CJI not same as SC, says defiant Prashant Bhushan | India News

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NEW DELHI: Standing agency on his two tweets criticising the CJI and his 4 predecessors which led to initiation of contempt proceedings in opposition to him, activist lawyer Prashant Bhushan defiantly detailed why he believes the Supreme Court has capitulated earlier than the excesses of a majoritarian authorities within the final six years.
In response to a two-page suo motu contempt discover from the SC, Bhushan filed a 132-page affidavit detailing quite a few instances, the overwhelming majority of which have been represented by him, the place, he alleged, the SC didn’t act by “abdicating its duty to protect basic constitutional values, fundamental rights of citizens and the rule of law”.
Citing the views of former judges Madan B Lokur and A P Shah, Bhushan defended his tweets as a bona fide expression of his views on developments during the last six years. He then went on to say, “It cannot constitute contempt.” He mentioned if the SC deemed his tweets as contempt, then “it would stifle free speech and would constitute an unreasonable restriction on Article 19(1)(a) (right to free speech) of the Constitution”.
He mentioned the CJI was not the Supreme Court and “raising of issues of concern regarding the manner in which a CJI conducts himself… or raising issues of grave concern regarding the manner in which four CJIs have used, or failed to use, their powers as ‘master of roster’ to allow the spread of authoritarianism, majoritarianism, stifling of dissent, widespread political incarceration and so on, cannot and does not amount to ‘scandalising or lowering of the authority’ of the court”.
Bhushan regretted the a part of his touch upon the CJI sitting astride a motorbike, linked to a BJP chief, when it was parked. However, he reiterated his criticism about protecting courts closed through the lockdown to deprive the needy of their proper to entry to justice and the incongruity of the CJI sitting on a motorcycle with out a masks with a number of folks round.
The activist-lawyer used the affidavit to stipulate how an elected majority ought to operate in a democracy by respecting minority rights. “In the last six years, majority rule has become majoritarian rule and electoral democracy has degenerated into electoral authoritarianism,” he mentioned.
“Minority rights are essential to any political system that calls itself democratic. Over the last six years, however, the constitutional rights of religious minorities have been systematically eroded, reducing them, especially Muslims, to the de facto status of second-rate citizens,” he added.
Bhushan mentioned the SC had turned a deaf ear to the intense assault on Jamia Millia Islamia and JNU and remained a mute spectator when Muslims have been systematically attacked, assaulted and murdered within the northeast Delhi riots.
Targeting BJP, he mentioned, “False information or fake news which is designed to generate hate, against Muslims in particular, is being generated and spread on a mammoth scale by the social media organisation affiliated with BJP and its assorted lapdog media.”
“During the term period of the last four CJIs, the country has seen abdication by the SC of its constitutional duty to protect basic constitutional values, fundamental rights of citizens and the rule of law… The court surrendered and tyranny and majoritarianism gained a deep foothold in the country. The SC has not been able to stand up as a check on the excesses of the government.”
Bhushan mentioned the SC has adopted a respectful strategy to the federal government, which was stark through the lockdown. “It just deferred to the government’s wisdom without even seriously examining the violations of the rights of these people (migrant workers), leading to their destitution, starvation and forcing them to walk back home, sometimes thousands of kilometres,” he mentioned.

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