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HC holds Chandigarh man guilty of contempt for derogatory remarks

During proceedings of a case, Singh wrote a letter to the then district and sessions judge using derogatory language against the judicial officer, who was hearing the case.

punjab Updated: Aug 17, 2018 13:16 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
Chandigarh,derogatory remarks,punjab
(Representative image )

The Punjab and Haryana high court has held a Chandigarh resident guilty of contempt of court for using derogatory language against judicial officers.

The quantum of sentence for contemner Tejinder Singh will be pronounced on August 31. Singh faces up to six months in prison and up to Rs 2,000 in fine.

Singh was party to a matrimonial dispute being heard by a Chandigarh court in 2008. During proceedings of the case, he wrote a letter to the then district and sessions judge using derogatory language against the judicial officer, who was hearing the case.

The letter was forwarded to the high court, which then initiated contempt proceedings against Singh in 2009.

The proceedings were withdrawn in March 2010 after he submitted an unconditional apology, assuring never to repeat the misdemeanour. However, his estranged wife filed an application in HC in 2015 seeking revival of the contempt proceedings, stating that despite an undertaking in the court, he had not stopped making derogatory remarks against various judicial officers.

The contemner had argued that numerous lawyers have been writing against the working of the judiciary, and when that was not found to be contemptuous, any remarks made by him also could not tantamount to contempt.

The division bench of justices AK Mittal and Jaswant Singh said the grieving party cannot level allegations against officials without any proof. “Such conduct of the public at large has to be depreciated and the dignity of the judicial system has to be vindicated,” the court said.

“The argument that other legal luminaries have been writing articles against the judiciary and therefore respondent has done nothing new, cannot be accepted for two reasons. Firstly, one wrong cannot justify a second wrong, secondly, none of them had given an undertaking to the court that they would refrain from making comments upon judicial officers,” the court said.

The brashness and the manner in which allegations have been levelled cannot justify any argument or explanation, either legal or on merits, the court said.

First Published: Aug 17, 2018 13:16 IST