Why he did not reacted when he was at the helm of affairs as SG? Now saying that he is ashamed of being Indian is really not good.

  17. i s verma says:

    Dear Mr. Mohan, You should not be ashamed of being Indian, rather should be ashamed of enjoying the post for 10 years. BJP Govt is not going to give you a chance to enjoy the fruits of such a nobal post.

  18. Rashmi Dave says:

    After enjoying the position of Addl SG / SG almost for one decade now Mr Mohan is talking that he is ashamed to be an Indian !!!

    I believe this is not fair on his part. Why he did not raised his voice when he was Addl SG / SG ? Why he has not tried to change the system(s) ? At least he should have tried to change the system of his own office i.e. office of Addl SG / SG. How and on what bases his Father has become the member of Rajyasabha ?

    Whatever position(s) he has enjoyed it was because he was INDIAN and after completely enjoying this position(s) now he is ASHAMED of being an INDIAN ? I am really filling Sorry for him

    • Lets get some facts straight says:

      “How and on what bases his Father has become the member of Rajyasabha ?” Are you retarded? Do you even have an INKLING of who Mr. K. Parasaran is? Quite evidently, you aren’t aware of his stature or how highly he is regarded by ANY advocate in the country. Please don’t comment on issues you are completely ignorant about.

  19. Lalchand Choudhary says:

    The words of wisdom should be welcomed when ever they are expressed. Integrity of Mr. Mohan Parasaran is beyond doubt. He has spoken at the right time as he must have felt that the new government in office may be willing to improve the system. Let us expect the new Government to look into the grievances of the AG and take effective steps to remove the bottlenecks in the system. This would make the country a better place to live in.

  20. It is evident and very clear that we Indians learnt the western culture sacrificing our old age discipline and culture and also honest way of living. Now we are paying heavy penalty without realizing the consequences. Little said far better We have resigned to god. There are rays of hope dawned in the new era from 26th May,2014. Let us hope for the best.

  21. PCYADAV says:

    Hon’ble Bombay High Court has applied the source rule vis-a-vis tax-ability of the capital gain attributable to asset of vodaphone Company. However no body has looked into this asspect while in Supreme Court

  22. PCYADAV says:

    Mohan Sir I am in agreement with your view regarding the judgment of Voda Phone because Lord Kapadia in association with Harish Salve has completely turned the issue which was their in the judgment of Bombay High Court

  23. Ashwani Joshi says:

    I am annoyed with comments of writers like Surinder Rathi who address Parasaran as Hon’ble. He was proud to be an Indian till he held the post, and ashamed of being Indian , when he left it. Shame on him for continuing as A.G. for his personal gains. Sometime bastards are recognized by the actions rather than DNA tests.

  24. Lets get some facts straight says:

    Mohan Parasaran was NOT Solicitor General for 10 years. He was Additional Solicitor General for 9 years and became SG only in February 2013. He also submitted his resignation as ASG in 2012 but it was REJECTED by the Government. How does anybody commenting here know that he did not raise these issues before the concerned Ministries? It is obvious that while holding the post of SG and representing the Government before the Apex Court, he cannot raise such issues in the press and undermine the credibility of his own client. But he has been extremely candid in all his interviews and has given similar opinions earlier as well. You people have only seen this Bloomberg interview. Go check what all he has said in the various conferences he has attended.

  25. SURENDRA RATHI says:

    The Remarks of Hon. Attorney General Shri Mohan Parasaran on the eve of his resignation should not be taken lightly , he should courageously present his difficulties and solutions to meet these before the new Government form today so that issues he faced should not continue , and reforms are brought in the system.

  26. vswami says:

    “Surprisingly, Mohan Parasaran called New York “the greatest of all tax havens”. He did not elaborate on what he meant. ”
    There is nothing surprising; or need for him to elaborate. That the reality is no different, and was never a hidden secret; ; for anyone to see clearly, on simply browsing websites.

  27. Irrespective of what he said and when he said, one can not deny the urgency of renegotiating DTAAs with various countries by using the intelligence and skill of legal luminaries in our country. Hope the new governments does it!

  28. Narendra Kedia, Advocate says:

    Extracts from the famous book RASMIRATHI written by the great poet of India Ramdhari Singh Dinker as under.,

    समर शेष हैं नहीं पाप का भागी केवल ब्याघ्र
    जो तटस्थ हैं समय लिखेगा उनका भी अपराध. It means the war is over and the hunter is not the only person to be blamed and history will write the crime of also those who are disinterested, dispassionate and uninvolved, allowed the crime to happen before them. The time will not spare those sitting on fence.Mr. M.P can not escape on account of govt. inaction, red-tap ism. He is accountable to this country.
    The truth of the matter is that we always know the right thing to do. The hard part is doing it. As power, money and position are the reason for keeping mum. But a person like S.G. is following the same path which a chaparasi in govt. dept. functioning?The people of this country may forget what you said in the court, but they will never forget how you made them feel by not allowing yourself to do your duty entrusted to you. just to save money, power and position which you was enjoying!!!!

  29. vswami says:

    Add; Born an Indian, not out of own volition or choice, wisdom lies in living, and ever be proud to be Indian; not an alien.

  30. vswami says:

    “Ashamed To Be INDIAN ” (FONT supplied)- Such a bizarre emotional outburst , a daring affront to ‘Indian’, unmistakably betraying the underlying trait of ‘ego’ of the person who has been holding all along an exalted position in the legal hierarchy of the nation is, by any standard, felt to be out of good taste and strikingly lacking courage of conviction in its absolute sense; and not fit to be taken in the stride or brushed aside as of no consequence.

    If perceived with an unadulterated puritanical disposition, in a manner of speaking, that goes to decry / ridicule the very wisdom behind the commonly ingrained belief of a true Indian, howsoever lowly or high he be, that, – ‘discretion is the better part of valor’!

    Incidentally, the glaringly lacking wisdom in choosing to give vent, at this late hour, to his ‘individual’ opinion, as a parting kick, against the final court verdict in the infamous Vodafone case is not but reprehensible from any conceivable angle of professional decency /etiquette.

  31. Satish Tandon says:

    This shows he was not a fit person for the post of(S G), the person without guts. Do not look towards that what GOVT. has done, see what you have done for the country.

  32. CA. Ashok D SHah says:

    Mohan Parasarn ( S G ) . if he is so genuine and truly honest to the nation why did he continued for 10 years . When he was S G what prompted him to stay in the position. I feel he is also party in the whole process of weakening the judicial system .Till he was S G he wanted all the luxury being enjoyed and now while moving out he is criticising the out going govt. This is just to enjoy a soft corner from Mody govenment and consider him for some future engagement . But let me tell you Mr. Parasaan now this will not work since we have a MODY SARKAR , a man with vision , sincere ……………………………etc. no words to express

  33. Augustine Jose says:

    Who wants this kind of funeral speeches ? If Mr.Mohan Parasaran was a bold and straightforward individual, he ought to have taken up all those isssues, which he preferred to raise now at the time demitting his Office as SG, at the relevant time itself with the top functionaries of the Government to improve upon the situation and despite of his sounding the Govenment, if there was still no improvements he ought to have resigned as SG rather than hanging on the position and enjoying the benefits till the full tenure of the Government got over after 10 long years ! It is really SHAMEFUL for such functionaries to ventilate their views at the fag end of their tenure and think that they will be looked as “wise” people by the citizens of this country. Fortunately, the people of India are intelligent enough to understand this kind of unsolicited sermons given by those who were once an integral part of the same establishment.

  34. mahesh mundhra says:

    what was he waiting for ?
    why did he not resign when he was in chair ?
    i request you to ask him

  35. CA Murali Krishna Murthy says:

    We must appreciate that he has taken all the trials and tribulations of the office despite all odds that the was exposed. Yes, it is but natural to complain about the prevailing system. He has done his job exceedingly well to the best of his ability. His remarks are more of caution to his successor about the impending cooperation that he/ she may obtain from the government in the discharge of duties cast. Wish him good luck in his future endeavors.

  36. KRNARAYANA says:

    It is difficult to accept that it takes 10 years to arrive at such conclusions. In the hour of demitting office it would have been better for him to thank the officers of the government who have put in their best to provide all support to him, against all odds, because of which he could effectively represent in many cases.

  37. CA Avineesh Matta says:

    Problem what we as a country is facing today is that bureaucracy is afraid of taking bold and judicious decision fearing retribution from the powers that be. Each and every bureaucrat is trying to save his skin by taking safe positions. Though the country’s top law officer is not a bureaucrat in strict sense of the term, I do not understand why it took 10 long years for Mr. Parasaran to open up. He should have been forthright in his expressions and opinions at the same juncture, when he was faced with an unrighteous situation during his tenure as SG.

  38. K.VASANTKUMAR says:

    I am fully in agreement with Mr.Kishore Satwick. For his standing he could have easily came out. Instead he clung to the post and now crying foul. Most unfortunate and it looks as if there is no difference between a politician and a professional. A politician when changes party speaks ill of the party with which he was associate earlier. A professional has the advantage of resigning and coming out if he is not comfortable or things are not happening as he desired. Mr.Parasaran proved that he is an opportunist.

  39. prabhakar says:

    Mohan could not have criticized earlier in his avatar as SG- his father was appointed to the Rajya Sabha!!!

  40. gopal nathani says:

    there are lessons to be learned from what he says and lets not just critizise. At the same time we must not desrespect every constitutional decision by calling it unconstitutional. Even in theVodafone decision the judges lamented a view that tax laws should be stable. And most certainly rules of game cannot be made to change accordring to the wishes of foreign interests/companies to the detriment of wider public interest. lets hope the new government take stock of all this and not relent from taking these views forward.

    • Ashwani Joshi says:

      He should have resigned at that moment.

    • malavika says:

      Why should he not be criticized? Is he some Semitic prophet?

      ‘Constitution decision’ can also be critiqued, with logic, reason and common sense. The Justices also must justify their judgment and NOT act holier than thou. More imp, our ‘Milords’ must explain how and why they fast rack some cases, give bails on phones and accept ‘some’ PILs over others.

  41. shekhar says:

    These people make statement for publicity purpose. they are not Roll Model.

  42. A reader says:


    Lets not be so mean. There is no point in mistrusting everyone. If you have patience to watch the interview, you will find it genuine enough. In any case, MP has highest level of integrity as an individual and as a professional. You cannot belittle all this with such sweeping remarks.

  43. Kishor Satwick says:

    Mohan Parasaran’s article is lacks credibility. he never raised these issues when UPA was in power. He served them without a word of ddissent. What had prevented him from resigning as SG?

    It is a fashion to criticise the outgoing Government by taking high moral ground. But the people taking such belated high moral ground never show the courage to do so when the time required them to do so. When Justice Ruma Pal retired as SC Judge, she gave a speech in Tarkunde memorial highlighting 10 sins of the SC Judges. She did not elaborate why she kept quiet when she was the SC judge.

    It seems, the wisdom dawn on these people only at a convenient time. Their concerns therefore lack ‘conviction’.

    • SOundararajan says:

      He should have raised his voice when he was SG. Not now when he is quitting.This means he is after power,money and position and not for values!!

    • Parth Garg says:

      You put it so convincingly right Avineesh! Everyone of such grand standers do it only when he retires. Rare are people who can grab the nettle.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *