Attorney General gives consent for contempt against derogatory video against SC judges
The Attorney General for India KK Venugopal on Tuesday gave consent to initiate contempt of court proceedings against journalist Ajeet Bharti in connection with a video posted by him on YouTube accusing Supreme Court judges of bribery, favouritism, and nepotism.
Terming the expressions used by Bharti as “vituperative, gross” and “highly derogatory”, AG Venugopal said, “There can be no doubt that the statements in question would lower the authority of the Court in the eyes of the public and obstruct the administration of justice.” The top law officer was responding to a letter written by a lawyer Kritika Singh who wrote to AG on July 1 highlighting the derogatory comments made by Bharti in his videos watched by about 1.7 lakh viewers.
For initiating contempt proceedings in the Supreme Court under Section 15 of the Contempt of Courts Act, one is required to obtain the consent of the Attorney General under Rule 3(c) of the Rules to Regulate Proceedings for Contempt of Supreme Court, 1975.
Singh in her letter provided English translations of Bharti’s statements along with the video link. After going through the material, AG Venugopal said, “The allegations made by Ajeet Bharti against the Supreme Court are, among other things, of bribery, favouritism, nepotism and abuse of power... I find that the contents of the video, which has been watched by about 1.7 lakh viewers, are vituperative, gross and are highly derogatory to the Supreme Court of India and the judiciary as a whole, being clearly intended to denigrate the courts.”
He proceeded on the basis that the video is authentic and said, “I have no hesitation in granting my consent for the initiation of contempt proceedings against Mr Ajeet Bharti based on the contents of the video posted by him.”