The Supreme Court held three lawyers, Vijay Kurle, Rashid Khan Pathan and Nilesh Ojha guilty of contempt against the judges of the Supreme Court. To list, Justices Deepak Gupta and Aniruddha Bose passed the order.
On March 12, 2019, Advocate Mathews J Nedumpara sentenced to three months in jail; by a Bench consisting of Justices Rohinton Fali Nariman and Vineet Saran. For the reason of attempting to intimidate judges in a matter related to the designation of senior advocates. The then Bench had taken note of a letter by Kurle, in the name of “Indian Bar Association” to President of India, the Chief Justice of India, and the Chief Justice of the Bombay High Court, seeking to sue the judges and withdraw them of judicial work.
Rashid Khan Pathan’s letter pursued similar orders against the judges for passing another order in a different matter, and he claimed to be the National Secretary of the Human Rights Security Council. The Bombay Bar Association stated that it believes that the Indian Bar Association is not a recognized Bar Association; but a self-concerning body launched by Advocates Ojha and Kurle.
Action for Contempt of Court
Thereafter, the bench took up a suo moto contempt case against the three advocates, even after the jail term ended.
“The relationship between the Bench and the Bar should be a cordial relationship with mutual respect for each other. Lawyers who try to threaten judges have to be dealt firmly and no sympathy can be shown to such lawyers. Such lawyers do nothing to help the legal fraternity much less the Bar,”- Supreme Court emphasized.
“The allegations that these Judges are trying to make the Court their personal property and are running a syndicate; and passing favourable orders to undeserving people to extort money are scandalous and scurrilous; and clearly they amount to contempt of Court,”- The division bench added.
Thus, the bench concluded, that upon reading the complaints together, it became obvious that Kurle and Pathan were fighting a proxy battle for Shri Nedumpara. Concluding that the advocates are raking up certain issues which only Shri Nedumpara could raise and they can’t.
The apex court will give the sentencing orders on May 1.