Prashant Bhushan moves SC, seeks deferment of hearing on sentence till review plea considered

The top court on August 14 held that Bhushan attempted to scandalise the entire institution of the Supreme Court.

NEW DELHI: A day before the scheduled hearing on quantum of sentence, activist-lawyer Prashant Bhushan who has been held guilty of criminal contempt for his two derogatory tweets, moved the Supreme Court seeking deferment of the proceedings till a review petition is filed and considered.

He has been convicted of contempt of court for his tweets against CJI S A Bobde and former four CJIs.

In a petition filed a day before the sentencing, Bhushan said he intended to file a plea seeking review of the August 14 order which convicted him of contempt of court for scandalising the judiciary.

“The applicant undertakes to file the review within 30 days from the date of judgment, as he is entitled under the law,” the application by Bhushan stated.

He requested the top court to defer Thursday’s hearing on the sentence “in the interests of justice pending consideration of the review application that petitioner intends to file within the limitation period…”

“If this Hon’ble Court proceeds with the hearing on sentence and imposes any sentence, the same may be directed to be stayed till the remedy of review is exhausted by the applicant,” Bhushan submitted adding, “The fact that there is no appeal against an order of this Hon’ble Court makes it doubly necessary that it takes the utmost precaution to ensure that justice is not only done but is seen to be done.”

On August 14, the bench had fixed August 20 to hear arguments on the sentence. The maximum sentence prescribed under Section 12 of the Contempt of Courts Act, 1971, is six-month imprisonment with a fine of Rs 2,000.

The top court on August 14 held that Bhushan attempted to scandalise the entire institution of the Supreme Court and said, “If such an attack is not dealt with, with requisite degree of firmness, it may affect the national honour and prestige in the comity of nations”.

In its 108-page verdict, a bench of Justices Arun Mishra, B R Gavai and Krishna Murari, had said: “The tweets which are based on the distorted facts, in our considered view, amount to committing criminal contempt.”

Source: The Indian Express


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