The International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) urges for a review of criminal contempt laws in India
Part of: GS Prelims and GS-II- International relations; Important Organisations; Judiciary
- The International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) has urged for a review of criminal contempt laws in India,
- It has expressed its concerns over the Supreme Court’s decision to convict Advocate Prashant Bhushan for criminal contempt.
- For the ICJ, the conviction appears to be inconsistent with international standards on freedom of expression and the role of lawyers.
- It goes against the general protection of free speech and expression in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
- It is also inconsistent with the freedom of expression law guaranteed by the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
- It goes against the principles enshrined under the UN Basic Principles on the Role of Lawyers.
Important value additions
Contempt of Court
- Article 129 and 215 of the Indian Constitution empowers the SC and High Courts respectively to punish people for their respective contempt.
- Article 142: It empowers the SC to punish for its contempt.
- However, what is contempt of court per se has not been defined by the Indian Constitution.
- The Contempt of Court Act, 1971, elaborately deals with the concept of contempt of court.
- The Act divides contempt into civil and criminal contempt.
Do you know?
- The SC had recently found Prashant Bhushan guilty of ‘scandalizing the court’ on a suo-motu consideration of his two tweets. It has fined him with Rs. 1.
To understand the controversy, click here.