The Supreme Court Wednesday issued notices to Attorney General K K Venugopal and advocate Prashant Bhushan on the contempt proceedings it has initiated against the activist-lawyer for his alleged derogatory tweets against the judiciary. A three-judge bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra and Justices BR Gavai and Krishna Murari heard the matter.
The allegedly contemptuous tweets were critical of the top court and posted by Bhushan on Twitter on June 27 and June 29. One was a tweet questioning Chief Justice of India SA Bobde on riding a bike in Nagpur.
According to Bar and Bench, Justice Mishra also took note of another tweet posted by Prashant Bhushan on June 27. "When historians in future look back at the last 6 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, & more particularly the role of the last 4 CJIs,â€ť Prashant Bhushanâ€™s tweet states.
The apex court directed that Twitter Inc be made a party, instead of Twitter India, to the contempt proceedings it has initiated suo motu (on its own) and asked the US-based firm to file a response in the matter.
A bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra was told by Twitter's counsel that if the top court directs, then they would disable the alleged contemptuous tweets of Bhushan.
The bench, which asked the Attorney General to assist in the matter, has posted the case for hearing on August 5.
Bhushan has been raising issues pertaining to the judiciary and recently was critical and vocal of the way in which the top court handled the matters related to migrant workers amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Earlier also, the apex court in November 2009, had issued contempt notice to Bhushan for allegedly casting aspersions on some sitting and former top court judges in an interview to a news magazine.
The matter which was not heard by the apex court as per the record available on the top court's website since May 2012 is now listed for hearing on July 24.
The pending contempt matter of 2009 against Bhushan will also be heard by a bench headed by Justice Mishra on Friday as per the list of business of July 24, uploaded on the apex court website.
With PTI inputs