India, Aug. 24 -- August 18, 2011 was a watershed day in the Rajya Sabha. Soumitra Sen, a Calcutta high court justice, was on the verge of becoming the first judge in the country to be impeached. Minutes before the proceedings started on the matter, leader of the Opposition Arun Jaitley entered the Upper House with a large number of books. They looked heavy and new.

Later, Jaitley told curious reporters that he spent more than Rs 35,000 on books to prepare for the debate that closely resembled a courtroom drama with frequent references to evidence, legal provisions and spirited arguments from all sides. The motion was passed by the Rajya Sabha but Sen, accused of misappropriation of funds, resigned before it came up before the Lok Sabha....