A law student has filed a petition in the Supreme Court for the initiation of contempt proceedings against cartoonist Rachita Taneja for her tweets criticising the judiciary, Live Law reported on Monday.
Kashyap, in his petition filed on Saturday, alleged that Taneja’s social media posts shook public faith in the judiciary and democracy by “directly attacking and making insinuations” against the Supreme Court.
He added that Taneja was a social media influencer with thousands of followers across different platforms and her posts were being widely shared by people attacking the judiciary, according to PTI.
Attorney General KK Venugopal had last week approved Kashyap’s request to initiate contempt proceeding against Taneja, who is the creator of webcomic Sanitary Panels.
The case against Taneja is related to two tweets she made about the Supreme Court granting bail to Republic TV Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami in an abetment to suicide case from 2014.
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The attorney general, while giving his approval to begin proceedings against Taneja on December 1, had called her tweets an “audacious assault” on the judiciary. He added that one of the tweets, a cartoon that Taneja posted from the official handle of Sanitary Panels, clearly implied that the Supreme Court was biased towards the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party.
Venugopal said that Taneja’s tweet was “clearly calculated” to undermine public confidence in the impartiality of the Supreme Court of India. “I am satisfied that each of the tweets with cartoons attached is in contempt of the Supreme Court of India, hence I grant my consent,” he added.
On November 12, Venugopal had given his consent to begin contempt proceedings against comedian Kunal Kamra. He had also spoken out against the Supreme Court granting bail to Goswami. Less than ten days later, the attorney general, Venugopal gave approval for fresh proceedings against the comedian for a tweet directed at Chief Justice of India SA Bobde.
Goswami and two other people – Feroz Shaikh and Nitesh Sarda – had allegedly failed to pay over Rs 5 crore to an interior designer named Anvay Naik, the managing director of Concorde Designs Private Limited. Naik and his mother were found dead in their home in Kavir village near Mumbai in 2018. A suicide note found at the site named Goswami, Shaikh and Sarda.