When the dispute over the rent of an apartment with or without a toilet in a small town in Karnataka was settled by the Supreme Court last week, we should have rejoiced. But we didn’t. Apart from the epic tenacity of the loo-lord and the loo-tenant, who came to New Delhi all the way from their southern comfort (or in the case of the complaining tenant, discomfort), we would have congratulated the SC for proving that the highest echelons of law are equal and open to matters of sanitary happiness and bowelish bliss.
But equality and the tremendous virtues of flush toilets aside, isn’t the court a tad busy with cases that may be ‘more important’ than that of the non-installation of a toilet? So should two citizens seeking cistern justice fight over the cardinal question of whether the rent of an apartment with a toilet should be more than that of an apartment without a toilet and in the process clog the pipelines of the SC?
Our answer is a resounding yes. Empowerment starts from the bottom of the pile. And if the powers that be are unwilling to pile through the muck, it is heartening that the SC at least gives it due importance. And just for the record, our view is that the rent of an apartment is correlative to the presence of a flush toilet.