New Delhi: A petition has been filed before the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court amid growing public outrage against the remarks of judges against former BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma. Earlier today, a vacation bench of the apex court severely criticised former BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma and blamed her for the Islamic terrorist attack which took place in Udaipur in which an innocent Hindu tailor was beheaded.
The petition filed by a social activist Ajay Gautam sought the withdrawal of the judges’ controversial remarks against Nupur Sharma. In a letter petition to CJI NV Ramana, Gau Mahasabha leader Ajay Gautam requested for orders to withdraw the oral remarks made by the Bench of Justice Surya Kant and Justice J. B. Pardiwala.
The petition also claimed that Nupur Sharma will be denied a fair trial after the oral observations of the Judges. The petitioner stated that the observations made by the Court are unwanted, uncalled for, without any merit and liable to be withdrawn. “Whether without trial or appeal or any judgment or finding of any court can this court made such statements which effect merit of the case as well as trial?,” Ajay asked the CJI in the petition.
Speaking to Times Now over the issue, Ajay Gautam said that it was shocking that the judges made the comments when no investigation or no court has decided whether Nupur Sharma is guilty or not. He said that everyone including the judges must follow the rule of law, and the rule of law does not permit such observations, and it is wrong to blame Nupur Sharma for the violence.
The petitioner also said that the observation of the judges justified the brutal beheading of Kanhaiya Lal, gave clean chit to the killers justifying their motif.
While rejecting the writ petition of Nupur Sharma to club all FIRs against her and transfer them to Delhi, the bench today observed that “She actually has a loose tongue and has made all kinds of irresponsible statements on TV and set the entire country on fire. Yet, she claims to be a lawyer of 10 years standing… She should have immediately apologised for her comments to the whole country.”
“She should have gone to the TV and apologised to the nation,” said Justice Kant. “She was too late to withdraw… and that too she withdraws conditionally, saying if sentiments hurt,” the bench added.
Meanwhile, the controversial remarks by the judges drew a wide range of criticism from the netizens. One Twitter user wrote, “Is this sharia court? Nupur had come with a demand for shifting her petitions to Delhi. If not, they would have been forbidden to do so. What is the need to say all this? She is being made guilty without a hearing.” Some netizens were also seen asking that if Nupur Sharma is responsible for Kanhaiyalal’s death, then who is responsible for the murder of Kamlesh Tiwari and Kishan Bharwad? One of the users said, “The judges have convicted Nupur, one of them is Justice Pardiwal, who has been a Congress MLA from 1989 to 1990, and the other is Justice Surya Kant, who has been subjected to serious allegations of corruption, due to which Justice AK Goen had also opposed his appointment.”
Some of the netizens also recalled a piece of valuable advice given to the judges by the President of India.
Notably, in November last year, President Ram Nath Kovind called upon judges “to exercise utmost discretion in what they say in courtrooms”. Speaking at the valedictory session of the Constitution Day celebrations, organised by the Supreme Court in 2021, the President said: “In Indian tradition, judges are imagined as a model of rectitude and detachment more akin to sthitpragya (steady wisdom)… We have a rich history of legions of such judges known for remarksfull of sagacity and conduct beyond reproach, which have become the hallmark for the future generations.”
Stressing that “there is no doubt that you have set for yourself a high bar”, the President said: “Hence, it is also incumbent upon judges to exercise utmost discretion in what they say in courtrooms. Indiscreet remarks, even if made with a good intention, give space for dubious interpretations to run down the judiciary.”