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Allow freedom of press, Supreme Court tells political leaders

THE ASIAN AGE. | J. VENKATESAN
Published : Jan 9, 2018, 1:16 am IST
Updated : Jan 9, 2018, 1:16 am IST

The high court, however, rejected the complaint and the present appeal is directed against this order.

Supreme Court of India (Photo: Asian Age)
 Supreme Court of India (Photo: Asian Age)

New Delhi: Against the backdrop of UIADI lodging a police case against an English newspaper for its expose on how unsafe Aadhaar data is, the Supreme Court on Monday asked politicians to allow journalists freedom of expression even if there is some “wrong reporting.”

Dismissing an appeal filed by Rahmat Fatima Amanullah, a former Bihar MLA, against a Patna high court order, a bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A.M. Kanwilkar and D.Y. Chandrachud told the counsel, “You must allow freedom of expression by journalists. There may be some wrong reporting.  But don’t hold on to it forever.”

The Patna high court had in September last year quashed defamation cases against the journalists of a Hindi Channel (IBN-7). It was alleged by the petitioner that to increase its TRPs, the television channel had run a story without verifying facts.

The complainant, who claimed to be the daughter of a senior and reputed bureaucrat, and that her mother was a minister in the Bihar government, alleged that on July 18, 2011, IBN-7 channel aired a news report regarding a scam in the allotment of BIADA land. She alleged that in the report the TV channel uttered some scandalous and defamatory remarks against her and her parents. The petitioner alleged that the channel did not exercise care,  caution and honesty in its reporting, but defamed and harmed the reputation of her respectable family with the sole objective of increasing its TRPs and, thereby, revenue.

The high court, however, rejected the complaint and the present appeal is directed against this order.

Tags: uiadi, supreme court, aadhaar data