N Ram, Prashant Bhushan, Arun Shourie challenge Contempt of Court Act in SC

Aug 1, 2020

New Delhi:Former editor and Managing Director of ‘The Hindu’, N Ram, Arun Shourie, former Union Minister Arun Shourie, senior advocate Prashant Bhushan have challenged the constitutionality of Section 2(c)(i) of the Contempt of Courts Act 1971, which deals with the offence of criminal contempt on the ground of “scandalizing the court or lowering the dignity of the court”.

The writ petition filed under Article 32 of the Constitution challenges the provisions as being violative of fundamental right to free speech under Article 19(1)(a) of the Constitution, as being vague and subjective, and also as being manifestly arbitrary.

The petition filed through Advocate Kamini Jaiswalargues that the impugned sub-section is unconstitutional as it is incompatible with preambular values and basic features of the Constitution, it violates Article 19(1)(a), is unconstitutionally and incurably vague, and is manifestly arbitrary.

The apex court has initiated two criminal contempt proceeding against Prashant. On August 4, a bench led by Justice Arun Mishra is set to hear a 11-year-old contempt case take against him over his comments against former Chief Justices of India in an interview given to ‘Tehelka’ magazine in 2009. The second contempt proceeding is for two of his tweets about SC and CJI of which the SC had taken suo moto note. This case is listed on August 5.

–India News Stream