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Contempt power being used as a sledgehammer: Kapil Sibal in defence of Prashant Bhushan

‘Why are Courts helpless when institutions that need to protect the constitution and the laws show ‘open contempt’ for both?’ he said.

SNS | New Delhi |

Congress leader Kapil Sibal on Saturday defending the lawyer Prashant Bhushan in contempt of court case, said, “Contempt power being used as a sledgehammer.”

Kapil Sibal, who is also a lawyer by profession, said in a tweet, “Contempt power being used as a sledgehammer Why are Courts helpless when institutions that need to protect the constitution and the laws show ‘open contempt’ for both? Larger issues are at stake History will judge the Court for having let us down.”

He had also posted relating to the matter on the occasion of Independence Day by saying that, “As we celebrate Independence Day Courts must never forget that their commitment to the cause of liberty and our constitutional values will be judged not by their words and homilies but by their actions in dealing with causes . Happy Independence Day.”

Lawyer and activist Prashant Bhushan was guilty of contempt of court for his alleged tweets on Chief Justice of India SA Bobde and his four predecessors.

The apex court had initiated suo motu contempt proceedings against Bhushan for publishing two tweets, the first tweet, which was posted on June 27 alleged that the last four Chief Justices had played a role in the “destruction of democracy” during undeclared “emergency” for last six years.

And the second tweet on June 29 allegedly said the present Chief Justice rode a stationary bike at Nagpur while keeping the apex court in lockdown and denying citizens their right to access to justice.

Advocate Bhushan has maintained that he was “exercising his freedom of speech” and giving his opinion about the functioning of the court, and it does not amount to “obstruction of justice”, necessitating the contempt proceedings.