A judge's love of cricket

A judge

India was playing against Earle's Eleven on the Bombay Gymkhana ground and Earle had hit eleven over-boundaries. CK Naidu was the captain, and he...

top1India was playing against Earle's Eleven on the Bombay Gymkhana ground and Earle had hit eleven over-boundaries. CK Naidu was the captain, and he swore that he would hit more over-boundaries than Earle had done. CK Naidu was as good as his word. But before the promise was redeemed and the target overtaken, he and Amarnath had joined in a partnership which produced throughout most glorious cricket I (MC Chagla) have ever seen. They were still not out when stumps were drawn for the day; and so the innings were to be resumed the following day. The day every possible seat in the stands was taken up and crowds had collected outside the stands to catch what glimpse, they could of their batting. Some of us who did not have work in court had flocked to the Bar Gymkhans tent, and were intently watching the batting of our star performers.

Justice Rangnekar, who was also keen on cricket, felt that is was most unjust that he should sit in court, and listen to a dull and dreary case when exciting things were happening right across. As soon as he came to court, a lawyer called Vyas, who afterwards became a Presidency Magistrate, appeared before him. Rangnekar asked him how long the case was likely to last, and Vyas said that it would take the whole day. The judge then asked him whether all the witnesses were present, and he said 'yes". He then asked Vyas whether it was safe to discharge the Board for the day, which meant that no other case would be taken up except the one hand, Vyas again answered in the affirmative. So Rangnekar solemnly discharged the Board after 10 or 15 minutes. Vyas got up and said, "I am terribly sorry, my Lord, my principal witness has not yet turned up". To all appearances Rangnekar was greatly upset. He first read a homily to Vyas.

He gravely told the counsel that he should have a sense of responsibility. He reminded him that he had discharged the Board, and could not take up any other case, and it was a sheer waste of public time. He added that he would reluctantly have to rise.After this little drama was over, Rangnekar changed and promptly came to the Bar Gymkhana tent to watch Naidu and Amarnath batting. He them told us with all the self-satisfaction which comes from the knowledge of something well done, that he had pre-arranged the entire episode with the help of Vyas whom he had earlier called to his chambers. The subterfuge had worked and had allowed Rangnekar the supreme pleasure of witnessing a memorable display of cricket.

Here is an amusing story about Justice Rengnekar of the Bombay High Court taken from "Roses in December" by MC Chagla � A Bhavan's Publications
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