Updated: January 22, 2022 7:45:24 am
ATTORNEY GENERAL K K Venugopal on Friday gave consent to a Mumbai-based activist to initiate criminal contempt of court proceedings against Yati Narsinghanand, saying his recent remarks about the Supreme Court were a “direct attempt to lower the authority” of the court “in the minds of the general public”.
The key organiser of the three-day conclave held last month in Haridwar where several hate speeches were made targeting Muslims and calling for violence against them, Narsinghanand was arrested on January 15.
Earlier this month, activist Shachi Nelli had written to the AG, seeking permission to initiate contempt proceedings against Narsinghanand for his remarks in an interview that “went viral” on social media on January 14.
“On being asked about the court proceedings in the Haridwar hate speech case, Yati Narsinghanand went on to state that ‘we have no trust in the Supreme Court of India and the Constitution. The Constitution will consume the 100 crore Hindus of this country. Those who believe in this Constitution will be killed. Those who believe in this system, in these politicians, in the Supreme Court and in the Army will all die the death of a dog’,” Nelli said in her letter.
Best of Express Premium
“In another clip from the same conversation, Yati Narsinghanand, when asked about the arrest made by the police in the case, goes on to say that ‘when Jitendra Singh Tyagi went by the name Wasim Rizvi and wrote his book, not a single policeman, not one of these ‘hijde’ policeman or politician had the courage to arrest him’,” says the letter.
Nelli said Narsinghanand’s remarks sought “to undermine the majesty of the institution and the authority vested in the Supreme Court of India”. It was “a vile and clear attempt at interfering in the course of justice by means of abusive rhetoric and baseless attacks on the integrity of the Constitution and the courts” and “any such attempt to harm the majesty of the institution and diminish the faith that citizens of India have in the court can result in complete chaos and anarchy,” she said.
Responding to the letter, the AG said he had “watched the video of the statements of Yati Narsinghanand which have been explained to me”. “I find that the statement made by Yati Narsinghanand that ‘those who believe in this system, in these politicians, in the Supreme Court and in the Army will all die the death of a dog’ is a direct attempt to lower the authority of the Supreme Court in the minds of the general public”. Granting sanction, the AG said “this would certainly amount to contempt of the Supreme Court of India”.
Under Section 15 of The Contempt of Courts Act, 1971, the consent of the Attorney General or Solicitor General is required before the Supreme Court can take cognizance of a contempt of court plea by a private individual.
🗞 Subscribe Now: Get Express Premium to access our in-depth reporting, explainers and opinions 🗞️
- The Indian Express website has been rated GREEN for its credibility and trustworthiness by Newsguard, a global service that rates news sources for their journalistic standards.