New Delhi: Veteran senior journalist N Ram, former Minister Arun Shourie and lawyer, Prashant Bhushan, on Thursday withdrew their petition from the Supreme Court challenging the constitutional validity of certain Section of the Contempt of Courts Act.
A petition had been filed before the Supreme Court by N Ram, Arun Shourie, and lawyer Prashant Bhushan, challenging the constitutional validity of Section 2(c)(i) of the Contempt of Courts Act, 1971 as being violative of Articles 19 and 14 of the Constitution of India.
The joint petition has been filed under Article 32 of the Constitution of India, challenging the constitutional validity of Section 2(c)(i) of the Contempt of Courts Act, 1971 as being violative of Articles 19 and 14 of the Constitution of India.
The petition, filed before the Apex Court, submitted that the impugned sub-section is unconstitutional as it is incompatible with preambular values and basic features of the Constitution, it violates Article 19(1)(a), is unconstitutionally and incurably vague, and is manifestly arbitrary.
First, the impugned sub-section failed the test of overbreadth. Second, the impugned sub-section abridges the right to free speech and expression in the absence of tangible and proximate harm. Third, the impugned sub-section creates a chilling effect on free speech and expression, the petition stated.
The impugned sub-section, despite setting out penal consequences, is incurably vague. lt uses vague terminology whose scope and limits are impossible to demarcate. ln particular, the phrase "scandalises or tends to scandalise" invites subjective and greatly differing readings, the petition stated. The impugned sections are thus, fall under the offence and violates Article 14 demands of equal treatment and non-arbitrariness, the petition stated.