Attorney General Refuses Filing Of Contempt Plea Against Swara Bhasker
In a relief to Bollywood actor Swara Bhasker, Attorney General KK Venugopal has declined permission to an advocate to file a contempt plea against the actor for comments on the Supreme Court’s verdict in the Babri Masjid-Ram Janmabhoomi case.
Lawyer Anuj Saxena had sought the consent of the Attorney General for initiating contempt action against the Nil Battey Sannata actor. Comments on the highly sensitive case were described by the petitioner as “derogatory”, “scandalous” and an “attack on the institution”. He and others have alleged that Bhasker made derogatory statements regarding the case at a panel discussion organised by the Mumbai Collective on February 1, 2020.
Attorney General, in a letter to lawyer Anuj Saxena, said the actor’s statements appear to be a factual one and is a perception of the speaker. “I do not think that this is a case where the offence of scandalising the court or lowering the authority of the court would arise. I, therefore, decline consent to initiate contempt proceedings against Swara Bhasker,” Venugopal said.
What You Should Know:
- KK Venugopal refused Lawyer Anuj Saxena’s contempt plea against actor Swara Bhasker.
- The plea was filed against the actor for her remarks on the Babri Masjid – Ram Janmabhoomi land dispute case.
- The Attorney General’s nod is a must before filing a contempt petition in the top court.
Venugopal, in his letter also mentioned the actor’s statements, “We are living in a country where the Supreme Court states that the demolition of the Babri Masjid was unlawful and, in the same judgment, rewards the same people who brought down the mosque”. He also mentioned the actor’s second statement which said that “we are ruled by a government that doesn’t believe in our Constitution… we are ruled by police forces that do not believe in the Constitution… it seems we are now in a situation where our courts are not sure whether they believe in the Constitution…”
These statements were made by Bhasker in connection to the Supreme Court’s November verdict last year which ruled that the formerly disputed land in Ayodhya belonged to the deity Ram Lalla, or the infant Lord Ram. During the verdict, the court also said that the razing of the 16th century Babri Masjid in December 1992 was unlawful and a “calculated act of destroying a place of public worship”.
Swara Bhasker has actively supported women in Shaheen Bagh against CAA-NRC. In addition to that, the Jawaharlal Nehru University alumna has also supported the student community in the protests. The actor praised students for “waking up the entire country”.
The consent of either the Attorney General or the Solicitor General is necessary, under section 15 of the Contempt of Courts Act, 1971, for initiating contempt proceedings against a person. In the recent past, Lawyer Prashant Bhushan has been found guilty under the Contempt of Courts Act 1971.
Sanskriti Tiwari is an intern with SheThePeople.TV