“Politicians should be thick-skinned,” the Supreme Court on Tuesday said while hearing a plea of a West Bengal-based political commentator seeking protection from arrest in multiple FIRs lodged against him for his alleged objectionable remarks against the Assamese people.
A bench of Justices B R Gavai and Sanjay Karol observed that even judges need to let go of the comments made against them in letters and interviews these days.
“Politicians should be thick-skinned. We judges also need to be cautious in view of letters and interviews happening these days. If we start listening to them we will not be able to work,” Justice Gavai said.
The bench was told by senior advocate Siddharth Agarwal and advocate Ashutosh Dubey, appearing for political commentator Garga Chatterjee, that he had made certain comments on Twitter (now X) in 2020.
Agarwal said several FIRs were registered against him in Assam and West Bengal which needed to be clubbed and transferred to a neutral state for further investigation.
Referring to the comments of then Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal, Agarwal said he had ordered Chatterjee’s arrest according to the official statement, after which he was arrested.
“On August 19, 2020, the petitioner tendered a public apology for his remarks hurting the sentiments of the people of Assam,” he said.
The bench asked him whether he was granted bail or not.
Agarwal said that bail was given and he was granted protection from arrest in FIRs lodged in West Bengal and Assam by this court on September 9, 2022.
The bench then posted the matter for a final hearing on a non-miscellaneous day and asked the pleadings to be completed.
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