Judgement of the Day - Prashant Bhushan Contempt Case

SUO MOTU CONTEMPT PETITION (CRL.) NO.1 OF 2020


Facts

Supreme Court in its suo moto case found Prashant Bhushan, an activist lawyer, guilty of Contempt of Court. Prashant Bhushan criticized the role of the Supreme Court and its judges in his tweets. He lambastes the role of the four preceding chief justice and said that it is the cause of the destruction of Indian Democracy. The court said that the tweets are based on distorted facts and it is the serious contempt of court. It is the malicious insinuations that may lead to loss of faith in the judiciary. The allegations against the top court had to be tackled more seriously so that it could not affect the national honour and prestige in the comity of nations. Prashant Bhushan said that he had no malafide intention, whatever he wrote was his opinion and he has right to do so as Freedom of speech and expression is guaranteed to him by Article 19(1)(a) of Indian constitution.


Judgement

Supreme Court held senior advocate Prashant Bhushan guilty under the offence of contempt of court. It was pronounced that senior lawyer need to pay Re 1 as fine and he may be imprisoned for 3 months if he defaults on the payment of the penalty. He may also be debarred from the practicing for 3 years if he failed to pay the aforesaid fine by 15th September 2020.

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