Kejriwal circular against media houses stayed

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.  

Bench questions the logic behind Delhi government’s policy

Days after he challenged criminal defamation as a slur on free speech, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Thursday faced major embarrassment with the Supreme Court staying his government’s May 6 circular to initiate criminal defamation proceedings against media houses responsible for negative reporting against his Ministers and colleagues in power.

The Supreme Court criticised the government for issuing the circular, saying it left it open for anyone aggrieved with a media report to randomly seek criminal defamation proceedings.“Why this circular by the government? So now anyone affected [by news reports] can file defamation in individual capacity? We issue notice, you file a response,” a Bench of Justices Dipak Misra and P.C. Pant observed.

The court questioned the logic behind the government’s policy. “What is this policy? Who is that authority [the official who issued the order]. As an interim measure, we direct stay of the circular dated May 6, 2015 till further orders by this court.”

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Printable version | Feb 27, 2020 1:48:23 AM |

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