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Indian Case Summary

R.K.Anand vs Registrar,Delhi High Court on 29 July, 2009 – Case Summary

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In the case of R.K. Anand vs Registrar, Delhi High Court, a significant legal battle unfolded in the Supreme Court of India on 29th July 2009. The case was a fallout from a criminal trial arising from a hit-and-run accident in Delhi, where a car, allegedly driven by Sanjeev Nanda, a young man from a wealthy business family, crashed through a police check post, killing six people. This case, commonly referred to as the BMW case, had been meandering for over eight years, with the prosecution’s case not proceeding satisfactorily.

Facts of the Case

On a cold winter morning in Delhi, a car traveling at reckless speed crashed through a police check post, killing six people, including three policemen. The main accused in the case was Sanjeev Nanda, who, according to the prosecution, was driving a black BMW car at very high speed while in an inebriated state. The case drew considerable media attention due to the status of the main accused and the flip-flop of the prosecution witnesses.

In May 2007, a well-known English language news channel, New Delhi Television (NDTV), telecast a program showing one Sunil Kulkarni, a witness for the prosecution but later dropped, meeting with IU Khan, the Special Public Prosecutor, and RK Anand, the Senior Defence Counsel, and negotiating for his sell-out in favor of the defense for a high price. This telecast shocked the Delhi High Court, which initiated a suo moto proceeding and issued show cause notices to RK Anand, IU Khan, and Bhagwan Sharma, an associate advocate with RK Anand, asking why they should not be convicted and punished for committing criminal contempt of court.

Issues and Court Observations

The main issue in this case was whether RK Anand and IU Khan were guilty of committing contempt of court as defined under section 2 (c) of the Contempt of Courts Act. The Delhi High Court, after considering their show cause and hearing the parties, found that their acts fell within the definition of contempt under clauses (ii) & (iii) of section 2(c) of the Contempt of Courts Act.

The court held them guilty of committing contempt of Court and prohibited them from appearing in the Delhi High Court and the courts subordinate to it for a period of four months from the date of the judgment. The court also held that RK Anand and IU Khan had forfeited their right to be designated as Senior Advocates and recommended to the Full Court to divest them of the honor. In addition to this, the High Court also sentenced them to a fine of rupees two thousand each.

These two appeals by RK Anand and IU Khan were filed under section 19 (1) of the Contempt of Courts Act against the judgment and order passed by the Delhi High Court.

Conclusion

The case of R.K. Anand vs Registrar, Delhi High Court is a significant one as it highlights the importance of maintaining the sanctity of the court proceedings and the role of the legal professionals in upholding justice. The case also underscores the power of the media in bringing to light the malpractices within the legal system, thus playing a crucial role in ensuring justice.