Contempt Case Against Prashant Bhushan LAW INSIDER IN

PRASHANT BHUSHAN

Advocate

 

NAME: Prashant Bhushan

DATE OF BIRTH: 15th of October 1956.

PLACE OF BIRTH: Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh, India.

PARENTS: Shanti Bhushan, Adv. Supreme Court (Father) and Kumud Bhushan (Mother)

SIBLINGS: Three (two brothers & one sisters).

SPOUSE: Deepa Bhushan.

CHILDREN: Three

SCHOOL(s): Not Known

COLLEGE(s):

  1. St. Joseph’s College, Allahabad.
  2. Indian Institute of Technology, Madras (Drop-out)
  3. University of Allahabad.
  4. Princeton University, USA.
EDUCATIONAL QUALIFICATION(s):
  1. Graduation with Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy, Political Science and Economics.
  2. Bachelor’s degree in Law i.e. LLB.

PROFESSION: Advocate, Legal Activist, Politician.

OCCUPATION: Advocate-on-Record.

DESIGNATIONS:
  1. Co-founding member of Aam Aadmi Party.
  2. Co-founder of Swaraj Abhiyan.
  3. Founder of Samabhaavana Institute.
  4. Advocate-on-Record, Supreme Court of India.
BOOK(s):
  1. The Case that Shook India (1974).
  2. ‘Bofors: the selling of a nation (1990).

AWARD(s): N/A

NET WORTH: 59 crore INR (approx.)

Prashant Bhushan is a veteran advocate of Supreme Court, a social activist, a critic, a politician. He is a personality of full of social activism. He has a strong family background in the legal fraternity.

His father is also a veteran Supreme Court advocate and was served as a Law Minister of India during the Morarji Desai regime.

Inspired by his father, he was much participated as a social activist lawyer, since the very starting from his legal career. His main area of participation is public interest issues related to civil liberty, human rights, corruption, socio-economic rights of the poor, or an environmental cause etc.

The elevation came in Bhushan’s life when he joined the Team Anna and became a major part of the India Against Corruption Movement (IAC) during the Anna Hazare’s campaign.

After the split in IAC, he joined and form the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) with Arvind Kejariwal but in 2015, he made several allegations against the party’s leadership and left the political career with AAP.

He owned and participated as an active member of several public policies think tanks, NGOs, Civil Societies. He witnessed his whole career very prone towards controversies.

LEGAL BACKGROUND:

  1. SUO MOTO CONTEMPT PETITION IN 2009

In Re: Prashant Bhushan and Ors 2010 SCC OnLine SC 47

While giving interview to Tehalka Magazine in 2009, Prashant Bhushan made some allegations remarks against ex-CJIs. He allegedly said that “half of the last 16 CJIs were corrupt and I have no evidences regarding the same”.

Against these derogatory statements towards higher level judiciary, the contempt plea against him was moved by the senior advocate Harish Salve in the Supreme Court who assisted the Court as amicus curiae.

Recently, Supreme Court again reopens the case to hear the 11 years old matter and agreed with contentions of the defense counsel, Senior advocate Rajeev Dhawan, the apex court asked the Attorney General K.K. Venegopal Rao to assist the court in determining the larger issues in the 2009 contempt case. Further, the court in the order dated 10/09/2020, 2020 SCC OnLine SC 732 adjourned the hearing till second week of October i.e. 12/10/2020.

FIR LODGED IN THE CIVIL LINES POLICE STATION, MUZAFFARNAGAR (U.P.)

In April 2017, A FIR was lodged against Prashant Bhushan by the Hindu MahaSabha in the Civil Lines, Police Station Muzaffarnagar (U.P.) for his derogatory tweets. In the tweets he allegedly hurting religious sentiments over his “offensive remarks against Lord Krishna”.

He tweeted “Romeo loved just one lady, while Krishna was a legendary eve-teaser. Would Adityanath have the guts to call his vigilantes anti-Krishna squads?” Basically, the tweets were regarding the U.P. Government’s Anti-Romeo squad policy.

Prashant Bhushan tried to made comment on the said policy. But later on, he deleted those tweets and apologized for the same.

SUO MOTO CONTEMPT PETITION IN 2020

In Re: Prashant Bhushan and Anr, [2020] 7 MLJ 193 OR (MANU/SC/0653/2020).

On 27th & 29th of June 2020, Prashant Bhushan allegedly made two derogatory tweets against judiciary.

In the first tweet he specifically marked the role of Supreme Court in the last 6 years, particularly last 4 CJIs for the reason behind destruction of democracy in India even without a formal emergency and in the second tweet he made comment on incumbent CJI Justice Bobde’s viral photo of astride a Harley Davidson bike and accused CJI riding a motorcycle without a helmet or a face mask during the pandemic.

Although later on he apologized for his second tweet on CJI’s photo. Against

these tweets the contempt plea against him was moved by the lawyer Mehek Maheshwari in the Supreme Court.

The apex court after taking suo moto cognizance on 21st of July 2020, held Prashant Bhushan guilty of criminal contempt for his two derogatory tweets. The Supreme Court in its prima facie statement, said that “Bhushan’s tweets brought disrepute to justice administration & undermined the dignity of the CJI’s office. Further in the judgement dated 31/08/2020, the apex court fined rupee one token on him as punishment.