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Aggravated Contempt: Supreme Court Directs Contemnors Who Re-possessed Property By Breaking Open Lock Violating SC Order To Keep In Civil Prison For 6 Months

Shruti Kakkar
10 March 2022 2:57 PM GMT
Aggravated Contempt: Supreme Court Directs Contemnors Who Re-possessed Property By Breaking Open Lock Violating SC Order To Keep In Civil Prison For 6 Months
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In a matter related to contempt of Court's order, the Supreme Court recently directed for keeping the contemnors who irrespective of Court's order re-possessed the property by breaking open the locks in civil prison for 6 months for their conduct. The bench of Justices SK Kaul and MM Sundresh was considering a contempt petition against the Top Court's order dated February 21, 2022, of...

In a matter related to contempt of Court's order, the Supreme Court recently directed for keeping the contemnors who irrespective of Court's order re-possessed the property by breaking open the locks in civil prison for 6 months for their conduct.

The bench of Justices SK Kaul and MM Sundresh was considering a contempt petition against the Top Court's order dated February 21, 2022, of directing the executing Court to take over the possession.

Irrespective of the Court's order dated February 21, 2022, the respondents re-possessed the property by breaking open locks. The respondents were required to hand over the possession but even after 13 months they were enjoying the benefits of the properties and rentals from the space.

Remarking that the present case was a case of aggravated contempt, the bench in their order said,

"The respondents already stand convicted of contempt. It is a case of aggravated contempt. The respondents do not seem to be genuinely apologetic for what they have done. They are entitled to the maximum, sentence for contempt. We thus direct that the respondents will be kept in civil prison for a period of 6 months for their conduct."

The Top Court further directed the contemnors to restitute the petitioner for Rs 5,60,000 (the amount which the contemnors had realized) within a period of 1 month from the date of order.

The Court however at the request of the counsel of the contemnors took a more compassionate view and directed for restricting the custody to the date of payment of the amount of damages in case the same is paid within one month from the date of order.

"At the request of learned counsel for the respondents we are taking a more compassionate view and if the amount of damages as assessed is paid within one month from today, the period of custody will be restricted to the date of the payment of the amount, failing which they will serve out the remaining period of sentence upto 6 months. Thus in any case, they have to serve out a sentence of one month. The respondents are also cautioned to be careful in future as they are already convicted of contempt in the present proceedings," Court said in its order.

Noting that demolition of the structure would take two weeks, the bench granted liberty to the petitioner to take assistance of the police and for charging the expenses from the contemnors. Directions were also issued to the police to investigate the incident about the respondents/at their instigation people coming and stoning the house of the petitioner and proceed in accordance with law.

Case Title: Manjunath Babu K V. Narasamma & Ors.| Contempt Petition(Civil) No. 304/2021

Coram: Justices SK Kaul and MM Sundresh

Counsel For Petitioner: Ashok Bannidinni, Aviral Chandra, Sujeet Kumar, Anushuman Nayak, Subhranshu Dash

Counsel for Contemnors: Advocate(s) C.B. Gururaj, Sharath Gogi, Prakash Ranjan Nayak

Click Here To Read/Download Order


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