Image source: livemint.com
Comedian Kunal Kamra put out a series of tweets which apparently have come out as statements aimed at raising questions about the freedom of the apex court. As a person who obtained enjoyment seeing Editor-in-chief of Republic Media Arnab Goswami being harassed by the Maharashtra government, he passed disgraceful comments against the apex court and its judges as the Supreme Court of India granted interim bail to Goswami. A day after Attorney General KK Venugopal granted his consent to initiate contempt of court proceedings against him, Kamra tweeted that he would neither apologise or pay fine if he is convicted in the contempt case.
WHO IS KUNAL KAMRA?
Kunal Kamra is an Indian Standup Comedian who is known for his observational comedy about absurdities of life. In 2017, he released a comedy video titled "Patriotism and the Government" on YouTube critcizing and mocking the Indian banknote demonetization, the government and the attitude of Indians towards the army. He received several death threats after uploading the video. In 2018, he shared that he was asked by his landlady to vacate the premise due to "political issues". On 28 january, 2020 he was banned from flying for six months by IndiGo for heckling TV news anchor Arnab Goswami on a flight from Delhi to Lucknow on account of “unacceptable behaviour”. Now he is facing contempt charges over a series of tweets criticizing the Supreme Court for granting TV anchor Arnab Goswami interim bail.
Stand-up comedian Kunal Kamra posted four tweets after Aranab Goswami was granted interim bail in a 2018 abetment to suicide case, with one of them showing morphed picture of the Supreme Court building swathed in saffron colour with the BJP flag flying atop it. Following this, the Attorney General K.K. Venugopal received a total of 10 letters seeking permission to initiate contempt of court proceedings against Kamra. A contempt plea has been filed against Kunal Kamra, a day after Attorney General gave his consent. The attorney general said that Kamra’s tweets were “highly objectionable” and it “constitutes criminal contempt of court. “This is a gross insinuation against the entirety of the Supreme Court that it is not an independent & impartial institution & so too its judges, but on the other hand is a court of the ruling party, the BJP, existing only for BJP’s benefit,” the AG said in his consent letter. His tweets “clearly cross the line between humour and contempt of court”. The self-proclaimed comedian said that he will not retract or apologize for his abusive tweets that tarnished country’s judiciary.
Kunal Kamra, was perhaps foreseeing such a controversy to boost his already diminishing ‘comedy’ career. Hs abusive advertisement has no takers anymore. He has now continued his outrageously distasteful remarks by saying that his views has not changed because the silence of the Supreme Court of India on matters of other’s personal liberty cannot go uncriticized.
“I don’t intend to retract my tweets or apologise for them. I believe they speak for themselves. I wish to volunteer having the time that would be alloted to the hearing of my contempt petition, to other matters and parties who have not been as lucky and privileged as I am to jump the queue”, he said.
Positioning himself to be some sort of a ‘victim’, he took to Twitter to play martyr in the entire saga by saying, “No lawyers, No apology, No fine, No waste of space”. Ironically, Kamra’s dramatics comes even before the initiation of contempt proceedings against him.
The infamous so called comedian described the Supreme Court of India as “Supreme Joke of India”. As per the law he is subject to the contempt proceedings. It is the need of the hour. However, senior advocate Mahesh Jethmalani advised people not to waste their time on the “lowly worm” by giving him attention. He had said that Kamra should not be given the attention that he seeks so desperately. But an example must be set of Kamra, so that individuals like him realise that maligning the sovereignty and integrity of the Supreme Court of India will not go unpunished.
1. "Instead of hearing contempt plea against me, hear challenges to electoral bonds, abrogation of Article 370," Kunal Kamra refuses to apologise, available at https://www.barandbench.com/news/litigation/kunal-kamra-statement-contempt-court-supreme-court-tweets-kk-venugopal
2. 'Don't Intend To Retract My Tweets Or Apologize', Kunal Kamra Responds To AG's Consent For Contempt Against Him, available at https://www.livelaw.in/top-stories/dont-intend-to-retract-my-tweets-or-apologize-kunal-kamra-responds-to-ags-consent-for-contempt-against-him-165857
3. CONTEMPT PETITION FILED AGAINST KUNAL KAMRA IN SUPREME COURT, available at https://www.legaleagle-lawforum.com/forum/legal-news-update/contempt-petition-filed-against-kunal-kamra-in-supreme-court