National

A-G declines consent for contempt petition

Attorney-General Mukul Rohatgi declined consent to a petition seeking the Supreme Court to initiate criminal contempt of court proceedings against JNUSU president Kanhaiya Kumar and research scholar Umar Khalid, former Delhi University lecturer S.A.R Geelani, among others, for allegedly terming the execution of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru a “judicial killing”.

Under Rule 3 (c) of the Rules to Regulate Proceedings for Contempt of the Supreme Court, 1975, a petition filed by a third person alleging contempt should receive prior consent of the Attorney-General or the Solicitor-General in writing before the court takes action. This screening is part of a mechanism to avoid wasting the court’s time on frivolous contempt pleas.

“I have declined consent. I gave no reasons,” Mr. Rohatgi told The Hindu on Tuesday.

This contempt petition was mentioned before a Bench led by Chief Justice of India T.S. Thakur last Friday.

The Attorney-General’s refusal on February 22 coincides with the start of the Budget session. The Opposition and the Left parties are expected to take up the JNU row and question the way the government is dealing with it.

Also, the refusal comes at a time when the government and the Delhi Police are gearing up to fight tooth and nail Mr. Kumar’s bail before the Delhi High Court on Wednesday. Mr. Kumar is facing trial for sedition for his alleged involvement in raising anti-national slogans.

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Printable version | Mar 5, 2021 1:37:40 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/ag-declines-consent-for-contempt-petition/article8272701.ece

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