Two lawyers sought the consent of Attorney General K K Venugopal to initiate contempt proceedings against senior advocate and Rajya Sabha MP Kapil Sibal for his remarks on certain judgements passed the Supreme Court.
The Attorney General or the Solicitor General's approval is a necessary condition to set in motion the criminal contempt proceedings before the apex court under section 15 of the Contempt of Courts Act.
The lawyers wrote two separate letters to the Attorney General seeking his permission. Vineet Jindal and Shashank Shekhar Jha have requested the top law officer to grant consent for initiating contempt proceedings against Sibal, a former law minister.
"The speech of the contemnor is not only against the Supreme Court and its judges but is a process to undermine the dignity and independent nature of the Supreme Court by scandalizing the authority of both the Supreme Court and its judges," Jha said in his letter.
Similarly, Jindal has claimed that statements by Sibal have "scandalized the judgments" passed by the Supreme Court judges. "If this kind of precedent was allowed, political leaders would start making a reckless allegation against the judges of the highest court of our country and this trend would soon lead to the failure of an independent judiciary system," he said in his letter.
In his letter to the Attorney General, Jha claimed that in his speech, Sibal had raised "doubt" on the independence of the Supreme Court and "undermined the dignity with a malafide intention to malign the image" of the top court.
Sibal had on August 6 made the statement as a speaker in an event organized here. In his statement, Sibal was critical of the apex court's recent judgements in the Zakia Jafri case as well as on the pleas pertaining to the interpretation of certain provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.
(With inputs from PTI)