The Attorney General of India KK Venugopal on Sunday has dismissed the petition to initiate criminal contempt proceedings against the actor Swara Bhaskar for her comments over the Supreme Court’s verdict on the Babri Masjid demolition.
The petitioner contended that Swara Bhaskar had made “derogatory and scandalous” statements against the Supreme Court on its verdict in the Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid title dispute case of Ayodhya.
On the petition, Attorney General KK Venugopal said the statement was the perception of the speaker on the judgment of the Supreme Court and does not offer any comment on the Supreme Court itself or say anything that would scandalise or tend to scandalise the authority of the Supreme Court.”
“In my opinion, this statement does not constitute criminal contempt,” the Attorney General said.
According to Section 15 of the Contempt of Courts Act 1971, for initiating contempt proceedings against a person, the consent of either Attorney General or the Solicitor General is necessary.
The plea cited that in February, a society identified as Mumbai Collective organised a conference in which Bhaskar was a panelist and while addressing the conference, she made a statement derogatory and scandalous in nature, putting a big question on the judiciary and its integrity to the Constitution.
It claimed that Bhaskar had made “derogatory and scandalous” statements against the courts in the country and mentioned the Ayodhya case judgement.
“Moreover, the alleged contemnor (Swara Bhaskar) seemingly provoking the address to resist against the judicial institution of this nation… objectionable statement is not only a cheap stunt of publicity to gain brief applause but a deliberate attempt to turn the masses to resist and revolt against apex court,” said the plea.
The petitioner contended that Bhaskar’s statements intend to incite a feeling of no confidence amongst the public with respect to proceedings of the apex court and integrity of judges of the top court.
The plea has been filed by advocates Anuj Saxena, Prakash Sharma, and Mahek Maheshwari.