The Supreme Court will take up the bail application filed by sedition accused Kanhaiya Kumar today, on Friday. The JNU students’ union president told the court that since there is security issue, his lawyers cannot follow the usual procedure of approaching the lower courts first. He also contended that he may be attacked in the prison by fellow inmates, and fears for his life.
Top lawyers Raju Ramachandra and Soli Sorabjee will represent Kumar in the Supreme Court.
Senior advocate Vrinda Grover mentioned the matter before Chief Justice TS Thakur in the afternoon, and stated that the petition has only diary number and requested the court that Justice Chelemeshwar take notice of the petition today since the matter was listed for 2PM.
The CJI responded by saying that they may apprise the appropriate bench during the course of arguments.
The court was jam packed when the matter was being heard.
Meanwhile, senior advocate Hiren Rawal who was part of the panel that was rushed to Patiala House Court yesterday to take stock of the situation when Kanhaiya was produced, submitted the report on behalf of the team. The report, however, was not signed by another team member Ajit Sinha.
Delhi Police will file the report by 10.30 morning.
Bar Council of India also appeared in the court, and submitted that it will tender the report by Monday.
The court has directed that report should not be made public till it passes any order.
The main PIL filed by ex-JNU student ND Jayaprakash will be taken up on February 22.
In a related development, advocate Subhash Chandran who was assaulted on February 15, also moved a petition under Article 32, saying that the police did not register his complaint.
The story so far:
Patiala House Court sent JNU Students’ Union president Kanhaiyya, who has been charged with sedition to judicial custody till March 2. Kanhaiyya who was produced in the court after five days’ police remand, was also assaulted by a group of lawyers while he was being taken to the court.
The Supreme Court also ordered that the hearing on Kanhaiyya be adjourned in the current circumstances.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court also sent a team of five senior lawyers including ADN Rao, Rajeev Dhawan, Kapil Sibal, Dushyant Dave, Hiren Rawal, and Ajit Sinha to Patiala House Court following reports that stones were pelted on Kanhaiyya and a team of journalists.
Dr Rajeev Dhawan, Siddharth Luthra, Indira Jaisingh, Prashant Bhushan, Dushyant Dave appeared before Justice Chelemeshwar. They said there was serious threat to life of accused; stones were thrown at senior advocates and abuses were also hurled on them in the court.
The premises turned into a fortress as Kanhaiyya since he was to be produced in the court. Security was also beefed up inside and around the court as tempers ran high with lawyers shouting pro-India slogans. Some of them also displayed the Tricolour outside the court.
Delhi Police chief BS Bassi was asked to submit a written report on Monday’s violence at Patiala House Court.
The Supreme Court directed that the report by the committee and High Court registrar should be submitted in the court by 2.30 tomorrow. Delhi Police has been asked to tender the report by 10.30 Friday morning.
Listed under urgent hearing by Chief Justice of India TS Thakur, the Supreme Court started hearing the PIL filed regarding the violence in Patiala House Court on Monday. Senior advocate KTS Tulsi appeared on behalf of journalists. Prashant Bhushan submitted that in the Monday scuffle between journalists and lawyers at Patiala House Court, a particular lawyer with allegiance to a particular political party did this, and there is video footage as well as evidence. “It is unfortunate that the police are not taking any action,” he said.
Rajeev Dhawan, counsel stated that lawyers have no right to take matter in their hands. “Open court means it is open to public and press,” he further stressed.
Counsel Raju Ramachandran prayed that since the police are also present, due protection should be given to press, and access should be given to the press to meet the accused.
During the proceedings, a lawyer, Rajeev, shouted ‘Vande Mataram’ in the court, and managed to give a slip when the bench asked to produce him at bar. He was later produced before the court, and apologised.
Earlier, the Supreme Court allowed only five journalists to cover the proceedings at Patiala House Court but agreed to another 25 after request from the scribes.
The case will now be heard on February