The Supreme Court may no longer entertain bail petitions under Article 32 of the Constitution. Republic TV's Arnab Goswami was recently given bail under the aforesaid article.
A Bench headed by Chief Justice Sharad Arvind Bobde on Monday refused to entertain a bail petition filed by one Sameet Thakkar, who was arrested for making objectionable comments about Maharashtra chief minister and his son Aditya Thackeray on social media and told to approach the High Court.
Why are you coming here under Article 32 directly, the CJI asked advocate Mahesh Jethmalani who was appearing for Thakkar. Jethmalani said there are bailable offences and yet Thakkar was put in jail, treated inhumanely for a tweet and he was even paraded in public. He was arrested for calling Aaditya Thackeray a "baby Penguin."
Advocate Rahul Chitnis, representing the Maharashtra government, told the court that Thakkar’s remand ends on Monday and "we will not be opposing bail as his custodial interrogation is over." Thakkar was granted bail by a Mumbai court later in the day.
In another case, the Bench issued a notice to Uttar Pradesh Government for its response on the arrest of Delhi-based journalist Siddique Kappan on October 4 while on his way to cover the Hathras gang-rape incident, fixing further hearing on Friday.
A 3-judge Bench headed by the CJI, with Justices A S Bopanna and V Ramasubramanian as the two other judges, passed the order on a petition filed by the Kerala Union of Working Journalists, challenging arrest of Kappan, secretary of its Delhi unit.
In this case also, the CJI indicated that the petitioner should not expect any relief from the Apex Court as it would direct the matter to the Allahabad High Court instead of intervening, but it wants to first hear the state government.