Supreme Court has on Friday issued show cause notice to comic artist Rachita Taneja over her tweets regarding the Supreme Court of India, asking her to file a reply within six weeks. The Court has directed Taneja only to file a reply, and has not mandated her presence before the Court.
A three-Judge Bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan, R Subhash Reddy and MR Shah had heard the plea filed seeking initiation of contempt proceedings against comic artist Rachita Taneja for her tweets against the Apex Court of India.
The Top Court has been approached by a law student seeking initiation of proceedings for criminal contempt against comic artist Rachita Taneja for her tweets concerning the top Court. In response to a letter written by a law student Aditya Kashyap, Attorney General KK Venugopal had granted consent to initiate contempt of court proceedings against comic artist Rachita Taneja, for a cartoon uploaded on her twitter handle that depicted the Bharatiya Janata Party, the Apex Court and a reporter along with a caption that read text “Tu Janta Nahi Mera Baap Kaun Hai”
The AG had also made note of another tweet that read “Arnab gets bail, real journalists get jail, independent judiciary is fail” along with a picture of Supreme Court with the engraving’ Sanghi Court of India”. The tweet by Taneja had come after the Supreme Court had granted interim bail to journalist Arnab Goswami, Taneja.
Attorney General KK Venugopal had stated that the tweet by Taneja implicates that Supreme Court is biased towards the ruling party and he is satisfied that each of the tweets with cartoons attached is in contempt of the Supreme Court of India.
According to Aditya Kashyap, Taneja’s tweets and posts scandalizes the Supreme Court, insinuates and attributes motives behind judgments of the Court clearly violating the line between humor and contempt of the Court. These posts not only erode the trust in the institution of justice by casting aspersions on the justice delivery mechanism, but also interferes with administration of justice. The tweets and posts are based on the distorted facts, inspired by malice, and amount to committing of ‘criminal contempt.
Kashyap’s plea, filed through Advocate Namit Saxena, states that Taneja’s posts in form of cartoons and caricatures have shaken public’s trust and confidence in the judicial system of our constitutional democracy by directly attacking and making insinuations against the Apex Court. The plea has urged the Court to take cognizance of the matter under Section 15(1)(b) of the Contempt of Courts Act, 1971 read with Rule 3(c) of the Rules to Regulate Proceedings for Contempt of the Supreme Court 1975 and initiate contempt proceedings.