Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted in 1948, bestows upon us the right to freedom of opinion and expression. This right includes the freedom to hold dissent opinions without interference and seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media, regardless of frontiers. It’s doleful to see our rights being curtailed day by day and one is admonished severely for the same. On 20th August, 2020, the Supreme Court refused Prashant Bhushan’s plea to adjourn the hearing. The Court’s imputation of Mr Bhushan in a trivial offence of contempt of court has said that his tweets, two of them, have defaced the reputation of the majestic and most powerful court.
According to a 2019’s appraisal, Twitter users reckon to be only 34 million, out of which Mr Bhushan just has 1.6 million followers — and people are oblivious to Tweets nowadays.
The Shiv Shankar (1988), Rachapudi Subba Rao (2004) and Kedar Nath Singh (1962) cases where the Supreme Court had declared that a critic cannot be punished as recalcitrant if they don’t impair and hamper the administration of justice in actual are some of the sine qua non judgements to be taken into consideration in deciding the fate of this case. Taking into account these yore verdicts, we can only hope that the Court absolves Bhushan of the allegation and restores the freedom of speech of Indian citizens again.