SC is there to protect, if state targets individuals: Top court

SC is there to protect, if state targets individuals: Top court

New Delhi: The Supreme Court Wednesday said if the State targets individuals then they must realise that the apex court is there to protect them and asked the high courts to not fall short of exercising constitutional duties in protecting personal liberty.

Putting personal liberty at the highest pedestal, the top court observed that if it does not interfere in the case relating to arrest of journalist Arnab Goswami in an abetment of suicide case then it would amount to walking on the path of destruction.

The top court said, if the state targets individuals then they must realise that there is the Supreme Court to protect them.

Simultaneously, it expressed anguish over denial of relief by various high courts in matters related to personal liberty in similar cases and said that a high court, being a constitutional court, must not fall short of exercising their constitutional duties.

We must send a message across to the high court today that please, exercise your jurisdiction to uphold personal liberty, said a vacation bench of Justices D Y Chandrachud and Indira Banerjee.

The top court's observations came during the day-long hearing on the interim bail plea of Republic TV's Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami in the case.

The apex court granted him and two others the relief, saying that it will be a "travesty of justice" if personal liberty is curtailed". "If we don't interfere in this case today, we will walk on the path of destruction. If left to me I won't watch the channel and you may differ in ideology but Constitutional courts will have to protect such freedoms, the bench


When a counsel for Maharashtra raised a technical objection saying that the journalist filed the bail application before the Magisterial court and then withdrew and chose a forum that suited him, the bench said "Technicality cannot be a ground to deny someone the personal liberty. This is not a case of


Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for the Maharashtra government who was opposing the interim bail plea of Goswami, was quick to point out the case of a Kerala journalist who was arrested in Uttar Pradesh on his way to Hathras and said that the apex court had asked him to go to the high court and come back after rejection of bail from


Justice Chandrachud recalled a recent case in which a woman was hauled up for a tweet in West Bengal as she criticised the lockdown enforcement and said that the constitutional courts must rise to the occasion to safeguard personal liberty.

She was issued summons Is this fair? This cannot happen," the judge remarked.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court on Wednesday questioned the Maharashtra government over the 2018 abetment to suicide case against journalist Arnab Goswami and said that it would be a travesty of justice if personal liberty of a person is curtailed like this.

A vacation bench of Justices D Y Chandrachud and Indira Banerjee said if state governments target individuals, they must realise then that there is apex court to protect the liberty of citizens.

The top court expressed concern over state governments targeting some individuals on the basis of ideology and difference of opinion.

We are seeing case after case where high courts are not granting bail and failing to protect personal liberty of people, the bench said while hearing Goswami's plea seeking interim bail in the case of alleged abetment to suicide of an interior designer in 2018.

Goswami has challenged the Bombay High Court's November 9 order refusing to grant him and two others interim bail in the case and asking them to move the trial court for relief.

The three accused were arrested by Alibaug police in Maharashtra's Raigad district on November 4 in connection with the suicide of architect-interior designer Anvay Naik and his mother in 2018 over alleged non-payment of dues by companies of the accused.

Next Story
Share it