The Supreme Court on Wednesday issued a notice to lawyer Prashant Bhushan for accusing the Centre of misleading the top court regarding the appointment of Central Bureau of Investigation’s former interim chief M Nageswara Rao, NDTV reported.
The bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra was hearing the contempt petitions filed by the government and Attorney General KK Venugopal. It said the matter would be heard on March 7, ANI reported.
On February 1, Bhushan tweeted about the deliberations of the selection committee headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi that was tasked with appointing a new CBI director after the removal of former chief Alok Verma on January 10. The lawyer, quoting a letter written by Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge, had hinted at the possibility of the government submitting fabricated minutes of the committee’s meeting to the Supreme Court.
According to Kharge, the committee had never approved Nageswara Rao’s appointment as the interim CBI chief. Bhushan is representing NGO Common Cause in its case against Rao’s appointment. The selection committee appointed former Madhya Pradesh Police chief Rishi Kumar Shukla the new CBI chief on February 2. Shukla took charge of the investigation agency on Monday.
The government argued that the tweets “wilfully and deliberately” made a false statement in a case being considered by the court.
Corrections and clarifications: An earlier version of the story incorrectly stated that the court sent a contempt notice to Prashant Bhushan. The error has been corrected.