'Supreme Court remained a mute spectator when Delhi burnt': Prashant Bhushan refuses to apologise | WeForNews | Latest News, Blogs ‘Supreme Court remained a mute spectator when Delhi burnt’: Prashant Bhushan refuses to apologise – WeForNews | Latest News, Blogs
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‘Supreme Court remained a mute spectator when Delhi burnt’: Prashant Bhushan refuses to apologise

Bhushan refused to apologise for his tweets stating that it fell within the domain of free speech and also cited the speeches on dissent made by sitting SC judges, Justices DY Chandrachud on February 15 and Deepak Gupta on February 24, when he was a sitting judge before retiring on May 6, to bolster his argument.

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Prashant Bhushan Lawyer

The Supreme Court (SC) remained a mute spectator as communal riots ravaged north-east Delhi, advocate Prashant Bhushan said on Sunday in his counter-affidavit filed in response to the contempt of court case initiated against him by the top court for his tweets against the apex court and the Chief Justice of India (CJI), SA Bobde.

Bhushan refused to apologise for his tweets stating that it fell within the domain of free speech and also cited the speeches on dissent made by sitting SC judges, Justices DY Chandrachud on February 15 and Deepak Gupta on February 24, when he was a sitting judge before retiring on May 6, to bolster his argument.

“Justice DY Chandrachud, while delivering the 15th PD Desai Memorial Lecture in the Gujarat high court on February 15, had expressed his anguish at the manner in which dissent was labelled as anti-national. Yet, a week later, when the Delhi riots were unleashed, with daily videos emerging of mobs tearing down and burning mosques, the police systematically destroying public CCTVs (closed-circuit TVs) and taking an active part in stone-throwing, the SC remained a mute spectator while the national capital burnt,” the affidavit said.

Bhushan had posted two tweets, one against the SC on June 27 and the second against CJI Bobde two days later.

Both these tweets had led to the contempt of court case against him for which he was served notice by the SC on July 22.

In his tweet on June 29, Bhushan had posted a photo of CJI Bobde sitting on a Harley-Davidson motorcycle, which belonged to the son of a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader, Sonba Musale.

Bhushan said that the CJI was riding a motorcycle without a helmet or mask, when he was keeping the SC shut, due to raging coronavirus disease (Covid-19), denying justice to millions.

He was referring to the fact that the SC was functioning in a restricted manner during lockdown restrictions due to Covid-19 and was hearing only a reduced number of cases via video-conference since March 24.

Bhushan, in his affidavit, offered a limited apology for that part of the tweet, which said that the CJI was not wearing a helmet stating that he failed to notice that the bike was stationary and Bobde was not riding it but only sitting on it.

“At the outset, I admit that I did not notice that the bike was on a stand and, therefore, wearing a helmet was not required. I, therefore, regret that part of my tweet. However, I stand by the remaining part of what I have stated in my tweet,” he said.

Earlier on June 27, he had tweeted that the SC’s role and four former CJIs in aiding the destruction of democracy will be taken note of by historians in the future.

This tweet, he said in his affidavit, is his impression about the manner and functioning of the SC in the past 10 years and especially about the role the last four CJIs that has led to the apex court failing to check executive high-handedness.

“Such expression of opinion however outspoken, disagreeable or however unpalatable to some, cannot constitute contempt of court. This proposition has been laid down by several judgments of this court and in foreign jurisdictions such as Britain, USA (United States of America), and Canada,” Bhushan contended.

The stifling of dissent under the watch of the SC has not only been adversely commented upon by the court’s retired judges, but even by the sitting ones during the tenure of the four CJIs, he added referring to the speeches by Justices Chandrachud and Gupta.

In defence of his perception that the SC aided in the destruction of democracy, Bhushan referred to the press conference held by four SC judges – Justices Jasti Chelameswar, Ranjan Gogoi, Madan Lokur and Kurian Joseph – in January 2018 against the manner in which cases were being assigned to select benches.

“So serious were the misgivings of the senior sitting judges that they (the four judges) felt compelled to disregard the code of judicial conduct to call a press conference and warn citizens of danger to democracy because of danger to a free judiciary,” Bhushan further submitted.

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Shaheen Bagh: Man held for raping woman on pretext of giving her job

The accused caught both her hands and forced himself on her. He later dropped the victim at her residence in Ghaziabad.

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ablaze rape case

New Delhi, Sep 27 : A 32-year-old man was arrested for allegedly raping a woman by luring her on the pretext of giving her a job in southeast Delhi”s Shaheen Bagh area, police said on Sunday.

On Friday, a woman, who resides in Ghaziabad and works at a factory, lodged a complaint where she alleged that while searching for a new job, she joined a WhatsApp group — ”Job for all”, a senior police officer said.

While chatting in the group, the accused called her and told her that he was a member of the group and wanted to help her get a new job. Later, they started chatting with each other, the officer said.

On Wednesday, the accused again contacted her, saying he had arranged a job for her and asked her to come to Abul Fazal Enclave in Shaheen Bagh.

She told him she would not be able to reach there that day , but he insisted.

She finally agreed and asked him to pick her up from Shastri Park metro station.

The accused took her at his house in Abul Fazal Enclave on his motorcycle, police said.

After reaching his house, he offered her some eatables but she refused to eat them.

She said she was not feeling well following which the accused offered to give her a massage which she again refused, police said.

Thereafter, the accused caught both her hands and forced himself on her. He later dropped the victim at her residence in Ghaziabad, police said.

“During investigation, the mobile number of the accused was found to be switched off. The victim identified the house of the accused in Abul Fazal Enclave, following which he was arrested,” Deputy Commissioner of Police (southeast) R P Meena said.

Sabri said earlier, he was working in private companies but during the lockdown, he lost his job and joined the group to get a job, the DCP said.

Through the group, he came in contact with the victim. On Wednesday, he called the victim and forced himself on her, police added.

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NCB chief Asthana in Mumbai, apprised of developments in case

Besides the NCB, the Central Bureau of Investigation and the ED are also probing his death.

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Rakesh Asthana

Mumbai, Sep 27 : With the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) questioning several top Bollywood divas as part of its investigation into the drug angle in actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s death, the drug law enforcement agency’s chief Rakesh Asthana arrived in Mumbai on Sunday to take stock of the probe.

According to NCB sources, Asthana, who flew from Delhi to Mumbai earlier in the day, met several officers and was briefed on the two drugs cases the agency had registered last month after the Enforcement Directorate (ED) wrote to it following the alleged chats of several Bollywood celebrities purportedly discussing drugs.

He was also apprised of the latest developments in the case by the NCB’s SIT.

The NCB questioned Deepika Padukone, Sara Ali Khan, Shraddha Kapoor and Deepika’s former manager Karishma Prakash on Saturday.

It had questioned Bollywood actor Rakul Preet Singh, Dharma Productions’ former executive producer Kshitij Prasad Ravi, fashion designer Simone Khambatta and Anubhav Chopra on Friday.

After being questioned for several hours, Kshitij was also arrested by the NCB on Saturday.

The agency has already arrested Sushant’s girlfriend Rhea Chakraborty, her brother Showik, the late actor’s house manager Samuel Miranda, personal staff Dipesh Sawant and several others.

Sushant was found dead in his Bandra flat on June 14.

Besides the NCB, the Central Bureau of Investigation and the ED are also probing his death.

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Karnataka braces for shutdown on Monday by farmers

The ryots and other organisations are also protesting against the farmers’ bills passed in Parliament last week, as they are alleged to be against their interests and welfare.

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Karnataka Farmers

Bengaluru, Sep 27 : Karnataka is bracing up for a day-long shutdown on Monday by thousands of farmers and others across the southern state in protest against the controversial farmers’ bills passed by the Centre and the state government last week.

“We have tightened the security and deployed additional police personnel in cities and towns across the state and stepped up vigil to prevent untoward incidents during the shutdown,” a state home ministry official told IANS here.

In an effort to prevent the shutdown, Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa urged the farmers to withdraw the shutdown call, as it would disrupt normal life and cause inconvenience to thousands of people in Covid times.

“As the bandh (shutdown) is uncalled for, I appeal to farmers and others to withdraw their call and discuss their problems with us,” Yediyurappa told reporters here.

The chief minister, however, said measures are being taken to ensure normal life is not affected and people are able to go to work by operating public services like buses and metro rail in the city.

The state legislative assembly on Saturday night passed the controversial bills to amend the APMC (Agriculture Produce Marketing Committee) Act and the Land Reforms Act amidst protest and walkout by the opposition Congress and the Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) members.

The ryots and other organisations are also protesting against the farmers’ bills passed in Parliament last week, as they are alleged to be against their interests and welfare.

Rejecting the chief minister’s appeal, about 50 farmers’ associations and other supporting organisations said they would observe the shutdown and court arrest in hundreds if the police disrupt their protest rallies and sit-in demonstrations against the state and central bills.

Though the chief minister explained to the farm leaders at a meeting here on Friday that the amendments to the APMC were to double their income by allowing them to sell their produce for the best price they get anywhere in the state or country, they refused to withdraw the shutdown call.

Terming the shutdown call illegal and against the Supreme Court orders, state revenue minister R. Ashok said state government and private offices would be open and public transport services like buses, autos and taxis would operate to ensure commuting.

“Strict action will be taken against those forcing people to observe bandh or disrupting normal life. Police has been told to ensure peace and maintain law and order across the state,” asserted Ashok.

Though the agitating organisations have exempted essential supplies and services from the dawn-to-dusk shutdown, private transport services like autos, taxis and buses are likely to stay away, as their unions are supporting the shutdown.

“Thousands of farmers, labourers, workers, traders and rural people will observe the shutdown by staging protest rallies and demonstrations against the state and central governments for their anti-farmer bills,” Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangh (farmers’ association) president Kodihalli Chandrashekar told reporters here.

The state government, however, failed to get the bill to amend the labour laws passed through the legislative council on Saturday though it secured approval in the assembly on Friday where the ruling BJP has majority.

“In the 75-member council, 14 members voted in favour of the Industrial Disputes and Certain Other Laws amendment bill, while 26 members of the Congress and the JD-S opposed it, causing embarrassment to the ruling BJP.

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