Courts Update Supreme Court reserves order on whether contempt proceedings should...

Supreme Court reserves order on whether contempt proceedings should be initiated against Rajiv Dahiya for not paying Rs 25 lakh exemplary cost

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New Delhi Sept 8(ILNS): The Supreme Court today reserved its order whether contempt proceeding should be initiated against Rajiv Dahiya, MD of Rajasthan-based NGO Suraz India Trust for not complying with its order of depositing exemplary cost of Rs 25 lakhs for casting ‘imaginary & scandalous accusations’ on the judiciary. 

Today the respondent judgment debtor and the contemnor in the contempt proceedings appeared before the court in pursuance of the Bailable warrants issued by the Apex Court. 

After hearing the Apex Court granted 3 days time to the chairperson to file the unconditional apology to the court or withdraw all that he has said. “In the end, as per usual practice in prior proceedings, the petitioner stated that he wants to tender an unconditional apology seeking to withdraw all that he has said. We have put to him that he has the liberty to file what he pleases within three days and we will take that into consideration while passing our orders. Judgment reserved,” noted by the bench of Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul & Justice MM Sundresh. 

The Supreme Court had issued contempt notice to the chairperson for not depositing the cost of Rs 25 lakh for repeatedly misusing the jurisdiction of the top court on 9th July 2021. 

During the hearing today, Rajiv Dahiya appeared before the court virtually requested for some time to seek legal advice which was further denied by the court. Subsequently, there were some prayers submitted by the NGO chairperson to allow for a mercy petition and requested that it’s impossible to make the payment as no resources.

“There is no such mercy petition and you are beyond that, as you have invited problems for yourself. You think if you throw mud on people, people will back-off, if you have assets it (the cost) will be recovered,” the court retorted. 

The court also denied recalling the orders made for the recovery of the amount from personal proceeds.

The court said if you would have taken apologies, you would not be in this position but now you have to learn a lesson.

Rajiv Dahiya shared an example of Japan detention center where a man breaks the jail 5 times just to draw the attention and notice of the authorities. In the same way, he wanted to bring notice to the courts that no one could make false statements in courts.” I just wanted to draw the attention of the courts; nobody has a right to make false statements in courts. I made this NGO for this purpose only to bring false examples out.”

“What you have done you think is right but we feel is wrong,” the court said.

The court opined that the purpose of forming an NGO may be right but there is a method to redress a grievance.

Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul also calls Rajiv Dahiya “Gyaani” in the subjects of law but at last, he cannot permit the same to be done.

The learned ASG Aishwarya Bhati respectfully submits that 9 times the matter was heard but there was complete evasion of information on employment and assets which is scandalizing the court.

He has to be mentally tested. The court asks the learned senior counsel Manish Singhvi.

The court also denied the petitioner any kind of review which was his constitutional right.

Rajiv Dahiya accepted his mistakes and asked for an unconditional apology.

Background 

The Bench comprised of Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Justice Hemant Gupta in a miscellaneous application( No. 1630 of 2020) in case of SURAZ INDIA TRUST V UOI, arising out of order passed in Writ Petition(PIL) no. 880 of 2016, dated 6.05.2021 asked the state(Union of India) that the petitioner in person qua Chairman of NGO (Suraj India Trust) has still not deposited 25 lakhs as a cost imposed by the then 3 judges bench namely CJI Jagdish Singh Khehar, Justice D.Y.Chandrachud and Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul in Writ petition no. 880 of 2016 for wasting the judicial time of the apex court by filing  64 frivolous petitions both before various high courts and the apex court. The Union of India had apprised the court that disciplinary proceedings had been instituted against the Petitioner in person, thereof the bench directed the state to initiate fresh steps in recovering the costs from the petitioner, which could be gathered from the arrears of land revenue.  

The Bench of Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Justice Hrishikesh Roy vide order 12.02.2021 noticed the fact that the application for modification was filed by the petitioner for waiving the cost awarded to Petitioner in person, was outrightly rejected on 5.1.2017.  furthermore, details of immovable and movable assets were sought by the apex court from the petitioner, by he failed to furnish to do so. Seeing the indiscretion conduct of the petitioner by laying tricks upon the court, the apex court issued a bailable warrant against petitioner Rajiv Daiya for the sum of 25,000/- with one surety of like amount.  

The order dated 12.04.2021 indicate that Sr. Adv Manish Singhvi, counsel for state appeared and the court asked him to obtain instructions as to the nature of employment of petitioner in person and whether all activities being carried out by petitioner are permissible or not while he is drawing a salary from the state since the petitioner is in a government job.

Genesis of Writ Petition No. (880 of 2016)

The following petition came up before the 3 judges Bench (Supra)  in the month of April 2017. the court had a view that such a petition does not disclose any cause in the interest of public nature, and as such the court granted him liberty to not file such PILs which are not in the interest of the public cause. An ample opportunity was given to the Petitioner to make a voluntary statement regarding not filing such petitions, nevertheless, the suggestion put forward by the court was declined by him. Several representations were sent by the petitioner to the then president of India making inappropriate remarks against SC judges, Rajasthan High court, and other court judges as well. Such a letter contained allegations about the registry of the Supreme court also./ILNS/KR/SNG

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