Bombay High Court’s view on applying “Prashant Kanojia” case as precedent in Arnab Goswani’s case

In the order of the High Court refusing interim bail to Arnab Goswani, it was made clear that the facts of the Prashant Kanojia’s case and Arnab Goswani’s case are totally different.

The Habeas corpus case of Prashant Kanojia was filed last year before the Supreme Court. He was a UP journalist. He was arrested and remanded for his tweets. A petition of Habeas corpus was filed by his wife Jagisha Arora challenging the detention as unlawful. (Jagisha Arora v. Union of India) Relying on this case, Goswani’s advocate argues the Habeas corpus petition filed for Arnab Goswani.

The Bombay High Court held that:

  1. Only the Supreme Court has the power to invoke Article 142 of the Indian Constitution. Article 142 is the extraordinary power to pass necessary orders to meet justice. In Kanojia’s case, the petition was before the Supreme Court, so they had invoked 142, but the present case is before the High Court. Such powers are not available for the High Court.
  2. Another reason for not taking this case as precedent is that the facts of the cases are different. Kanojia was charged under Section 500, 505 of IPC and Section 67 of Information Technology Act, 2000. But Arnab Goswani is charged under Section 306 of IPC that is abetment of suicide, which has maximum punishment of 10 years.

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