With more cases of public servants making derogatory statements against women in public being notified, the Supreme Court of India will most probably formulate guidelines to regulate the behaviour of elected officials, said Supreme Court advocate Renjith Marar.
The bench led by Supreme Court Chief Justice Deepak Misra has allowed George Vattamkulam, the petitioner, to approach the constitution bench formed to decide on elected officials’ lewd statements in public.
The constitution bench was formed in the wake of UP Minister Azam Khan’s statement on Bulandshahr gang rape incident which shook the country in July last year. A 35-year-old woman and her daughter were brutally gang raped for more than three hours in front of the male members of their family by a group of highway robbers. The Minister had remarked that the incident was part of a ‘political conspiracy’ by the opposition parties. The constitution bench sought if the freedom of speech enshrined in the constitution could be controlled by Article 21 of the Indian constitution (protection of life and personal liberty) apart from article 19 (2) of the constitution (imposes reasonable restrictions on freedom of speech).