Published On: Fri, Mar 6th, 2020

Another clip of Harsh Mander surfaces, SC seeks his response

New Delhi: Solicitor General Tushar Mehta informed the Supreme Court that another video clip of Harsh Mander has surfaced where he can be seen allegedly making derogatory remarks on the Supreme Court.

The government wants to shoot the messenger…I have been put in the dock

A bench headed by Chief Justice SA Bobde and comprising Justices BR Gavai and Surya Kant queried Mander’s counsel Karuna Nundy if she had filed a reply to the Delhi police seeking initiation of contempt proceedings against her client.

Senior advocate Dushyant Dave, representing Mander, strongly contended before the bench that it is important to read the entire speech, as it is neither contentious nor derogotary towards the apex court.

“The government wants to shoot the messenger…I have been put in the dock”, said Dave contesting Mehta’s argument.

Heated arguments broke out in the courtroom after senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan attempted to intervene. Mehta objected to it and so did Mander’s counsel.

The apex court asked Mander’s counsel to file response on the Delhi police affidavit and scheduled the matter for further hearing on April 15, after the court was informed that Mander was in the US.

Delhi Police on Wednesday urged the Supreme Court in an affidavit to initiate contempt proceedings against social activist Harsh Mander, who delivered a speech “instigating violence” to a huge gathering of people outside Jamia Millia Islamia in December 2019.

“This clip is freely available on social media. Harsh Mander is known for taking contemptuous stand and bringing the judiciary, as an institution, and individual judges to disrepute”, said Delhi Police in a two-page affidavit. The police also provided a copy of his speech in a pen drive to the top court.

Mander had moved the top court seeking an FIR against BJP leaders for making hate speeches and accused them of inciting riots. The police urged the top court to dismiss Mander’s plea with exemplary costs and initiate contempt proceedings against him.

“It is submitted that I have come across a video clip showing Harsh Mander delivering a speech which is not only inciting the violence, but is also seriously contemptuous as it makes derogatory remarks against the Supreme Court to a huge gathering of people”, said Delhi Police in the affidavit.

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