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Attorney General grants consent for contempt proceedings against Kunal Kamra over fresh tweet

Stand-up comedian Kunal Kamra landed in further troubles on Friday as Attorney General KK Venugopal gave his consent to initiate fresh contempt of court proceedings against him for his latest tweet against Chief Justice of India SA Bobde.

Describing Kamra’s November 18 tweet as “grossly vulgar” and “obnoxious”, Venugopal said “I have no doubt that it would tend to lower the authority of the Supreme Court of India as well as undermine the confidence that the litigant public have in the institution of the Supreme Court of India itself.”

This is the second time that Venugopal has given his consent to initiate criminal contempt of court proceedings against the comedian for his tweets allegedly scandalising the Supreme Court after it gave bail to Republic TV Editor-in-Chief Arnab Goswami in an abetment to suicide case.

On November 12, he had granted consent to around 10 persons to initiate contempt proceedings against Kamra, terming Kamra’s tweets as “highly objectionable”. Kamra’s tweets clearly crossed the line between humour and contempt of court, he had noted.

However, Kamra had refused to retract his tweets insinuating the Supreme Court or apologise for them, saying he believed they “speak for themselves” even as several persons filed criminal contempt of court petitions against him. On November 13, a defiant Kamra had released a statement addressed to Venugopal and the top court judges justifying his controversial tweets.

The consent of either the Attorney General or the Solicitor General is necessary, under Section 15 of the Contempt of Courts Act, 1971, for initiating contempt proceedings against a person.

On Friday, Venugopal granted fresh consent on a request made in this regard by Prayagraj-based advocate Anuj Singh regarding Kamra’s November18 tweet making an objectionable gesture while making a comment against the Chief Justice of India.

“I have gone through your request for consent under section 15 of the Contempt of Courts Act, 1971 against Kunal Kamra in respect of the tweet dated November 18, 2020 (at 9.46 PM), Venugopal said in his letter to Singh.