SC issues contempt notice to NGO head for scandalising court

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New Delhi, Jul 11 (PTI) The Supreme Court has issued contempt notice to the chairperson of an NGO as to why he should not be proceeded against and sentenced for his endeavour to scandalise the court.

The apex court had in February issued bailable warrants against chairperson of NGO Suraz India Trust, Rajiv Daiya, for not depositing the cost of Rs 25 lakh for filing 64 PILs over the years without any success and 'repeatedly misusing' the jurisdiction of the top court.

A bench headed by Justices S K Kaul in an order passed on July 9 said all kinds of pleadings are being made and letter written by Daiya only to scandalise the court.

“On perusal of the record, we find that while the issue is simply of recovery of costs from the Trust/Daiya in terms of judgment of this court, all kinds of pleadings are being made, letter written only to scandalise the court and prevent the court from taking action to ensure recovery of costs. It is clearly an endeavour to browbeat the court and this court will not countenance the same.

'Let contempt notice be issued to Rajiv Daiya as to why he should not be proceeded against and sentenced for his endeavour to scandalise the court, returnable on August 4, 2021,” the bench also comprising Justice Hemant Gupta said.

The top court on December 5, 2017, had refused to modify its earlier order against the NGO for filing 64 PILs. It had dismissed the plea filed by the NGO to modify the apex court's May 1 order which also barred the organisation from filing any plea before any court across the country. Since the costs were not deposited with the Supreme Court Advocates on Record Welfare Trust, the matter was put up again before the apex court and notice was issued on September 29, last year. The top court had issued direction to the NGO to disclose the movable and immovable assets of the petitioner which was not complied with.

The apex court had on May 1, 2017 taken the punitive step and imposed a hefty cost on the NGO, saying waste of judicial time was a matter of serious concern. The top court had also said such practises have to be dealt with sternly to prevent misuse of the courts by such individuals 'who have nothing to do but only cast scandalous and imaginary aspersions'. On 64 occasions when the Suraz India Trust had approached the court, it did not get any success, the court had noted. Referring to the details of the matters filed by the NGO and the various orders passed by the apex court, the bench headed by the then Chief Justice J S Khehar had said it 'leaves no doubt that Suraz India Trust has repeatedly misused the jurisdiction of this court'. The apex court had on April 24, 2017, rapped the NGO and its chief for wasting judicial time. PTI PKS DV DV

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