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PIL in Bombay HC against media trial in SSR Case to issue guidelines to regulate media reporting



A Public Interest Litigation has been filed before the Bombay High Court to issue guidelines to regulate the media till specific statutory rules are framed.


The PIL seeks a new dimension for the interpretation of Article 19 of the Constitution of India.


One of the petitioners, Asim Sarode raised grievance over the manner in which the media has reported on the death of late Actor Sushant Singh Rajput, and suggested that the Court issue guidelines to regulate the print media and broadcast media without curtailing the freedom of the press.


He added that until the legislature passes a law in this respect, guidelines must be made in order to regulate the press in a manner that does not abridge the freedom of press.


Citing the leading cases of D.K. Basu v. State of West Bengal and Vishakha v. State of Rajasthan, Mr. Sarode, in a reply affidavit, enlisted precedents where the Court had framed new guidelines "to bridge the gap of absence of clear law on some specific issue".


Sarode has urged the Court to intervene in the interest of public as it "will shape the policy for responsible media."

"In the background of present hue and cry over the media trial and uncontrolled way of handling issues by the media, giving new dimension to Article 19 of the Indian Constitution is the need of the hour."

Asim Sarode

While pointing the importance of guidelines of the Courts in a situation where certain news channels may not be covered under the News Broadcasting Association, he expressed hope that the Court may lay down guidelines as the Court had observed that there was lack of State control over the media.

Sarode’s PIL, along with the other PILs, is listed for hearing today before the Bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Dutta and Justice GS Kulkarni.





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