The Delhi high court has sent a businessman to two weeks of mental treatment on Wednesday for recording court proceedings in his mini tape recorder.
Justice Suresh Kait said Deepak Khosla, who is fighting 20 cases in courts, "needed check up" at Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences (IHBAS), saying he had been continuously disrespecting the court orders telling him not to record proceedings.
The judge, who had seized the tape recorder on December 23, had told Khosla to appear before him on Wednesday. Terming the order "absurd" and an "affront on campaign for greater transparency in working of judiciary", his lawyer Prashant Bhushan said an appeal will be filed.
Bhushan said he will argue Khosla's review petition against an order of the court of August 2011. The then chief justice's bench had dismissed Khosla's plea for permitting lawyers and litigants to audio and video record court proceedings in high court and subordinate courts.
"An effort has been made to give sermon in the name of transparency. An individual sermon cannot attain status of law…such a direction cannot be issued in the absence of legislative enactment," chief justice Dipak Misra and justice Sanjiv Khanna had said adding Khosla, a businessman did not have a "legal right" in this regard.
Interestingly, while referring Khosla's plea to the chief justice's bench, justice SN Dhingra of the court (now retired) had said on February 28 last year that the "step will also be deterrent against judges who do not come to courts on time as then there will be evidence against in this regard in the form of CDs and cassettes".
On April 8, 2010, Khosla had succeeded in taping at least 100 minutes of hearing of his case before the judges ordered seizure of the recorder.