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Friday, 2 June 2017

Peacock theory: When a legal eagle sings paeans to the national bird (The Times of India - 02 June 2017)

     
Justice Mahesh Chand Sharma, formerly of Rajasthan high court, has done more for India’s national bird, the peacock, than any other brother judge in the country. On the last day of his term, the legal eagle catapulted the peacock from the ornithological pantheon into the social media stratosphere by sharing his exceptional insights on this majestic bird. According to Justice Sharma, the peacock was declared the national bird because it did not need to mate with a peahen to procreate – the peahen simply drinks the tears of the peacock to get pregnant.

     No sooner had the learned judge made this stunning proclamation, the birds on social media started tweeting away with gay abandon. Suggestions ranged from conferring the Nobel Prize on Justice Sharma to possible aphrodisiacs for the national bird – Arijit Singh’s tearjerker songs being top of the list. Besides being an expert on all things birdy Sharmaji is very knowledgeable about cows, saying with all its holy qualities the cow should be declared the national animal – he actually made this suggestion while disposing of a petition in his court.

     Never mind that the tiger is genuinely endangered and majestically deserving of the protection accorded to it by the national animal status. In Sharmaji’s menagerie, celibate peacocks and holy cows rule the roost. True, some have also contended that the learned judge’s insights about the animal world are a bit batty. But in these post-truth times, these wise owls are missing the peacock for its tail-feather. In delivering a unique swan song, Justice Sharma has shown that birds of a feather do not necessarily flock together. For sometimes one does fly over the cuckoo’s nest.

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