The Supreme Court on August 31 started pronouncing order on the sentence of Prashant Bhushan for Contempt of Court for his defamatory tweets. The order for the matter was reserved on August 25 by A bench led by Justice Arun Mishra. The bench also gave 30 minutes to Prashant Bhushan for him to think over his stand for not expressing regret about the tweets.
The Supreme Court remarked, “Freedom of speech cannot be curtailed but rights of others need to be respected.” The bench comprising of Justices BR Gavai, Krishna Murari and headed by Justice Arun Mishra has told Bhushan to deposit a fine of Re. 1 by September 15,failing to do which he shall be jailed for 3 months and banned from practice for a period of 3 years.
The bench took note in the judgement that Prashant Bhushan has refused to apologise or express regret over the matters notwithstanding several opportunities for his two tweets against the Judiciary. Prashant Bhushan took it to the twitter and said,“My lawyer & senior colleague Rajiv Dhavan contributed 1 Re immediately after the contempt judgement today which I gratefully accepted” along with a photograph holding a Re 1 coin.
The court also said, “Bhushan’s past conduct was also taken into account with the court observing that it had initiated contempt cases against Bhushan on previous occasions too for his statements… We gave him several opportunities to express regret…” It took the apex court 40 days to attain a conclusion.