SC decides to refer 2009 contempt case against Prashant Bhushan to another bench.

The Supreme Court today decided that the 2009 contempt case against lawyer Prashant Bhushan and journalist Tarun Tejpal deal with certain larger questions related to freedom of speech and leveling of corruption charges against the judiciary. The apex court had issued a contempt notice to Prashant Bhushan and editor of magazine Tarun Tejpal, in November 2009, for allegedly casting defamatory remarks on some former top court judges in an interview to a news magazine.

A bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra was told by senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan, appearing for Prashant Bhushan, that there were as many as 10 questions of constitutional importance that have been raised by him and they needed to be dealt by a Constitution bench.”These are broader issues that need to be deliberated at length. We can have some amicus and it can be adjudicated by an appropriate bench,” said the bench, which also comprised Justices B R Gavai and Krishna Murari. “The matter is pending for a long time and it is listed before the appropriate bench on September 10,” the bench said in a hearing conducted through video conferencing.Justice Mishra, who is retiring on September 2, said the matter will need time and observed “let us leave this to an appropriate bench”.

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