New Delhi: In the Maharashtra assembly breach of privilege motion case, the Supreme Court granted protection from arrest to Republic TV Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami on Friday (November 6). The apex court, however, issued a show-cause notice to the Secretary of the legislative assembly for his letter to the journalist purportedly cautioning him against disclosing house notice to the top court.
The Supreme Court directed the Secretary of Maharashtra legislative assembly to explain in two weeks as to why the contempt proceedings not be initiated against him.
The top court gave this order while hearing the plea by journalist Arnab Goswami against the show cause notice by the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly for initiation of breach of privilege motion against him for reportage related to the case of actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s death.
The SC bench of Chief Justice S A Bobde and Justices A S Bopanna and V Ramasubramaniancourt said, “This is a serious matter and amounts to contempt. The statements are unprecedented and have a tendency to bring the administration of justice into disrepute and in any case, may amount to direct interference in the administration of Justice.”
“The intention of the author of the letter seems to be to intimidate the petitioner because he approached this court and to threaten him with a penalty for doing so,” the bench observed.
In another case on Thursday, the Bombay High Court refused to grant interim relief to Arnab Goswami in a 2018 suicide abetment case even as a district court while sending him to two-week judicial custody a day earlier observed his arrest “appears to be prima facie illegal”.
The plea by Goswami, 47, for interim bail is currently at the high court for hearing today.