The Supreme Court on Wednesday said its power to punish a person for contempt cannot be taken away by enacting laws, Bar and Bench reported.
A bench of Justices SK Kaul and MM Sundresh held Rajiv Daiya, the chairperson of a non-governmental organisation named Suraz India Trust, guilty of contempt of court. The court held that he wasted the time of the court by filing multiple petitions with allegations against judges and court staff.
The Suraz India Trust had filed 64 public litigations, all of which were dismissed.
In 2017, the Supreme Court had fined the NGO Rs 25 lakh for filing frivolous petitions, according to Live Law. It had also barred the NGO from filing any case, including a public interest litigation, in any court.
However, the trust never paid the fine amount.
The organisation subsequently filed an application against the Supreme Court’s order. Responding to the application, the court said that Daiya was behaving as if “I will throw mud at all, whether it is the court, administrative staff or state government”.
“We refuse to back off,” the court said on Wednesday.
The court also directed that the sum of Rs 25 lakh be recovered from him in the form of arrears of land revenue. Daiya had told the court that he did not have the resources to pay the amount and that he would approach the president with a mercy plea.
Although the applicant apologised, the bench said he did so only “to get out of consequences, again followed by another set of allegations”.
The court directed Daiya to remain present before it on October 7 for his sentencing.
“The power to punish for contempt is a constitutional power vested with this court which cannot be taken away even by a legislative enactment,” the bench said, according to PTI.