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Miscellaneous - This Day That Age

dated March 15, 1952: Law and Life

Speaking at the Diamond Jubilee Celebrations of the Madras Law College, on March 14 at Madras, Mr. C. Rajagopalachari pointed out that a nation would be decadent if obedience to law depended on brute force and the power of the State to enforce it. He emphasised the need for present day students studying standard text-books on law. Students should be examined in such a way as to find out if their study of the principles of law was adequate, instead of their getting a pass by answering questions merely from memory.

"What is the difference between law as a science and law as a profession?" Mr. Rajagopalachari asked, and said: "Science relates to truth, whereas profession it related to work, an avocation that you take up in life and possibly what you earn from it. If in dealing with law we are dealing with truth, what exactly are we to find? We find out that laws of human behaviour and the requisite regulations that should be made in order to make the behaviour conform to stability of society. That nation is decadent, you may take it for granted, wherein obedience to law must depend on brute force and the power of State to enforce it. It is only when men know how to behave by the inner urge of their own mind and how to regulate and restrain themselves automatically by their own conscience and drive till they could cease to depend upon the State to exercise its force and its coercion, that nation will be stable, happy and prosperous."

Mr. P.V. Rajamannar, Chief Justice of the Madras High Court, presided over the function. In his concluding remarks, Mr. Rajamannar said Dean Swift had described the Bar as "a society of men bred up from their youth in the arts of proving, by words multiplied for the purpose, that white is black and black is white according as they are paid." That was a very wrong and misleading conception of lawyers. Lawyers were a very useful section of the community, though they generally came in only when one was in trouble and though they insisted upon being paid fees for their services. But they could say the same thing of members of other professions like doctors.

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