On Thursday, Prashant Bhushan, Activist Advocate clearly refused to apologize to avoid punishment for his conviction for contempt. With this, he told SC (Supreme Court) that he would cheerfully accept the penalties decided for him rather than begging for the court’s mercy on him.
Bhushan was given a chance to rethink about his statements as he had the back of retired judges and attorney general K K Venugopal who filed a “don’t punish him” plea for Bhushan.
Bhushan told a bench of Justice including- Krishna Murari, Arun Mishra, and B R Gavai that for the past three decades, he has been trying to uphold the majesty of the SC “not as a courtier or cheerleader but as a humble guard”. Source: Times of India.
Further, he continued and said- “I find it hard to believe that the court finds my tweet ‘has the effect of destabilizing the very foundation of this important pillar of Indian democracy’. I can only reiterate that these two tweets represented my bonafide beliefs, the expression of which must be permissible in any democracy… Failing to speak up would have been a dereliction of duty, especially for an officer of the court like myself.” Source: Times of India.
His statement continued and read- “I can only humbly paraphrase what the father of the nation Mahatma Gandhi had said in his trial: I do not ask for mercy. I do not appeal to magnanimity. I am here, therefore, to cheerfully submit to any penalty that can lawfully be inflicted upon me for what the court has determined to be an offence, and what appears to me to be the highest duty of a citizen.” Source: Times of India.
On this, the bench cast aside the public support of Bhushan and said- “a lot of things are happening. You do not want us to tell you everything.” Source: Times of India.
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