The Supreme Court has served a notice to the secretary of Maharashtra Assembly for writing a letter to Republic TV editor-in-chief Arnab Goswami for intimidating him by approaching the apex court against breach of privilege notice.
The top court issued the notice to the secretary of Maharashtra Assembly on Friday who wrote the letter to Goswami on October 13, 2020.
The letter was produced before the top court by the Republic TV editor-in-chief’s lawyer Harish Salve.
Salve submitted an application with an affidavit by Goswami’s wife in absence of the senior journalist, who has been jailed after his arrest in connection with a 2018 case of abetment to suicide.
The secretary of the Maharashtra Assembly has been directed to remain present during the hearing on the letter, which will take place after two weeks.
As per media reports, till further orders, the top court has directed that journalist Goswami should not arrested in the privilege matter.
The Supreme Court bench, headed by Chief Justice of India, SA Bobde has senior advocate Arvind Datar as amicus to assist in the case.
The bench comprising justice AS Bopanna and justice V Ramasubramanian viewed that the letter interfered with the administration of justice by intimidating Arnab Goswami for approaching the court.
The bench also termed the letter as unprecedented and shocking.
A media report quoted the bench as saying: “The clear intention of the author of the letter seems to be to intimidate the petitioner because he approached the Court and to threaten him with a penalty for doing so.”
“The assembly should be well advised to understand that the right to approach this Court under Art 32 of Constitution is itself a fundamental right,” the bench of the court further said.
The apex court has issued a notice to Attorney General KK Venugopal to assist in the matter.