Supreme Court slams Prashant Bhushan, issues notice for tweets on ‘Sub-Judice’ CBI matter

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The Supreme Court issued a notice to Senior Lawyer Prashant Bhushan after Attorney General KK Venugopal representing the Centre accused him of contempt for his tweets on the appointment of Nageshwar Rao as the interim chief of the Central Bureau of Investigation. Prashant Bhushan has sought three weeks’ time to file a reply. The case will be heard again on March 7.

“He should have applied to get the minutes of the meeting instead. The time has come to put guidelines on whether lawyers can write on a matter that’s sub-judice,” said Attorney General KK Venugopal, who has filed a separate petition on the issue apart from the plea challenging the appointment Nageshwar Rao, as the Interim Chief of CBI on January 10 by high powered panel headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Though KK Venugopal said he was not pressing for punishment and a decision on larger issues, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said, “The Attorney General is magnanimous. But the Centre wants Bhushan punished as this is not the first instance he has done this.”
The Top Court Bench comprising justices Arun Mishra and Naveen Sinha slammed Prashant Bhushan for passing comments on Sub-judice matter. The Bench further said it would deal with the larger question of whether it is open for lawyers or any other person to criticize the court in a sub judice matter which would lead to influencing public opinion.
The Bench said, ‘Issue required to be heard in Length, and notice issue on this regard’
Nageshwar Rao was appointed as CBI interim Director for the Second time on January 10 by the panel that sacked the then CBI Boss Alok Verma.

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