NEW DELHI: Greater than 4 years after a senior bureaucrat from Assam died combating for restoration of honour, the Supreme Court absolved him of contempt of court docket fees whereas deciding his 12-year-old attraction and dominated that larger officers can’t be hauled up for contempt of court docket for alleged disregard of court docket orders by his subordinate officers.
A former chief govt officer of Assam Agricultural Produce Committee, Dr U N Bora, was convicted for contempt of court docket by the Gauhati Excessive Court docket in 2009 for levying sure fees in alleged violation of HC orders. Bora had filed the attraction in 2009 within the SC. However, he died in 2017 and the proceedings towards him abated in SC.
A bench of Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and M M Sundresh faulted the HC for continuing below Contempt of Court docket Act towards Bora and others for the alleged lapses by sure subordinate officers, which too on scrutiny was discovered by the SC to be unfounded.
Laying down a precept regarding the dreaded contempt of court docket course of, the bench mentioned, “Merely as a result of a subordinate official acted in disregard of an order handed by the Court docket, a legal responsibility can’t be fixed on a better official within the absence of information… The Contempt of Courts Act, 1971 explains a civil contempt to imply a willful disobedience of a call of the Court docket. Due to this fact, what’s related is the “wilful” disobedience. Information acquires substantial significance qua a contempt order.”
Writing the judgment, Justice Sundresh mentioned on the studying of a court docket order, if two views are potential, then the bureaucrat can’t be faulted below contempt of court docket regulation for taking motion in accordance with one of many two potential views. Contempt arises when there’s proof past doubt concerning the alleged deliberate, aware and intentional disregard for court docket orders, he mentioned.
“Whereas coping with a contempt petition, the Court docket just isn’t anticipated to conduct a roving inquiry and transcend the very judgment which was allegedly violated. The mentioned precept must be utilized with extra vigor when disputed questions of details are concerned they usually had been raised earlier however consciously not handled by creating a selected discussion board to resolve the unique proceedings,” the bench mentioned.
Within the case in hand, the SC mentioned it’s the particular case of the appellants that they didn’t violate the directives of the court docket.

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