Monday, November 1, 2021

Abusive content on social media lowering majesty of the court: Andhra Pradesh High Court

The Andhra Pradesh High Court observed on Friday while directing YouTube to block a channel named Punch Prabhakar run by a man based in the US (The High Court of Andhra Pradesh at Amravati v State of Andhra Pradesh and ors).

The Court also asked its Registrar General to forward all URLs/IDs of other derogatory content to the intermediaries which have to remove the same within 36 hours.

The directions came from the bench of Chief Justice Prashant Kumar Mishra and Justice Lalitha Kanneganti while hearing a suo motu contempt petition initiated last year to deal with the wild, defamatory, baseless and untenable statements being made against the judges.

“The CBI is considered to be a premier investigating agency of the country. The Courts in India hold CBI as an organization in high esteem. It is important that it should never give the impression that its working is lopsided. In spite of orders passed by this Court on a number of occasions, neither there is development in the investigation nor efforts are made to remove the abusive content. We feel attention from the top level is warranted. Hence, an affidavit shall be filed by the Director, CBI as to what has transpired from December 2020, what are the efforts made by CBI and the future course of action.” 

“Judge bashing and using derogatory and contemptuous language against Judges has become a favourite pastime of some people. These statements tend to scandalize and lower the authority of the Courts and cannot be permitted because, for the function of democracy, an independent judiciary to dispense justice without fear and favour is paramount… Judiciary should not be reduced to the position of flies in the hands of wanton boys. Judge bashing is not and cannot be a substitute for constructive criticism." 

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