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Prashant Bhushan Contempt Case 2020

Case Summary


The case of Prashant Bhushan & Anr. (2020) refers to a significant legal proceeding in the Supreme Court of India involving Prashant Bhushan, a prominent lawyer and activist, and another individual. Prashant Bhushan was held in contempt of court for his tweets criticizing the judiciary, particularly regarding the conduct of Chief Justice of India and the role of the judiciary in upholding democratic values.


In August 2020, the Supreme Court of India found Prashant Bhushan guilty of contempt of court for his tweets and imposed a fine of one rupee on him. The court held that Bhushan's tweets undermined the dignity and authority of the judiciary and constituted a deliberate attempt to scandalize the court. However, the court also acknowledged Bhushan's right to freedom of speech and expression but emphasized that such rights were not absolute and must be exercised responsibly, particularly by members of the legal fraternity.


The judgment in Prashant Bhushan & Anr. (2020) sparked widespread debate and discussion about freedom of speech, judicial independence, and the boundaries of criticism against the judiciary in India. It raised questions about the balance between the right to criticize public institutions and the need to maintain respect for judicial institutions. The case underscored the importance of upholding the dignity and integrity of the judiciary while also safeguarding individuals' right to dissent and express their opinions freely.

List of Linked Cases:

Arundhati Roy v. Registrar, Supreme Court of India (2002)

In Re: Vijay Kurle & Ors. (2018)

Baradakanta Mishra v. Registrar of Orissa High Court (1974)

Brahma Prakash Sharma & Ors. v. State of Uttar Pradesh (1953)

Asim Pandey v. Supreme Court of India (2017)

P.N. Duda v. P. Shiv Shanker & Ors. (1988)