Supreme Court holds Bhushan responsible of contempt for CJI tweets

Satya Prakash

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 14

The Supreme Court at this time held activist-lawyer Prashant Bhushan responsible of contempt of court docket for his tweets towards Chief Justice of India SA Bobde and the final 4 CJIs.

A 3-judge Bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra mentioned, “The scurrilous/malicious attacks by the alleged contemnor No. 1 (Bhushan) are not only against one or two judges but the entire Supreme Court in its functioning of the last six years. Such an attack which tends to create disaffection and disrespect for the authority of this court cannot be ignored.” It mentioned if such an assault was not handled requisite diploma of firmness, it could have an effect on the nationwide honour and status within the comity of countries.

The Bench, which additionally included Justice BR Gavai and Justice Krishna Murari, will hear arguments on sentence on August 20. The most sentence prescribed beneath Section 12 of the Contempt of Courts Act, 1971, is six-month imprisonment with a nice of Rs 2,000.

Recently, Bhushan had tweeted, “The CJI rides a 50-lakh motorcycle belonging to a BJP leader at Raj Bhavan Nagpur (sic), without a mask or helmet, at a time when he keeps the SC in lockdown mode denying citizens their fundamental right to access justice!” In one other tweet, he had on June 27 mentioned, “When historians in future look back at the last six years to see how democracy has been destroyed in India even without a formal Emergency, they will particularly mark the role of the Supreme Court in this destruction, and more particularly the role of the last four CJIs.”

‘Attack Created disaffection, can’t ignore’

Such an assault which tends to create disaffection and disrespect for the authority of this court docket can’t be ignored. SC Bench

Prominent instances previously

EMS Namboodiripad (1971)

On Nov 9, 1967, Kerala CM EMS Namboodiripad described judiciary as ‘an instrument of oppression’ and judges as ‘dominated by class hatred, class prejudices’. The SC imposed Rs1,000 nice or easy imprisonment for a month

Arundhati Roy (2002)

Activist-author Arundhati Roy accused the SC of exhibiting ‘disquieting inclination… to silence criticism and muzzle dissent, to harass and intimidate those who disagree with it…’. The SC despatched her to jail for a day & imposed Rs2,000 nice

Justice Karnan (2017)

Calcutta HC Judge CS Karnan levelled allegations of graft towards sure judges and handed orders towards then CJI JS Khehar and 6 different judges. SC Bench convicted him of contempt of court docket and sentenced him to six-month jail

Remarks that drew SC ire: In June 27 tweet, Bhushan alleged previous 4 CJIs performed a job in ‘destruction of democracy’. On June 29, he claimed ‘present Chief Justice’ rode bike ‘while keeping the apex court in lockdown’

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